Indulge in a symphony of cozy flavors with this easy apple pork tenderloin recipe. Featuring tender, warmly spiced pork tenderloin cooked with an blissfully delicious sweet and savory apple bourbon compote, this pork with apples will tantalize your taste buds and leave you craving more.
Featured comment: This pork tenderloin is the perfect comforting dish to warm up with. And oh my goodness, the apple cider sauce? Heck yes!!! I could have just drunk it up all by itself!” – Kelly
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About this pork tenderloin with apples
Are you looking for a special dish to impress your family, friends, or dinner guests?! This Apple Pork Tenderloin is here to save the day – perfect as a warm and comforting fall and winter-inspired meal!
The pork tenderloin is seasoned in a mixture of warm spices and left to flavor and tenderize the meat. The oven-roasting forms a caramelized crust on the outside of the pork while the inside remains succulent, juicy, and tender! It’s like cutting into warm butter!
The fruity compote accompanying this pork tenderloin is packed with soft apples and raisins in a mixture of bourbon, apple cider, cinnamon, maple syrup, ginger, melted butter, leeks, and mustard powder.
This heavenly infusion of sweet and savory flavors will make your taste buds go wild (in a good way, of course!). Serve thick slices of your pork tenderloin and top it with chunky apple compote alongside a refreshing salad, dinner rolls, roasted vegetables, or your choice of grains!
Why you’ll love pork tenderloin with apples recipe
This pork tenderloin with apple compote is a delicious alternative to the usual pumpkin and sweet potato-inspired dishes during fall and winter. Here’s why you’ll love it:
- Succulent and flavorful! The dry rub tenderizes the pork tenderloin while infusing maximum flavor.
- A crowd pleaser. Everyone is going to love this dish. It’s perfect for special occasions or when you feel like taking your midweek family dinner to the next level.
- Pairs with anything! I know this sounds a little dramatic, but the array of side dishes you could pair with this recipe is through the roof!
- Versatile. Easily adapt this dish by changing the consistency of the apple mixture, or adjusting the ingredients in the rub.
What is pork tenderloin with apple?
Pork tenderloin with apple compote is a sweet and savory dish, boasting the warm flavors of fall thanks to the use of ground cinnamon, grated ginger, and thyme.
Roasting the pork tenderloin creates an irresistible outer caramelized crust while the meat remains super juicy and tender. It’s like slicing into butter.
While the pork offers a salty savory flavor, the apple and raisin compote provides a delicious balance of sour and sweet with subtle notes of maple syrup and bourbon!
It’s a beautiful and classy dish that never disappoints!
If you’re looking for more recipes to celebrate apple season, try these reader favorites next: Apple Cheddar Soup, Apple Cider Meatballs, Apple Cheesecake Bread, Fall Apple Granola, Baked Cider Donuts, Bite Size Apple Pies, and Apple Cider Cocktail.
Ingredients for apple pork tenderloin
This dish combines succulent and tender slices of pork tenderloin with a bourbon and maple syrup-infused apple compote! Here’s what you’ll need to get going:
- Pork tenderloin – Trimmed of silver skin.
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Pork dry rub – Combine brown sugar, cinnamon, mustard powder, ground ginger, dried thyme, kosher salt, and ground black pepper.
- Unsalted butter – If you use salted butter, omit the kosher salt in the mix of compote spices.
- Leeks – This recipe calls for medium-sized leeks. Only use the white portions of leeks. Halve the leeks lengthwise and slice them thinly.
- Apples – This recipe uses Granny Smith apples that are peeled and then diced into small pieces.
- Substitution: Fuji or Cortland apples are also great options for the apple compote.
- Substitution: Regular raisins are great for the compote, although you could also use Golden raisins, currents, or sultanas.
- Apple cider – This fortifies the apple fruit flavor and the syrup in the compote.
- Substitution: Apple juice will work if you can’t get your hands on cider.
- Ginger – Freshly grated.
- Substitution: Ground ginger can be used instead.
- Pure maple syrup
- Substitution: Use honey instead.
- Bourbon – This adds a lovely depth of flavor and the alcohol will burn off, so it’s suitable to include when serving children.
- Substitution: Brandy in the form of Cognac or Armagnac can make good alternatives to the bourbon.
- Compote spices and seasoning – This compote combines kosher salt, ground black pepper, mustard powder, and ground cinnamon.
- Low-carb. You can make this apple pork tenderloin more keto-friendly by using swerve brown sugar for the rub and keto-friendly honey that includes xylitol.
- Apples. The apple compote calls for juicy tart Granny Smith apples, but you can use another type of apple that has a similar flavor profile (slightly sour), such as Fuji and Cortland.
- Compote. This compote is traditionally chunky in texture. While the fruit is still intact, it is very soft and tender. If you prefer a smoother consistency like a puree (correctly known as a coulis), you can blend the compote.
- Herbs. Dried thyme is used in this recipe. However you can use fresh. Or consider dry or fresh rosemary or even Herbs de Provence.
How to make pork tenderloin recipe with apple
You’ll need just one large skillet and a total of 30 minutes to make this apple tenderloin recipe. Here’s how:
Prep and Rub Pork: In a small bowl combine the ingredients for the pork rub. Then, pat the pork tenderloin(s) dry and use your hands to the rub the spice mixture all over the pork, massaging the spices into the tenderloin. Set aside.
Optional, but for the best flavor, wrap the pork tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 hours up to overnight.
Meanwhile, Make the Chunky Apple Sauce: Melt the butter in a medium saucepan and then add the leeks, salt, and pepper. Sauté until the onions are soft, stirring occasionally. Next, add the apples, raisins, apple cider, ginger, mustard, cinnamon, maple syrup, and bourbon to the sauce. Bring contents to a boil and then immediately reduce the heat to low.
Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the apples are soft and the mixture is slightly thick. Remove the cover and continue to cook for 5-6 minutes, or until the apple compote sauce is thick. Remove from heat and set aside.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Line a roasting pan or baking sheet with aluminum foil for easy clean up and then place a wire rack large enough to hold both tenderloins on top of the aluminum. Next, arrange the pork tenderloins on top of the wire rack.
Cook Pork Tenderloin: Place the pork in the oven and roast until slightly caramelized and an instant read thermometer reads 140-145 degrees F, about 25 minutes.
Rest Pork: Transfer pork to a clean work surface, tent lightly with aluminum foil and let rest 10 minutes before slicing.
Serve Pork Tenderloin with Apples: Slice the pork tenderloin into thick rounds and top with a few generous dollops of the chunky apple compote. Serve immediately and enjoy!
Tips for making pork tenderloin recipe with apples
- Clean the tenderloin. Stop wasting your money by purchasing cleaned and individually wrapped pork tenderloins. It’s really much easier to clean the tenderloin yourself and there’s a great tutorial on cleaning pork tenderloin below.
- Rub. If you have the time, I highly recommend wrapping the tenderloin tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerating it for at least 4 hours, but preferably overnight. This extra time allows the flavors of the rub to sink into the meat and also helps tenderize the pork so that you get the juiciest slices of meat!
- Rest time. Allow the pork tenderloin to rest for about 10 minutes before slicing it to serve. This resting time allows the flavorful juices to be reabsorbed into the meat for ultra-succulent slices of meat.
- Make ahead. The dry rub and the compote can be made ahead of time to reduce the preparation time in this recipe.
FAQs: frequently asked questions
How to select the best pork tenderloin at the grocery store?
If you are purchasing those cleaned, individually wrapped pork tenderloins, you are spending too much money for your pork tenderloin. It is SUPER easy to clean a tenderloin yourself! Here’s a pretty great tutorial on cleaning pork tenderloin.
One of those pre-cleaned tenderloins is about $9.99.
However, if you purchase untrimmed pork tenderloins – and trim them yourself – you can get a package of two for about $6.99.
I don’t have to tell you that is a HUGE savings for a small amount of work. Legitimately, it took me about 2 minutes to clean each tenderloin. I understand I went to culinary school and have a lot of practice cleaning tenderloins, but even without my experience, it should only take you about 15-20 minutes, tops. If you ask me, 20 minutes of work is worth all the money you will save. So, check out the video and give it a try… it’s easier than you may be imagining!
What type of apples should I use with pork?
This recipe calls for juicy Granny Smith apples that have a slightly sour flavor, complimenting the flavors of the compote ingredients, spices, and seasonings. Other apples that provide similar qualities include Fuji apples and Cortland apples.
How do I cook pork and apples together?
The pork is roasted separately from the apples in the compote for this apple and pork tenderloin recipe. The apples need to be cooked in the compote ingredients, brought to a boil, and then further softened by simmering.
What can I serve with pork and apples?
Why must the pork sit at room temperature before roasting?
If the juices inside the meat are cold when you cook the meat, this will reduce how tender and juicy the roasted pork will be. Allowing those internal juices to reach room temperature before cooking the meat will yield the best results.
Allowing the meat to sit out for 30 minutes is sufficient, while some home cooks even recommend up to an hour.
Serving pork tenderloin apple
Pork tenderloin is one of those dishes that can be served on special holidays and occasions or when you just feel like something a little different during the week with the family. Either way, you won’t be short on options of what to serve with this irresistible and flavor-packed cut of meat!
How to serve pork tenderloin apple recipe?
Wait ten minutes after the pork tenderloin has roasted before slicing it into thick slices. This will help lock in those flavorful juices. Once sliced, serve it with a generous topping of the freshly made apple compote!
What to serve with apple pork roast?
Serve this apple pork tenderloin with grilled, roasted, or steamed vegetables, salad, coleslaw, rice or other grains, bread rolls, and so much more! Here are a few of my top picks:
- Easy Homemade Dinner Rolls
- Warm Kale Salad
- Zucchini with Rice
- Asparagus Mimosa Salad
- Mini Roasted Potatoes with Garlic
- Whipped Sweet Potatoes
- Store leftover roast pork tenderloin with apples compote in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days.
- Make the compote a day or two ahead of time and store it in an airtight container in the fridge, ready to be served warm or chilled, depending on your preference.
Can you freeze pork tenderloin recipe with apples?
Yes, you can freeze both the tenderloin and the apple compote, preferably in separate airtight containers. I recommend wrapping leftover pork tenderloin in plastic wrap to help prevent the meat from drying.
Reheat leftover apple pork tenderloin in a preheated oven at 350F for about 12-15 minutes. Cover the meat with aluminum foil while it is reheating to prevent excess loss of moisture.
The apple compote can be reheated in a small saucepan over medium-low heat or you can serve it chilled.
This pork tenderloin with apple compote will put you on a momentary break from all-things-pumpkin! But seriously, it’s too good to skip over, so grab a few tenderloins, and let’s get cleaning and cooking!
More easy pork dinners!
How to make pork tenderloin apple recipe👇
Oven Roasted Pork Tenderloin with Apples
- 1 Small mixing bowl (for making the pork rub)
- 1 Medium Saucepan (for making the apple compote sauce)
- 1 Roasting Pan with Wire Rack (SUBSTITUTE: large baking sheet with wire rack) (for roasting the pork tenderloin)
Apple Compote Sauce: (yield = 3 1/2 cups; roughly)
- 2 TBS Unsalted Butter
- 2 Medium Leeks – white portion only, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced (about ¾ cup)
- ¼ tsp Kosher Salt
- 1/8 tsp White Ground Pepper
- 4 whole Granny Smith Apples – peeled and small dice
- ¼ Cup Raisins
- ½ Cup Apple Cider
- 1 TBS Fresh Ginger – grated
- ½ tsp Mustard Powder
- ¼ tsp Ground Cinnamon
- 1 TBS Pure Maple Syrup
- ¼ Cup Bourbon Alcohol
- Make the Pork Rub: To a small bowl, add all the ingredients for the pork rub. Then, use a fork or small whisk to stir the spices and seasonings together.
- Prepare Pork Tenderloin: Place the pork tenderloins on a clean work surface and use paper towels to pat the pork completely dry. Next, sprinkle the rub mixture over all sides of the pork, using your hands to massage the spices into the pork. Let Pork Marinate - Optional, but Recommended: Wrap the pork tenderloins tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, or preferably, up to overnight. (Note: If you are refrigerating the pork, make sure you remove it from the fridge and let it sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes before removing plastic wrap and cooking the pork.)
- Cook the Tenderloins: Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Line a roasting pan or baking sheet with aluminum foil for easy clean up. Insert a wire rack large enough to hold both tenderloins into pan and add tenderloins. Roast until pork is slightly caramelized and an instant read thermometer reads 140-145 degrees F, about 25 minutes. (Note: If you put the pork tenderloins into the fridge to marinate, don't forget to remove them from fridge and let them sit on the counter at room temperature at least 30-45 minutes prior to roasting. I like to remove and discard the plastic wrap just before cooking.)
- While the Pork Roasts, Make the Apple Compote: Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Once fully melted, add the leeks, salt, and pepper to the pan. Sauté, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft and lightly golden in color, about 5-8 minutes. Next, add the apples, raisins, apple cider, ginger, mustard, cinnamon, maple syrup, and bourbon to the pan. Bring apple sauce to a boil and then immediately reduce heat to low, or to maintain a gentle simmer. Cover the pan and simmer, stirring the sauce occasionally, for 5-7 minutes, or until the apples are soft and the mixture is slightly thickened. Remove cover and continue to cook for 5-6 minutes, or until the chunky apple compote is thickened and reduced. Remove the apple sauce from the heating element and set aside.
- Rest Pork: Transfer the porks to a clean work surface and tent lightly with aluminum foil. Let rest for 10 minutes.
- Slice Pork and Top with Apples: Slice the pork tenderloins on the bias into thick coins or rounds. Arrange the pork slices onto a serving platter and top with the chunky apple compote sauce.
- Garnish and Serve Apple Pork Tenderloins: Sprinkle a little ground cinnamon and fresh thyme leaves all over the pork. Garnish with a cinnamon stick, if desired. Serve pork tenderloin apple while warm and enjoy!
- Marinating Pork Tenderloin: While not strictly required, I highly recommend letting the pork tenderloins marinate in the rub seasonings overnight for the best flavor.
- Make Ahead: The thick apple compote sauce will keep, stored in an airtight container, in the fridge for up to 5 days.
- Recipe Serves: 6-8
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