Pesto is a classic pasta sauce that it much easier to make at home than you may think. The sauce requires no cooking at all-simply blend all of your ingredients together. Here, I use cashews and nutritional yeast to create a creamy, completely vegan pesto sauce that is just as satisfying as the real thing.

The Ingredients

  • Basil
  • Cashews
  • Nutritional yeast
  • Garlic
  • Olive oil
  • Lemon
  • Salt

The key to creamy and vegan pesto

The healthy fat content in this recipe is what helps impart the creamy texture and mimic classic dairy pesto. Cashews are excellent sources of creaminess, and they add a lot of depth to this sauce. Olive oil also adds an additional creaminess. Often, a food processor is used for pesto, but in this particular recipe I like to use a high speed blender to amp up the smooth and velvety texture.

How to Make Creamy Vegan Pesto

  • Place all of your ingredients into a blender or food processer. Blend. That’s it!


  • Basil-You can replace some of the basil with spinach or kale if you find that you are low.
  • Cashews-You can use basically any nut. I love making pesto with sunflower seeds or walnuts. Keep in mind that the cashews do make this extra creamy.
  • Olive Oil- Use any oil that you prefer, or replace some of all of the oil with veggie broth if you need a lower fat content.

Different ways to serve pesto

Creamy Cashew Pesto Sauce


  • 2 cups fresh basil
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup cashews
  • 1 juiced lemon
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • salt and pepper to taste


  • Place all of the ingredients in a high speed blender*
  • Use the sauce on spaghetti, pasta, bread, whatever sounds good to you!! This sauce can be modified to your liking by adding any seasonings you like.