Recipe: Pesto Pork Loin with Grilled Veggies

by JJ Virgin on June 7, 2019

Seriously, as bacon is to breakfast… pork loin is to dinner. This tender, lean cut of pork is so juicy and flavorful, all you need to do is sprinkle on salt and pepper, and the high temperature will do the rest!

Served up with a slather of fragrant basil pesto and toasty grilled veggies, this meal is fit for a queen. (According to my six-year-old daughter, Gretel, anyway…)

This stand-alone cut is so succulent and aromatic, you will want to dig in immediately. Just be sure to hold off long enough to tent with foil and give the pork time to rest. Your patience will be rewarded with juicier, more tender meat!

As always, source only clean, pastured pork that was never given antibiotics or GMO feed. If you are interested in finding farms close to home, check out the USDA Local Food Directory or Local Harvest, or speak directly with local producers at your neighborhood farmer’s market!

Now, let’s talk about leftovers. I can hardly think of a way not to polish off the extras.

Try pork loin for breakfast with an Avocado Egg Cup. Chop it into bite-sized cubes and stir into cooked lentils or beans.

Or one of my favorite ways to enjoy the leftovers is simply on a bed of arugula with extra grilled veggies, topped with basil pesto as the salad dressing. You can save time by preparing your salad in advance to guarantee you and your family a gourmet, healthy lunch the next day!

Pesto Pork Loin with Grilled Veggies


June 7, 2019

Virgin Diet compliant: Cycles 1, 2, and 3
Sugar Impact Diet compliant: Cycles 1, 2, and 3

This succulent roast pork loin recipe with homemade pesto and grilled vegetables comes together with just 10 minutes of prep. So tasty and healthy!

  • Prep: 10 mins
  • Cook: 1 hr
  • Yields: 4 servings


2 lbs organic pastured pork loin

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

3/4 cup Basil Pesto Sauce (recipe below)

1 medium organic yellow onion, sliced into 1/4”-thick rounds

1 medium organic zucchini, sliced into 1/4”-thick rounds

1 medium organic yellow summer squash, sliced into 1/4”-thick rounds

1 small organic red bell pepper, sliced into 1/4”-thick rings

1 tbsp olive oil (for the veggies)


1Preheat oven to 475F.

2Season the pork loin with sea salt and black pepper, and place in 9x12 glass baking dish.

3Place in hot oven for 20 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 425F, and continue roasting for 30-40 minutes, or until meat thermometer reads 145F.

4Remove roast from the oven, tent with foil, and let stand for 20 minutes before slicing.

5While the pork loin rests, heat a grill pan over medium heat until hot.

6Toss the vegetables gently with olive oil and a pinch of sea salt.

7Cook for 7-10 minutes, flipping once.

8Slice rested pork loin into 4 servings and serve each one topped with a healthy slathering of pesto sauce and as many grilled veggies as you like.

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Nutrition Facts

Sodium382 mg
Protein64 g
Cholesterol181 mg
Sugar5 g
Total Fat35 g
Total Carbohydrates8 g
Dietary Fiber2 g

Basil Pesto Sauce


June 7, 2019

NOTE: This should accompany pork recipe

Virgin Diet compliant: Cycles 1, 2, and 3
Sugar Impact Diet compliant: Cycles 1, 2, and 3

This easy, dairy-free homemade pesto doubles as an awesome salad dressing, a tasty sauce for gluten-free pasta, or a yummy mayo mix-in. Try it in our Grilled Pesto Chicken Wraps.

  • Prep: 10 mins
  • Yields: 3/4 cup


3 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves

1 garlic

3 tbsp pine nuts

1 tbsp chia seeds

1/3 cup olive oil

1/4 tsp sea salt


1Combine basil, garlic, pine nuts, and chia seeds in the bowl of a food processor and process until finely chopped.

2With the machine running, add the olive oil in a steady stream.

3Turn off the machine and stir in the salt, then serve.

Originally published in The Virgin Diet Cookbook, Grand Central Life & Style, 2014

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Nutrition Facts

Serving Size1 tablespoon
Calories138 calories
Sodium1 mg
Protein2 g
Cholesterol0 mg
Sugar0 g
Total Fat15 grams
Saturated Fat2 grams
Total Carbohydrates2 g
Dietary Fiber1 g

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