A few years ago, a time period I like to refer to as "the Hamburger Helper days," the only time I would eat pesto was at Panera on one of their delish sandwiches. I knew it was good. So good that I thought pesto must have a million ingredients to make it taste like that. Who knew it was basil, olive oil, garlic, parm, and pine nuts? 4 out of 5 of those I have on hand at all times. Though, I don't know about you, we can't afford pine nuts. With the cost of the pine nuts it's cheaper to just buy the stuff in the jar. And believe me when I say the stuff in the jar DOES NOT compare to the homemade stuff.
That's when the fabulous Melanie of Melanie in the Middle (formerly the Coupon Goddess) posted her BRILLIANT idea of using sunflower seeds in place of the pine nuts. Her family was fooled and you know what? It was the best darn pesto I've ever had!
Sunflower Seed Pesto
from Melanie in the Middle
4-6 cloves garlic (we LOVE garlic around here, dial this back if it's too much for you though)
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1 cup basil, packed down
In your food processor, dump everything except olive oil.
Make sure you pick the leaves off the basil, the stems don't taste very well. Don't ask me how I know this. :) Pulse your food processor to get everything chopped down and mixed.
Drizzle some olive oil in there and pulse again. Keep adding olive oil until you get the consistency you want.
Ok so now you have delish homemade pesto that didn't cost you an arm and a leg. What are you going to do with it?! Here are two Semi Homemade Mom pesto recipes...
This ravioli will seriously wow your family. You don't have to tell them you threw the ravioli in there frozen!
This honestly took 5 minutes to put together and it tastes better than takeout. Plus, you know exactly what your kids are eating.
Have any great ideas for pesto?
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