Monday, May 20, 2013

Cherry Chipotle Pork Tenderloin

If you asked me what my favorite cut of pork is every day, I would probably change my answer each day.  Shoulder, chops, ribs, sausage, name it.  Sunday my pork weapon of choice was tenderloin.  It's lean, quick cooking, and can take on so many kinds of flavors.

This particular time I went with the sweetness of cherry and the smoky heat of chipotle for a delicious grilled Cherry Chipotle Pork Tenderloin.

The brine, rub, and BBQ sauce are all easy to make for this simple recipe.  If you don't have the time to brine, you could skip that part but it adds a lot of flavor and keeps the pork juicy while grilling.

Cherry Chipotle Pork Tenderloin

Prep Time: 4 hour brine time
Cook Time: 22-25 minutes

Ingredients (6 servings)
    You'll need
    • 2 pork tenderloins, trimmed of silverskin
    For The Brine
    • 1 quart water
    • 1/3 cup whiskey
    • 1/3 cup birch or maple syrup
    • 2 Tbsp kosher salt
    For The Pork Rub
    • 4 tsp turbinado sugar
    • 2 tsp smoked salt
    • 1 tsp smoked paprika
    • 1/2 tsp chili powder
    • 1/4 tsp garlic pepper
    • 1/4 tsp chipotle chile powder
    For the Glaze
    • 1/2 cup red BBQ sauce
    • 1/4 cup cherry preserves
    • 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
    • 1 tsp Pork rub
    • 1/4 tsp chipotle chile powder
    1. Mix the brine ingredients and chill to 40f. Brine the tenderloins for 4-6 hours.
    2. Mix the sauce ingredients together, bring to a simmer and then remove to heat. You don't want it to thicken, just blend.
    3. Preheat a charcoal grill to 350-400f.
    4. Remove the tenderloins from the brine and pat dry. I like to tie my tenderloins after tucking the skinny end under, so they cook evenly end to end. Reserve 1 tsp of the rub for the sauce and use the rest to cover the tenderloins.
    5. Grill the tenderloins, turning occasionally, until they reach an internal temp of 140f (about 22-25 minutes). Brush with the glaze and cook another minute per side, just enough to cook the sauce onto the pork.
    6. Let rest for 5 minutes, slice thin, and serve with the remaining sauce.
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    Since they almost always come two in a pack, they should call them "twinderloins".

    Notice the coal arrangement.  See the void in the bottom right corner?  That's to help keep the corn husks from burning.

    Place the corn so their husks are over the void.

    Served with rice pilaf and grilled cilantro butter corn.
    Do you have a favorite pork tenderloin dish?


    1. Love the idea of the chipotle and cherries together with the pork. And cilantro butter for the grilled corn? Bring it on!

    2. That pork tenderloin is cooked to perfection!

    3. Can you believe that my Chris does not like pork tenderloin? Geez.. I think he is my punishment for being a picky eater as a kid!
      Nice thing about this recipe, I can use regular pork chops and he'll love it! Love the glaze!

    4. Gosh darn you!!!!! How am I ever going to have time to cook everything I've bookmarked from your site. This looks incredible Chris. And do you already have fresh corn? We don't get it here until end of July. And as always great photos. I only have one pork tenderloin dish in my database and I've had it for years. Easy and delicious.

    5. Oh, the perfect color on your pork tenderloin. Fie on those who can't abide some pink.

    6. Lovely looking meal! I have a loin roast in the freezer that could sure benefit from this treatment.

    7. What Sam said. we had tenderloin last night with pineapple salsa.

    8. Very nice. Great cook and as always, amazing photography.

    9. Great job. I did pork tenderloin tonight and I wish I had used this brine.

    10. Love the whiskey in the brine. I always like finding new recipes for pork tenderloin and I am really LOVING this one.

    11. I don't know how many times I can say it, but your grill skill is other worldly. GREG

    12. I recently had cherry chipotle cream cheese on a bagel and fell in love. One of the more perfect flavor combos, methinks.

    13. It all looks very good Chris. The cherry and chipotle combo sounds intriging.

    14. Hold the presses....this dish is absolutely drop dead awesome. Gather a crowd, follow the receipe to the letter, cook the tenderloin to 140 degrees and then just stand back and take in the accolades. Folks, the combo of chipotle, cherries and pork was just spot on. Plus, when making the brine, you may as well enjoy a spot of good Tenn. whiskey when adding to the mix. Thanks for the recipe.

    15. This is one of the best pork tenderloin recipes I have tried in years of serious "grilling". Invite a crowd of friends, cook this recipe exactly as written and get ready for loads of accolades. Really special combination of flavors. You will love the results.

    16. My husband would say that pork tenderloin was his pork choice everyday. I will be sharing this with him.

      This weekend I am going to try my hand at making a Jamaican Jerk chicken. I plan on marinating it tomorrow morning, and the hubs will grill it for the evening. I am looking forward to it.


    17. i've never had much luck with pork tenderloins, but i must be doing something wrong because i have tasted some that has been amazing. i love that you brine this, i'll have to try it soon!

    18. I am a huge pork fan, Chris!!!It looks perfect and love the combination of flavors!What a wonderful dish for this weekend!

    19. Sounds awesome Chris! I love fruit glazes or salsas paired with pork. So glad corn is coming back in season. Grilled corn is one of my all time favorites!


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