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Cooking a Pork Tenderloin with a Pomegranate Glaze

Pork Tenderloin with Pomegranate Seeds

Delicious and elegant-a great combination!

Delicious and elegant-a great combination!

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How I discovered the Pomegranate and Pork recipe

I discovered this delectable recipe in an old edition of Clean Eating magazine, (January 2011). While thumbing through it I saw a photo of a pork tenderloin that had pomegranate seeds sprinkled over it. I am aware that this is the season for pomegranates and have seen them in the produce department lately. In the Northern Hemisphere the season for pomegranates usually lasts between September through February. The season for this fruit in the Southern Hemisphere is from March through May.

I have to rate the Spiced Pork Tenderloin a 5 star recipe. Simple enough to prepare for the family-elegant enough to serve for a dinner party.

What is a pomegranate?

The pomegranate is a fruit about the size of a grapefruit. The seeds and juice have a rich, deep red color. You could say it is blood red. I have been fascinated with the pomegranate and its tiny seeds that hide in the interior, since my dad first brought one home to show us. He was always introducing us to new things, including different foods, and I recall my siblings and me gathering around the kitchen table and peering into the halved fruit.

Dad encouraged us to put the tiny red seeds in our mouths to taste them. They are nestled in layers of pulp within the hard rind. At age nine I didn't really care for their tart taste...and, certainly never appreciated their health benefits, nor their usefulness in recipes.

Health benefits of the pomegranate

Pomegranates have a tart flavored juice. They are:

1. High in antioxidants

2. A rich source of Vitamin C.

3. High in potassium

4. A good source of fiber if eating the whole seed.

More facts about the pomegranate

Pomegranates originated from the Middle East and through the trade routes ended up in India and finally to North America.

There are between 200-1400 seeds in each pomegranate.

In the United States, pomegranates are grown in California.

Grenadine, a sweet syrup that is added to many cocktails, such as the Sea Breeze, was once made with pomegranate juice. Now, it is mostly high fructose corn syrup, food coloring and other ingredients.

The word 'pomegranate' comes from two medieval Latin words: pomum for 'apple' and granatum for 'seeded'.

Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

30 min

30 min

1 hour

6 people

Photos of Ingredients for Pork and Pomegranate Recipe

Ingredients you will need.

Ingredients you will need.


  • 1 - 2 (3/4 -1 # each) Pork tenderloin, will make at least 12 slices per loin
  • 1 cup 100% Pomegranate juice, If unavailable: use a blend
  • 1 Pomegranate (optional), Use seeds for garnish
  • 2 Tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 2 teaspoon Balsalmic Vinegar
  • 3/4 teaspoon arrowroot, If unavailable: substitute flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon (+ additional to taste) sea salt, Use Kosher salt as a substitute
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How to prepare Spiced Pork Tenderloin with Pomegranate Glaze

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a shallow bowl, (I used a separate casserole dish to hold the spices in one corner as the tenderloin was turned), stir together the dry ingredients: coriander, cinnamon, cumin, paprika, and salt.
  3. Pat the tenderloins dry and rub the spice mixture evenly over each of them. The easiest method I used was to first divide the spice in half; sprinkle the meat in an area and then rub across the meat. I continued this method, turning the meat, until all areas were covered.
  4. In a large, heavy bottomed skillet heat the oil over medium-high until hot but NOT smoking. Reduce heat and sear pork until meat is browned on all sides. Transfer pork to a baking dish and place in oven to cook for about 20 minutes or until a meat thermometer inserted diagonally into the center of each tenderloin registers 145 degrees F. (I had to cook mine for 30 minutes).
  5. Remove from oven and transfer pork to a cutting board, tent wiht aluminum foil and let rest for 10 minutes before slicing.
  6. While meat rests pour off and discard any fat from the skillet. Add pomegranate juice to skillet and boil over medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes or until juice is reduced to about 2/3 C. Note: I could not find 100% pomegranate juice, so I used an Ocean Spray brand of pomegranate/cranberry juice which worked fine.
  7. In a small bowl, whisk together arrowroot and 1 T reduced pomegranate juice. Whisk mixture back into skillet, then boil sauce until thickened slightly, about 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat and add vinegar. Season with salt. Note: I could not find arrowroot and researched a substitute. Between corn starch and flour it was recommended to substitute FLOUR for arrowroot in this recipe.
  8. Slice pork on the diagonal and drizzle with pomegranate glaze. Garnish with pomegranate seeds, if desired. Note: I did not cut the pork on the diagonal and it presented very well without that added touch.

Photo of Leftover Pork Tenderloin

Delicious the second day, too.

Delicious the second day, too.

Leftover pork tenderloin

Pork is considered, 'the other white meat', and tenderloin is the most flavorful cut that I've had. I bought this package for a mere $10 and it served our family generously, three times.

Besides the initial meal of Pork Tenderloin with Pomegranate Glaze, you can serve it in these ways:

1. For hot or cold sandwiches. If hot-add a pork gravy for a different flavor.

2. As a leftover with the pomegranate glaze-by adding the sliced pork to the glaze in the pan you can let it warm gradually in the sauce. If you've run out of the glaze, make a fresh batch-it is easy to do and ready in about 5 minutes.

3. With BBQ sauce on a hamburger bun as BBQ'd pork sandwiches. I wouldn't recommend this, unless you have a die-hard lover of BBQ sauce. This meat is so tender and juicy it is a shame to cover up the flavor with BBQ sauce.


Denise Handlon (author) from North Carolina on December 22, 2013:

Hello poetryman6969 Thanks for your visit. I hope you have a chance to make this delicious dish...or have your significant other/wife make it for you, if you don't cook. Happy Holidays.

poetryman6969 on December 22, 2013:

This will start them talking. Hopefully in a good way!

Denise Handlon (author) from North Carolina on May 07, 2013:

Hi Beth, I just made a pork tenderloin last night, but skipped the glaze. It is so delicious, I hope you have a chance to let me know how you enjoyed it. Thanks. :)

Beth37 on May 06, 2013:

I make a pork tenderloin about twice a year, both for special occasions, and always with a fruit topping. I have never heard of this one, very excited. thanks! :)

Denise Handlon (author) from North Carolina on December 04, 2012:

Hi Peggy-if you enjoy pork, this is a 'must do'. It is so easy and delicious and yet, presents with an elegance fit for a holiday gathering. It is a sure hit if you do give it a try. Thanks for the shares. :)

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on December 04, 2012:

We love eating pork and have often served pork in various guises...but never with Pomegranate. You made this sound so interesting and look so delicious, that we may just have to give this recipe a try. This is the right season to be looking for Pomegranates in the stores. Thanks for the work that went into this hub. Up, useful, interesting and tweeting.

Denise Handlon (author) from North Carolina on December 01, 2012:

Hi Alicia-I finally found 100% pomegranate juice and am eager to try this with poultry. It should be just as tasty, (I hope). Let me know if you do give this a whirl. It's good whether or not you have pomegranate seeds, but it is a nice finishing touch. Thanks for your comments.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on November 30, 2012:

I love the taste of pomegranates, and this recipe sounds very interesting, Denise! I've noticed the pomegranates in the stores and I'm looking forward to using them in recipes. Thanks for sharing the information and the photos. The meat and the glaze sound like a very tasty combination.

Denise Handlon (author) from North Carolina on November 29, 2012:

Thanks, SkeetyD-it is amazing how certain blends create a completely different outcome. I have recently discovered that adding cinnamon to dishes I would not normally think to do so has been well worth the risk. The meat rub here, with the cinnamon, is as wonderful a discovery as the pomegranate. :) Thanks for the comment.

SkeetyD on November 29, 2012:

Great recipe Denise! Very unique as well. I would have never thought of putting pork and pomegranate together. I think the addition of cinnamon also adds a splash of individuality to this recipe.

Denise Handlon (author) from North Carolina on November 29, 2012:

Hi Carter-I'm glad this recipe caught your eye. I finally found a bottle of 100% pomegranate juice-everything is blended! I'm going to try it on left over turkey. :) I've never heard of pomegranate flavored balsamic vinegar...that's amazing that the recipe calls for two tsp of the b.vinegar to be added to the pom. juice. Thanks for the info-I'll keep my eye out for it.

Mary from Cronulla NSW on November 28, 2012:

Deniuse this looks fantastic!! We are not @ home for Christmas this year but will def try this @ some stage...I love pomegranites & a favorite of mine is pomegranite balsamic vinegar only available in gourmet deli's...thanks for sharing this delicious one...Up & Awesome...cheers

Denise Handlon (author) from North Carolina on November 27, 2012:

Thanks! The great thing about this awesome dish was that the two tenderloins together cost $10 ! And, we made at least four meals from it. The leftovers, with the glaze, was just as good.

Vespa Woolf from Peru, South America on November 27, 2012:

I'd never thought to use pomegranate with pork tenderloin, but of course it would be delicious together! I like your suggestion of making sandwiches with the leftovers to stretch out another meal. Thanks!

Denise Handlon (author) from North Carolina on November 26, 2012:

Hello MN Twin-I'm glad this recipe appealed to you. I think you'll enjoy it. It is so tender and delicious. Let me know if you do try it. :)

Linda Rogers from Minnesota on November 26, 2012:

This recipe sounds great-I like pomegranate and pork tenderloin-I too remember trying the seeds as a kid-I really liked it-what a great idea for christmas dinner-I hit many buttons and up :-)

Denise Handlon (author) from North Carolina on November 26, 2012:

Ruby-it's just right for a Christmas dinner party-served either as the center of attention on Christmas Day or as a nice 'different' choice for a Christmas Eve get together. I guarantee you will love it and your guests will too. BTW-the whole pomegranate seed can be eaten as is.

Hi Rebecca-I know what you mean-that is why the recipe appealed to me so well. When you say, "it goes good with pork, too" I am assuming you mean other cuts of pork besides the pork tenderloin pictured here, right? I'm sure it does. It has that 'tartness' to it like a side of apples or cranberry would. Thanks for your comment.

Rebecca Mealey from Northeastern Georgia, USA on November 26, 2012:

This sounds really good. I have often wondered what to do with pomegranate. Great idea. I'll bet it goes good with pork,too.

Ruby Jean Richert from Southern Illinois on November 25, 2012:

This is another new dish to me. I love pork but never tasted pomegranate. It is certainly a lovely dish. It will be pretty at Christmas time. Thank you again Denise...

Denise Handlon (author) from North Carolina on November 25, 2012:

Hi Mary-yes, I usually do a poultry dish over pork. It was a nice change of pace and taste, ha ha.

Hi Dianna-thanks...I couldn't wait to share it when I came across it in that magazine. Best wishes and I hope you and hubby enjoy it. :)

Dianna Mendez on November 24, 2012:

I am absolutely in love with this dish! I love pork done with fruits. Have never tried it with pomegranates, but I'm willing to give it a try. Thanks for sharing.

Mary Hyatt from Florida on November 24, 2012:

I seem to forget about pork for some reason; don't know why....when I cook a pork roast, my family loves it. I'll try adding the Pomegranate Glaze to my next Pork.

Voted this UP, etc.

Denise Handlon (author) from North Carolina on November 24, 2012:

Hi Linda-LOL sorry, it's all gone, but I would gladly cook up another if you happen to be in my neck of the woods. :)

Hey Bill-wow, the usual group has left the 'Last one standing' post. I hardly ever see anyone there anymore. Odd how we all seemed to migrate away at the same time and there's a new group there. I've been good-how about yourself?

Ok, Mr. hot sauce man-this recipe has a spicy rub on it that does NOT require any hot sauce, ha ha. At least give it a shot BEFORE the shake. Thanks for reading-it is very good. :)

mts1098 on November 24, 2012:

I have to admit this sounds very intriguing...I may need to add some hot sauce because I add it to everything but I cannot imagine what this tastes like...please send samples :) I hope all is well Denise....cheers...bill

Linda Bilyeu from Orlando, FL on November 24, 2012:

What time is dinner? :)

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