"Cheesy" Pine Nut Pesto On Quinoa (A Vegan Delight!)

Sometimes, I forget that vegan food can be cheesy, hearty and delicious.

But then I remember this recipe and all is right in the world.

This pine nut pesto quinoa dish will have you wondering what the heck you’ve been doing with your life until now. Topped with nutritional yeast, it satisfies your cheesy, savory craving while filling you up with protein and homemade pesto goodness.

It’s a great go-to for a dinner party full of vegans, vegetarians, and meat-eaters alike. No one says no to pine nut pesto. But be careful, because making this dish may result in an increased dinner party invitations and overall popularity!


Yield is 1 cup of pesto, half of which can be used for quinoa dish for 4, or double the quinoa quantity for a larger party and use all the pesto

  • 2/3 cup of pine nuts
  • 2 ½ cups fresh basil (this was a little over one large bushel for me, which once I broke apart was able to fit into 2 ½ cups
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 cup white quinoa
  • 2 1/3 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 Tbsp. water
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp. nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp. salt

For quinoa (for 4 servings)

  • 1 cup white quinoa
  • 2 1/3 cups vegetable broth


Boil 2 1/3 cups vegetable broth, then add 1-cup quinoa, cook for about 15 min. Watch and stir as needed, quinoa should be fluffy at the end, so more liquid can be added if need be.

Tear fresh basil off stems, gather 2 ½ cups to place in your food processor or high speed blender. Add minced garlic and 3 Tbsp. of water, then blend/process/adjective of choice for 10 second intervals.

Once it is a bit smooth, add in 1/3 cup of pine nuts. Blend together.

Add 2 Tbsp. of olive oil (or more if you’d like, though this can get much of its flavor from the pine nuts and basil)

Add ½ cup of this pesto mix to the quinoa

After mixing in pesto, add 2 Tbsp. of nutritional yeast and 1 tsp. of salt, or more of both to taste. Then mix in the 1/3 cup of remaining pine nuts.

Serve, and bask in how awesome eating vegan can be.

Ready to learn more about how to unlock the power of food to heal your body, prevent disease & achieve optimal health? Register now for our FREE Functional Nutrition Webinar with Kelly LeVeque.

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