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Pork Tenderloin with Cilantro-Lime Pesto

Total Time

Prep: 30 min. + chilling Bake: 25 min. + standing


6 servings

Scrumptious, elegant, easy...what more could you want in a recipe? The homemade cilantro-jalapeno pesto has a wonderful blend of flavor and goes deliciously well with the pork.—Jerri Gradert, Lincoln, Nebraska
Pork Tenderloin with Cilantro-Lime Pesto Recipe photo by Taste of Home


  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh gingerroot
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon chopped seeded jalapeno pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 pork tenderloins (1 pound each)
  • 1/2 cup shredded pepper Jack cheese
  • 1/4 cup sunflower kernels, toasted and chopped
  • 1/2 cup crumbled cooked bacon


  1. In a small food processor, combine the first eight ingredients; cover and process until blended. While processing, gradually add oil in a steady stream.
  2. Make a lengthwise slit down the center of each tenderloin to within 1/2 in. of bottom. Open tenderloin so it lies flat; cover with plastic wrap. Flatten to 3/4-in. thickness.
  3. Remove plastic wrap; spread a fourth of the pesto mixture over each tenderloin. Sprinkle each with the cheese, sunflower kernels and bacon. Close tenderloins; tie at 1-1/2-in. to 2-in. intervals with kitchen string and secure ends with toothpicks. Spread remaining pesto over tenderloins. Cover and refrigerate for several hours or overnight.
  4. Place tenderloins on a rack in a shallow baking pan. Bake at 425° for 25-30 minutes or until a thermometer reads 160°. Cover and let stand for 10 minutes before slicing.
Editor's Note
Wear disposable gloves when cutting hot peppers; the oils can burn skin. Avoid touching your face.

Nutrition Facts

4 ounces cooked pork: 308 calories, 16g fat (4g saturated fat), 96mg cholesterol, 411mg sodium, 4g carbohydrate (1g sugars, 1g fiber), 36g protein.

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