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Dutch Oven Pork Tenderloin

gravy being drizzled on pork tenderloin

This hearty and comforting recipe for pork tenderloin uses the Dutch oven to not only save on dishes, but to keep the meat moist and flavorful. The pork tenderloin is cooked with apples and onions, in a rich gravy flavored with herbs and balsamic vinegar.

Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 2 pounds (907 g) pork tenderloin (2 small tenderloins)
  • 2 apples (recommended - Honeycrisp)
  • 2 large onions
  • 3 tablespoons (43 g) butter, divided
  • 3 tablespoons (24 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more to season pork (see note 1)
  • 1 1/2 cups (355 ml) beef or chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon dried crushed rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, plus more to season pork
  • 1/4 cup (59 ml) balsamic vinegar

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
  2. Peel and slice the onions. Peel and core the apples, and cut them into thick slices (about 1/3 - 1/2 inch, or 1 cm, thick). Set aside.
  3. Trim away the silver skin and any excess fat from the pork tenderloins using a thin, sharp knife. Pat the pork tenderloins dry with clean paper towels. Season the pork with kosher salt and black pepper to taste.
  4. In a large Dutch oven (7 - 8 quart capacity), heat 1 tablespoon butter over medium-high heat. Swirl the melted butter to coat the bottom of the Dutch oven. Place in the seasoned pork tenderloins. Allow them to cook, undisturbed, for 3 - 4 minutes, or until browned. Flip the pork and cook for another 3 - 4 minutes. (If the butter is getting too dark, turn the heat down.)
  5. Remove the pork tenderloins to a plate. Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons butter in the Dutch oven. Add the onions, rosemary, thyme, 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt (or 3/4 teaspoon table salt) and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Cook for 3 - 4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onion is softened.
  6. Sprinkle in the flour and cook for 1 minute, stirring frequently.
  7. Pour in the broth and balsamic vinegar. Stir to combine, and scrape up any browned bits stuck to the pot with a wooden spoon. Add the apples. Turn the heat up to high to bring the liquid to a boil, then adjust the heat to maintain a simmer. Simmer for 4 - 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thickened.
  8. Turn off the burner and add the pork back into the Dutch oven, along with any juices on the plate. Nestle the tenderloins down into the gravy (they don't need to be fully submerged). Place the lid on the Dutch oven and bake in the preheated oven for 14 - 18 minutes, or until the pork has reached an internal temperature of 145 degrees F at the thickest part.
  9. Remove the tenderloins from the Dutch oven and allow them to rest for 5 minutes. Taste the gravy and add more salt and/or pepper if needed. The gravy will continue to thicken as it cools.
  10. For serving, the pork tenderloins can be sliced, then placed back in the Dutch oven on top of the apples and onions.

Notes

This recipe was developed using Diamond Crystal kosher salt which is quite light and flaky; to substitute Morton kosher or regular table salt, use 3/4 teaspoon in the gravy rather than the 1 1/2 teaspoon called for. When seasoning the pork tenderloins, salt to taste.

The pork can become dry if overcooked, so I recommend using an oven-safe alarm thermometer if you have one. This type of thermometer has a probe that stays in the meat during cooking, and will beep once the target temperature is reached. Or, be sure to check the meat with a regular instant-read thermometer every few minutes after the minimum cook time to ensure the pork does not overcook.

The nutrition information below was calculated using a total of 2 1/2 teaspoons Diamond Crystal kosher salt for the entire recipe. This nutrition information is an estimate only; the nutrition counts of your dish will vary based on the brands and exact amounts of ingredients used. This information was provided by an online nutrition calculator, and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical, health, or nutritional advice. See our full nutrition disclosure policy.

Nutrition

Keywords: Dutch oven pork tenderloin, pork tenderloin in a Dutch oven