Pork Pesto Skillet

Pork Pesto Skillet | Autoimmune-Paleo.com

Last month when Angie was visiting me for an in-person work week (she lives all the way across the country in DC!), I came up with a recipe on the fly that ended up being quite tasty. I was a little unsure of the combination of basil and pork, but let me tell you it is divine!

A couple other selling points about this recipe–it only has a few ingredients, takes less than 20 minutes to make, and there is only one pot to clean up at the end of your meal. Add some bonus points in for adaptability (I’ve tried it with beef and lamb!) and it sure is a winner.

Pork Pesto Skillet | Autoimmune-Paleo.com
4.5 from 2 reviews
Pork Pesto Skillet
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 4 servings
  • 2 lbs ground pork
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups fresh basil, tightly packed (about the contents of a 4-oz container)
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 1 bunch kale
  1. Gently pre-heat a skillet on medium-high heat for a minute. When it is ready, add the ground pork, breaking up in to bits and cooking for 10-15 minutes, stirring, until browned.
  2. In the meantime, place the olive oil, basil, garlic, lemon juice, and salt into a blender. Blend for 30 seconds or just until incorporated (or more, if you like a more blended pesto). You may need to use your tamper here, or stop the blender to scrape the sides down--whatever works!
  3. Once the pork has reabsorbed all of the fat and started browning, add the kale to the skillet and continue cooking for a few minutes, being sure to stir occasionally.
  4. Turn off the heat and add the pesto to the skillet. Stir to combine and serve warm.


About Mickey Trescott

Mickey Trescott is a co-founder here at Autoimmune Wellness and a co-teacher of AIP Certified Coach. After recovering from her own struggle with both Celiac and Hashimoto’s disease, adrenal fatigue, and multiple vitamin deficiencies, Mickey started to write about her experience to share with others and help them realize they are not alone in their struggles. She has a Master's degree in Human Nutrition and Functional Nutrition, and is the author of three best-selling books--The Autoimmune Paleo Cookbook, The Autoimmune Wellness Handbook, and The Nutrient-Dense Kitchen. You can watch her AIP cooking demos by following her on Instagram.


  • Alysson says


    This recipe sounds so simple and yummy! A friend I’d like to make it for gets migraines from uncooked citrus. Do you think I could simply use apple cider vinegar instead in the pesto sauce? Or perhaps I could cook the lemon juice with the meat and make the pesto sauce without the uncooked lemon juice? Thanks for any suggestions you might have.

    • Mickey Trescott says

      Yes, ACV can certainly replace lemon there! Good luck!

  • Meghan says

    I adapted this recipe to suit what I had on hand (ground pork, bok choy, and dried basil), and it was still delicious! And made so many breakfast and lunch servings for me. Thanks for sharing.

    • Mickey Trescott says

      Happy you enjoyed it! Leftovers are always the gift that keeps on giving 🙂

  • […] Paired with bright herbs, vibrant greens and zesty lime juice, the ground beef in this dish is perfectly filling and refreshing for summer. A hat tip to my Autoimmune Paleo pal, Mickey Trescott, for the inspiration on this one! […]

  • Amanda says

    We had this tonight and the whole family enjoyed it. I had to sub in ACV because we didn’t have any lemons on hand, and I also added about 1 tsp turmeric when I was cooking the meat. So delicious 🙂 Thanks for a great recipe, as always!

    • Mickey Trescott says

      Great modifications, and I’m happy you and your family enjoyed it!

  • Sophie says

    Thanks for the recipe, this was delicious! 1/2 cup of oil was quite a lot though, my bowl was dripping in it! So I’d probably just add 1/4 cup next time I make it.

    • Mickey Trescott says

      Sophie, sometimes the pork can be extra fatty, so in that case, you can use less oil!

  • Amanda says

    Can this be put over pasta?

    • Mickey Trescott says

      Hi Amanda,
      Pasta (at least the usual type, made with wheat flour) is not included in the elimination phase, but there are some varieties made with cassava that are AIP friendly.

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