This pork tenderloin and pears is Fall on a plate! With tender pork tenderloin, balsamic onion and pan sautéed pears.
When always tender pork tenderloin meets balsamic-infused onions and pan sautéed pears, it is a perfect combination of flavours. And while this dish comes together quickly, it is a natural for whenever a special meal is on the menu.
What you’ll need
Pork tenderloin – you can start with any size of pork tenderloin, but typically they are about 1-1 1/4 lb. You can certainly double everything up if feeding a crowd. Be sure to remove the silver skin and any visible fat from the pork tenderloin before cooking.
Red Onions – while red onions look lovely and cook up beautifully, regular yellow onions will also work just fine here.
Balsamic Vinegar – bust out your best balsamic vinegar for this special dish.
Bosc Pears – it’s hard to beat Bosc pears for a dish like this, as they are a lovely colour and perfectly firm when ripe, so they sauté up beautifully.
- Rub the spice rub onto the pork tenderloin.
- Brown the pork in a skillet, then remove to a plate.
- Melt some butter in the same skillet and cook the pears.
- Remove the pears to the plate with the pork.
- Cook the onions with brown sugar and balsamic vinegar.
- Return the pork and pears to the skillet, on top of the onions, then pop into the oven for about 15 minutes.
- Remove the skillet from the oven and place the pears on a serving dish.
- Set the pork aside to rest, then slice and place onto serving dish with pears.
- Finish the onions on top of the stove with another pat of butter, then spoon on top of the pork.
- Garnish with chopped parsley.
Pork tenderloin is perfect when cooked to 145F internal temperature. As the pork will continue cooking a bit when removed from the oven, if you take it out of the oven at 142-143F, it will easily reach the 145F as it rests.
Be sure to test in the thickest part of the pork tenderloin, inserting the probe just to the centre of the meat (if you go too far, you will get a false reading from the heat of the pan).
What to serve with pork tenderloin and pears
This dish is perfect served with Parsnip Purée. Alternately, regular or garlic mashed potatoes are nice. If you’d like to add a vegetable, broccoli or broccolini would be nice.
Making ahead, storing and freezing
This dish is at its best freshly cooked, but if you need to make it ahead, my strategy is to undercook the pork just slightly, so that when it is re-heated it doesn’t end up over-cooked. The onions and pears stand up well in the refrigerator.
I have never frozen this dish. Certainly the onions and pork will freeze well. I’m not as sure about the pears. I feel like they will be fine, but again, I haven’t tested it.
Get the Recipe: Pork Tenderloin with Pears
- 1 1/4 lb. pork tenderloin
- 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt, *reduce to 3/4 teaspoon if using garlic salt instead of garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves, or 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
- 2 Bosc pears, ripe, but firm, unpeeled, quartered and cored
- 2 Tablespoons butter
- 1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced
- 2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon light brown sugar
- 2 Tablespoons butter
- 1-2 Tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
- Preheat oven to 400F (not fan assisted). In a small bowl, stir together all the ingredients for the rub. Remove silver skin and any visible fat from the pork tenderloin. Pat pork dry with paper towels and rub with the rub mix.
- Heat oil in an oven-safe, non-stick skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Place pork in skillet and cook until browned on all sides, about 8 minutes. Remove the pork to plate and wipe the skillet.
- Melt butter in the same skillet over medium heat. Arrange pears cut side down and cook until well browned on cut side, about 5-6 minutes. Transfer pears to the plate with the pork.
- To the same skillet, add the red onions and cook over medium heat, stirring often, until softened and lightly browned, about 3-4 minutes.
- Stir in the balsamic vinegar and brown sugar, scraping up any browned bits. Arrange pork and pears in even layer over onion mixture in skillet. Transfer the skillet to the oven and roast until pork registers 140-142 degrees, about 15-20 minutes. **Timing will vary based on the exact size of the pork tenderloin. Check regularly with a an instant read thermometer, testing in the thickest part of the pork.
- Transfer the pork to a cutting board, loosely tent with a sheet of aluminum foil and let rest for 10 minutes. Transfer the pears to a serving platter.
- Meanwhile, return the skillet to the stovetop (*** Careful! the handle will be hot!!) With the heat set to medium-low , heat the onions just until simmering. Add the butter and cook, stirring, until melted and sauce is slightly thickened, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat.
- Slice pork into 1/2-inch thick slices. Arrange pork on the serving platter with the pears.. Spoon onions and sauce over pork and pears and sprinkle with parsley.
Adapted from a Cook’s Country recipe
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Hi! I’m Jennifer, a home cook schooled by trial and error and almost 40 years of getting dinner on the table! I love to share my favourite recipes, both old and new, together with lots of tips and tricks to hopefully help make your home cooking enjoyable, stress free, rewarding and of course, delicious!