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Jar of nut free pesto made with pumpkin seeds

Nut free pesto (Pumpkin seed pesto)

  • Author: Nina Mills
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 cup or 250g of pesto 1x
  • Category: Basics
  • Cuisine: Italian


Super quick nut-free pesto made with pumpkin seeds instead of pine nuts.



½ cup toasted pumpkin seeds (see notes)

1 cup fresh basil

½ cup fresh parsley (stems are ok to include)

2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice

2 cloves garlic, peeled

½ cup finely grated parmesan

½ cup extra virgin olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Add the toasted pumpkin seeds, basil, parsley, lemon juice, garlic and parmesan to a food processor and blitz
  2. While the food processor is running, slowly pour in the extra virgin olive oil and continue blending until you get an even consistency (you are looking for fine chunks). You may have to stop the food processor and scrape the sides down a couple of times
  3. Have a taste and then season with salt and pepper to your liking


To toast your pumpkin seeds, place them in a cold pan on turn the heat onto medium. Shake the pan occasionally to move the pumpkin seeds around so they don’t burn. They will be toasted when the colour changes slightly and they give off a slight toasted smell. You may find some of the seeds start popping too. This shouldn’t take more than 2-3 minutes.

Changing the texture. The directions for making it ends up with a pesto that is a little chunkier, so you could add more oil to create a smoother texture or blitz the ingredients one at a time from hardest to softest to help get a smoother consistency.

Keywords: nut-free

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