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40 Easy Ways to Use Up Fresh Basil

Nothing smells like summer quite as much as this fragrant herb. Our best fresh basil recipes are the perfect way to use up a bumper crop.

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Lime Basil PieTaste of Home

Lime Basil Pie

This sweet tooth satisfying dessert has a unique taste, plus less calories and fat than the traditional key lime pie.—Samara Donald, Redmond, Washington.

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Spinach-Basil LasagnaTaste of Home

Spinach-Basil Lasagna

In the kitchen, my husband and I like to use classic ingredients in new ways. I came up with this lasagna one day and haven't made another type since. We love it! —Charlotte Gehle, Brownstown, Michigan

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Basil & Heirloom Tomato TossTaste of Home

Basil & Heirloom Tomato Toss

I came up with this garden-fresh salad to showcase the heirloom tomatoes and peppers we raised for our stall at the farmers market. Try out other types of basil like lemon, lime, licorice and cinnamon. —Sue Gronholz, Beaver Dam, Wisconsin

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Caprese Salad KabobsTaste of Home

Caprese Salad Kabobs

Trade in the usual veggie party platter for these lively kabobs. I often make them for my family to snack on, and the kids like to help with the recipe! —Christine Mitchell, Glendora, California

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Chicken ProvoloneTaste of Home

Chicken Provolone

Though it's one of my simplest dishes, this version of an Italian classic is also one of my husband’s favorites. It’s quick to prepare and a garnish of fresh parsley or basil makes it look elegant. —Dawn Bryant, Thedford, Nebraska

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PestoTaste of Home

Pesto

Homemade pesto always makes a thoughtful hostess gift. Mix things up with the cilantro variation. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Basil Vegetable StrataTaste of Home

Basil Vegetable Strata

I've been cooking this strata for years, and my family just can't get enough! The fresh basil gives this healthy brunch dish an added flavor boost. —Jean L. Ecos, Hartland, Wisconsin.

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Basil Pork ChopsTaste of Home

Basil Pork Chops

Just a few ingredients give a tender pork loin chop all the glazed goodness it needs. Serve with your favorite roasted veggies and you’ve got a meal bursting with flavor. —Lisa Gilliland, Fort Collins, Colorado

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Crispy Goat Cheese AppetizersTaste of Home

Crispy Goat Cheese Appetizers

Want an amazing party starter? Coat slices of goat cheese with seasoned bread crumbs, fry them until golden-brown and top them off with tomato, basil, vinegar and pine nuts. —Julia TenHoeve, Richmond, Virginia

 

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Seared Salmon with Strawberry Basil RelishTaste of Home

Seared Salmon with Strawberry Basil Relish

Salmon and basil take a sweet new approach when topped off with a relish of strawberries, honey and pepper. —Stacy Mullens, Gresham, Oregon

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Strawberry-Basil CocktailTaste of Home

Strawberry-Basil Cocktail

This cocktail of sun-ripened strawberries and tender basil is so refreshing without being overly sweet. It’s our favorite. —Mary Marlowe Leverette, Columbia, South Carolina

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Heirloom Tomato TartTaste of Home

Heirloom Tomato Tart

Here's a delicious way to use the tomato bounty from your garden or the great buys from the local farmers' market. If you don't have heirloom tomatoes, try regular tomatoes with grape or plum tomatoes. —Kathryn Conrad, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

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Basil-Lemon Crab LinguineTaste of Home

Basil-Lemon Crab Linguine

I always add herbs to pasta to really punch up the flavor. This linguine looks and tastes like it's from a five-star restaurant. We love it. —Tonya Burkhard, Palm Coast, Florida

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Garlic Basil ButterTaste of Home

Garlic Basil Butter

Instead of serving plain butter alongside an assortment of fresh breads, prepare this herb-laden whipped butter. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Grilled Basil Chicken and TomatoesTaste of Home

Grilled Basil Chicken and Tomatoes

Relax after work with a cold drink while this savory chicken marinates in an herby tomato blend for an hour, then toss it on the grill. It tastes just like summer. —Laura Lunardi, West Chester, Pennsylvania

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Strawberry Basil JamTaste of Home

Strawberry Basil Jam

I make this recipe with fresh-picked strawberries and fresh basil grown in my own herb garden. This unique sweet and savory jam makes a perfect gift—just add a bright ribbon around the top with a gift tag! The deep red jam, laced with flecks of green basil, is so beautiful. —Julie O'Neil, Two Harbors, Minnesota

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Honey-Melon Salad with BasilTaste of Home

Honey-Melon Salad with Basil

Put the taste of summer in your salad! Loaded with juicy cantaloupe and honeydew, and glazed with a sweet honey dressing, this dish will be gone in minutes. Watermelon is a tasty addition, too. —Khurshid Shaik, Omaha, Nebraska

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Viva PanzanellaTaste of Home

Viva Panzanella

Add some white beans, and suddenly the traditional Italian bread and tomato salad is filling enough to stand on its own. It’s a great way to use fresh tomatoes from the garden or farmers market. —Patricia Levenson, Santa Ana, California

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Lemon-Basil Grilled Shrimp & CouscousTaste of Home

Lemon-Basil Grilled Shrimp & Couscous

The basil and lemon in this dish complement each other so nicely. Using fresh ingredients really makes a big difference. —Trisha Kruse, Eagle, Idaho

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Basil Dill ColeslawTaste of Home

Basil Dill Coleslaw

I was introduced to basil when I married into an Italian family. I loved the aromatic fragrance and flavor of the herb. I think it adds a unique flavor to this tasty slaw that’s a cool side to grilled meats. —June Cappetto, Seattle, Washington

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Roasted Tomato Soup with Fresh BasilTaste of Home

Roasted Tomato Soup with Fresh Basil

Roasting really brings out the flavor of the tomatoes in this wonderful soup. It has a slightly chunky texture that shows it's fresh and homemade. —Marie Forte, Raritan, New Jersey

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Basil and Parsley PestoTaste of Home

Basil and Parsley Pesto

Toss this herby pesto with pasta, spread it over sandwiches or stir it into an Italian-style soup, like minestrone. —Lorraine Fina Stevenski, Land O’ Lakes, Florida

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Tomato-Basil SteakTaste of Home

Tomato-Basil Steak

We grow the basil and bell peppers I use in this dish. It's easy to prepare, yet so rich and delicious. —Sheryl Little, Sherwood, Arkansas

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Peach-Basil CoolerTaste of Home

Peach-Basil Cooler

Mix peaches and basil with club soda for a cool and refreshing mocktail! —Dana Hinck, Pensacola, Florida

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Caprese ChickenTaste of Home

Caprese Chicken

I love a Caprese salad of tomatoes, basil and cheese, so why not try a chicken caprese? You can grill this dish, but my family agrees it’s juicier straight from the oven. —Dana Johnson, Scottsdale, Arizona

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Grilled Sausage-Basil PizzasTaste of Home

Grilled Sausage-Basil Pizzas

These easy little pizzas are a wonderful change of pace from the classic cookout menu. Let everybody go crazy with the toppings. —Lisa Speer, Palm Beach, Florida

 

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Basil Corn & Tomato BakeTaste of Home

Basil Corn & Tomato Bake

I think this is the ultimate dish to make when sweet Jersey corn is in season. Combined with tomatoes, zucchini and basil, it makes for a spectacular side for brunch, lunch or dinner. —Erin Chilcoat, Central Islip, New York

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Blueberry, Basil and Goat Cheese PieTaste of Home

Blueberry, Basil and Goat Cheese Pie

For a good friend moving to L.A., I made a blueberry goat cheese pie. Bake one, share it and start a precious memory. —Ashley Lecker, Green Bay, Wisconsin

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Grilled Tilapia PiccataTaste of Home

Grilled Tilapia Piccata

We aren’t big fish eaters, but a friend made this for us, and we couldn’t believe how wonderful it was! Now we eat it regularly. I love making it for guests because it’s simple, looks lovely and tastes restaurant-worthy. —Beth Cooper, Columbus, Ohio

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Prosciutto-Pesto Breakfast StrataTaste of Home

Prosciutto-Pesto Breakfast Strata

I'd never tried prosciutto before this recipe, and it instantly made me a die-hard fan! The layers of flavor in this dish are brilliant, making it well worth the time and a must for your recipe box. —Vicki Anderson, Farmington, Minnesota

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Berry-Basil Limeade JamTaste of Home

Berry-Basil Limeade Jam

My husband and I have fun picking fruit. We ended up with too many strawberries, so it was time to make jam, inspired by a mojito recipe. —Erica Ingram, Lakewood, Ohio

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Lemon-Basil Mojito MocktailsTaste of Home

Lemon-Basil Mojito Mocktails

In this twist on the classic summer beverage, lemon basil takes the place of mint. For a grown-up version, just add your favorite rum or vodka. —Cheryl Perry, Hertford, North Carolina

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Bruschetta ChickenTaste of Home

Bruschetta Chicken

We enjoy serving this tasty chicken bruschetta to both family and to company. It just might become your new favorite way to use up summer tomatoes and basil. —Carolin Cattoi-Demkiw, Lethbridge, Alberta

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Basil Grilled Corn on the CobTaste of Home

Basil Grilled Corn on the Cob

Corn on the cob is a comforting and cherished Midwest dish. It's amazing when grilled, and my recipe adds a few unexpected ingredients to make it taste even more like summertime. —Caitlin Dawson, Monroe, Ohio

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Grilled Basil ChickenTaste of Home

Grilled Basil Chicken

This cinch of a marinade gives the chicken lots of Italian flavor. Serve the chicken with a tossed green salad and garlic breadsticks, or put slices on a ciabatta roll along with lettuce, tomato and mozzarella cheese for a zesty handheld meal. —Lisa Moriarty, Wilton, New Hampshire

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Lemon Basil SalmonTaste of Home

Lemon Basil Salmon

It was my husband, Steve, who came up with this easy, foil-packet recipe for flaky, fork-tender Lemon Basil Salmon. We eat a lot of salmon and Steve likes trying out different herbs and spices on our food. This recipe's a winner! —Marianne Bauman, Modesto, California

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Basil Burgers with Sun-Dried Tomato MayonnaiseTaste of Home

Basil Burgers with Sun-Dried Tomato Mayonnaise

I often end up with a bumper crop of basil—here's a favorite way to use some of it. These burgers feature great Italian flavor. The gooey, cheesy centers and scrumptious topping are irresistible. —Virginia Kochis, Springfield, Virginia

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Mediterranean Chicken in Creamy Herb SauceTaste of Home

Mediterranean Chicken in Creamy Herb Sauce

Just because it's a weeknight does not mean that you can't have a delightful dinner. The aroma of the fresh herbs simmering in a creamy sauce combined with the chicken thighs make this easy entree is perfect supper for any night of the week. —Judy Armstrong, Prairieville, Louisiana

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Cherry Tomato & Basil FocacciaTaste of Home

Cherry Tomato & Basil Focaccia

When I had 80 pounds of tomatoes, I got creative incorporating them into meals. Sometimes I slice this loaf into squares to make sandwiches with fresh mozzarella cheese and deli meats. —Katie Ferrier, Houston, Texas

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Lemon-Basil Chicken RotiniTaste of Home

Lemon-Basil Chicken Rotini

My husband and sons like to have meat with their meals, but I prefer more veggies. This combo with rotini pasta is colorful and healthy, and it keeps everyone happy. —Anna-Marie Williams, League City, Texas

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