healthy pesto pizza recipe

Healthy Pesto Pizza Recipe

healthy pesto pizza recipeI love pesto and I’m always looking for ways to use it in recipes. This healthy pesto pizza recipe couldn’t be more simple to make and it’s delicious.  You definitely don’t have to be a master in the kitchen to make a this gourmet spin on an american favorite.

For those of you who don’t know what Pesto actually is, you’re about to learn!  It’s primary ingredient is the herb basil.  Pesto gets it’s nutty taste from it’s secondary ingredient which is Pine Nuts.

The reason I love this healthy pesto pizza recipe has more to do with the pesto than the pizza itself.  I can’t stand store bought pesto. It just tastes over processed to me, and it’s expensive!  I make my own pesto and here’s what you need to do that:

Fresh Basil – about 4 cups

Extra Virgin Olive Oil 1/3-1/2 cup

Roasted and Salted Sunflower Seeds 1/3 cup (this is the substitute for pine nuts at about 1/4 of the cost)

Grated Parmesan Cheese about 1/2 cup

Minced Garlic (I buy the crushed garlic in a jar.  You can easily spoon out what you need.)

Salt and Pepper to taste

I know I’m not going to win any cooking shows with this recipe for Pesto because I don’t really adhere to any set measurements.  I know I like my Pesto to taste like fresh basil and I also like it to have a good garlic taste. As I process it all, I add each ingredient as I taste test along the way.  If you use the salted sunflower seeds I recommend not adding additional salt until you’ve tasted the final concoction.


Start by tossing the fresh basil into a blender or food processor with about 1/4 cup of olive oil.  Blend that together and then add the Parmesan cheese, sunflower seeds, and garlic.  The mixture will begin to form a thick paste. Keep adding olive oil until you achieve your desired consistency.  Any pesto that you don’t use on the pizza can be stored in the fridge.  I tend to like my pesto pasty vs soupy.  It’s easy to make leftover less pasty by adding additional olive oil or water when you want to use it, however you can’t really go backwards and make a watery pesto thicker.

Grab a Boboli Pizza Crust and spread the pesto on top as you would sauce. You don’t need nearly as much pesto as you would tomato sauce… a little goes a long way!   Next layer with sliced tomatoes and grated Parmesan cheese.  For added flavor you can also add some crumbled low fat Feta cheese.

Bake the pizza per the instructions on the crust packaging.

This healthy pesto pizza recipe can be changed up and modified any way you like.  Total prep time including making the pesto is about 20 minutes.  If you have the pesto already made it’s even faster.   This is also a great appetizer for friends on cocktail night as well.