Dairy-Free Pesto

More people are lactose intolerant out there than they think! This recipe is a dedication to them. Classic pesto uses tons of Parmesan cheese, which is delicious. But, we can substitute nutritional yeast for the cheese which gives the familiar "umami" savory flavor. I think the basil is really the star anyway. The umami is second to the fresh basil flavor. If you don't have nutritional yeast, make it without it and it will still be great. Add just a little more salt for that savory flavor.

I hope you give this simple recipe a try. It can last almost over a week in the fridge if sealed air tight. It goes well in pasta, panini, or little appetizers like cherry tomatoes or toasts. My favorite is on a pizza. 


(Serves 2-4)
  • 2 cups fresh basil, tightly packed
  • 3 Tablespoons walnuts or pine nuts
  • 1 sliver garlic, smaller than a clove (optional)
  • 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3-4 Tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2-3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3-6 Tablespoons water


Add all the ingredients together, except oil and water, in a blender or immersion blender container. Blend a little and keep blending as you stream in the oil. Add a little more oil or water until you get a smooth consistency. 

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