With school right around the corner, you need delicious dinner recipes that can win the hearts of everyone at the table after a long day. We're exploring the delicious pairing of apples and pork tenderloin that strikes the right balance between sweet and savory. Read on to learn more.
How to make maple glazed pork tenderloin with sautéed apples
Total Time: 30 minutes.
- 2 packs of Hatfield® Tuscan Herb Pork Tenderloin.
- 2 cooking apples (e.g., Gala or Granny Smith apples), cored and sliced in thin wedges.
- 3 Tbsp. salted butter, divided.
- cup pure maple syrup.
- ¼ cup apple cider vinegar.
- 1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard.
- Kosher salt, black pepper and ground sage, to taste.
Preparation and cooking instructions
- To start, preheat your oven to 425 and line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil. Then, set aside.
- Place the pork tenderloins on a cutting board and sprinkle all sides with your preferred amount of salt, pepper and ground sage.
- Now, heat a large sauté pan over medium heat and add one tablespoon of butter. When it's melted and starts to foam, add your pork tenderloins. After this, sear and brown on all sides (about 3 to 4 minutes per side).
- Move the pork tenderloin to the prepared baking sheet and roast in the oven for about 10 to 15 minutes. Keep in mind that this can change depending on the size of the meat used.
- While the pork is cooking, prepare your maple glaze with apples. To do this, heat the same large sauté pan over medium heat and add one tablespoon of butter. Once again, wait for this to melt and foam, then sauté your apples for 4 to 5 minutes.
- At this point, stir in the maple syrup, apple cider vinegar and Dijon mustard. Bring to a low boil and let reduce for 2 to 3 minutes. Whisk in the remaining butter and season to taste with your salt and pepper.
- Remove the pork from the oven and let rest for about 5 to 10 minutes before slicing. Once sliced, drizzle the glaze over your tenderloins and serve with sautéed apples.
Tips and tricks for the best results
As you bring your roasted pork tenderloin recipe to life, keep the following considerations in mind for the safest and most delicious mealtime:
- Start with room-temperature pork: You can't always plan ahead, but when the time allows, it's best practice to remove the meat from the refrigerator about 20 to 30 minutes before preparing it. This will give the pork an opportunity to reach room temperature and lose the "chill" from the fridge — supporting more even cooking.
- To peel or not to peel: You have a few options to consider when it comes to using apples in this recipe. Not only are there various kinds of apples to choose from that alter the dish's flavor profile, but you can also decide whether or not to peel the apples beforehand. Either way is fine, but we suggest leaving the peel to add texture to the meal, give the dish a pop of color and offer added nutrients.
- Check the internal temperature: It can be hard to determine exactly when your pork tenderloin is done cooking and safe to consume. Fortunately, the U.S. Department of Agriculture reports that pork is safe to eat once its internal temperature reaches 145. Insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the tenderloin to ensure it's fully cooked before removing from the heat.
Mastering marinades and finding the right apple variety
When you're starting with a plain pork loin or tenderloin, a tasty marinade can make all the difference in terms of flavor and juiciness. And, there's no shortage of options to choose from. Here are a few of our favorites to try:
- Classic BBQ: You can't go wrong with traditional barbecue flavors and it only requires a few key ingredients. Combine ketchup, brown sugar, soy sauce, garlic powder and a splash of apple cider vinegar for a tangy sweetness everyone will love.
- Sweet and savory teriyaki: For the perfect pair to the natural sweetness of apples, create a teriyaki marinade using soy sauce, honey, ginger and minced garlic.
- Apple cider zest: Give pork tenderloin an extra essence of apples by marinating it in apple cider vinegar, Dijon mustard, rosemary and a hint of lemon juice.
- Herbs and citrus: Opt for a lighter flavor profile with an herb and citrus marinade. Simply blend together olive oil, lemon zest, thyme and a touch of honey for a bright and savory result.
Simplify the cooking process with pre-marinated pork
A homemade marinade is a great way to elevate your tenderloin mealtime experience, but it inevitably adds to your time in the kitchen. When life gets hectic, a pre-marinated, dry-rubbed option — like Hatfield® Lemon Garlic Pork Tenderloin or Hatfield® Savory Mushroom Marsala Pork Tenderloin — simplifies the process for equally delicious results. Cutting preparation time in half gives you the opportunity to spend it with the ones you love.
Does it matter what type of apples are used?
The short answer is, no: You can use any type of apple you prefer. But, it will end up changing the taste of the dish, so it's best to consider all of your options. This ensures you select the right apple to pair with your marinade and side dishes. Here's a closer look at four popular options:
- Granny Smith: Known for their tart flavor, Granny Smith apples offer a tangy contrast to roasted pork tenderloin. This highlights the richness of the meat and creates a harmonious blend that pleases the palate.
- Gala: For a different profile, Gala apples are a sweet and fragrant option that complements the savory notes of tenderloin.
- Honeycrisp: Honeycrisp apples are a classic, crisp and juicy apple with the right balance of sweetness and tartness. So, if you can't decide between a Granny Smith or Gala, then a Honeycrisp might be the best of both worlds — ideal for adding a refreshing twist to pork.
- Fuji: With a firm texture and sweet taste, Fuji apples are an alternative that offers a delightful crunch and natural sweetness to tenderloin recipes.
Ready to get started? Head to your local grocery store to pick up your favorite Hatfield® products today!
Time-saving meal prep tips: Perfect for school nights
When school is back in session and weeknights are busy, a little meal prep can go a long way toward easing the dinner rush. Consider the following tips for a more efficient process:
- Marinate ahead of time or opt for pre-marinated pork: If you know you'll be in a pinch for time, marinate the tenderloin the night before and let it refrigerate. This may even elevate flavor because the juices have more time to sink in. Or, choose pre-marinated meat to cut out this step of the process altogether.
- Use a slow cooker: The family cooks who are up bright and early can get a head start on this dish by using a slow cooker. By the time you and your loved ones are ready for dinner, your pork tenderloin will be tender, juicy and thoroughly cooked.
- Store properly: Sufficient storage is important to extend the shelf life of your pork. With this in mind, make sure to separate raw and cooked foods separately, use air-tight containers for leftovers and ensure everything is refrigerated properly.
- Make the most of leftovers: Plan to make more than you need and use leftovers for school lunches. This reduces food waste and gives you a little extra time back in the day.
Explore premium pork products from Hatfield®
Make mealtime a breeze and bring your dining experience to the next level with pork from Hatfield®. With premium quality and pre-seasoned convenience on your side, cooks of all experiences can ensure delicious results every time.
Consider expertly dry-rubbed products like Hatfield® Tuscan Herb Pork Tenderloin or Hatfield® Honey Garlic Teriyaki Pork Tenderloin to minimize the time you have to spend in the kitchen while getting the same delectable flavors you know and love.
When you're ready to start cooking pork tenderloin with apples, use our store locator to find your favorite Hatfield® products in a supermarket or grocery store near you.