Pepper Jelly Glazed Pork Loin Roast

A glazed pepper jelly pork loin nestled in a bed of red onions and sliced apples.

I’m always on the lookout for easy and economical pork loin recipes, aren’t you? Pork loin is such a great roast and it’s very economical – I love it for a hearty weeknight meal. Pepper Jelly Glazed Pork Loin Roast makes a beautiful meal and the pepper jelly gives this pork loin roast just the bit of zing it needs.

Pepper Jelly Glazed Pork Loin Roast Recipe –

Pork loin roast on a bed or apples and red onions.

Howdy! Chef Alli Here. Let’s Get You Cookin’….Shall We?? 🙂

This is one of those recipes that can be the star of your show at any holiday or family gathering – it’s soooo easy to make, budget-friendly, and hands-down the best pork loin recipe you’ll ever put in your mouth.

This easy method of cooking pork loin in the oven makes it very fork-tender and juicy. Just season, sear, smother, roast, rest, slice and serve – it’s really that easy! The red onions and apples make this an extra special dish – it’s gorgeous.

We are also big fans of pork tenderloin in this house. (Keep in mind that pork tenderloin and pork loin are not the same thing – see below for more details!) We love Roast Pork Tenderloin with Sweet Potatoes, a quick sheet pan meal.

A great Instant Pot dinner is Instant Pot Cuban Pork Tenderloin with Black Beans and Rice. I use my Instant Pot nearly every day since it helps get dinner on the table so quickly.

If you’re looking for help with your Instant Pot, go here. I’ve got all kinds of Instant Pot help available here on my blog.

What to love about this recipe –

  1. Learn the secrets to moist and tender pork loin (pork roast)!
  2. Cheap. Easy. Inexpensive. Beautiful!
  3. A “keeper” recipe that you’ll break out again and again.

Which ingredients do I need to make this pork loin roast recipe?

  • Boneless pork loin roast
  • Kosher salt and black pepper
  • Your favorite pepper jelly
  • Apple cider or apple juice
  • Apples
  • Red onion
A large glazed pork loin nestled in a bed of sliced apples and sliced red onions.

How to make Pepper Jelly Glazed Pork Loin Roast Step-by-Step –

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. While the oven is preheating, season the pork loin liberally with salt and pepper. Use your fingertips to get the spices really rubbed in – don’t miss any nook or cranny!
  2. In a large, deep skillet over medium high heat, add a good swish of olive oil. When the oil is good and hot, gently lay the seasoned pork roast into the hot oil, searing the loin on all sides until it’s deeply golden brown and you are salivating. Remove the pork loin to a platter and reserve.
  3. Add the cider to the skillet, whisking and deglazing the pan to bring up all the delicious browned particles that are attached to the bottom of the skillet from searing off the pork; now return the seared pork loin back to the skillet.
  4. Place the pork loin into the preheated oven, uncovered, on the center oven rack; roast at 425 degrees F. for 20 minutes. Remove the pork loin roast from the oven; add the sliced apples and onions, placing them all around the roast in the pan. Spread the pepper jelly over the top of the roast.
  5. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F. Return the roast, uncovered, to the oven; continue to cook the pork loin for an additional 35-40 minutes, basting with the apple cider every 10 minutes or so. Cook the pork roast just until it reaches an internal temperature of 130-135 degrees F. at the center. Use your instant-read meat thermometer so you don’t over cook the pork roast! (There’s nothing worse than overcooked, tasteless, dry pork loin roast, either…)
  6. When the roast reaches the proper internal temperature of 130-135 degrees F., remove it from the oven and tent with foil. Let the roast rest for 10 minutes, allowing the meat to relax and raise in internal temperature an additional 5-10 degrees to 140-145 degrees F.
  7. To serve, slice the pork loin across the grain of the meat into 3/4-inch slices, arranging them on a platter. Top the pork slices with apples and onions; drizzle with pan juices, as desired. The pork roast can also be served with additional warm pepper jelly, if desired.
The easy steps to making a glazed pork loin roast.

Common Questions Asked About This Recipe

Which tools are helpful for making pork tenderloin?

  • Any time you are cooking meat or poultry, be sure to use an instant read meat thermometer. It’s easy to use and keeps us from overcooking our proteins. There’s nothing worse than overcooked meat!
  • When you’re cooking pork loin, it’s also handy to have a nice long-handled pair of tongs for turning the tenderloins when seasoning or searing.
  • For slicing the pork loin roast (and for slicing any other type of meat, as well), you’ll want a large cutting board that has a channel around the edge. The channel is where the juices from the meat can gather, keeping them from running off the cutting board and making a mess.
  • I use my stainless steel Wusthof chef’s knife for slicing meat, but some cooks prefer a good carving knife since the blade is more narrow.
  • When purchasing good quality knives, know that it’s a great kitchen investment since if taken care of properly, good knives are a lifetime purchase.
  • I know it seems like a lot of cash upfront, but it sure pays off quickly, and you’ll enjoy prep work a whole lot more if you’ve got good knives in your hands.

What is the perfect internal temperature for pork? Is it still 160 degrees F. at the center?

  • NOOOO!! The USDA says we can now safely cook all pork just until it’s 140-145 degrees F. at the center. Pork cooked to this temperature will have a slight pink tinge to the meat and that is perfect! No more gray, overcooked, funky pork – hallelujah!
  • To be sure your pork is cooked to that perfect 140-145 degree final temperature, you’ll need to remove it from the cooking source (grill, oven, grill pan, etc) when the pork has an internal temperature of 130-135 degrees. Then, tent the pork with foil and let it rest.
  • During this resting time, the pork will raise 5-10 more degrees in internal temperature, finishing out at that perfect 140-145 degrees F.

Is there a secret technique to ensuring pork loin roast is tender and juicy?

  • So glad you asked – great question. Yes, actually there is. DON’T OVER-COOK PORK LOIN. Because pork loin cooks quickly (due to being pretty lean), the best thing you can do is to make certain it doesn’t get over cooked.
  • Remember – the new USDA safe internal temperature for cooking pork is 140-145 degrees F., ensuring your pork has a nice pink tinge and is perfectly juicy and tender. Yay – no more gray, funky pork that’s over-cooked at 160 degrees as we were formerly told.

Is pork loin considered to be a lean cut of pork? Is pork loin healthy?

  • Yes, pork loin is lean and this is why it’s very important not to overcook it, since it can easily become dry and tasteless. Pork is a rich source of vitamins and miners that your body needs to function, such as zinc and iron. It’s also a great source of high-quality protein.

Pork loin vs pork tenderloin - they are not the same cut of pork!

Is pork loin the same thing as pork tenderloin? If not, what’s the difference?

  • NOPE…. and I’m so very glad you asked this important question! Pork tenderloin and pork loin are cut from different parts of the pig. Because their shape and size is quite different, they typically aren’t well suited for being substituted for each other.
  • Pork tenderloin is the narrow, long muscle that goes down the back of the pig, right along the back bone; because that muscle doesn’t get much use on a pig, it’s super super tender. There are only 2 pork tenderloins on each pig, too.
  • Pork loin is a large muscle on the pig that is from the back, running from the shoulder and the beginning of the leg. You can buy an entire pork loin but because it’s really big, it’s usually cut into roasts that are 2-4 lbs. in size.
  • Once you understand the important difference and characteristics between pork tenderloin and pork loin, you’ll easily be able to tell them apart at a glance! Pork tenderloins are always long and very skinny, only weighing about 1 lb. each. (Though they are typically sold as a pair in a 2 lb. package)
  • Pork loin on the other hand will be short and chunky in appearance, weighing in anywhere from 3-5 lbs. Also, pork loins are usually a lighter pink in color whereas pork tenderloins are dark red.
  • As far as cooking goes, pork tenderloin is best suited for cooking at high temperatures more quickly (a whole tenderloin can be roasted to 130-135 degrees F internal temperature in 15-20 minutes) and a pork loin is best seared off on the outside and then cooked low and slow.
A beautiful whole pork loin roast with pepper jelly glaze on top.

How economical is pork loin compared to other cuts of pork? Can I purchase a whole pork loin and cut it up myself to save money?

This is a great question! Pork loin is one of the most economical cuts of pork available. Purchasing an entire pork loin (7-8 lbs. of pork) can definitely be cut into roasts, chops, cutlets (thin chops), and country-style ribs, and you can definitely do it yourself in your own kitchen.

And purchasing a whole pork loin will make it cheaper by the pound. The biggest hurdle in purchasing an entire pork loin and cutting it up yourself is usually freezer space. And, each cut of pork will need to be wrapped up very well to be protected from freezer burn. Here are the steps for cutting up your own pork loin.

NO, PORK LOIN AND PORK TENDERLOIN ARE NOT THE SAME THING! HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

Important Characteristics of Pork Tenderloin

  • Skinny and long piece of pork
  • Dark red in color
  • Weighs in at only 1 lb.
  • Never has a bone
  • Very tender because it’s the muscle that runs down along the backbone of the pig, getting very little use
  • Other names: pork filet, pork tender
  • Texture is lean and delicately flavored.
  • Best cooked quickly at a high temperature
  • Sometimes you’ll find silver skin on the outside of the pork tenderloin – always trim this off.
  • For optimum enjoyment, don’t over cook it! Cook to 130-135 degrees F. internal temperature, then let rest for 5 minutes, tented with foil
  • Slice pork tenderloin into medallions to serve. It has such beautiful presentation
  • Because pork tenderloin is delicately flavored, it’s delicious served with more strongly flavored sauces, salsas, and chutney

Important Characteristics of Pork Loin

  • A large piece of meat, that is short and stocky in appearance (much more round that a pork tenderloin!)
  • Light pink in color
  • A whole pork loin weighs in around 7-8 lbs. typically and is then cut into roast-size portions that weight 2-4 lbs.
  • Is sold both as a bone-in roast and a boneless roast
  • Other names: center cut pork loin roast, center cut pork roast, pork center loin roast, pork center cut rib roast, pork loin half rib, and pork loin roast center cut. Whew!
  • Tender if cooked properly (low and slow) with a lean texture and mild flavor
  • Best cooked low and slow (searing the exterior really adds lots of extra flavor)
  • Pork loin is also sold a lot during the holidays because when the back bone is removed and the bones are “frenched” (the ribs are trimmed of the meat) it is called a pork rack. These pork racks are tied into a big circle and then called Crown Roast of Pork – fancy!!
  • Pork loin is best sliced across the grain into 3/4-inch slices and served with pan juices or a sauce
Pepper Jelly Glazed Pork Loin on a bed of sliced apples and red onions.
Pink Pork is Perfect! The finished safe internal temperature for pork is now 140-145 degrees F., no longer 160 degrees F. Halleluiah!

More Favorite Recipes to Enjoy –

Printable Pepper Jelly Glazed Pork Loin Roast Recipe

A glazed pepper jelly pork loin nestled in a bed of red onions and sliced apples.

Pepper Jelly Glazed Pork Loin Roast

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Ingredients

  • 1 boneless pork loin roast 4-5 lbs.
  • olive oil for searing the pork roast
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup pepper jelly
  • 1/2 cup apple cider or apple juice
  • 2 apples cored and thinly sliced
  • 1 red onion sliced

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
  • Season the pork loin with salt and pepper, using your fingertips to get the spices into all sides.
  • In a large, deep skillet or Dutch oven over medium high heat, add a good swish of olive oil. When the oil is nicely hot, gently lay the seasoned pork loin roast into the hot oil; sear the roast on all sides until deeply golden brown. Remove the roast to a platter.
  • Add the apple cider to the skillet, whisking and deglazing the pan to bring up all the browned particles from the bottom of the skillet after searing the pork roast; return the roast to the skillet.
  • Place the roast into the preheated oven, uncovered, on the center oven rack; roast for 20 minutes.
  • Remove the pork loin roast from the oven; place the sliced apples and onions around the pork roast. Spread the pepper jelly over the top of the pork roast.
  • Return the pork roast, uncovered, to the oven, reducing the temperature to 350 degrees F. Continue to cook the roast for an additional 35-40 minutes, basting with the apple juice every 10 minutes or so.
  • Cook the pork roast until it reaches 130-135 degrees F. in the center when temped with an instant-read meat thermometer. Be sure not to over cook the pork roast!
  • Remove the roast from the oven and tent with foil. Let the pork roast rest for 10 minutes, allowing it to relax and come up an additional 5-10 degrees in internal temperature to a finished temperature of 140-145 degrees – just perfect for pork roast!
  • To serve, slice the pork roast across the grain into 3/4-inch slices, arranging them on a platter. Top the pork slices with apples and onions; drizzle with pan juices, if desired. Pork can also be served with additional warm pepper jelly, if desired.

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Let’s Get You Cookin’,
Chef Alli

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Chef Alli

Chef Alli is a home-grown Kansas girl on a mission to strengthen families through enabling kitchen confidence, educating the family cook, and encouraging better food relationships. She believes with her whole heart that time spent with our loved ones and our overall quality of life is greatly enhanced by nutritious food made at home with simple, wholesome ingredients. She loves being able to connect and share this passion with others through her website, her social media presence, and her coveted speaking engagements.

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