Pesto will always be the best pasta topper known to man kind; it's the perfect blend of herbs and nuts, and provides the most gorgeous sheen to just about any dish. Besides pasta, it's great on sandwiches as a spread, and it also adds depth to meats like chicken or steak, or fish like salmon. Or it can be thinned out with a little water or olive oil and used as a flavorful salad dressing.

Most traditional pesto recipes are made using pine nuts, basil, Parmesan cheese, and olive oil. However, that's not the only way to enjoy this glorious sauce. Dislike the herby taste of basil? Allergic to pine nuts? Here's a roundup of 10 homemade pesto recipes that go way beyond basil. These recipes can be easily made in the comfort of your own home and don't compromise on flavor. 

1. Non-Basil Pesto

This recipe is from my favorite Food Network morning show, The Kitchen. What I love about this recipe is that it uses just about any green, like kale, arugula, or mint. Walnuts are used here instead of pine nuts, giving the pesto a more vibrant and nuttier flavor. This recipe lasts in the fridge for two weeks or in the freezer for three months, so there's time to use it in different recipes.

2. Mint Pesto

herb, vegetable, tea, condiment, relish
Ellen Gibbs

This recipe uses Marcona almonds as the nut of choice, as well as a combination of mint and parsley. This pesto has a "cool and zesty" flavor thanks to the mint, and I'm all for it. 

3. Beet Green Pesto

herb, matcha, tea, vegetable, cake
Grace DeLucia

This homemade pesto recipe uses an ingredient that's often overlooked and not used enough by anyone: beet greens, or the leafy greens that come attached to raw beets at the grocery store. In addition to beet greens, this recipe features a mix of delicious nuts and seeds like pecans, hemp seeds, and pumpkin seeds. This pesto is a serious health boost, with antioxidants thanks to pumpkin seeds, as well as essential amino acids thanks to the hemp seeds.

4. Vegan Pesto

matcha, green tea, tea, spinach
Brooke Daly

This vegan pesto recipe packs in a good amount of protein by using two of the traditional pesto ingredients, basil and pine nuts, in addition to ingredients you wouldn't think to use, like spinach, onion, broccoli, and cannellini beans. Talk about health in a dip! To replace the Parm, this recipe uses nutritional yeast, an ingredient that gives it a plant-based, cheesy taste.

5. Avocado Pesto

vegetable, basil, avocado, herb, spinach, sauce
Emma Brant

This five-minute avocado pesto recipe is ultra creamy, and omits any kind of nut (perfect for those allergic to them). This recipe is great if you have limited ingredients and don't have a lot of time to prepare a weeknight meal. Spread it on toast, eat it on zoodles for a healthy "pasta," or just add it to anything you want. 

6. Arugula Pesto

This homemade pesto recipe uses arugula and walnuts in addition to Parmesan cheese, garlic, lemon, and walnut oil. This packs in lots of omega 3's from the walnuts and walnut oil, and a vibrant green color from the arugula. 

#SpoonTip: Use olive oil if you don't have walnut oil. It'll work just as well, but will give the pesto a slightly different flavor.

7. Kale Pesto

The BBC made our favorite trendy superfood into a pesto recipe and I'm all about it. I love kale in salads, but in pesto? Game changer. This recipe keeps in the fridge for a week if covered with a little more olive oil to keep it from drying out. It's also vegetarian-friendly and the Parmesan can easily be substituted with your preferred alternative. 

8. Spinach Parsley Pesto

Parsley in pesto? Never tried it, but I'm totally intrigued. Adding this herb to pesto, in addition to vitamin and mineral-rich spinach, walnuts, and dairy-free nutritional yeast, makes for a delectable spread that I would be perfect on a grilled cheese sandwich. 

9. Vegan Cashew Pesto

Raw cashews blended with nutritional yeast, olive oil, and basil leaves make for the most delicious vegan pesto that can be enjoyed by animal-eaters and non-animal eaters alike. The cashews add lots of copper and plant-based protein, and make the pesto extra rich and creamy. 

10. Pea Pesto

Peas are a great way to add more color, thickness, and protein to pesto, without compromising on flavor. Giada de Laurentiis takes the crown again for creativity and ingenuity, but why am I not surprised?

Homemade pesto lasts about 5-7 days in the fridge or about 3-4 months in the freezer, so there's time to enjoy it now, as well as later. Whatever your mood or food preference, there's a pesto option for you. Get creative by using a blend of different leaves and nuts, and you'll be surprised with what you can come up with.