Is it possible to make pesto without cheese? The answer is YES: The trick is to use nutritional yeast flakes, which lend a bit of “umami” flavor. You can find it in most grocery stores as well as natural food stores.

This recipe can be customised to your taste: try using cashews, pistachios or pine nuts. We chose walnuts because of their high omega 3 content.

This is great stirred into veggies or as a condiment over your favorite protein.


  • 1 cup raw walnuts, shelled (not roasted)
  • 3 cups fresh basil leaves
  • 2 cups baby spinach leaves
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • Zest and juice from 1 large lemon
  • 2/3 cup olive oil (you also could use a light nut oil like walnut or macadamia)
  • 3/4 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast


  • Place all ingredients in a food processor or high speed blender and blend until well combined.
  • Store in an airtight glass jar in the refrigerator.