12Aug2012 Sunflower Seed Pesto 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 olive oil 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 Mostly Homemade Mom pesto recipes… Crockpot Pesto Ravioli Tomato Pesto Pizza Ranch Pesto Rigatoni Bake Crockpot Portabella Mushroom Sandwiches Pesto Hoagie Melts 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? Linking up to: Must Try Monday, Craft O Maniac Monday, Making Monday Marvelous, Mangia Monday, Melt In Your Mouth Monday, Motivate Me Monday, Makin’ You Crave Monday,Recipe Sharing Monday, Cure for the Common Monday, The Gunny Sack, Skip to My Lou, Mop it Up Monday, Totally Tasty Tuesday, Tempt My Tummy Tuesday, Tasteful Tuesdays, A Bowl Full Of Lemons, Tip Junkie, Take A Look Tuesday, Tuesday Confessional, T Time, Too Cute Tuesday, Tuesday Timeout,Show Me What Ya Got, Trick or Treat Tuesday, Strut Your Stuff, Link and Greet.