Vegan Pesto Mania

Ohhh my gosh am I excited to share this recipe with you. I am so obsessed with fresh herbs - I've always loved the smell and taste of basil, parsley, and more recently, sage. Why not, then experiment with making a healthy pesto using some of these wondrous beauties? 

I don't care that pesto can seem more spring-timey, I think herbs are always amazing for you, they have incredible anti-inflammatory properties, tout loads of vitamin C, and give everything such a good flavor.  Today I'm sharing my new recipe for plant-based and dairy free pesto. Now, I don't have anything majorly against traditional pesto, except that I often tend to eat a ton of it, and the parmesan cheese tends to then give me a stomach ache. Not fun, not happy Joanna. 

Sooo, instead I decided to experiment with a few of my favorite things to create an EASY recipe that requires (as most good things do) just a teeny bit of planning. This recipe calls for a quick soak of raw cashews and the aid of a food processor but you could also use a blender.  Happy pesto people!

Makes about 1 1/2 cups - store in fridge in airtight container for up to 1 week


  • 1 cup of raw cashews soaked in filtered water for at least 30 minute (and up to overnight!)
  • 1 cup of basil, tightly packed
  • 1 cup of other herb (or green) of choice - used a combo of sage and parsley. But you could also experiment with watercress, or even arugula, or cilantro for a more mexican-pesto vibe (ole!) 
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 cup of olive oil (plus a bit more for drizzling)
  • 1/2 tsp of sea salt


  1. Rinse soaked cashews and place cashews, herbs, peeled garlic cloves, olive oil, and sea salt in a food processor. Pulse until a smooth pesto-like paste develops. Add a teensy bit more olive oil if necessary
  2. Serve over fresh pasta, or with any other items that would complement a good zesty pesto (sandwiches, spoonfuls of it on its own, pretzels, even mixed with rice as a risotto)