Five Herb Pesto Recipe

A summer pesto made from a mix of coriander, basil, arugula, oregano, and chives, and links to a few other new recipes we've sprinkled around the QUITOKEETO shop site.

Five Herb Pesto

Last week we updated the collection at QUITOKEETO, for summer, and sprinkled some new recipes across the shop site as well. One of the recipes I did was this simple twist on a classic pesto. It starts with toasted coriander seeds smashed with garlic and salt, before you work in almonds and lots of lemon zest. I chose a mix of fresh basil, arugula, oregano, chives as the blend of herbs, and immediately noted how much I Iike the chives for their strength and fragrance. There's lots of grated Pecorino cheese, and a final thinning with good olive oil. Bright, summery, and a offbeat - it's all the things I love. It looks familiar, like a straight-ahead basil pesto, and then takes you a bit by surprise. Anyhow, it's easy, and I thought you might give it a try. And if not this one, perhaps one of the other recipes.

Five Herb Pesto Recipe

Other new recipes in the QK archive:
- Milk & Honeydew Granita
- Cultured Honeydew Butter (you can make it with honey as well!)
- Tomato Buttermilk Dressing
- White Peach Maple Soda

Welcome summer! -h
p.s. I'm sure a number of you will ask about the mortar & pestle. It sold out quickly, but we should be getting another 100 to list by next Monday (thank you Magnus!). An email will go out if you're on the QK mailing list. xo

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Five Herb Pesto

1 1/2 teaspoons whole coriander seeds
1/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
1 large clove garlic, peeled
a handful sliced almonds, toasted (cooled)
zest of one lemon

50 medium basil leaves
a handful of arugula leaves
1/2 teaspoon fresh oregano leaves
1/4 cup minced chives
3/4 cup grated Pecorino cheese
~1/4 cup / 60 ml extra virgin olive oil

Toast the coriander seeds in a dry skillet until fragrant, and grind finely using a mortar and pestle. Add the salt and garlic and crush into a paste. Add the almonds and lemon zest and smash into a nut butter. Start working the basil in, a few leaves at a time, then the arugula, and oregano. Blend until consistent. Stir in the chives and cheese with a fork, before using the pestle to gradually work in the olive oil. Taste and adjust to your liking.

Makes about 2/3 cup.

Prep time: 15 minutes

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I love the idea of using toasted coriander seeds! I'll definitely give that a try in my next pesto. Thanks!


Can't wait to get out in my herb garden to try this out! I love playing around with new ways to make pesto! I need to get this mortar and pestle.

Amy @

Awesome recipe.. thanks for sharing !!

Hari Chandana

Your 5 herb pesto looks insanely tasty & fabulous even! MMMMMM! The uses are endless,...Yum! I make 2 herb pestos a lot but this is a genius idea!


Hi Heidi, this looks great!!! I love all of your recipes on this site and am obsessed with your cookbook! One question- for someone allergic to almonds (what a drag, I know!) what nut do you suggest can be used instead? I was thinking pecans or walnuts because I love them, but if you have an idea, I'd love to hear it! Thanks and keep posting!! HS: Yeah! Walnuts would be nice.


I've made pesto with toasted almonds before but never really travelled away from the basil in terms of the herb content - I might have to give this a go - my son is a big fan of pesto!

Laura @ Kneadwhine

Mmmm, I'll definitely be adding this to my shopping list for the week. Pesto is going to be on the menu!

Megan T

The mortal & pestle is our favorite tool in our nest. Thank you for sharing this delicious recipe another excuse to use our kitchen tool.


Hi Heidi, When I read this recipe my stomach is making funny noises ...... Yum ! Magnus

Magnus Lundström

This has confimed I need a herb garden! I can just imagine how amazing this would taste. Nothing beats homemade pesto!


I love pesto! I've never tried making it before though, I will have to give it a try now. Thanks for sharing!


Love how you twisted the traditional but it still looks the same; going to try this recipe with the lemon thyme I have growing. Thanks!


You got me hooked on coriander with the Red Fruit Salad so now I am excited to give this pesto a try. As for the other recipes from QUITOKEETO...I made the Tomato Buttermilk Dressing and used it to top our chopped salad last was spectacular {it was also superb on my egg this morning}! We have been enjoying the Honeydew so brings back memories of childhood summers on my Grandparents' farm in St. Pacome, Quebec {a jar always sat on the kitchen table}. I will be making the Honeydew Butter this weekend. Thank you for all of these wonderful treasures.

Kristin | The Dinner Concierge

what a great idea to use more than one herb. and i love the mortar and pestle! just beautiful.


Yay--no pine nuts! Ever since I got a case of "pine mouth" (yup, it's in the literature) from a batch of Chinese pine nuts, I can't eat most pestos. Everything tasted metallic for a week, yuck!


This looks really fresh and lovely, and then I read "Arugula"... *sigh* I think I'll make my own version with flat leaf parsley :-D We're off for a two week sailing trip, and I have Jamie Olivers barbappa shaped shaker mortar in my tiny cupboard omboard, I'll give this recipe a whack in it! Should be perfect with the fresh shrimps and crayfish we can buy straight of the boats along the swedish west-coast!


Before I start, I love the golden bracelet, your style is amazing ;-) I've been looking for a few nice twists on classic green pesto, I have never thought about integrating some coriander, though - even though it is, next to basil and oregano, one of my favourite herbs. I'm definitely gonna give this a try - sounds like something that might go nice with some goat cheese.

Ole @cookingbrains

This looks wonderful! Any ideas for a vegan version? Some more almonds and some nutritional yeast? Would love to try but don't want to lose the rich/sharpness of the cheese! p.s. do you think Quitokeeto will ever ship to the UK?

HS: Hi Hannah - you can certainly leave the cheese out...You could add some toasted bread crumbs at the last moment, and have a nice herby topping on your hands instead. Also, re: UK shipping - it's definitely a possibility, we're chatting with UPS about the logistics, it will likely be Canada first, and then potentially Australia & UK? We're excited about it as well (although it's more complicated than we thought!)...


This looks so amazing! I love experimenting with pestos! One of our favorite for "leftovers" is to make pesto with our radish leaves. Yum!!

Katie | Healthnut Foodie

Love the idea of using coriander seed, and have just learned about drying them when they're still green. Doesn't that sound like those would be great in this pesto? We've been riffing on Italian salsa verde lately — masses of mint, garlic scapes, garden alliums/chives, lemon balm/verbena, nasturtium capers and anchovies for a bit of umami punch.

HS: Fresh coriander seeds are in season right now and I've been using them in all sorts of things :) So bright and zesty!

diary of a tomato

I will try this! This looks good and yummy!


I've been mixing up pesto with different herbs coming into their own in the garden. This combination will help with using up my *abundant* chives...thinking of maybe adding rosemary olive oil asiago with the romano.


If you weren't a vegetarian, you would know how delicious this mix of herbs is drizzled across grilled chicken! Yes, I'm biting my tongue for writing such blasphemy! Seriously, this mix is one of my favorites used in all sorts of dishes, but I've never thought to make it into a pesto. Can't wait to try it!


Wow, I adore pesto and your recipe sounds so wonderful! I will be making this as soon as I go to my farmer's market.

Shelley Alexander

Oh this pesto recipe looks so good , thanks for sharing.


Approx how much lemon zest would we use? a tablespoon?


Yum! Sounds like a delicious alternative to the classic pesto, which sometimes I find too basely. :)

abby @ teawiththemoon

I that really only 1/2 teaspoon! of oregano leaves? Seems very little with those other robust flavours. Very keen for this one! Thanks x

Ruth Stephens

I nice blend of herbs etc. I especially like the Pecorino touch...and my sweet basil is flourishing right now. I'm going to try this.


Fresh and summery, sounds like the perfect pesto combination! Your white peach maple soda looks gorgeous, I added it to my recipe ideas list too! Thanks.


I love seeing fresh, complex flavored yet simple recipes like this one. I rely on simple pestos as they are one of my favorite flavor boosters for most everything from fish to pastas. It's easy to get in a comfortable 'rut' when it comes to staples such as pesto so finding a new favorite like this one is such a treat. XO

Gwen @SimplyHealthyFamilly

i love seeing your hands in the shot! those hands have made so much amazing food over the years. WOW. always and inspiration heidi, thank you.


Interesting! I've never made pesto with mortar & pestle. I usually just throw it all into a food processor... I like that this is much more intimate and so different than the typical basil, garlic, parmesan mix.

Allie @ The Nutritional Epiphany

Fabulous and gawwwgeous. And the bracelets are pimp too.

HS: Thanks Bev, I picked them up in Jodphur, and they've been on ever since. I've tried to bring them in for the shop, but trying to communicate that I want these exact bangles, and then ensuring quality, conflict-free, etc....yeah,making my head explode. Might be a good excuse to go back though? ;)

Bev @ Bev Cooks

Home made pesto is my favoride. I've tried like 10 different recipes and am always happy to try out a new one.

Marta @ What Should I eat for breakfast today

Totally random question: Where did you get the gorgeous dress you are wearing in the "wrapping cloth" photo?

HS: Hi jmbh - thanks! It's a Sofie d'Hoore dress from a few years ago. Super easy and comfortable, I've nearly worn it to death.


Oh, this sounds lovely and so refreshing!

Marie @ Little Kitchie

I have a huge bunch of fresh herbs that I got from the farmers market. This will be a great recipe to put the majority of them to use. On my blog I wrote about the health benefits of fresh herbs.


awesome recipe! love that you used 5 herbs!


It's hard to beat a good pesto!

Belinda @zomppa

Oh-so-timely! I was just plotting pesto inspirations--Vietnamese with peanuts came to mind, and then this... Offbeat, as you say, but intriguing. Can't wait to try it (and that peach soda too)!


I've always been a basil pesto lover, but ever since I've started making pesto with other herbs, I've fallen in love with it even more. It's such a wonderful condiment that really elevates any vegetable dish. And with the abundance of seasonal herbs available, I will be trying your version, which I'm sure I'll love.

Nourish Your Roots

Now I want pesto.... come on baby garden basils, grow babies, grow! Looks perfect, thank you :)


I love seeing fresh, complex flavored yet simple recipes like this one. I rely on simple pestos as they are one of my favorite flavor boosters for most everything from fish to pastas. It's easy to get in a comfortable 'rut' when it comes to staples such as pesto so finding a new favorite like this one is such a treat. XO

Gwen @SimplyHealthyFamilly

I happen to have some Pecorino cheese on hand for another recipe I made yesterday and I almost never buy it! It was meant to be that you posted this. It's beautiful and perfect timing!

Averie @ Averie Cooks

Sounds like summer!


This will become one of those staples with which I can fool people into thinking I know my way around a kitchen:) Thank you so much.


I love this twist on pesto. Just this afternoon while in our garden, I was noticing how the chives have gone wild with proliferation. I can't wait to put them to good use, with this idea!

Dan from Patter Talk

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