Basil and Roasted Garlic Spread

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fresh basil and roasted garlic spread

Creamy, yummy, buttery good and positively delicious on everything – have I sold you on this spread yet? I make a double or triple batch and spread on veggies, sandwiches, bread sticks, crusty bread. It’s just that good.

Using fresh basil leaves gives this recipe such a bright flavor. When you combine that with the creamy, nutty goodness of the roasted garlic you have a match made in heaven. Bonus – with the fresh, uncooked basil you retain more of the natural vitamins and minerals so this is super healthy as well!

Key to this recipe is a mortar and pestle. I’ve found that using either a food processor or blender to do the job does NOT work and leaves you with a vastly inferior spread.

mashed fresh basil leaves

That said, the most basil I will mash in a batch is 2 cups. More than that at a time and it becomes harder to get the basil mashed to a smooth paste.

Use only the basil leaves and not the stems. If your basil is coming from the garden or farmer’s market, make sure to rinse it well to get rid of any dirt/sand hiding in the folds of the leaves.

rinsed and dried fresh basil leaves

And pat dry really well.  You don’t want any water in your spread. The drier your leaves, the smoother your final product will be.

Once you’ve mashed your desired amount of basil leaves, you can add the roasted garlic and olive oil all together for the final mash/mix.

roasted garlic

The proportions of this recipe can very easily be doubled and tripled.


  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves
  • 3/4 cup roasted garlic (4-5 medium heads)
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt

In mortar and pestle, mash salt and fresh basil leaves. Add roasted garlic and olive oil. Mash/mix to combine.

Transfer mixture to a bowl or plate and let it sit for 30 minutes to a hour to allow the basil liquid to drain off slightly.

Spread on crackers or toasted bread, as a dip for veggies and bread sticks, on sandwiches – anywhere you’d like a burst of flavor!

as an appetizer on toasted bread

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