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Photo Credit: Elizabeth Newman

Citrus Pesto (Pesto Agli Agrumi)

I absolutely love pesto - the combination of rich and bright ingredients is one of my favorite things. When I make a classic pesto, I'll often add a squeeze of lemon to brighten it up - and that's essentially what this version of pesto is all about!

This citrus pesto, AKA Pesto Agli Agrumi, originates from Sicily. Essentially, it contains the same ingredients as Pesto Alla Genovese, with almonds in place of pine nuts, and the addition of lemon or oranges - or both, like my recipe here. It also sometimes has capers as well.

Use this delicious pesto in any way that you would use a classic Pesto Alla Genovese - tossed with pasta, drizzled on veggies, in salad... I particularly love the bright citrus flavor paired with seafood, too.

Citrus Pesto

Citrus Pesto (Pesto Agli Agrumi)


condiment sauce

Prep Time

10 minutes




Giada De Laurentiis

Image of Citrus Pesto (Pesto Agli Agrumi)



  1. Blend the basil, almonds, garlic, zests, juices, salt, and pepper in a food processor until the mixture is finely chopped. With the machine running, gradually add the olive oil until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Transfer to a bowl and stir in the Parmesan.
  2. Serve tossed with pasta*, as a spread for bruschetta or over chicken, fish or steak.
  3. Chef',s Note: If tossing with pasta, reserve some pasta water to toss with the pesto. This will ensure a creamy, smooth sauce.



per serving
Amount/Serving % Daily Value
7 grams
9 grams
27 grams
Saturated Fat
6 grams
Trans Fat
1 grams
15 milligrams
450 milligrams
2 grams
3 grams
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gluten free

3 reviews & comments

  • Author's avatar image

    Have made this several times without the orange, just used lemons. Delicious with pasta but also on top of chicken and fish. A keeper for sure!

  • Author's avatar image
    Laura Pinsky

    This pesto is spectacular. The citrus lends a freshness that makes the pesto taste especially light. I look forward to making more as my basil plants grow this summer.

  • Author's avatar image
    Katherine Morgan

    Wasn’t our best success, girls not a fan of this one

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