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Texas Basil Pesto

A Central Texas version of classic basil pesto made with fresh basil leaves, pecans, garlic, Parmesan cheese, olive oil, and salt and pepper.
Author: Sherri Stockman


  • Food Processor
  • Cutting Board
  • Measuring Cup
  • Knife
  • Rubber Spatula
  • 4 half pint (8 ounce) jars


  • 4 cups Basil fresh leaves, stripped from stem, packed
  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese grated
  • 1 cup Olive oil extra virgin, organic if possible
  • 1 cup Pecans chopped
  • 2 Tbsp garlic fresh, minced
  • 1/2 tsp salt Celtic or Tibetan, to taste
  • 1/4 tsp pepper freshly ground, to taste


  • Pulse the basil, pecans, and half the olive oil in a food processor: Place the basil leaves, pecans, and 1/2 cup olive oil into the bowl of your food processor and pulse several times. Should be finely chopped.
  • Add garlic and cheese: Add the minced garlic and Parmesan cheese to the basil mixture, and pulse several more times. Scrape the mixture down from the sides with a rubber spatula.
  • Stream in the olive oil: While the food processor is running, slowly add in the olive oil in a small steady stream. This helps it to emulsify, and keeps it from separating. Stop the food processor occasionally to scrape the pesto back down into the processor bowl.
  • Stir in salt and pepper: Add more to taste, if desired
  • Jar it up: Spoon pesto into jars and add a small layer of olive oil on top, to avoid oxidation and discoloring. Leave at least a half inch space at the top of the jar if you plan to freeze your pesto.