Batch of homemade Vegan Pesto Breadsticks on a parchment-lined cutting board
4.69 from 22 votes

Vegan Pesto Parmesan Breadsticks

Simple vegan pesto breadsticks topped with vegan parmesan cheese. Wholesome, dairy-free ingredients that mimic the flavor of traditional breadsticks perfectly.
Author: Minimalist Baker
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 32 minutes
Servings: 12 (breadsticks)
Category: Appetizer, Side, Snack
Cuisine: Italian-Inspired, Vegan
Freezer Friendly 3 months, Dough only
Does it keep? (dough only), 2-3 Days


  • 1 packet active dry yeast (1 packet yields ~2 1/4 tsp)
  • 1 Tbsp cane sugar (or granulated – you could also sub maple syrup, or honey if not vegan)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 2 1/2-3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour or whole-wheat pastry flour (I use a mix of the two)
  • 3 Tbsp vegan-friendly basil pesto (my recipe below)
  • 3-4 Tbsp vegan parmesan cheese

For the Vegan Pesto:

  • 2 cups fresh basil (tightly packed // rinsed and thoroughly dried)
  • 1/3 cup raw walnuts or pine nuts
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 large cloves garlic (chopped)
  • 1 healthy pinch (~1/4 tsp) each sea salt and black pepper
  • 3 Tbsp vegan parmesan cheese (or sub 2 Tbsp nutritional yeast, or omit)
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice


  1. To make the pesto, add all ingredients to a food processor and mix until combined, leaving a little texture. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. Store covered in the fridge for up to a couple weeks, though best when fresh. Freeze for longer term storage.

  2. For the breadsticks, add 1 cup warm water – 110 degrees (43 C) or about the temp of bath water – to a large mixing bowl (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size). Make sure it’s not too hot or it will kill the yeast. Sprinkle on yeast and let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes.

  3. Add the sugar, oil, salt and stir. Using a wooden spoon, slowly add the flour and mix until a dough ball forms. You may not be able to add all 3 cups of flour, so add a little at a time until it won’t accept anymore (amount as original recipe is written // refer to the higher end of the range if altering batch size). You will likely add in more while kneading.

  4. Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface and knead by hand for 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until a smooth ball comes together.

  5. Wipe out your mixing bowl and add 1 Tbsp olive oil (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size). Add dough back in, flipping a couple times to cover with oil, leaving the seam side down. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place for about an hour. The dough should double in size (see photo).

  6. Cut the dough in half. Reserve one half for later use. Will freeze for up to 3 months, or stay in the fridge for a few days.
  7. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F (232 C).
  8. On a floured surface, roll the remaining half of the dough out into a rectangle about 1/4 inch thick. Carefully transfer to a parchment lined baking sheet, reforming it into a rectangle.
  9. Leaving the edges bare, generously brush with vegan pesto and top with an even layer of vegan parmesan cheese. You could also add a handful of vegan mozzarella if you wish, such as Daiya shreds. In place of the pesto, you could also sub red sauce.
  10. Bake for 11 – 13 minutes or until the crust and cheese are golden brown. Slice and serve immediately.


*To make these freezer-friendly for future use, par-bake the whole batch for 5 minutes, slice, cool and store in a freezer-safe bag or container. Pull out and bake on a baking sheet in a 450-degree F (232 C) oven until fluffy and golden brown.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate.
*Basic dough recipe from Food Republic
*Pesto adapted from Food 52

Nutrition Per Serving (1 of 12 breadsticks)