• Kingdom: Plantae
  • Order: Lamiales
  • Family: Lamiaceae
  • Genus: Ocimum
    • Species: O. basilicum ‘Genovese

Medicinal Uses and Research

Genovese basil, like other basil varieties, has been traditionally used in herbal medicine for its potential therapeutic properties. It is believed to have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial effects. The essential oil derived from basil leaves contains compounds like linalool, eugenol, and estragole, which have been studied for their potential health benefits.

Recent research has indicated that basil extracts can have potential neuroprotective effects and may be beneficial in conditions like oxidative stress. Another study highlighted its potential in reducing the risk of certain types of inflammatory conditions. Furthermore, its antimicrobial properties have been explored against a range of pathogens.

However, it’s essential to note that while Genovese basil has shown promise in various studies, it’s crucial to consult with healthcare professionals before using it for therapeutic purposes.

Culinary Uses

Genovese basil is a staple in Italian cuisine, especially in dishes like pesto. Its large, fragrant leaves have a sweet flavor that pairs well with tomatoes, mozzarella, and olive oil. It can be used fresh in salads, sandwiches, and pasta dishes or dried for longer storage.

Classic Basil Pesto


  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts or walnuts
  • 3 medium-sized garlic cloves, minced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese


  1. In a food processor, combine the basil, garlic, and pine nuts. Pulse until coarsely chopped.
  2. While the food processor is running, slowly add the olive oil in a steady stream.
  3. Stop the processor and scrape down the sides. Add both cheeses and pulse until blended.
  4. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Store in the refrigerator with a thin layer of olive oil on top to preserve freshness.

2. Loaded Vegetarian Quiche with Basil


  • 1 pie crust
  • Olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • Mushrooms, sliced
  • Zucchini, sliced
  • Tomatoes, sliced
  • Flour for dusting
  • Fresh basil, chopped
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups cheese (your choice, e.g., cheddar or mozzarella)


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C) and bake the pie crust for about 8 minutes.
  2. Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F (175°C).
  3. In a skillet, heat olive oil and sauté onion, bell pepper, mushrooms, and zucchini until softened.
  4. Dust tomato slices with flour and basil, then sauté in the skillet for 1 minute per side.
  5. In a bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, salt, and pepper.
  6. Layer 1 cup of cheese in the pie crust, followed by the vegetable mixture, and then the tomato slices.
  7. Pour the egg mixture over the top and sprinkle with the remaining cheese.
  8. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean.

Full Recipe & Instructions


Genovese basil prefers full sun and well-draining soil. It’s sensitive to cold temperatures, so it’s best to plant it after the last frost in spring. Regular pruning helps the plant produce more leaves and prevents it from flowering, which can affect the flavor of the leaves.


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