Pesto!! Canapé & Appetizers Ideas using Pesto – By Reader Request!


Q: I’m making Pesto Monday with Basil from a friend’s garden. So…. then what do I do with it?! Like for an appetizer or snack preferably. Thanks!

Pesto in Canapés and Small plate Appetizers

** Chilled Canapés **

  • Pesto on toast rounds with roasted peppers or sliced plum tomatoes topped with aged cave cheese
  • Pesto on toasted rounds topped with thinly sliced grilled beef or pork tenderloin. Brush the meat with olive oil and finish with milled pepper
  • Hummus infused with pesto & sundried tomatoes– serve with pita chips and raw vegetables
  • Grilled and then chilled shrimp over pesto (infuse the pesto with diced jalapeño or Serrano peppers or hot sauce)- serve on rice crackers or toasted baguette rounds
  • Toasted baguette rounds topped with pesto, cucumber rounds & diced cherry tomato. You may want to top with lump crab

 ** Warm Canapés **

  • Grilled thinly sliced eggplant or summer squash on halved toasted baguettes, lightly spread with pesto. Top with grated Asiago and warm in the oven
  • Marinate chicken thighs in pesto and lemon juice. Slow cook the thighs at 300*F. Chill. Dice fresh fennel and the thighs and mix together with a little pesto. Serve with lettuce cups and sides of hot sauce and lime mayo
  • Grilled and sliced chicken breast on toast rounds spread with pesto, topped with diced roasted peppers
  • Clams on the half shell topped with pesto, raw butter and lemon juice- baked (you will need a clam knife)
  • Hot stuffed mushrooms: Blanch large button mushrooms in boiling water for about 30 seconds. Drain, chill and pat dry. Stuff with a mixture of pesto, mozzarella (or your favorite cheese) and sundried tomatoes and bake until bubbly
  • Grilled halved scallops over pesto and toast rounds. Finish with milled pepper

Elegant Canapes

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