Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Roast Pork with Spicy Sweet Onion Pan Sauce

A garlic studded pork roast recipe, with a butter based mustard rub, caramelized onions, and a basting sauce made from mango jam with hot pepper jelly.

Roast Pork with Spicy Sweet Onion Pan Sauce

I just love a good pork roast, and this one truly fits. Moist and full of flavor, this has been one of my most favorite ways to cook a pork roast for years, and I just happened to have a pork loin in the freezer.

The use of the mango jam with the hot pepper jelly, intertwined with the caramelized onion, makes for an amazing sweet and spicy pan sauce that marries well to the pork and is just absolutely delightful to the tongue. Don't worry if you don't have mango jam - apricot works, as will peach or even apple! Serve this with some southern style green beans and some roasted potatoes and you have a well balanced, delicious and nutritious meal.

Let's get started!

The first thing we're gonna do is lightly caramelize some onion to draw out the natural sweetness. Heat some olive oil and butter in an oven safe, lidded braising pan or else use a heavy bottomed stainless or cast iron skillet over medium heat, absent having a braiser. You don't want to use a non-stick skillet here. Once the butter has melted and the oil is hot, add the sliced onions. Just cut the ends off of the onion, cut it in half lengthwise, turn and slice.

While the onions are cooking, combine the chicken broth, jam and pepper jelly in a small saucepan and cook over medium low heat until liquified. If you don't keep pepper jelly on hand, you can simply omit it and use more jam. I love using the mango chutney jam that I buy for my fancy chicken salad.

In the meantime, let's get started with studding our pork roast with some slivers of garlic. Start by taking a sharp paring knife and cutting a slit into the roast. I am using a netted pork loin roast this time, but what you're looking for is a pork loin, not a pork tenderloin. While similar, the tenderloin doesn't fit well with braising as it cooks far too quickly. A loin roast is still lean but can take a braise, while not having to cook as long as a pork shoulder or butt, such as with this recipe. A pork loin roast will be much larger than tenderloin, which is longer and thinner in size.

Stick one of the slivers in the slit.

And push it deep into the roast so that it disappears. Repeat this all over the roast with the rest of the garlic.

The onions are just beginning to soften and turn a very light gold color, so we'll keep them going.

The chicken stock with the jam and jelly is ready, so let's set it aside to cool. As you see I used a bit less this time since the roast I'm using is a bit smaller than usual.That's my most favorite measuring cup there too. Great for everybody, but especially "older" eyes.

In a small bowl, combine the butter, mustard, thyme and pepper. You don't want the butter melted, only softened so you can rub it all over the roast.

Mix that together well using a spatula to blend it.

Now the onions are lookin' just about right. Remember we don't want to deeply caramelize them; we only want to just start the release of the sugars.

If you don't have a lidded braising pan that you can transfer to the oven, you'll need to line a baking dish with several layers of aluminum foil and pile the onions in the center of the foil.

Place the roast on top of the onions and use the same spatula to spread the butter mixture all over the top and sides of the roast.

Pour the stock mix all around the bottom of the roast inside the aluminum foil tub and gather the foil up loosely around the roast, leaving the top exposed.

Bake at 350 degrees F, for about 1-1/2 hours, or roughly 20 minutes per pound, until the internal temperature on an instant read thermometer reaches about 160 degrees, basting the roast with the liquid and turning the pan occasionally if you aren't using a lidded braiser. Remove, loosely tent with foil and let rest for 15 minutes.

Using a slotted spoon, transfer the onion to a skillet. Removing them helps to retain the integrity of the shape, although you can also just leave them in the pan, and they will melt in. Use a gravy separator or skim any fat from the top of the sauce and place braiser back on the stovetop or place the sauce into a skillet with the onion. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cook until sauce has reduced. Slice roast and serve with a scoop of the onion and drizzle of the pan sauce over the top, or serve the sauce on the side at the table.

For more of my favorite pork roast recipes, visit my page on Pinterest!

If you make this or any of my recipes, I'd love to see your results! Just snap a photo and hashtag it #DeepSouthDish on social media or tag me @deepsouthdish on Instagram!


Recipe: Roast Pork with Spicy Sweet Onion Pan Sauce

©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish
Prep time: 20 min |Cook time: 1 hour 40 min | Yield: About 6 to 8 servings

  • 1 (4 to 4.5 pound) boneless pork loin roast (not tenderloin)
  • 2 to 3 cloves of garlic, slivered
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter
  • 1 medium onion, halved and sliced
  • 2 cups of chicken stock or broth
  • 2 tablespoons of mango, apricot, peach or other jam
  • 1 tablespoon hot pepper jelly
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) of unsalted butter, softened to room temp
  • 2 tablespoons of Creole or Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon of dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon of freshly cracked black pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Cut deep slits into roast, inserting the slivers of garlic. Set aside. Heat the 2 tablespoons of oil and butter together in a lidded braising pan over medium heat and add the onion. Cook until the onion just begins to caramelize. Add chicken stock, jam and pepper jelly and cook until melted and well incorporated.

In a small bowl, stir together the 1/2 stick of butter with the mustard, thyme, and pepper and smear all over the pork. Place roast into pan and cover. Bake for about 1-1/2 hours, or roughly 20 minutes per pound, until the internal temperature on an instant read thermometer reaches about 145 degrees F. Remove roast and loosely tent with foil; let rest for 15 minutes.

While the roast is resting, place braising pan with juices on burner. Skim off accumulated fat and discard. Bring remaining sauce to a boil, reduce to medium and cook until sauce is reduced by half. Serve with pan sauce.

Cook's Notes: If you don't have a braising pan, prep sauce in a skillet and use a baking pan, double lined with aluminum foil to form a tub. Add onions to foil, add sauce and top with roast, pulling foil loosely closed for basting. Baste several times during the cooking process.


Requires Adobe Reader - download it free!
©Deep South Dish
Are you on Facebook? If you haven't already, come and join the party! We have a lot of fun & there's always room for one more at the table.
Check These Recipes Out Too Y'all!

Pork Schnitzel
Sage Pork Roast with Apple Pan Sauce
Coca Cola Brown Sugar and Mustard Glazed Ham

Posted by on January 28, 2009
Images and Full Post Content including Recipe ©Deep South Dish. Recipes are offered for your own personal use only and while pinning and sharing links is welcomed and encouraged, please do not copy and paste to repost or republish elsewhere such as other Facebook pages, blogs, websites, or forums without explicit prior permission. All rights reserved.

Material Disclosure: Unless otherwise noted, you should assume that post links to the providers of goods and services mentioned, establish an affiliate relationship and/or other material connection and that I may be compensated when you purchase from a provider. You are never under any obligation to purchase anything when using my recipes and you should always perform due diligence before buying goods or services from anyone via the Internet or offline.

Bookmark and Share


  1. I am getting hungry this looks great Thanks for sharing. Can't wait.

  2. Hi! Thanks for stopping by and commenting. It really is delicious and I think you'll love it!! Please let me know what you think if you happen to stop back by again.

  3. This looks really good. My husband really likes pork fixed any way.
    I wanted to tell you I like the new look of your blog. Did you have to go to a new template to get the three columns? It really looks good but it did before too.

  4. I do too but this is one of my most used - I really like the mustard rub and then the use of the jam & jelly. The sauce is awesome! We are kind big on the sauces down here - I think that's a bit of Creole and French influences.

    You're so sweet ... thanks - I used some Christmas money that my mother in law gave me and had somebody make the changes and pretty it up a bit for me - I can write some code but it's been years and things have changed quite a bit since I played around with that and I was afraid to venture into foolin' with it myself for fear of losing the recipes I have in here already!

  5. This seriously looks so amazing! We cannot wait to try it!

  6. Is there any other jam that you can use other than mango...I can't seem to find mango jam in the stores in my area...

  7. LaShaun, go with apricot - that works very well with pork and should be easy to find!

  8. O.K, thanks Mary and I actually had that in my pantry alrready...I am cooking a big Sunday dinner for family and friends and I have tried some of your recipes before and they turned out pretty good...So I am actually using four of your recipes for Sunday...I am preparing your braised brisket, the balsamic roasted chicken (which I have tried before and it was delicious), this roast pork and your holiday macaroni and cheese...Thanks for all of your wonderful recipes:)

  9. Glad to help! What a fantastic dinner too - very lucky recipients at that dinner table. Have a great day!

  10. Mary.....happy to say that this transplanted southern girl has ressurected the traditional Sunday Dinner....this roast is on the menu tomorrow for my family. Serving it with mashed potatoes, butter beans and creamed corn. Can't wait to try it!!!

  11. Hi Mary! I made this yesterday for a not-so traditional Christmas dinner. My hubby and I were burnt out on turkey, dressing and ham after Thanksgiving so I thought this would be a nice change. And oh my it was perfect!! I used a big boneless pork loin and apricot jam. All of us will be eating leftovers for a week! The gravy was so flavorful and really made the dish. Served it with your Special occasion Mac n cheese and your asparagus bundles. SO scrumptious! Thanks for another hit :)

    1. I love this pork roast & I'm so glad that you enjoyed it too Sara! Thanks so much for taking the time to come back and let me know & Happy New Year!

  12. Mine had good flavor, but came out tough. :/ Thank you for sharing your recipes however.

    1. Oh gosh, no - shouldn't be tough at all! It should be very tender. Pork is bred so lean these days that I highly recommend using a meat thermometer and checking it about 10 minutes toward the end, especially since oven thermostats can often be off from what they read. I'm sure it may have cooked just a tad too long because that's what pork will do for sure these days.

  13. Hello! I love your recipes and wondered if I can make this one with my bone in pork roast? Should the bone be up or down?

    1. So sorry I missed this yesterday afternoon - I was busy with grandbabies!! For bone-in, you'll want the fat side up so that the drippings cook down over the roast.

  14. I've got two bone in pork roasts all ready to go with garlic inserted and glaze all over, my question is: do these go in bone down or bone up? I'm not sure if the glaze will car alive properly if I put it in bone up. Your suggestion? Thanks!

    1. Gosh, I bet that was delicious Crystal! The fat side should be cooked up as noted above.

    2. It was divine and everyone loved it! Thanks so much for the detalled recipes, the cook ahead tips are so helpful!

  15. Could this be prepared in a dutch oven instead of a baking dish lined with foil?

    1. Hi Denise! You could use it as the baking vessel instead of the pan, but I'd still prepare the "hot tub" of aluminum foil for it to sit in, loosely gather it around the roast, and leave the top open slightly.

  16. Wow, what an amazing pork roast; I made it this evening. I didn't want to go to the grocery store to get mango or apricot jam, so I substituted seedless blackberry and used habanero pepper jelly. All I can say is it turned out fantastic, and the onion/jelly sauce put it over the top.

    1. Wow, I bet that blackberry/habanero combo was delicious. So glad you enjoyed the roast!


Thanks for taking the time to comment - I love hearing from readers and I read every single comment and try to respond to them right here on the site, so stop back by!

From time to time, anonymous restrictions and/or comment moderation may be activated due to comment spam. I also reserve the right to edit, delete or otherwise exercise total editorial discretion over any comments left on this blog. If your comment serves only to be snarky, mean-spirited or argumentative, it will be deleted. Please mind your manners.

Related Posts with Thumbnails