Substitutes for Garlic in Pesto

Pesto is delicious, but it also has a ton of garlic cloves in it. If you’re not into garlic, here are some substitutes for pesto that you can make to avoid the potent taste.

Pesto is one of the most popular dishes in Italian cooking. It’s traditionally made by pureeing basil leaves with olive oil, pine nuts, and garlic cloves, which gives it its distinctive flavor.

But what if you don’t like garlic? There are plenty of substitutes for this ingredient that will give your pesto dish just as much flavor without all the smelly breath! Here’s our list of 7 substitutes for garlic pesto.

Garlic Pesto


1. Pumpkin Pie Spice: For a milder and sweeter taste, try adding 1/4 cup pumpkin pie spice to the pesto instead of garlic cloves. It’ll give your pesto a sweet and warm flavor that is great for those who don’t like garlic!

2. Dried Chillies: If you’re looking for a more spicy flavor, try adding 1/2 teaspoon dried chillies to the mix! This will give your pesto an especially peppery bite that’s perfect for people who love spicy foods.

3. Ginger: For a milder taste alternative, try adding 1/2 teaspoon ginger powder to the mix! This will give your pesto a slightly zesty flavor that isn’t too strong for people who don’t like very much spice.

4. Onions: Feel free to add some onions or shallots if you want to create a milder taste alternative by substituting them with garlic cloves in your recipe! Try throwing in 1-2 shallots or 1/4-1/2 small onion slices into your recipe before it gets blended with all the other ingredients!

5. Garlic Powder: Make your own garlicky powder by grinding up garlic cloves into powdered

More Substitutes for Garlic Pesto

1. Oregano

Oregano is a common substitute for garlic in most Italian recipes. It’s achieved by combining the herb with oil and salt, leaving it to steep overnight or a few days in a jar. You can use this for pesto, but you’ll need to do some extra work to make it taste like pesto.

2. Basil

Basil is another common substitute for garlic in most Italian recipes. As its name suggests, basil comes from the Mediterranean region where it grows wild; however, there are also domesticated varieties of basil that are commonly grown as well.

3. Fresh Clinical Grade Extra Virgin Olive Oil

It might not be glamorous like pureed garlic, but extra virgin olive oil can be used as a good substitution for olive oil in many other dishes like pesto! Because of its lower smoke point (meaning it doesn’t burn at high temperatures), using extra virgin olive oil makes your pesto taste all the more delicious!