This mild pesto is a great alternative for those who don’t love the strong flavor of garlic. It’s also great to freeze – so make sure to harvest that basil before the end of the season!

This mild pesto is a great alternative for those who don't love the strong flavor of pesto. It's also great to freeze - so make sure to harvest that basil before it dies! Get the easy recipe on RachelCooks.com!

 

This is pesto you can eat on a first date.

Well–I can’t guarantee you won’t have green stuff stuck in your teeth after you eat it, but I guess you gotta live on the edge a little bit. Besides, it’s the truest test of character–will your date tell you about it or let you walk around all night with pesto stuck in your teeth?

When I say “mild,” I’m talking about the garlic! Because let’s be honest, pesto can be very garlicky! This pesto lets you taste the gloriously toasted pine nuts, the Parmesan cheese, your good extra virgin olive oil, and….of course, basil.

And continuing with the honesty here, I think the pine nuts are the best part. Not to mention stinking expensive. If all you can taste is garlic, you might as well replace them with something else and save your money.

Because this mild pesto is a little more “tame” than its garlicky relative, make sure you use really great olive oil, because you’ll taste that too. There is also spinach mixed in to stretch the quantity a bit and to…tame it down. More.

I promise mild pesto still packs all the pesto-y goodness you could ever wish for!

This mild pesto is a great alternative for those who don't love the strong flavor of pesto. It's also great to freeze - so make sure to harvest that basil before it dies! Get the easy recipe on RachelCooks.com!

I love it that I can eat a whole bunch of this mild pesto slathered on a piece of bread and not breathe hot-garlicky-fire the rest of the day. It’s good stuff. Don’t send me hate mail telling me that it isn’t pesto without the garlic. I’ll email you back! Just warning you!

If you have a good harvest of basil that you need to use up before the cold comes (like I did!), this is your recipe! Make a bunch, use up that basil, and freeze it for later. You’ll be so glad you did when it’s the middle of winter and you’re just dying for a fresh taste of summer. 

Notes about freezing:

  • Freeze in snack-size zip-top bags (2 tablespoons in each), flatten, removing any excess air, seal, and then place all the little bags in a gallon-sized freezer bag or freezer container. 
  • Alternate way to freeze the mild pesto: Use ice cube trays! Once the pesto has frozen, pop it out into a large freezer bag.
  • To use, thaw in fridge overnight or on the counter for a few hours. If you’re using it in soup or spaghetti sauce, just drop the frozen pesto in. It will thaw out quickly.
  • Don’t need 2 tablespoons? Crack off the amount you need, reseal the bag, and return it to the freezer.
  • Frozen pesto will keep for up to a year.
  • Keep reading for recipes that use pesto.

Looking for ways to use this mild pesto?

 

This mild pesto is a great alternative for those who don't love the strong flavor of pesto. It's also great to freeze - so make sure to harvest that basil before it dies! Get the easy recipe on RachelCooks.com!

Mild Pesto

Yield: 1 to 1 1/2 cups
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes

This mild pesto doesn't contain garlic and makes a large enough batch to have plenty to freeze.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
  • 3 cups packed fresh spinach leaves
  • 1 cup toasted & cooled pine nuts
  • 12 ounces grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 1/4 cups good olive oil

Instructions

  1. In a food processor, add basil, spinach, pine nuts. Pulse until it has a texture of coarse meal. Add cheese and pulse until combined.
  2. Add oil in steady stream while food processor is running. Continue to add olive oil until pesto is a smooth paste.
  3. To freeze: Put in small containers, zip-top bags or ice cube tray. I freeze mine flat in zip-top bags in small portions so they thaw very quickly.
  4. To use: Thaw in refrigerator overnight before using or drop frozen pesto right into soups or spaghetti sauce.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 24 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 202Total Fat: 19gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 12mgSodium: 272mgCarbohydrates: 4gFiber: 1gSugar: 0gProtein: 6g

RachelCooks.com sometimes provides nutritional information, but these figures should be considered estimates, as they are not calculated by a registered dietitian. Please consult a medical professional for any specific nutrition, diet, or allergy advice.

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This mild pesto is a great alternative for those who don't love the strong flavor of pesto. It's also great to freeze - so make sure to harvest that basil before it dies! Get the easy recipe on RachelCooks.com!

Verdict: I can literally eat this by the spoonful.
Husband’s take: He’s not a huge garlic fan so he really likes this mild pesto. I did it for him–not because I didn’t have garlic in the house. Yeah–let’s go with that.
Changes I would make: Not a single one! But-if you love garlic, and you have it in the house–throw a few cloves in the food processor with everything else for a more “traditional” pesto.
Difficulty: So easy!

This mild pesto is a great alternative for those who don't love the strong flavor of pesto. It's also great to freeze - so make sure to harvest that basil before it dies! Get the easy recipe on RachelCooks.com!