Basil Artichoke Pesto

12 oz frozen, thawed artichoke hearts
3 oz Parmesan cheese, grated
2 oz fresh basil
.5 oz fresh Italian parsley
1 oz pinenuts, toasted
3 tablespoons olive oil
4-5 cloves garlic

to serve: 1 lb hot pasta

Place all ingredients in a food processor or blender, pulse until almost smooth. Stir into hot pasta.

My thoughts:

I love making pesto in the warmer weather because it good on hot or cold pasta, comes together quickly and requires no cooking. However, buying enough fresh basil for pesto at times costs small fortune and I get tired making the same thing over and over again. Enter the frozen artichoke. It adds a great texture and flavor to the pesto and you only need a drop of basil to make a delicious sauce. A great twist on an old favorite.


  1. I find basil is pretty cheap, but I’m trying to grow my own plant anyway. This looks really yummy!

  2. Well, basil isn’t the most expensive, but it is frequently $3 or so for just about 3 oz and I’d generally use at least 8 oz for a fair amount of pesto. $9-10 just for basil for one meal is a little pricy. I have have grown my own but again, unless you have a number of plants or a really large one, you pretty much use one whole plant for one meal of pesto.

  3. I am looking forward to my basil plants growing, so I can make pesto. I have a miniature variety (only get to be 6″) and they are tiny right now, but I have 12 plants!

  4. lovely pesto! and a great marriage of seasonal flavors

  5. That is lovely Rachel, I’ll be making this one very soon.

  6. I hear you on the basil. All herbs really! Then, since I am just one person – I can never use the whole bunch I purchase. So, I began my own garden this summer and am loving it. The basil is flourishing!

    I also like making Arugula pesto…yum!

  7. I totally agree, herbs are just too darn expensive. I’m trying to grow a basil but since I completely lack a green thumb, I’m not sure how that’ll turn out. I love artichoke hearts so I’ll definitely be making this.

  8. what an interesting take on pesto! will have to try it soon!

    my basil grows like weeds in the summer!

    fyi to baltimore:
    the waverly farmers market had excellent prices on herbs this saturday…the vendor should return this weekend!

  9. My parsley is already growing like crazy and I love pesto with parsley. AND an Italian friend makes pesto with walnuts instead of pinenuts because she’s found that pinenuts can go rancid when frozen. Whereas walnuts freeze no problem. I use walnuts because they are healthier and an excellent source of Omega-3 – and cheaper (in Toronto anyway).
    Really enjoy your site.
    Toronto, Canada

  10. Susan from Food Blogga

    I’ve got some baby artichokes in the fridge and a fresh bunch of basil. Guess what I’ll be making? Thanks!