With its luscious leaves and sweet, slightly peppery flavor, you can’t go wrong with a basil harvest. These exciting basil recipes are ones you’ll come back to over and over.
You know basil as the classic Italian garnish (read: pizza, pasta, and tomato’s eternal companion), but trust us, this delicious herb is so much more than that. It goes fabulously with alcohol, berries, and other greenery. Not to mention, it makes a divine pesto and an infused oil you’ll use for all of your cooking.
Read on to discover our favorite basil recipes and how to use your harvest like a pro.
This Basil and Cucumber Rum Cocktail is a refreshing cocktail that’s ideal for opening up the summer. Basil and cucumber flavors play each other perfectly, and when paired with sweet rum, they create a dreamy summer drink. This delicious cocktail will help you unwind, relax, and enjoy summer.
Get the recipe here!
Infusing oil with fresh herbs is a beautiful and elegant way to add flavor to your kitchen. Make this basil infused oil, and then use it for everything. Dip toasted bread in it, drizzle atop tomatoes, or use it to cook veggies.
Put basil into a one-quart mason jar. Pour 2 cups canola oil and 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil into a saucepan. Heat to 200° F. Pour the hot oil into the mason jar with your herbs and cover with a towel. Let sit overnight. In the morning, use cheesecloth to strain the oil.
Basil pesto is a classic recipe that, no matter how much I eat, I simply can’t get enough of. And homemade, it’s even more delish. We use our pesto for all sorts of reasons — pasta, sandwiches, dip, and more — and it never gets old.
- 2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
- ½ cup lemon verbena leaves
- 2 cloves garlic
- ⅓ cup olive oil
- 2 tsp fresh lemon juice
- ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- Combine the basil, garlic, and lemon verbena in a food processor, and pulse until chopped.
- Add in the olive oil and blend.
- Add the lemon juice and Parmesan cheese.
When making salads, people often forget that adding herbs to the mix is an option. Basil balances out acidity perfectly and ties this recipe together. With tomatoes, cucumbers, and basil, this is a recipe so full of nutrients, you’re healthier just by looking at it.
Get the tomato, cucumber, & basil recipe here.
In our book, chocolate is a girl’s best friend. And it pairs oh-so-beautifully with orange and basil. Fresh basil shines in this sweet herb recipe and creates a complex flavor you won’t be able to resist.
- ¾ cup raw walnuts, finely chopped
- ½ cup fresh basil, tightly packed
- 4 oz unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
- ¾ cup butter
- 1 ½ cups white sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 6 drops oil
- ¼ tsp kosher salt
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- Preheat oven to 350° F. Line an 8×8 brownie tin with parchment paper.
- Place walnuts and basil in a food processor and pulse until a crumbled mixture forms. Set aside.
- In a medium glass bowl, microwave the butter and chocolate at 50% power until the butter has melted — about 3 for 4 minutes. Whisk until chocolate has melted. Then stir in sugar, eggs, vanilla, orange oil, salt, and the walnut basil mixture. Gradually add flour and stir until just combined.
- Spread batter into the prepared brownie pan. Bake for 30-35 minutes. Do not over bake. Let cool completely before cutting and serving.
We hope you enjoy these basil recipes! For more interesting ideas on how to use your basil, check out these 8 innovative ways to use your herbs.