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Easy Sage Pesto Recipe

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Today I’m sharing this easy sage pesto recipe because my sage grew SO well in my cold frames!  (Here’s my DIY cold frame garden bed update – I shared what grew/what didn’t, and just overall how my first year of vegetable and herb gardening went).

Fresh Sage

Is There Sage Pesto?

I’ve never seen sage pesto at the grocery store – only basil pesto – but I had so much sage grow in my garden this year that I wanted to experiment with making sage pesto.  I love pesto and this twist on the classic recipe is delicious and easy to make.  At first, it takes a minute to adjust the taste buds because you look at the dish and expect the familiar taste of basil pesto, but the sage pesto is equally tasty – just different!  You can also make this with walnut instead of pine nuts and experiment with different cheeses!

My Aqua Pasta Fail

I bought fancy aqua and white striped pasta just for this recipe post, but it turned greywhomp whomp whomp.  The color faded after cooking and become less appetising than I had hoped… I guess there are just some things that shouldn’t be colored aqua.  Very few things.  But pasta is clearly one of them. 😉

Ingredients for this Easy Sage Pesto Recipe:

  • 2 cups sage leaves (washed and dried)
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup oil (I used grapeseed, olive oil works too)
  • 1/3 cup (generous) pine nuts
  • 2 garlic gloves
  • Pinch of salt and pepper
  • And you’ll need a food processor!

How to Make This Easy Sage Pesto Recipe:

  • Rinse and dry sage leaves (I used my salad spinner)
  • Grate the Parmesean cheese (you can do this by adding to the food processor first or grating separately)
  • Whirl together the grated cheese and sage
  • Add the oil, garlic, salt and pepper, and whirl until combined.

How to Store Fresh Sage Pesto

I transferred to a couple of glass jam jars and refrigerated immediately.  I recommend using up fresh pesto within a few weeks.  Although, I gifted some to my Mom and she kept her for months.  Alternatively, you can freeze pesto in an airtight container.  I froze some fresh pesto and it lasted all year in my freezer – whenever I needed some, I just scooped it out and added it to freshly cooked, hot pasta (no need to thaw).

What Makes Homemade Pesto Different?

This homemade sage pesto was so tasty and a lot less oily than store bought pesto – it had more substance and flavor.  It’s kind of funny because I factored in the cost of the sage seeds, the cheese, the pine nuts, etc. (never mind the cost of the soil, manure, and the garden beds themselves) and it cost so much more money to make a jar of pesto than to just buy one.  But it’s worth it because my homemade sage pesto tasted so much better.  I also enjoyed dinner more because I grew what we were eating.  Getting into gardening last summer was incredibly expensive and frustrating and, to be honest, I’m not sure I enjoy it at all – but when I cook or eat something I grew, I do feel this little flutter of pride.  Next spring I’ll plant way more sage so I can make and gift jars of this sage pesto!  I’m also going to experiment with mint sage pesto and basil sage pesto blends – the best part of making pesto is the ability to experiment with new flavors!

Don’t Forget to Pin for Later:

Easy and Delicious Sage PestoSage Pesto Recipe



  1. Sandy Geraci
    September 9, 2021 / 7:35 pm

    This was very good but I used 1 cup of oil as I found it much to dry and difficult to process. Consistency was perfect!

    • September 9, 2021 / 10:46 pm

      I used this recipe tonight too, lol! Funny coincidence. Happy to hear more oil worked out for you.

  2. halie thomas
    October 28, 2021 / 10:19 am

    Do you think there’s a possibility that you could freeze portions of those to use later on?

    • October 28, 2021 / 2:49 pm

      Yes! I am glad you asked! I’ve been experimenting with that myself. I used a silicone mold (or ice cube tray) to freeze the pesto into into chunks, and then put those chunks into one big container so it would be easy to grab a portion. I toss a chunk into my pasta from the freezer and warm it up on the stove and it tastes just as good.

  3. Amanda
    November 5, 2021 / 4:55 pm

    I hear ya on the cost of making your own sage from plant. But isn’t sage a perennial? So you should technically only have to buy once. In previous years, Ive planted sage in deck planters but this year, I put it directly into our garden so hoping it comes back!

    • November 6, 2021 / 2:49 pm

      It is a perennial, I believe. I did have one part of my plant come back but only a small chunk so I ended up planting more anyway. So this year I had a good amount. It’s more the other ingredients that really add up cost-wise, like the cheese and nuts – which are so pricey right now! But you’re right, the sage will eventually be free, haha.

    • Katy
      August 7, 2022 / 11:40 am

      It is, but it depends on what zone youre in. It will come back, or should, if youre anywhere zone 4/5 and up. So if you live somewhere super cold it may not. Although honestly I am zone 5 and mine never grew back so it depends.

  4. Barbara
    August 26, 2022 / 1:43 pm

    Thanks for sharing recipe came out great but turned brown in canning jar after refrigerated

    • August 26, 2022 / 9:34 pm

      Hmmm, interesting! Mine got a tiny bit less green but didn’t turn brown. Mine looked like jars of pesto you can buy in stores… You can also freeze it and stir, right from frozen, into hot pasta to use.

  5. Iris
    September 12, 2022 / 6:14 pm

    I add spinach to my basil pesto and rarely use pine nuts, usually pecans, walnuts or pistachios. What a great idea to use sage! Bet sage pesto would taste great on a Turkey & Swiss sandwich.

    • September 13, 2022 / 4:03 pm

      Love the idea to add spinach! I’ve been experimenting with other nuts lately as well – I just used walnuts in a sage and basil mix pesto. Super yummy! I’ve been making a lot of different pestos lately (with dill too!) and freezing for winter because I really will miss having fresh herbs.

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