Easy Pork Tenderloin with Maple-Balsamic Sauce

In just thirty minutes, you can whip up this succulent and Easy Pork Tenderloin, draped in a mouthwatering maple-balsamic sauce. Perfect with crusty bread to savor every flavorful drop – a true feast for the senses!

Easy Pork Tenderloin on a white plate.

This pork medallions recipe is one of our reader favorites because it is so easy and delicious. I have updated it with process photos and a video. This special recipe tastes, well, about four hundred times better than pork chops and is impossible to mess up. Intrigued? You should be. All you need is a one-pound boneless pork loin (sometimes sold pre-packaged in two-pound bags; just freeze the extra pound), a knife, and some pantry staples. You can make this in a skillet or a large non-stick pan to make cleanup easier. If you need a large non-stick pan, you can order it from Amazon.

Here are a few other popular pork recipes to try: French Pork Chops with Apple Cream Sauce, Latin Pork Tomatillo Stew, German Pork Schnitzel, and Latin Pork Kebab Bowl.

Pork Loin vs. Pork Tenderloin

These are two different cuts of meat. The tenderloin is a small, lean, and incredibly delicious cut of pork. Known for its tenderness, it’s perfect for various cooking methods, including roasting and quick cooking techniques.

The pork loin, on the other hand, is a larger and more popular cut of meat. It has a larger diameter than the tenderloin, typically about 4 inches or more. This recipe prefers pork tenderloin for its tenderness and quick cooking time. You can also use pork loin or boneless pork chops, adjusting the cooking time as needed.

Reasons to Love This Pork Tenderloin Recipe

  • Easy Pork Tenderloin takes minimal time to prepare, making it a favorite for busy weeknights.
  • The meat is inherently tender and juicy, ensuring a satisfying meal every time.
  • Its mild flavor makes it a perfect canvas for various seasonings and sauces.
  • Pork tenderloin is a great source of lean protein, appealing to health-conscious eaters.

Recipe Ingredients

Maple Balsamic Pork Medallions ingredients on a white table.
  • Real Maple Syrup: Used to add a sweet and rich flavor to the dish.
  • Balsamic Vinegar: Offers a tangy contrast to the sweetness of the maple syrup.
  • Pork Tenderloin: It provides a melt-in-your-mouth tender and juicy base.
  • Dijon Mustard: Adds a sharp and slightly spicy flavor to enhance the overall taste.

See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities.

Variations

  • Honey for Maple Syrup: Replace maple syrup with honey for a similar natural sweetness.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar Substitute: Use apple cider vinegar instead of balsamic for a fruity tang that complements the pork well.
  • Chicken Breasts for Pork: For a leaner option, substitute pork tenderloin with chicken breasts.
  • Olive Oil Instead of Vegetable Oil: Use olive oil for a slightly different flavor profile, offering a more Mediterranean twist.
  • Onion Add: Elevate the flavor profile by incorporating either thinly sliced onions or a pinch of onion powder into the sauce.

How to Make the Best Pork Tenderloin Recipe

Step #1: Combine the maple syrup, vinegar, and red pepper flakes in a small saucepan. Turn the heat to high and boil for about 3 minutes, until the mixture has reduced to one-third of a cup.

Making sauce for pork.

Step #2: Turn off the heat and whisk in the Dijon mustard.

Whisking sauce for pork medallions.

Step #3: Meanwhile, slice the pork tenderloin into eight equal pieces. Place four of the pieces between two pieces of plastic wrap and pound until they are about 1/2″ to 1/4″ thick.

Pounding pork medallion with meat hammer.

Step #4: To cook pork medallions, pat the tenderloins dry with a paper towel. Then, heat one teaspoon of vegetable oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Season the pounded pork pieces with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Once the oil is hot (about 3 minutes), add the pork pieces and cook for about 90 seconds per side.

Easy Pork tenderloin medallions cooking in a skillet.

Step #5: Test with a meat thermometer to ensure the internal temperature is at least 145°F (63°C). Set aside on a plate.

Step #6: Season the remaining four pork pieces. Add another teaspoon of oil to the pan and cook the pork for 90 seconds per side. Again, test with a meat thermometer to ensure the internal temperature is at least 145°F (63°C).

Pork medallions cooking in a skillet.

Step #7: Return the rest of the cooked pork to the pan.

Cooking pork tenderloin in a skillet.

Step #8: Pour in the maple-balsamic sauce and cook for 1 minute. Garnish with scallions.

Easy pork tenderloin cooking in a skillet.

See how easy that was, and look at that beautiful plate!

Pork tenderloin with sauce on a plate and in a skillet.

Expert Tips

  • Excess Fat and Skin Removal: Ensure even cooking and create a healthier meal by trimming any excess fat from the pork tenderloin. Additionally, remove the silver skin—the tough white membrane on the outside of the meat. Use a sharp knife, angling it upward to avoid cutting off unnecessary meat. If you prefer to keep the silver skin, that’s entirely fine.
  • Even Thickness: Pound the pork to an even thickness for consistent cooking and tenderness.
  • Use a Meat Thermometer: Always use a meat thermometer or an instant-read thermometer to check doneness; the internal temperature should be 145°F (63°C).
  • Control Your Heat: Maintain a medium-high heat for a good sear without burning.
  • Rest the Meat: Let the pork rest for a few minutes after cooking to allow juices to redistribute.
Maple Balsamic Sauce on Pork Medallions on a white plate.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can it be cooked entirely on the stove?

Yes, the Easy Pork Tenderloin can be cooked entirely on the stove. You can sear the pork in a skillet and then finish cooking it in the same skillet without using an oven. This method is convenient and still yields delicious results.

Can I use pork chops instead of pork loin or pork tenderloin?

Yes. But keep in mind that they have a different texture and thickness compared to pork loin or tenderloin. Adjust cooking times accordingly to ensure they reach the desired doneness without overcooking.

How do I ensure the pork cooks evenly?

Pound the pieces to an even thickness and cook each side for the same amount of time.

How can I tell when the pork is done without a thermometer?

The pork is done when it’s firm to the touch and its juices run clear when sliced.

Can I use other spices like oregano or parsley in the Easy Pork Tenderloin recipe?

Absolutely! Incorporating spices such as oregano or parsley can add delightful herby flavors to the pork.

Storage Info

Store leftover Easy Pork Tenderloin in an airtight container in the fridge, where it will stay good for up to 3-4 days. You can freeze it in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months. To reheat, thaw in the refrigerator if frozen, then gently warm in a skillet over medium heat or in a microwave, being careful not to overcook it. Reheating in a skillet helps to retain the moisture and texture of the pork better than the microwave.

More Pork Recipes That You Will Love

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Easy Pork Tenderloin with Maple-Balsamic Sauce elegantly presented on a platter.

Easy Pork Tenderloin with Maple-Balsamic Sauce Recipe

In just thirty minutes, you can whip up this succulent and Easy Pork Tenderloin, draped in a mouthwatering maple-balsamic sauce. Perfect with crusty bread to savor every flavorful drop – a true feast for the senses!
4.4 from 802 votes
Pin Rate
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: North American
Diet: Gluten Free, Dairy Free
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 Servings
Calories: 223kcal
Author: Linda
Print Recipe

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Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup maple syrup - the real stuff!
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 teaspoons dijon mustard
  • 1 pound pork tenderloin - one piece
  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil - divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Scallion chunks for garnish

Instructions

  • Combine the maple syrup, vinegar, and red pepper flakes in a small saucepan. Turn the heat to high and boil for about 3 minutes, until the mixture has reduced to one-third of a cup.
  • Turn off the heat and whisk in the Dijon mustard.
  • Meanwhile, slice the pork tenderloin into eight equal pieces. Place four of the pieces between two pieces of plastic wrap and pound until they are about 1/2" to 1/4" thick.
  • To cook pork medallions, pat the tenderloins dry with a paper towel. Then, heat one teaspoon of vegetable oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Season the pounded pork pieces with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Once the oil is hot (about 3 minutes), add the pork pieces and cook for about 90 seconds per side.
  • Test with a meat thermometer to ensure the internal temperature is at least 145°F (63°C). Set aside on a plate.
  • Season the remaining four pork pieces. Add another teaspoon of oil to the pan and cook the pork for 90 seconds per side. Again, test with a meat thermometer to ensure the internal temperature is at least 145°F (63°C).
  • Return the rest of the cooked pork to the pan.
  • Pour in the maple-balsamic sauce and cook for 1 minute. Garnish with scallions.

VIDEO

NOTES

Storage Info:
Store leftover Easy Pork Tenderloin in an airtight container in the fridge, where it will stay good for up to 3-4 days. You can freeze it in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months. To reheat, thaw in the refrigerator if frozen, then gently warm in a skillet over medium heat or in a microwave, being careful not to overcook it. Reheating in a skillet helps to retain the moisture and texture of the pork better than the microwave.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 223kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 74mg | Sodium: 383mg | Potassium: 513mg | Fiber: 0.2g | Sugar: 14g | Vitamin A: 23IU | Vitamin C: 0.01mg | Calcium: 35mg | Iron: 1mg

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About the Author

Linda

Hi, I'm Linda! Welcome to The Wanderlust Kitchen, where I share recipes and travel adventures from all around the world. Here you'll find a world of recipes you can have confidence in. These recipes celebrate authentic food heritage as well as modern techniques and ingredients. Be adventurous and try a new recipe and travel somewhere you have never been before.  Bon Appétit! Bon Voyage!  

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Comments:

  1. 5 stars
    My husband was saying that we needed a sauce for Porketta roast and suggested perhaps something with maple syrup. I found this and it was a HUGE hit. Quick and easy and delicious. Thank you!

  2. 5 stars
    Love this recipe. Have made it many times. Simplification hack…no need to boil the vinegar and maple syrup before. Combine it and then put it in the pan when you return the pork into the pan. I was finding that the sauce thickened too much when I did the intermediary step so I omitted it and it turned out so great with the bonus of being easier and one less pot!

  3. 5 stars
    One word. AMAZING! I served this for my family and it is now in our dinner rotation! The sauce for the pork is the perfect of sweet with that tang from the vinegar and spice from the red pepper flakes! I cannot get over how delicious this recipe is! Thank you!