Basil is one of the absolute best herbs to use in your cooking.
This is a very aromatic herb that can easily add that extra pizazz to your dish. It’s quite delicate, so is often best added towards the end of the cooking process to really get the best out of the fresh basil.
Often associated with Italian cuisine, there’s no end to the recipes that you can use your fresh basil in.
But if you’ve been growing your own fresh basil on your windowsill, it can be confusing knowing what to use it for.
There are only so many times you can use the same recipes before you start to get bored of them!
But there’s no need for you to worry – we’ve searched far and wide to accumulate the very best fresh basil recipes that the world has to offer.
So let’s take a look at these 28 wonderfully refreshing fresh basil recipes to get you started! There’s something for everyone down below, so you’re sure to find something that you’ll love.
One of the easiest ways to use up an excessive amount of fresh basil is by making your own fresh basil pesto!
In fact, this can be crafted and then used in a range of recipes that we have included down below. This is a super simple recipe for you to use, and you can then use it to top some toasted bread, or add to your favorite pasta dish.
You’ll be needing that fresh basil pesto that we’ve highlighted above for our next tasty recipe!
This tomato and basil soup combines some classic Italian flavors to warm you up on those cool fall and winter nights. With a healthy dose of fresh basil pesto, you’ll certainly get the basil kick that you’re after!
Want something super summery to add to your recipe repertoire? Then this sweet basil vinaigrette is just the thing you’re after!
This is best served with plenty of crusty bread so that you can really appreciate the best that this vinaigrette has to offer. Or simply drizzle in generous amounts over a selection of your favorite salad leaves!
One of the most versatile recipes to have in your cooking handbook is undoubtedly this tasty tomato and basil sauce.
Not only does this sauce recipe help you to use up your fresh basil, it’s also super versatile and can be used for a variety of recipes. Ideal if you need something easy to whip up in a pinch!
Looking for a super easy recipe that can be cooked up all in your skillet while also using up your abundance of fresh basil? Then this refreshing lemon basil chicken is just the thing you need to try!
Filled with delicious lemon and basil flavors, you’ll have a tasty meal to suit all the family.
Want a super tasty summer dish that can be enjoyed both hot or cold? Then this roasted tomato, basil, and parmesan quiche will be the perfect addition to your table.
It can be prepared in advance of when you need it, and you can also use extra fresh basil leaves as a garnish on top of the finished quiche.
Another super easy way to use up all of that fresh basil that you’ve got piling up is to give this fresh basil hummus recipe a try.
This makes an excellent dip for soft pitta breads, crusty bread, or even tortilla chips. This is a super tasty appetizer that is also vegan friendly.
Basil marries so well with pasta that we just had to include this tempting Silvana’s Mediterranean and basil pasta! This is a quick recipe that you can put together in a pinch, making it the perfect midweek meal.
There’s plenty of basil in the recipe itself, and also some extra added as a garnish if you so wish!
Want a creamy dish to tempt your taste buds? This creamy basil chicken is just the thing you need to try!
It features a creamy tomato and basil sauce to really highlight the best that the chicken has to offer. Plus it can all be cooked in your skillet for additional ease!
You really can’t beat a classic, which is why we simply had to include this baked tomato, mozzarella, and basil risotto.
This features some classic flavors that highlight basil well, and complement its aromatic flavors. Plus it makes the perfect midweek meal complete with gooey cheese!
11. Caprese Salad
We couldn’t possibly have a list of the best fresh basil recipes without including a recipe for caprese salad! This is a simple classic that allows the basil to shine through.
Combined with fresh mozzarella, fresh salad tomatoes, and a classic balsamic glaze, you’ll get a vibrant flavor with every bite.
Want to put a twist on the classic garlic bread? Then you simply must try this tempting garlic and basil ciabatta.
Featuring beautifully crusty bread as the base, with basil and garlic working together, you will get an appetizer that you won’t forget in a hurry.
Whip up a batch to accompany one of the main meals we’ve also featured on this list, or simply enjoy it on its own.
This basil chimichurri is the perfect tangy sauce for adding to a variety of other ingredients and dishes to really make them shine.
Fresh basil is combined with garlic, parsley, red wine vinegar, and olive oil for a tangy sauce that marries well with seafood, chicken, roasted vegetables, or grilled steak.
This bacon, pea, and basil macaroni is the perfect comfort food for your warm summer evenings.
You can also adjust the recipe to suit your preferences in terms of the veggies used. Plus you can easily add or take away quantities of basil depending on your needs!
We simply had to include a classic fresh tomato basil pasta recipe! There’s a reason that tomatoes and basil are so often used together.
The two ingredients really bring out the best in your favorite dishes! Plus this is a super easy dish that can be whipped up in a pinch to give you a flavorful bowl of comfort food.
Want some explosive flavor from your basil dish? Then why not whip up some fresh basil pesto and combine it with this tasty zucchini and broad bean risotto!
This is a hearty dish that will make the ideal midweek meal for all of the family. You can also adjust the quantities to make this dish a starter or a main meal!
Searching for a more unusual way to use up all of that excess fresh basil? Then why not give this fresh basil butter a try!
This can be stored in your refrigerator for up to 2 months, or you can freeze it for it to keep for up to 6 months. This fresh basil butter is an excellent way to add a basil hit to your steak, bread, or whichever recipe that’s your fancy!
We simply had to include this tempting barley and broccoli risotto with lemon and basil! This dish is bursting with both flavor and healthy goodness.
You’ll get a bunch of tasty vitamins in every bite, and have a great way to use up your excess basil.
Want a cheesy twist on your classic basil pesto? Then you simply must give this fresh basil and parmesan pesto a try! Plus it’s super easy to make, and you can always refrigerate any extras for you to use another time.
Love your seafood? Then give this lemon cod with basil bean mash a try! This is a yummy summer recipe that makes the perfect meal for 2 during your midweek. Plus it’s super healthy to boot!
You really can’t beat a classic Italian recipe. Which is why we had to include this yummy lasagne and fresh basil recipe! You can use your fresh basil as a main ingredient in the lasagne, and you can also use it as a tasty garnish.
Looking for something super quick to whip up in a pinch? Then search no further than this spaghetti bolognese with salami and basil recipe!
This gives you the ideal midweek meal to feed all the family, all while using up your tasty basil in the process.
Sample the taste of summer with this refreshing fresh basil lemonade! You can taste summer in every sip of this drink, and it gives you one of the more unusual recipes for using up your excess basil.
You can also adjust the quantities of the recipe to make more or less basil lemonade depending on your requirements.
Searching for a tasty lunch meal or appetizer to serve to family and friends? Why not give these basil and olive eggs a try!
Using fresh basil and Kalamata olives, you’ll get a tasty morsel with every bite. Not to mention a boost of protein!
This easy Thai basil chicken recipe is the perfect midweek meal for those who enjoy a little added heat from their meals. Basil combines with garlic, honey, scallions, and other ingredients to give you an authentic Thai street food dish.
Love your fish dishes? Then you need to give this haddock in tomato basil sauce recipe a try! Featuring tasty haddock alongside your tasty basil, this is a super simple dish that makes for a rewarding midweek meal.
Spice up your midweek meals with this sticky basil chicken! The addition of chili garlic sauce gives this basil chicken dish even more bite. Plus you can add your aromatic basil into the mix for an unforgettable dish!
Nothing says comfort food like creamy linguine with ham, lemon, and basil. This is a super quick meal that can be made without too much hassle.
You can enjoy your plateful in less than half an hour! Plus it features your basil as the star of the dish.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Can I Do With Fresh Basil?
There are lots of different things that you can use your fresh basil for! This is a wonderfully aromatic herb that tends to be added towards the end of the cooking process so as to maintain as much of that delicious flavor as possible.
Some of the things that you can use your fresh basil for include making a fresh basil pesto, adding them to your favorite dishes for an added flavor kick, using them in salads, or using them as a garnish for your dishes.
We’ve made a list of 28 wonderfully refreshing fresh basil dishes up above to give you more inspiration for what to use your fresh basil for!
How Do You Prepare Fresh Basil?
The first thing you will need to do before you start using your fresh basil is to rinse it under cold water.
If it’s store bought basil this will be important, as all manner of pesticides can be used during the growing process. Washing them makes sure that your basil is ready to eat.
If you are picking your fresh basil from the pot, make sure to not pick lots of stems. Preferably you will want the leaves for your cooking, however, the stems can also be used.
Depending on the recipe required, you can use the basil leaves whole, you can tear them gently with your hands, or you can chop up the basil leaves into smaller pieces.
Can I Freeze Fresh Basil?
Yes, you can freeze your fresh basil leaves! However, you will need to prepare a few things beforehand because of the fact that the basil leaves are very delicate.
Remember that your defrosted basil won’t look the same as fresh basil leaves, but it will taste the same.
Your best bet is to wash your basil leaves and then chop them up using a sharp knife. You can then place them into a clean, prepared ice cube tray, and fill this tray with water to make a basil ice cube.
Once you defrost your frozen basil, the leaves will appear black, but they will still taste great.
Is It Better To Freeze Or Dry Basil?
We’re all used to seeing dried basil on the grocery store shelves, so why not do this instead of freezing your fresh basil? Is it better to freeze or dry your fresh basil, anyway?
Ultimately, it will make little difference, and will all come down to your personal preference.
The basil tends to taste better and more like its original entity if frozen, but drying your basil from scratch is also a good way to maintain the flavor until you are ready to use it.
The best way to dry your basil is to blast it in the microwave 3 times, for around 30 seconds each time.
Make sure to place a paper towel underneath the fresh basil first, and then place a second paper towel on top of the fresh basil. You can then allow your fresh basil to dry out at room temperature once you have finished.
How Long Will Basil Keep In Olive Oil?
Storing your basil in olive oil is an excellent way to preserve it. When kept in olive oil, your fresh basil will last you for up to 2 months.
Which gives you plenty of time to use your fresh basil as you see fit, without having to throw any away! The fresh basil stored in olive oil can even keep for up to 3 months if it’s stored in your refrigerator.
And there you have it! You now have a wonderful selection of recipes to choose from to help you use up that overabundance of fresh basil.
We’ve made sure to include a versatile selection of recipes so that there is a good variety to choose from. So if you’ve used one recipe and don’t want to try the same thing again, you’ll have something else to tempt your taste buds with!
Whether you want something that can be used for other recipes such as a basil pesto, or are looking for a hearty main meal, you will find something to suit your needs.
Not to mention a super tasty way for you to use up all of that fresh basil!
Which are your favorites? Or will you be branching out to try something new? Whichever culinary path you take, there’s plenty here to keep you busy!