An ode to pesto.


Each month, Rachael Ray Every Day staffers try hundreds (seriously, hundreds) of new food products (it's research, people!) in hopes of determining the best of the bunch for our monthly Checkout column. Here, we'll show a little extra love to our editors' favorite new food and bev picks. Check back every week for your grocery store aisle inspo!

This Week's Food Fave: Sam's Choice Traditional Basil Pesto Sauce


Whether it's actually on pasta or not, I really love pasta sauce. All of 'em: red, Alfredo, meat, vodka...However, there's one sauce that stands above the rest. The Queen of the Sauces if you will. And that, my friends, is pesto. 

In theory, I'd love to make my own, but: a) I'd actually rather not b) I accidentally kill every basil plant that enters my apartment c) If I'm going to go to the store to buy all the ingredients for pesto, I'm probably just going to end up buying it pre-made, and d) many of those pre-made options are better than what I could make myself. For all those reasons, I'm always on the hunt for a pesto that's affordable, convenient, and most importantly, delicious, and Sam's Choice Traditional Basil Pesto Sauce fits the bill. The sauce was flavorful, basil-y, slightly cheesy, and satisfying in every meal I ate. In true pesto-obsessive behavior—and in honor of our new Italian Issue—I ate the sauce three different ways this week. Here's what I tried (and an in-depth look at the throw-everything-on-a-plate style dinners I eat):

1. Pesto, Spaghetti Squash, Ground Beef, and Veggies

Like the rest of the world, I typically pair ground beef with red sauce, but I decided to mix things up. I ended up mixing everything together, including my side of roasted broccoli. It was delicious and I'll definitely make it again the next time I have prepped ground beef (or any prepped protein for that matter).

2. Pesto, Zoodles, and Tilapia

I intended to just top the zoodles with pesto, and let the lemon pepper I sprinkled on the fish speak for itself, but once there was pesto on the plate, I couldn't help but smear it over everything. I'll admit, the pesto was a bit overpowering for the piece of tilapia (I didn't taste the lemon pepper at all), but that could have way more to do with the amount I piled on than the pesto itself. Anyway, everything on my plate ended up tasting like pesto, and I'm definitely not complaining.

3. Pesto, Mushrooms, Spinach, Tomatoes, and Onions

Most weeks, I've used up the majority of the food I've prepared, and this week was no different. As a quick dinner solution, I sautéed all the veggies I could find in my refrigerator in some olive oil, then poured a bit of the pesto on top. So. Good.

The lesson here? This pesto goes with everything, people!

Price: $4.43 on