Pesto is an Italian sauce that is traditionally made of fresh ingredients, such as garlic, basil and olive oil. The key to pesto is that the ingredients are not pounded but ground into a fine mixture. Olive oil is the base and offers the bulk of the calories. In just one tablespoon of pesto sauce there are about 90 calories.
Traditional Pesto is anything but healthy, although can be quite flavorful when added to pasta and meat dishes. Pesto is added to the top of most Italian dishes and makes the flavors of the entree really stand out.
If you are trying to cut calories but love Italian food, leaving pesto out is a must. You can make your pesto at home to cut back on calories by using extra virgin olive oil, rather than the rich stuff. Extra virgin olive oil or EVOO is much lighter and contains less calories than the heavy oil. Keep the other ingredients as fresh as you can in order to enhance the flavor of your dishes. If you choose to use pesto, but still want to reduce calories, try cutting back on the amount of pesto used in the dishes. You can reduce your calories this way by as much as fifty percent.
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