- a sauce typically made with basil, pine nuts, olive oil, and grated Parmesan blended together and served hot or cold over pasta, fish, or meat.
Origin of pesto
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
- a sauce for pasta, consisting of basil leaves, pine nuts, garlic, oil, and Parmesan cheese, all crushed together
Italian, shortened form of pestato, past participle of pestare to pound, crush
Word Origin and History for pesto
olive oil-based pasta sauce, 1937, from Italian pesto, contracted form of pestato, past participle of pestare "to pound, to crush," in reference to the crushed herbs and garlic in it, from Latin root of pestle.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper