I love super versatile recipes. Like, if you can swap ingredients and components last-minute and consequence-free, I want in. This Sweet & Savory Slow-Cooker Pork Tenderloin gets its sweet factor from some apricot jam, but it could just as easily come from berry, grape or peach jam or preserves, and the recipe would still hit the mark…it gets its savory factor from balsamic vinegar and dijon mustard, and while the balsamic vinegar is sorta unsubstitutable, the dijon could be swapped for whole grain mustard or even citrus juice in a pinch. Pork’s earthiness always benefits from some fresh herbs, but if you don’t have any on hand, dried herbs will do, and if you’ve got some spuds, carrots or any other root veggie laying around, toss ’em right in, they’ll be a welcome addition to the sweet and savory pool you’ve got going on.
Basically, you can’t really go wrong with this recipe, so check your pantry and see if you can set-and-forget this one-pot meal sometime soon! Here’s the basic recipe to get you started:
Sweet & Savory Slow Cooker Pork Tenderloin
- 1 pork tenderloin *1 – 3 lbs
- 1 cup jam or preserves of your choice *I prefer apricot
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp dijon mustard
- 5 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1 brown or yellow onion *quartered
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled *no need to chop these
- salt and pepper *to taste
- crushed chili flakes *optional
Pop the pork tenderloin in your slow cooker and add all of the other ingredients to the pot. You don't need to make sure everything is evenly distributed right now – after it's been cooking for half of your cooking time, give everything a stir and make sure everything is evenly distributed.
Cook at 1.5 – 2 hours on high heat, or 3.5 – 4 hours on low heat.
When the cooking time is up, shred the pork into large chunks with two forks. The meat will be very tender and the process won't take long at all. Serve with some of the wilted onions and garlic cloves, over a big helping of mashed potatoes or polenta to soak up all that juice!