Peppery Double Parmesan Basil Pesto

Course: Condiment, Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 234
Author: Lord Byron's Kitchen
Traditional basil pesto is rustic and perfect just the way it is, but change is good and should be embraced - pesto not excluded!  Peppery Double Parmesan Basil Pesto is a updated version on a trusted classic, because every day deserves something extra!
Print Recipe


  • 3 cups basil leaves, fresh, packed
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts, lightly toasted
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried red chili flakes


  • Place a cast iron skillet on a burner over medium heat.  Add the pine nuts and shake the skillet so that the pine nuts are in a single layer.  Keep the pine nuts moving so that they don't burn.  As soon as you can smell the woodiness, and see the pine nuts turn a golden brown, remove them from the skillet immediately to a cool glass dinner plate.  Try to keep them in a single layer so that they can cool down.
  • Next, add the basil, garlic, lemon juice, and olive oil to a food processor.  Pulse until the mixture is smooth and all of the basil is finely pureed.
  • Add the cooled pine nuts and pulse 3 or 4 times until the pine nuts are crushed and incorporated.
  • Next, add the ground black pepper, dried red chili flakes, and parmesan cheese.  Pulse 3 or 4 times until mixed through.  Do not over-pulse, you want there to be little specks of pine nuts and parmesan throughout the pesto.
  • Set aside pesto.  Cook pasta and toss the desired amount of pesto with the hot pasta.  Serve immediately.


Calories: 234kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 11mg | Sodium: 194mg | Potassium: 92mg | Fiber: 0g | Sugar: 0g | Vitamin A: 620IU | Vitamin C: 3.2mg | Calcium: 156mg | Iron: 1mg