Purrfect Pesto

Fresh pesto is even better than jarred, so worth trying to make. It lasts in the fridge for up to a week.


Cooking time: 15 minutes
Makes 4 servings


1.5 wooden spoons +


  • 350g Fusilli (or other pasta)
  • 50g pine nuts
  • 50g fresh basil leaves
  • 150ml olive oil (extra virgin is best)
  • 125g grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 cloves garlic


  • Saucepan
  • Frying pan
  • Food processor
  • Mixing bowl
  • Spoon
  • Colander


  1. Toast the pine nuts in a dry frying pan (no oil) over a medium heat for 2-3 minutes until lightly golden. Toss in the middle to stop them burning.
  2. Pulse the pine nuts, garlic, salt and basil in a food processor until you have a paste.
  3. Mix the pine nut mixture with the parmesan in a mixing bowl.
  1. Using a spoon, beat the olive oil a little at a time until you have a thick sauce. (You may not need to use all the olive oil. Stop when you have the right consistency.) This is your pesto!
  2. Cook the pasta in a saucepan of salted boiling water according to the packet’s instructions.
  3. Drain the pasta using a colander (reserve some of the drained water).
  4. Mix the pasta with however much pesto you would like and add pepper. Top with more cheese if you want. Tip: a little of the pasta water to help everything bind.

Further Suggestions

You can try this pesto with all sorts of things, not just pasta.

Try putting some in a sandwich, along with chicken or mozzarella cheese and roast vegetables. It’s also tasty in a potato salad. What else could you eat it with?


Want to try a different pasta sauce?

Click on this paw
to find out more.