9 Winter Pesto Recipes That Don't Call for Basil

By F&W Editors Posted February 10, 2016

No basil? No problem.

Fresh, easy-to-make pesto is a perfect way to upgrade weeknight pasta. But when the winter chill blows in and fresh basil is nowhere to be found, what do you do? Well, you can make pesto with pretty much any herb and nut combination, so simply swap out the basil for something more seasonal like sage or even radish greens. Here, our best recipes for basil-free, winter-friendly pestos.

1. Spicy Almond Pesto

Food & Wine:

Using almond butter is a great shortcut for making this delicious spicy sauce.

2. Radish-Greens Pesto

Food & Wine: Spaghetti with Radish-Greens Pesto

© Con Poulos

Radish greens make a superfresh, flavorful pesto. You can also use beet or turnip greens.

3. Hazelnut-and-Green Olive Pesto

Food & Wine:

This isn't a typical pesto, since it has no cheese; instead, it's made with an irresistible blend of crunchy toasted hazelnuts, fresh green parsley, salty green olives and garlic.

4. Chile-Cilantro Pesto

Food & Wine: Chile-Cilantro Pesto

© Antonis Achilleos

Chef Rick Bayless keeps extra cilantro from going to waste by using it in this pesto, which can stay in the fridge for two months.

5. Sage-Walnut Pesto

Food & Wine:

Earthy, aromatic sage and buttery walnuts make for a perfect cold-weather pesto.

6. Parsley-Hazelnut Pesto

Food & Wine:

Toasted hazelnuts are a fun substitution for the typical pine nuts usually found in pesto.

7. Dill-Pecan Pesto

Food & Wine:

The subtle flavor of dill is delicious with sweet, toasted pecans.

8. Broccoli Rabe Pesto

Food & Wine:

This healthy, peppery pesto is delicious on toasted bread.

9. Herb and Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto

Food & Wine:

Try this flavor-packed pesto on meats like lamb or pork.

The Dish
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