This Smothered Pork Tenderloin in Apple Cider Gravy is the best meaty main dish for dinner. It’s special enough for an intimate dinner party but also makes a quick and cozy weeknight meal!
Smothered Pork Tenderloin
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I love a good stick-to-your-bones, meat-and-potatoes dinner. And this roasted pork tenderloin truly delivers! The pork loin comes out perfectly juicy and delicious. The gravy is so good you'll feel absolutely no shame when you drown your entire plate in it as you simultaneously contemplate filling your tub with it (Who me? Never!).
I originally started dreaming this recipe up as a quick and tasty weeknight meal. I make a lot of pork tenderloin, particularly on weeknights. It's a cut of meat that's pretty quick and easy to throw together and it always stays so tender!
Since I has some delicious apple cider hanging out in the fridge, I figured why not throw it into the gravy? And I know that some of you are shaking your heads at the thought of something sweet invading your gravy. But do me a favor and try to keep an open mind. The cider actually helps balance out all of the deliciously savory flavors and adds a nice amount of depth. The saccharine fruitiness that can often overpower some sauces is simply not there.
Tips for how to cook pork tenderloin smothered in gravy
- While olive oil is typically my go-to oil for cooking, for this recipe I use canola or vegetable oil because you’ll be searing the tenderloin over high heat and it has a higher smoke point.
- I left the seasoning amounts to taste, but I always give it a nice sprinkle.
- The amount of cornstarch I use give you a nice, thick gravy but if you want it a bit thinner, feel free to halve it.
- If apple cider isn’t available, you can always substitute apple juice.
- This recipe is designed to be made in a cast iron pan. But if you don’t have one, it’s ok, just be sure to get a nice sear on it and allow a bit more baking time if needed since other types of pans don’t conduct heat as well as cast iron.
- I cook my pork to 145 degrees and then rest it for 5-10 minutes in a foil tent to redistribute the juices (it will continue cooking a bit more).
Frequently asked questions about making pork tenderloin recipes
- How long do you cook a pork tenderloin in oven? This one goes for about 20 minutes. No all ovens are different so start temping around 15 minutes and when the internal temperature at the thickest part of the tenderloin reaches 145 degrees you can pull it and rest it.
- What do you serve with this pork tenderloin? I personally love it with mashed potatoes since the gravy is so delicious and a green veggie of some sort.
- Why sear the pork tenderloin? It locks in the flavor and also reduces the baking time.
- Can pork be served pink? Yes, it’s ok if it’s a little pink which is why I pull it at 145 degrees.
- Can I double the recipe for a crowd? While this isn't the ideal dish for feeding a crowd though could always double or triple it by transferring into a large baking pan, just know that it may take longer to cook.
Make it a meal!
A few great recipes to round out and complete this meal would be:
- Peas with Onions
- Easy Garlic Green Beans
- French Onion Mashed Potatoes
- Summer Bounty Strawberry Salad
- Grandma's Best Banana Cake
- Quick and Easy Chocolate Pudding Cake
Smothered Pork Tenderloin in Apple Cider Gravy
- 2 Tablespoons canola or vegetable oil
- 1 pork tenderloin (mine was around 1 lb. - 1 ¼ lb.)
- Kosher salt, to taste
- Ground black pepper, to taste
- Dried thyme, to taste
- 1 14.5 ounce can low sodium chicken broth
- 2 Tablespoons corn starch (you can cut this to 1 Tbsp. if you want a sightly thinner gravy)
- 1 10.5 ounce can cream of mushroom soup
- 1 packet dry onion soup seasoning
- ½ cup apple cider (or apple juice if cider is not available)
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. In a cast iron skillet, heat oil over medium high.
- Pat pork tenderloin dry and season with salt, pepper and dried thyme to taste.
- When the pan is hot, sear the pork on all sides. Keep a close eye on it because cast iron tends to move things along faster than regular pans. You want it to have a nice brown sear without burning it.
- While the pork sears, in a separate bowl whisk broth into cornstarch until combined. Then whisk in mushroom soup, onion soup seasoning and apple cider to combine. Set aside.
- Once each side is seared, dump broth mixture over the pork and bake for around 20-25 minutes or until the thickest part of the pork reaches an internal temperature of 145 degrees.
- Remove the pork from the pan and let it rest under a foil tent for 10 minutes. Slice and serve with gravy immediately.
If you tried this recipe please comment and rate it 🙂 I love hearing your feedback and answering your questions! And if you make it please tag me on Instagram with @thelifejolie so I can share it <3
Looking for some other great meaty main dishes?
- Roast Turkey Thighs for Two
- 3 Ingredient Slow Cooker Pork Chops
- Mom's Meatloaf
- Greek Yogurt Roasted Chicken
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