If you’re looking for a fun way to use up a bit of leftover Cranberry Sauce, this easy and fast Pork Tenderloin is it. Of course, you can make it anytime but it is perfect for after Thanksgiving when you *may* already have a little Cranberry Sauce on hand. Don’t we all usually have a little, or maybe even a lot? Pin this recipe for after the holiday!
No cranberry sauce? Think about riffing off of this by using a little good jam of another flavor. This is really a versatile recipe and would be great with apricot or blackberry, for instance.
That sauce of caramelized onions, a touch of balsamic vinegar and a little sweet is over the top amazing. And so so simple. It really steals the show. You’ll find yourself eating the tenderloin just as a vehicle to scoop up every last drop of that luscious saucy compote.
I originally made this recipe from a November 1998 Bon Appetit and over the years it’s morphed and changed to this. I simplified the cooking method and changed it up quite a bit – it has the same ingredients but caramelizing those onions is a game changer.
You’ll likely find pork tenderloin on sale quite often during the Holiday Shopping Weeks. Pork is always at a low in the fall and while the grocers are pushing turkeys, hams and beef roasts, they also tend to lower the price of some of the items people are less focused on.
See my post on How to Buy & Prep a Tenderloin for more information. Make sure to look at it if you’re thinking about buying a beef tenderloin for Christmas or New Years, too.
Pork Tenderloin with Caramelized Onion & Cranberry Compote
- 1 1/2 tablespoons butter
- 1 8- to 10-ounce pork tenderloin
- salt & pepper to taste
- 1/2 thinly sliced onion
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary or 1/4 teaspoon dried
- 1/2 cup canned low-salt chicken broth
- 1/2 cup whole berry cranberry sauce
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Preheat oven to 450°F.
Melt 1/2 tablespoon butter in heavy large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle pork with salt and pepper. Sear pork on all sides. Transfer to an oven-proof plate or dish and roast until a thermometer inserted into the center registers 155 degrees F, about 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, melt remaining 1 tablespoon butter in the skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and rosemary; sauté until onion softens and begins to pick up color, about 10 to 15 minutes. Add broth, cranberry sauce and vinegar and whisk until cranberry sauce melts, about 2 minutes.
Bring to a boil and cook until the sauce has reduced enough to coat the spoon thickly, about 6 minutes. Season with salt and lots of pepper.
When pork is finished, transfer pork to work surface. Scrape any juices from baking pan as well as any juices given off by the resting tenderloin to the cranberry mixture. Slice pork and serve with sauce.