Pesto with Black Olives

As hinted quite blatantly when I requested some basil advice, I’ve been making quite a bit of pesto lately. When I bought some basil plants this year, I discovered making homemade pesto. I tip my hat to the first person that invented pesto. Homemade pesto is incredibly delicious and easy to make. I bet you can confirm this statement if you’ve ever made it!

This pesto incorporated black olives. Taking into account that pesto already uses olive oil in the first place, they won’t produce a flavour clash. It gave my usual strong pesto a lovely smoothness both in taste and in a softer, bouncier texture. I don’t think it makes it better nor worse, just different.

How to make pesto with black olives


1 bunch basil

1 handful pine nuts

1 handful walnuts

2 cloves garlic – peeled

1/2 cup black olives

100g cured Manchego cheese


black pepper

1/4 cup olive oil

Simply put all of the ingredients in a blender and blend.


  • I didn’t have any Parmesan cheese at that moment so I used cured Manchego cheese. The cured one has the hardest, most dehydrated texture. It’s a bit milder than Parmesan, which probably helped make this pesto smoother.

Pesto with black olives recipe

Thank you for reading!

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    1. Sofia 2013-09-23 at 21:22

      🙂 thanks!

  1. dalo2013 2013-09-21 at 21:25

    Love this post… When I saw the title, I thought “olives in pesto…sounds strange” but you are right, olive oil is used in pesto (and I love pesto) and now really would like to try some. Do you ship to the States or Hong Kong? 🙂

    1. Sofia 2013-09-23 at 21:22

      How about shipping dim sum from Hong Kong?? 🙂

  2. Laura Lynn 2013-09-22 at 12:17

    This sounds fantastic! Can’t wait to make some as I have a bumper crop of both basil and tomatoes. Pesto is a LOT easier to make than tomato sauce.

    1. Sofia 2013-09-23 at 21:23

      It is so easy, I’m still amazed at why it took me so long to start making it! You even have tomato plants? You’ll have to give me tips 🙂

      1. Laura Lynn 2013-09-26 at 00:47

        I also have a strange but delicious recipe for mung bean hummus that seemed, on paper, inedible. But it’s delicious and healthy. Tomatoes require sun and air. That’s all. We grew 4 different varieties successfully this year. We are inundated with tomatoes. Roasting them and canning salsa as I write.

        1. Sofia 2013-09-26 at 19:39

          Mung bean hummus… sounds interesting!
          Thank you for the advice,.. can they start growing in winter? Lucky you with the tomatoes 🙂

    1. Sofia 2013-09-23 at 21:24

      And adequate for vegetarian you 🙂

  3. Sunny 2013-09-22 at 16:22

    Black olive is a genius idea! I’ve made pesto (and loved it, of course), but I have never tried to add walnuts and black olives!

    1. Sofia 2013-09-23 at 21:24

      Black olives is optional (it makes it more interesting) but the walnuts are fantastic!

  4. Mya 2013-09-22 at 21:41

    This is great! I would’ve never considered combining the two!

    1. Sofia 2013-09-23 at 21:24

      Thank you Mya!

  5. Guillermina Bósquez Stover 2013-09-23 at 04:12

    I’ll have to make this recipe–it looks delicious!

    1. Sofia 2013-09-23 at 21:25

      Go ahead Guillermina 🙂

  6. dedy oktavianus pardede 2013-09-23 at 21:39

    You’ve just inspire me for my next project Sofia
    i think i need to reduce the ammount of the olive oil for this recipe….

    1. Sofia 2013-09-24 at 08:46

      Oh wow! I hope to see it on your blog then 🙂

  7. Tala Ghalayini 2013-10-04 at 08:59

    this is my next pesto experiment for sure! thank u for sharing! 🙂

    1. Sofia 2013-10-13 at 14:23

      Good luck 🙂

  8. Shanna Koenigsdorf Ward 2013-10-13 at 20:23

    This recipe is inspired. The black olives and aged Manchego to give such a lovely Spanish flair! I loved the food I ate when I lived in Spain. I could see this pesto served as a tapa – maybe on a slice of toasted harina del trigo baguette with a some jámon serrano? 🙂

    1. Sofia 2013-10-13 at 20:39

      Oh, what a brilliant idea!


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