This mint pesto has a bright flavor that will instantly elevate your favorite dishes, from pizza, to pasta, to grilled meats, vegetables, sandwiches and more. Best of all, it’s easy to make and can be customized to your tastes.
While I love all herbs, mint might just be my favorite. I call it my “happy herb” because the smell transports me straight to our garden in summer, where we grow a giant planter every year (my little one Juni eats handfuls at a time). This mint pesto is a true staple in my kitchen, and I hope you’ll love it too.
Ingredients and swaps:
- The pesto is made with a mix of mint and parsley or basil. The parsley and/or basil bulk up the pesto and gives it a deep green color.
- Toasted pine nuts give the pesto a creamy texture and rich flavor. You can swap them out for toasted sliced almonds, walnuts or even pistachios.
- The pesto is flavored with garlic and red pepper flakes, which add a subtle kick of heat. You can omit the red pepper flakes if you prefer, or swap them out for Aleppo pepper.
- Fresh lemon juice brightens all the flavors.
- Extra virgin olive oil ties everything together.
- There’s no cheese in this mint pesto, making it naturally vegan, but you can add 2-3 tablespoons of grated parmesan cheese if you prefer.
How to make mint pesto:
- In a food processor, chop garlic until finely chopped.
- Add mint leaves, parsley and/or basil, toasted pine nuts, red pepper flakes and lemon juice. Process until finely chopped.
- With the machine running, drizzle in water and extra virgin olive oil and process until smooth.
This pesto is fantastic on pizzas, grilled meats and fish, pasta, sandwiches and more! Here are some of my favorite ways to serve it:
- On these Lamb Flatbread Pizzas (pictured below)
- On grilled chicken, lamb and fish
- Drizzled over roasted or grilled vegetables
- Tossed with pasta (try it with this Lamb Ragu!) and risotto
- On sandwiches and paninis
- On lamb burgers
- With sliced tomatoes
- You’ll need a food processor to make the mint pesto, or you can use a Vitamix.
- To make basil mint pesto, use basil instead of parsley.
- Store the pesto in the refrigerator with a piece of plastic wrap directly on the surface—that will prevent it from turning brown.
- For another variation, try this Green Sauce recipe!
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Mint pesto is the perfect way to use up a lot of mint! You can easily double or even triple this recipe.
Refrigerate pesto with a piece of plastic wrap directly on the surface to prevent it from browning. You can also freeze it in a zip-top freezer bag or in ice cube trays (once frozen, pop out the frozen pesto cubes and store them in an airtight container or freezer bag).
You can use mint pesto on pizzas, with pasta, over grilled meats and fish, on roasted and grilled vegetables, on burgers, with sliced tomatoes and on sandwiches.
Try adding parmesan cheese for a nutty flavor, a jalapeno pepper for a spicy kick, or a drizzle of honey for a touch of sweetness.
Other no-cook sauces to try:
I'd love to answer any of your questions and see what you're cooking!! Don't forget to rate this recipe and leave a comment below. Follow along on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube & Pinterest, and be sure to tag @fromscratchfast so that I can share your creations!
Get the recipe!
- Food processor
- 1 garlic clove, peeled
- 1 ½ cups lightly packed mint leaves
- 1 cup lightly packed parsley or basil leaves
- ¼ cup toasted pine nuts
- ⅛ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1-2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, to taste
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons water
- ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- With the motor running, drop the garlic clove through the feed tube to chop. Scrape the sides.
- Add the mint, parsley or basil, pine nuts, red pepper flakes and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. Process to a coarse puree. Scrape down the sides.
- With the motor running, drizzle the water and extra virgin olive oil through the feed tube to incorporate. Taste and add more lemon juice if you prefer a brighter flavor. If you prefer a thinner texture, you can also blend in more olive oil to taste. Season with additional salt and pepper, if needed.