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5 Easy Ways To Use Leftover Pesto

Updated on August 26, 2015

Leftover Pesto To The Rescue!

Do you have leftover pesto your trying to keep, but not sure what to make with it? Have you considered dumping it and just moving on with your day? I get it, I really do. I'm sure it seems that the leftover pesto is not worth saving and would be way easier to just throw away.

But before you head to the nearest garbage, please check out the easy and delicious ways I have for you to use your leftover pesto. They really are tasty and will probably have you regretting all the pesto you've previously throw out.

The great thing about pesto is that it doesn't really matter if your pesto was homemade, came out of a jar, or was provided with your takeout meal. It all goes well in the meal ideas I have provided for you so there's no need for that extra pesto to go to waste. So check out my five easy ways to use leftover pesto I share below. I'm hoping it will help you to see that leftover pesto is a good thing!

1. Pesto Chicken Salad

Most chicken salad recipes include a mayonnaise or oil-based dressing, that will pair well with any leftover pesto you may have. Start small by adding one tablespoon at a time of your leftover pesto to your chicken salad until you get the desired flavor.

Serve this for lunch or dinner and amaze your family and friends with your unique and delicious pesto chicken salad. You can serve the pesto chicken salad on

  • sandwich bread or crescents
  • over lettuce leaves or a salad
  • in a tortilla or flatbread
  • with a variety of crackers
  • and more!

Pesto as Pizza Sauce is Superb!


2. Pesto Pizza Sauce

I don't think I'll ever forget the time I tried my first pizza with pesto as the pizza sauce. I had it custom made at a local yogurt and pizza shop and decided to try something new by ordering a garlic butter crust, pesto pizza sauce, mozzarella cheese, grilled chicken and fresh spinach. It was beyond delicious and anytime I think about it, I instantly desire to have a piece, okay the whole pizza!

So if your making homemade pizza, buying a pre-made crust, etc. check out the list below as a guide to how much leftover pesto to use. If your a real pesto lover, then these amounts might not be enough for you and you will have to add more at your own discretion.

Leftover Pesto Pizza Sauce Amounts

Personal Pan Pizza
Medium Pizza
Large Pizza
1/4 cup leftover pesto sauce
1/2 cup leftover pesto sauce
3/4-1 cup leftover pesto sauce
Try to spread the pesto in an even layer all over the crust. Feel free to add extra olive oil to the pesto before putting it on the crust. Enjoy!

3. Pesto Meatballs

Pesto and meatballs, a winning pair for any spaghetti and meatball fans! All you will need is your favorite meatball recipe, or you can use this one which is delicious and then add 1/2 cup of leftover pesto sauce to it. That's it! You'll be amazed at the flavor the leftover pesto adds to your meatballs, just delicious!

Anyone who tries your pesto meatballs will think they have a gourmet meatball with the finest ingredients. Who needs to know that it was made with leftovers? Just let them enjoy these meatballs and any questions can be answered at a later time.

Pesto Wraps Are Quick, Easy & Delicious!


4. Pesto Wraps

Pesto wraps are a quick and easy way to use leftover pesto with a variety of wraps, vegetables, meats, cheeses and more! They're also a great way to use up other leftovers you have in your refrigerator, for a quick lunch and dinner, that can be easily made the day or night before.

To make a delicious pesto wrap, you will start by using your favorite tortilla wraps (white, wheat, sun-dried tomato, spinach, low carb, gluten-free, etc.) and then use your leftover pesto as the sauce you will spread on the wraps before adding your other toppings. Once all your toppings are added, roll your wrap burrito-style, slice it down the middle at an angle and enjoy!

You'll Love The Flavor Of A Pesto Burger!


5. Pesto Burger

How can a burger get better, add pesto to it! Whether you want to add it into your beef before cooking it, or as a condiment on top, leftover pesto is a must have for your favorite burgers.

To get the best flavor, I recommend grilling your hamburgers and then putting 1/2 cup of pesto in your hamburger meat before grilling them, or put a teaspoon of pesto on each hamburger as a topping, once they've been cooked. Invite some family and friends, so they can enjoy these unique and delicious burgers with you!

Learn How To Make A Chicken Pesto Panini

Will you use your leftover pesto to make another meal?

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    • mirrie profile image

      Mirrie 2 years ago from France

      I am officially drooling - great hun

    • Alessio Ganci profile image

      Alessio Ganci 2 years ago from Italy

      If you have the opportunity to go in Ligurian region in Italy, you will find it in pizzerias! Yes it is very delicious. One day I will probably write a hub about it!

      Have a good weekend!

    • georgialgal1984 profile image

      Mrs Clark 2 years ago from United States

      That sounds delicious! Would love to try it one day. Thanks so much for sharing and I hope you have a wonderful weekend~ :)

    • Alessio Ganci profile image

      Alessio Ganci 2 years ago from Italy

      Pesto sauce is from my country, and I can also propose another recipe you can try if you want (in addition to having pesto with pasta): the Italian "focaccia al formaggio", which is a slim (it's slim like Italian pizza) focaccia made with "stracchino cheese"... well, you can add also pesto sauce to stracchino cheese... this dish can be found in some Italian regions and I like it very much.

    • georgialgal1984 profile image

      Mrs Clark 2 years ago from United States

      paolaenergya- I agree, pesto is so delicious on just about anything! Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have a great day~ :)

    • paolaenergya profile image

      Paola Bassanese 2 years ago from London

      Pesto meatballs, yeah! Good idea! If I can I'll put pesto everywhere that's edible!

    • georgialgal1984 profile image

      Mrs Clark 2 years ago from United States

      ddoesmc- Thank you for your interest and stopping by. Hope you have a great day~ :)

    • ddoesmc profile image

      David James 2 years ago from United States of America

      Great hub! I have a lot of pesto, I think I'll be trying a few of these out! Thanks for sharing all of them.