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Jar of cashew pesto with a spoon dipping into it.

Cashew Basil Pesto

This Creamy Cashew Pesto is perfect for any summertime pasta. Fresh garden basil combined with parmesan cheese and cashews makes a versatile sauce. 
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Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: basil pesto with cashews, cashew basil pesto, cashew pesto, cashew pesto recipe, Cashew Pesto Sauce, pesto recipe with cashews
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 3 minutes
Total Time: 8 minutes
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 254kcal
Author: Karen


  • ½ cup raw cashews
  • ½ cup Parmesan cheese grated
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 2 cups fresh basil loosely packed
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon salt


  • In a small dry skillet, toast the cashews over medium-high heat for 3 minutes or until golden brown.
  • In a food processor or blender combine the cashews, cheese, oil, peeled garlic, basil,  lemon juice, and salt. Pulse in 5-second intervals until smooth.
  • Adjust consistency by adding more oil, if desired.


Expert Tips:
  • Fresh ingredients: Pesto will taste the best when fresh ingredients including basil, lemon juice, and garlic are used rather than any shortcuts.
  • Use immediately: While you can store pesto, it has the best color and flavor when used right away.
  • Freeze in Ice Trays: This gives you a greater ability to thaw out exactly what you need to use so you have less waste.
  • Cashews: Use raw, freshly toasted cashews for the best flavor.


Calories: 254kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 16g | Cholesterol: 6mg | Sodium: 232mg | Potassium: 105mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 487IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 117mg | Iron: 1mg
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