Roasted Tomato Basil Pesto

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We haven’t been this excited about a dinner recipe in a long time.

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Probably not since the 15 Minute Creamy Avocado Pasta, which Eric said – in between shoveling this pasta in his mouth – is “not as good as this roasted tomato pesto recipe”.

I didn’t believe it, but after tasting and then devouring my own bowl of pesto (ok, there was some pasta in there too), I may have to agree with him. This is by far, the best pesto I’ve made or perhaps ever tasted.

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Don’t be put off by the colour, I promise it tastes much better than it looks. ;)

We enjoyed it so much, I made two batches over the long weekend and froze some for a later date. In January, there will be no tears over tasteless tomatoes as long as I have this pesto waiting for us!

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If I can wait that long to eat it, that is.

Outlook not good.

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I decided to roast the tomatoes first to give the pesto a really deep flavour. So glad I did!!

First, I drizzled them with olive oil and sprinkled them with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.

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Into the pre-heated oven they went at 400F for about 1 hour and 10 minutes. The longer they roast, the more delicious they become. The bottoms will be blackened slightly, but not to worry as it only enhances the flavour.

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After cooling slightly, I ate one straight off the pan. And I almost burned my mouth off, but it was so worth it. I’m surprised that the rest of them made it into the processor!

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While the processor blade is spinning, add two garlic cloves. Let it whirl around until the garlic is chopped. Next, add 1 cup of tightly packed basil and process. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spoon. With the processor on, add in 1/4 cup oil, 1.5 cups of roasted tomatoes, nutritional yeast (optional), and salt and pepper to taste. Pulse in the toasted almonds.

I’m loving this olive oil right now:

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This pesto is so delicious it’s unreal.

This was my first batch and I used 1 cup of roasted tomatoes, but I suggest using 1.5 cups of roasted tomatoes as I did in my second batch. You get more bang for your buck!

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If you want to be a fancy pants, you can Chiffonade the basil for garnishing on top of the pasta. “Chiffon” is French for “rag” which is what the basil will look like when you’re finished.

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How to Chiffonade basil:

1. Grab a few basil leaves (you can use spinach or any leafy vegetable for future reference)

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2. Stack them on top of one another like so.

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3. Now roll it up all the way.

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4. Grab a sharp knife and slice tiny 1mm cuts through the rolled up basil.

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Do not slice finger off as it looks like I’m about to do in the above photo. That would not be good.

Repeat until you’ve sliced through all of it. The basil, not your finger.

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5. With your (in tact) fingers, gently separate the basil into its ‘rag-like’ pieces and sprinkle over top of your dish.

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And if you handle them as long as I did to get these photos, they will really look like rags!

You are now a fancy pants.

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It is your mission to go on and enjoy those deliciously sweet tomatoes that are waiting for you.

Just don’t forget to freeze some for the Winter!

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{ 313 comments… read them below or add one }

Christine September 16, 2011

Oh my. This is FANTASTIC! Thanks *very* much for sharing this recipe! :-)

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Caryn September 17, 2011

I just bought my first food processor – inspired by this recipe. Definintely worth it -thank you!

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Rebecca C September 17, 2011

I just made this and it was amazing! I served it over spaghetti squash. I look forward to trying more of your recipes.

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Angela (Oh She Glows) September 18, 2011

Glad you enjoyed it!

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Sharika September 18, 2011

Wow! I just made this recipe and my taste buds are dancing in my mouth! This is jam packed with flavor. I can’t wait to eat it with some pasta for my meal later! Thank you! :)

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Willie Costello September 19, 2011

Today my blog was dedicated to the singing this recipe’s praises, and it deserves every accolade:

http://untilweeatagain.wordpress.com/2011/09/19/oh-it-wows-roasted-tomato-pesto-from-oh-she-glows/

Seriously. I have made this pesto now three times SINCE FRIDAY.

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Angela (Oh She Glows) September 19, 2011

HOLLA!

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Kelsey September 20, 2011

I have never made my own pesto. My co-worker would bring it in ALL the time and say how easy it was. And I absolutely love roasted tomatoes! I have never been a big tomato person but I roasted tomatoes for the first time this summer and they are amazing.

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Liz September 20, 2011

Made this yesterday and used it as the sauce for vegan pizza. It was a BIG hit! You can be sure this will become a regular on our pizza crusts and pastas!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) September 20, 2011

great idea! I will have to try that. :)

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Gabriels aka The Picky Foodie September 20, 2011

Been looking for a new one to have on my kelp noodles. looks like a must!

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Sarah @ Sharing Bananas September 21, 2011

I made this for my carnivore husband last night and slipped in some vegan meatballs…without telling him they were vegan. He loved it!

Still haven’t told him….

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Melanie September 22, 2011

We had this for the second time Tuesday night. We already have plans on having it again next week if we can get some more tomatoes and basil out of the plants next week (I don’t think my tomatoes have ever gone this long before).

Thanks again!! LOVE THIS!

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Carol Johnson September 22, 2011

seriously yummy. Likely the best pesto ever. I don’t love raw garlic, so I roasted mine on the cookie sheet with the tomatoes for the last few minutes.

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Andrea September 23, 2011

I don’t currently have any nutritional yeast, what difference do you think it would make to the pesto if I left it out?

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Andrea September 25, 2011

Well, I answered my own question :) I made this pesto tonight and plan on making at least one more batch this week to freeze for the winter :) It turned out awesome and I think I’m going to make some pasta to use it with for dinner tomorrow, thanks!

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Jana September 23, 2011

Thank you so much for sharing that recipe. I made it last weekend for some friends with the vague hope that there would be some leftovers for sunday. It was completely gone within 20 minutes :-).

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Angela (Oh She Glows) September 23, 2011

Glad it was enjoyed!

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Kelly September 23, 2011

I love this recipe! I made it for the second time last night, this time over spaghetti squash. Definitely a win; the tomato and garlic really complimented the nutty squash flavor. :) Thanks!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) September 24, 2011

oh great idea :)

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Jill @ A Cook's Nook October 20, 2011

Just saw this post go up on FB and wanted to thank you for the reminder. This looks delicious & I have all the ingredients to make it tonight! I’m a little too excited about this :)

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Renata October 20, 2011

Hi Angela – have you ever tried this recipe without the oil? I’m wondering because I’ve been following the Forks over Knives suggestions about not using oil…which makes it super hard! Anyhow, this looks so incredibly delicious, I’m just curious if you think it would be ruined if I omitted oil? Thanks!

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Jane Plass October 20, 2011

My sister and I made this after picking armloads of basil at her CSA’s farm end-of-season PestoFest in September. Delicious, but even better after we added a tablespoon of balsamic vinegar!

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Steph @ A Life without Ice Cream October 21, 2011

OMG that sauce looks heavenly!

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Lina May 5, 2012

Looks great! How big is your food processor? I’m just wondering, I have a small 3 cup food processor… and for anything larger I use my vitamix (but sometimes the vitamix has too much power).

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Jessie @ amomgetsfit May 31, 2012

I just found this recipe and it looks DELICIOUS!!!!!
I can’t wait to make it.

If I want to feed 3 adults and two (small) kids – how much should I make of this???

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Angela (Oh She Glows) May 31, 2012

It makes 1 cup of pesto so I guess it really depends on how much pesto you want on each serving. If you used 1/4 cup pesto per dish, essentially you could get away with 3 servings + 2 small? Or maybe just double the recipe anyways because the leftovers are amazing on sandwiches and whatnot.

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Sara June 18, 2012

What can I sub for the nuts? I would love to make this but am allergic!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) June 19, 2012

Im not sure, do you think sunflower seeds would work?

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Darlene June 19, 2012

This was soooo good, loved it.

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Kristine August 8, 2012

I made an awesome pasta salad with your delicious roasted tomato pesto! I added diced zucchini, red onion, black olives, and capers. So good! Thanks for another great recipe. :)

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Maddy August 15, 2012

I’m about to make this! If I were to do this with cherry tomatoes, how many cups would I use?

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Anna September 2, 2012

I had an overflow of Roma tomatoes and basil from my garden and decided to make a double batch of this. I am SO glad I did, it is delicious!

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Jeuline September 5, 2012

Oh My, this sounds and looks delicious… And I love the name of your website! :))) Shine On!!!

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kendra September 5, 2012

WOW! WOW! WOW! I just made this and put it over raw zucchini and yellow zucchini pasta. I’m in love. Lol.

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Maura September 6, 2012

Ange – Fantastic! Made this for the kids tonight and I was blown away! What an incredible flavor combo!!!! You’re the best!!

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Carolyn September 8, 2012

I second dhauberger’s scentiment!

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Heidi c September 8, 2012

JusT an FYI. I am making this right now & threw in some more beefsteak type heirloom black tomatoes in addition to Romas because I have a bunch as well. They roasted down to practically nothing so probably best to stick with romas.

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Angela (Oh She Glows) September 9, 2012

Aw good to know, thanks for the tip! Sorry that happened to you.

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haley September 9, 2012

I made this for dinner tonight with a non-vegan – we both LOVED it, sooo good and sooooooooooo easy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thank you!!

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sonya September 10, 2012

Can’t wait to serve this tonight…just put the tomatoes in the oven to roast.

I do have a question, I have not used nutritional yeast before. I did purchase some in bulk to try. Do you know by chance the salt content?
Thanks for sharing this recipe!

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Emily September 12, 2012

How many tomatoes do you think you,d use if you have big beefsteak tomatoes? It’s hard to tell how many tomatoes are equivalent to 9 Roma’s, but it looks like 1.5 cups total?

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Angela (Oh She Glows) September 12, 2012

Hey Emily!
I’m sorry I didn’t measure the amount of cups prior to roasting (should have or weighed them). Anyway, the tomatoes do shrink down when roasting, so I would err on the side of roasting too many rather than too few – the leftover are AMAZING thrown into pasta, salads, etc. Goodluck!

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Christine September 16, 2012

This recipe is amazing! I love that it used up so many of the Roma’s sitting on my kitchen window sill.

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Sarah Bester October 3, 2012

Just thought I would comment since I just made this for dinner tonight as I had a whole bunch of heirloom tomatoes to use up from my CSA box. I’m eating it right now and it’s delicious! I threw in some hot pepper flakes to spice it up a notch. Thanks for the simple, yet tasty recipe.

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JazzyJ4545 October 4, 2012

Made this and it was absolutely fantastic. Took your hint and made extra to freeze. Love your site.

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Nd October 11, 2012

I made this again last night as part of an unprocessed dinner. I think it is delicious. One question I have is have you ever made your own vegan pasta? If so do you have a good recipe you could share?

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Goldie October 18, 2012

WOW!!! I made this dish last night — soooo freakin good I couldn’t believe it. I’ve never made pesto or roasted tomatoes or almonds before, and boy oh boy my mouth is in love. Can’t wait to make it again! Thank you so much for this delicious recipe :)

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Bou Shin @ Shin's Vegan Lovin' November 9, 2012

This looks fantastic! I was wondering if it would be okay if I used one of your photos for this recipe and linked to your blog through my own. I’m doing an event for my upcoming, golden, 18th birthday and I am having a huge event called “Shinmas” where I am advertising other people’s blogs and we have a whole setup of themes each day and it becomes really fun. I am also going to hold a few giveaways so that those who don’t have blogs or artwork to share can also join in.

Thank you for your time,
Bou Shin

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Angela (Oh She Glows) November 9, 2012

Thanks for asking. That is not a problem – please email me the link when it’s up! angela [at] ohsheglows [dot] com

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Allyne November 9, 2012

This is absolutely delicious! I have tonnes of tomatoes from my garden that are ripening rapidly, this is the perfect recipe for them. I’m going to make more batches to freeze. Thanks for the wonderful recipe!

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