26 Things to Make with Pesto

Pesto might just be the perfect flavor enhancer. It features a well-rounded balance of peppery basil, buttery pine nuts and salty Italian cheese that’s impossible to resist. If you’ve got a jar on hand, you’re in luck. You can use your pesto to easily upgrade everything from soups and salads to breads and pastas.

July 15, 2021

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5-Ingredient Chicken Pesto Soup

Although this soup is made with just five ingredients, the cooking technique packs the soup with flavor. You start by poaching bone-in chicken thighs in chicken broth, which amps up the flavor of the broth and leaves you with meat so tender, it practically falls off the bone. A swirl of pesto at the end delivers a cheesy, herby hit and turns the soup a vibrant green.

Get the Recipe: 5-Ingredient Chicken Pesto Soup

Pesto Lasagna Rolls

Each of these pesto-packed noodle roll-ups has just the right amount of filling and bakes in a fraction of the time a traditional deep-dish lasagna takes. Talk about a winning dinner!

Get the Recipe: Pesto Lasagna Rolls

Pesto-Rubbed Baked Salmon with Smashed Cucumber and Green Apple Salad

Geoffrey uses a combination of prepared pesto, mustard and lemon juice to make a savory sauce for salmon fillets. He tops the fish with the sauce before cooking — so that every bite is full of flavor.

Get the Recipe: Pesto-Rubbed Baked Salmon with Smashed Cucumber and Green Apple Salad

Garlic Bread Pinwheels

If you love picking up an assortment of pinwheels at the local pizzeria then you're going to want to keep this homemade versio in your recipe box. They're a cinch to make, thanks to store-bought crescent dough and flavorful basil pesto.

Get the Recipe: Garlic Bread Pinwheels

Carrots with Pesto and Ricotta

Instead of relying on rich, wintery flavors like maple or smoky spices, these oven-roasted carrots are bright and spring-y topped with dollops of pesto and creamy ricotta cheese.

Get the Recipe: Carrots with Pesto and Ricotta

Grilled Pesto Chicken Sandwiches

These grilled chicken sandwiches have all the flavor of a classic caprese salad thanks to slices of tomatoes and fresh mozzarella — and a generous slather of fragrant basil pesto.

Get the Recipe: Grilled Pesto Chicken Sandwiches

Gnocchi Pesto Pasta Salad

Katie combines store-bought pesto with mayonnaise to make a creamy and delicious dressing for her reimagined pasta salad. Her other twist? She uses tender gnocchi instead of the pasta!

Get the Recipe: Gnocchi Pesto Pasta Salad

Grilled Pesto Ravioli

Cooking the ravioli in one skillet all the way through means there is no need to boil, drain and reserve the starchy cooking water. The residual cooking water will thin out the pesto just enough for a loose coating and help the pesto sauce thicken a touch without becoming gummy.

Get the Recipe: Grilled Pesto Ravioli

Turkey Pesto Meatball Sheet Pan Dinner

This family-friendly meal is full of tricks that will save time and energy. Aside from making fewer dishes (the meatballs and veggies cook together on one sheet pan) you can also skip extra chopping and measuring for seasonings since the meatballs get their flavor from store-bought pesto.

Get the Recipe: Turkey Pesto Meatball Sheet Pan Dinner

Pesto Bean Soup

An easy way to add flavor to homemade soup? Pesto! It's packed with fragrant basil, buttery pine nuts and salty cheese, making it the perfect addition to lots of your favorite recipes.

Get the Recipe: Pesto Bean Soup

Yogurt Pesto Dip

You only need four ingredients — yogurt, pesto, salt and pepper — to make this crowd-pleasing dip. Better yet, it's delicious with all kinds of dippers. Try pretzels, crudites and even potato chips.

Get the Recipe: Yogurt Pesto Dip

Pesto Potato and Green Bean Sala

An easy way to health-ify potato salad? Skip the mayonnaise-based dressing and opt for a simple basil pesto instead. Ellie makes her own but jarred would taste every bit as delicious here.

Get the Recipe: Pesto Potato and Green Bean Salad

Crispy Artichoke Pesto-Stuffed Chicken

Pesto transforms a simple Italian-inspired dish into something special. And since it's packed with flavor, the pesto only needs a few other ingredients (artichokes, Parmesan and provolone cheese) to make a filling fit for these crispy, golden brown chicken cutlets.

Get the Recipe: Crispy Artichoke Pesto-Stuffed Chicken

Pasta Salad with Lemon-Pesto Dressing

Rachael gives classic pasta salad a simple update: she dresses it with store-bought pesto. To brighten things up just a bit, she adds some lemon zest and juice, too.

Get the Recipe: Pasta Salad with Lemon-Pesto Dressing

Mozzarella and Pesto Twists

Talk about your easy appetizers: These cheesy, pesto-filled twists come together with just three ingredients — crescent dough, mozzarella and pesto (plus a dusting of flour). This means more time with your guests and less time in the kitchen.

Get the Recipe: Mozzarella and Pesto Twists

Pesto and Prosciutto Asparagus

Giada turns simple asparagus spears into an impressive side worthy that you could serve at a dinner part with just 4 more ingredients: proscuitto, salt, shaved Parmesan cheese and pesto.

Get the Recipe: Pesto and Prosciutto Asparagus

Pesto Pizza Pillows

Molly uses prepared pesto to give these deep-fried, sausage-and-mozzarella bites extra flavor. Paired with marinara for dipping, they taste just like miniature pizzas!

Get the Recipe: Pesto Pizza Pillows

Pesto Chicken Skillet Supper

Ree takes the simple skillet supper to new heights by filling this one with all the best flavors of summer: zucchini, summer squash, corn, tomatoes and savory basil pesto.

Get the Recipe: Pesto Chicken Skillet Supper

Pesto-Goat Cheese Pinwheels

This 3-ingredient appetizer is so delicious, no one will believe you made it just 5 minutes!

Get the Recipe: Pesto-Goat Cheese Pinwheels

15-Minute Grilled Skirt Steak with Pesto Butter

Skirt steak, a super flavorful and quick-cooking cut of beef, is made even better with a simple, 2-ingredient pesto butter. Served with grilled asparagus, this is a recipe to keep in your back pocket for whenever you need a quick and delicious meal.

Get the Recipe: 15-Minute Grilled Skirt Steak with Pesto Butter

Risotto With Pesto and Peas

Thought homemade risotto couldn't get any more delicious? Try swirling some prepared pesto at the end for a great pop of fresh, fragrant flavor.

Get the Recipe: Risotto With Pesto and Peas

Broccoli Pesto Pizza

Ellie makes her own pesto in this recipe but you could just as easily add jarred pesto to the broccoli instead of the Parmesan, basil and olive oil. Whether you decide to make your own or go with store-bought, this better-for-you pesto pie is sure to please.

Get the Recipe: Broccoli Pesto Pizza

Baked Goat Cheese Pasta

If you're a fan of the hack where oven-baked cheese and tomatoes are transformed into a creamy, crave-worthy pasta sauce, then you'll love Ree's take on the dish. She uses goat cheese and adds a healthy dose of pesto at the end for extra flavor.

Get the Recipe: Baked Goat Cheese Pasta

Pesto Pretzels

Guy folds store-bought pesto (and cream cheese!) into homemade pretzel dough for a soft, savory treat that's 100% worth the extra time and effort.

Get the Recipe: Pesto Pretzels

Spicy Pesto Wings

Make Eddie's one-of-a-kind wings even easier by substituting store-bought pesto for homemade.

Get the Recipe: Spicy Pesto Wings

Pesto Fried Eggs

Cooking eggs in pesto is a great alternative to frying in butter and an easy way to enhance their flavor. When the pesto is heated, the oil separates from the rest of the ingredients and gives your eggs crispy, fried edges. While this dish is delicious on its own, try serving the eggs with sliced fresh tomatoes and mozzarella for a take on Caprese salad or on toasted sourdough bread for a quick meal.

Get the Recipe: Pesto Fried Eggs