This dazzling Candied Pecan Crusted Pork Tenderloin with Baked Pears is a marvelous dinner party entree for the holidays.
Trying to decide what to make for Christmas dinner?
Isn’t it always such a dilemma? Our family tends to have a very traditional menu for Thanksgiving, yet when it comes to Christmas, our plans get a bit willy-nilly.
Some years we stick with a classic ham. Other years we’ve made big ethic feasts, like Italian night, or a Vietnamese buffet.
A couple times, when our family of four was celebrating without extended family, we asked each person what they wanted to eat for Christmas then made all four random main dishes together… As if it was our last meal on death row!
Today’s recipe for Candied Pecan Crusted Pork Tenderloin with Baked Pears is an elegant main course to serve to friends and family this holiday season.
The pork tenderloin is perfectly cooked, rich and juicy, and covered in crunchy candied pecans for flavor and textural appeal. It’s resting on a bed of silky pears and baked in wine and brown sugar.
The combination of the sweet pears and the succulent pork is a true thing of beauty.
Pork tenderloin is not only a popular ingredient for holiday cooking, it’s lower in fat than other cuts of pork, and many other protein sources.
Pork is also extremely affordable for feeding a crowd. Believe it or not, average prices on pork have actually dropped in the last year!
This Candied Pecan Crusted Pork Tenderloin with Baked Pears recipe dresses up lean everyday pork tenderloin, making it a luxurious meal you could serve on any occasion.
It looks and tastes fancy, even though the ingredients are economical.
The key to cooking a perfect pork tenderloin is to check the internal temperature making sure it reaches between 145 degrees F (with a light pink center) and 160 degrees F, followed by a three-minute rest. That way, the pork stays tender and juicy with a light pink center.
Let the pork rest for three minutes, so the juices can redistribute throughout the pork loin. Then cut into luscious porky goodness and serve.
You will feel like a French chef this season, when you make this Candied Pecan Crusted Pork Tenderloin with Baked Pears.
It just might become your new holiday tradition!
Find more savory pork recipes and cooking tips on PorkBeinspired.com.
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by the National Pork Board. All opinions are our own.
Candied Pecan Crusted Pork Tenderloin with Baked Pears
Yield: 4-6 servings
Prep Time:15 minutes
Cook Time:35 minutes
Candied Pecan Crusted Pork Tenderloin with Baked Pears Recipe – The ultimate (and easy) dinner party recipes for the holidays!
For the Pork Loin:
- 1 large pork tenderloin (about 1 1/2 pounds)
- 1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
- 1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1 cup finely chopped pecans
- Salt and pepper
For the Baked Pears:
- 4 large ripe pears
- 1/4 cup red wine (substitute balsamic vinegar for non-alcoholic)
- 2 tablespoon melted butter
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Peel the pears and cut them into thin wedges. Place them in a 9 X 13 inch baking dish. Then add the wine, melted butter, brown sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Toss to coat the pears. Bake the pears for 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, mix brown sugar, Dijon mustard, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper in a small bowl. Brush the mixture over the entire surface of the pork tenderloin.
- Pour the chopped pecans in a shallow baking sheet or on a large cutting board. Roll the pork tenderloin in the nuts to coat on all sides.
- Toss the pears after baking. Carefully lay the pork tenderloin on top of the pears. Press any runaway pecans back in place. Bake another 15-20 minutes, until the thickest part of the pork loin reaches between 145 F (with a light pink center) and 160 degrees F on a meat thermometer.
- Allow the pork tenderloin to rest 3 minutes while the juices redistribute, then cut and serve with a side of baked pears.
NOTE: Using a serrated knife to cut the pork loin will keep (most of) the pecans from falling off.
Yield: 4-6 servings, Serving Size: 1/6 recipe
- Amount Per Serving:
- Calories: 636 Calories
- Total Fat: 26.5g
- Saturated Fat: 6.6g
- Cholesterol: 208mg
- Sodium: 987mg
- Carbohydrates: 32.2g
- Fiber: 6.3g
- Sugar: 22.2g
- Protein: 66.2g
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