Can You Freeze Pesto?

Frozen pesto in an ice-cube tray

Short answer
Like many sauces, you can freeze pesto very easily with minimal loss of quality. It ensures you have little nuggets of pesto on hand whenever you need to spruce up your dinner.

Long answer
As long as it hasn’t been frozen before, pesto is perfectly safe to freeze, and it offers a great way to ensure that you don't waste any leftovers. Some Italians feel strongly that the extreme cold kills many of the delicate properties of the sauce, but we've never noticed a substantial difference between the taste of fresh pesto and pesto that has been frozen.

Our favourite way is to invest in a dedicated plastic ice cube tray and use it exclusively for storing little pesto cubes. It means you'll have a ready supply of flavourful nuggets whenever you want to jazz up your supper with an extra pop of flavour.

If you find yourself with a glut of pesto that's too much to fit in an ice cube container, simply layer the sauce flat on greaseproof paper, wait for it to freeze solid, and then break it into smaller pieces before transferring it to a zip-lock freezer bag. Providing your freezer is set to the recommended temperature of -18°C, your frozen pesto will be perfectly safe for up to 6 months.

To defrost your pesto, simply place it in the fridge overnight or put it in your microwave on its defrost setting for a minute or two.