Pork Chops with Arugula Pesto

For an impressive but ridiculously easy dinner, try Pork Chops with Arugula Pesto.  In about 30 minutes, you can have an entire dinner on the table and it’s presentation will wow everyone!

Serve seared pork chops topped with arugula pesto and bordered with roasted cauliflower on a large board for a great look!

This dish has three components:  the pork chops, the arugula pesto and the roasted cauliflower.

To prepare the chops, pat them dry and generously season each one with salt and pepper.

For the pesto, combine the arugula, basil, garlic, walnuts, lemon juice & zest, olive oil, salt and pepper in the bowl of a food processor.  Pulse until it’s finely chopped but still holds some texture.

Toss the cauliflower florets with olive oil, salt and pepper and roast until the cauliflower is tender and golden brown.

For the pork chops, heat a cast iron skillet over high heat and then add olive oil and the pork chops.  Sear on high for 5 minutes on each side.  Remove the pork chops to rest while you cook the last two chops the same way.

Don’t cover the resting pork chops as this will steam them and soften the crispy edges.

To serve, I love to place the chops on a large platter, drizzle some of the pesto over and spread the roasted cauliflower around the platter.  Beautiful!

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Pork Chops with Arugula Pesto

Makes: 4 servings

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes


  • 4 pork chops, 1-inch thick, bone-in
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2 cups baby arugula
  • 1 cup chopped basil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into florets


Preheat oven to 425°F. Pat each pork chop dry with a paper towel and season generously with salt and pepper on both sides. Set aside.

In the bowl of a food processor, add arugula, basil, garlic, walnuts, lemon zest, lemon juice, 1/2 cup olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Pulse until finely chopped but the sauce still maintains some texture.

Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Toss cauliflower florets with 1 tablespoon olive oil and season with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Roast for 25 minutes until golden brown and tender.

Meanwhile, preheat a large cast iron pan over high heat. Add 1 teaspoon olive oil to the pan and add two pork chops. Sear on high for 5 minutes on each side. Remove the pork chops to rest while you cook the last two pork chops. Some suggest to cover meat with foil while it’s resting, but in this case I don’t suggest it. The steam will soften the delicious crispy edges of the pork chops.

Serve pork chops with a drizzle of the arugula pesto and roasted cauliflower.

Recipe by Delish.com


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