Slow Cooker Honey Balsamic Pork with Pears is the perfect fall meal packed with the flavors of balsamic vinegar, honey, and sweet pears all paired with a tender pork tenderloin. Jump to Recipe
Crockpot Honey Balsamic Pork is one of those easy meals to throw together that tastes like you have been cooking for hours. It's healthy comfort food at its best. Pair it with some Roasted Cauliflower or Mashed Potatoes for a perfect winter meal.
Pork tenderloin is one of those often-overlooked lean protein sources. Even as someone who pretty much thinks about food all day, every day, for some reason I never think to plan a meal around a pork tenderloin. All that changed when I was out of options and went through the usual rounds: chicken? - no, beef? - nah, seafood? - not feeling it...pork? YES. "Yes" to the pork tenderloin and fruit. It just screams warm and hearty and easy to set it in the slow cooker and forget it.
And, with around 160 calories and 4 grams of fat per serving, it’s a good healthy option, and I'm so glad I took the time to incorporate it into my Slow Cooker Series. For this recipe, the pork is cooked low and slow until it becomes fall-apart tender. It is flavored with a fantastic combination of balsamic, honey, and rosemary as well as some pears for extra flavor and a little sweetness.
One quick note, if you want your pears to “hold up” more, add them in the last 30 minutes of cooking. Also if you want a glaze for the pork, take the cooking liquid and reduce it in a saucepan before serving.
Ideas for Customizing Slow Cooker Balsamic Honey Pork Tenderloin
When it comes to slow cookers, (almost) anything goes! Ways to mix up this pork dish include:
- As I mentioned earlier, if you want to have the pears less cooked down, wait until the last 30 minutes or so to add them so they have more texture.
- You can also add peaches or apples with or instead of pears if you like. Just don't go overboard!
- Add in a few diced red or yellow potatoes to cook up with the pork tenderloin for a well-rounded meal. (Increase vegetable broth to 3/4 a cup.)
- Change up the herbs. Instead of rosemary, try thyme, oregano, or basil.
- Do you love garlic? Increase to two cloves, or better yet, use two teaspoons of pre-minced garlic to speed up the prep time.
- Instead of honey, you can also try maple syrup or agave as a sweetener.
How can I use leftover Pork Tenderloin?
I love a good leftover!
Try using up some of that leftover pork for a sandwich. I like to use hoagy rolls, a baguette, ciabatta, or sliders as my bread. Top with more pear slices and a little gouda or havarti for a well-rounded sandwich (add to a panini press to melt that cheese and get it nice and gooey).
Add leftover slices of pork over mashed potatoes or mashed cauliflower. Oh la la!
This slow cooker pork would also be just wonderful over some grits or polenta! Or, mix it all together with some of that sauce reduction for a warm, cozy, comfort meal ready to eat right by the fire.
Add pieces of the pork to some eggs for breakfast or make a hash with diced potatoes, onions, and bell peppers.
Tacos! Add the pork to a tortilla and top with fruit salsa, shredded cabbage, jalapenos, or whatever toppings you like — no judgment here.
Side Dishes to Serve with Balsamic Honey Pork Tenderloin with Pears
Lots of good sides go with pork, such as:
- A simple side salad is easy and goes with just about everything, including slow cooker pork tenderloin.
- How about a roasted vegetable? Brussels sprouts, green beans, and broccoli are some of my favorites.
- Mashed potatoes or cauliflower mash is great alongside a pork tenderloin.
- How about a nice fruit salad to pair with the fruitiness of the pork with the pears?
- Lemon-pepper asparagus steamed or cooked over medium heat on the stovetop is always delicious and so nutritious.
- I love a slimmed-down pasta side, like macaroni and cheese with broccoli.
- Do you ever want something simple, like the simplest side ever? Well how about pork (tenderloin) and...applesauce? There's a reason people say it goes so good together — because it does!
- Corn on the cob is a great complimentary dish to go with slow cooker pork. Make it creamed or in a salad, if you don't have it on the cob — get creative.
Can I use a different cut of pork?
If you have thicker cuts of pork chops, you can substitute those for the pork tenderloin, though I'd see if I could find thick, boneless pork chops if possible. It will be that much easier to shred or cut the pork chops if you're not working around a bone.
Slow Cooker Balsamic Honey Pork Tenderloin with Pears
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- 2 lb lean pork tenderloin, trimmed of fat
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 2 tbsp honey
- 1/2 cup vegetable broth
- 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tbsp soy sauce (GF if needed)
- 1 U garlic clove
- 3 U pears, sliced
- 1 tsp dried rosemary
- Salt and pepper to taste
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* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
The Nutritional Values provided are estimates only and may vary based on the preparation method.
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