Our family started moving away from purchasing processed foods, partly for health reasons, partly for financial reasons, and partly for the fun of making food from scratch. We started by trying to eliminate items that came in boxes or jars first. We still have a few every now and then (mandarin oranges is one of them!) but for the most part have drastically reduced our pre-made packaged foods. Unfortunately, what we found is that sometimes from scratch can turn out to be a bit more expensive. One of the most pricey items in the produce department is herbs. At our grocery stores they are sold in tiny flat plastic packages for absurd amounts of money. This is not going to be very cost effective.


  • 1 1/2 C. Basil Leaves 
  • Soybean Oil
  • 1-2 Cloves of Garlic
  • 1/4 C. Romano Cheese or Parmesan 
  • 1/4 C. Olive Oil (more if you like thicker)
  • 2 tbsp. Pine Nuts


  • Put all ingredients into food processor. 
  • Blend until smooth, scraping down the sides as needed.
  • Serve.

Instead, what we decided to do was grow our own herbs. We have a variety now, but since we are talking about making pesto, we’ll just focus on the basil. We got a small plant, planted it outside in our garden, set an automatic watering system and weed occasionally. It takes very little effort and in less than two years has become quite large. Using herbs from our own garden has saved us quite a bit at the grocery store!basil

It’s ridiculous how easy that is. Now you have a beautiful pesto sauce with no strange “flavors” or preservatives. Mix it into some cooked pasta and dinner is served!

basil pesto.

This can be stored in the refrigerator and used within about a week (having no preservatives and all) or it can be frozen if you make more than you can use in a week. I use these small jars that can be purchased through Amazon for less than $15 with free shipping. 

smalljar1 smalljar

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Southern Carolina Family