Vegan Green Basil Almond Pesto


Pesto. Yum. There are MANY different variations on the classic ‘pine nuts and parmesan cheese’ pesto recipe, but when given a jar of nutritional yeast flakes recently, I wanted to get creative with recipes using it! As you guys know, I consider myself ‘plant-focused’ in terms of how I eat, and I love trying vegetarian and vegan friendly versions of animal protein-containing recipes. Nutritional yeast is a very popular ingredient in vegan cooking (I’ve used them in my Creamy Cashew Sauce recipe) as it has a sort of nutty cheesy flavour, and is a great source of B-complex vitamins, with many brands fortified with vitamin B12. I love the flavour, so I decided to try it out in a pesto recipe to see if it would bring that flavour game. Happily it did, so here’s the tasty finished product for you to try at home, whether you’re a veggie, vegan, meat-eater or somewhere in between!


Recipe (Makes 1 jar of Pesto)


  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and finely diced
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 3 heaped tbsp nutritional yeast flakes
  • 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 100g of raw almonds
  • 1 handful of washed spinach leaves
  • 2 tsp dried basil


  1. This really is a super simple recipe. Just add the ingredients to a blender cup or food processor, screw on the lid, shake it up, and blend!
  2. I find I have to blitz the mix for 1-2 minutes at a time to get the consistency right, so don’t be afraid to do that, pushing down the sides of the mix as you do as the drier parts can gather there. Add a little extra olive oil or water if you like!
  3. Serve however you like! I love simply adding this to a bowl of pasta, or coating a pan of veggies in it and roasting them in the oven! Store this jar in the fridge once made.

Enjoy guys! Tag me if you try this one out as always – @theirishbalance on Instagram/Twitter/Facebook!

Ciara 🙂 x

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