Clean Crock-Pot Pork Tenderloin
“I don’t have time to eat well.” “Eating clean is way too complicated.” “It’s so much easier to head to the drive-through.”
Clean eating doesn’t have to be time consuming, complicated, or intimidating. Case in point: my crock-pot pork tenderloin. The actual prep time is very minimal and you’re free to go about your day while the slow-cooker does all the work for you!
- 1 large pork tenderloin, trimmed of visible fat and broken down into chunks
- 1/2 Tbsp garlic powder
- 1/2 Tbsp cumin
- 1 Tbsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 1/2 tsp oregano
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- salt&pepper to taste
- cooking spray (go for an olive oil or coconut oil)
- 2 c water (or low-sodium chicken stock)
Blend the seasonings (garlic powder through pepper) in a small dish. Rub the pork with the prepared seasoning mixture.
Brown the pork in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
Note that the goal here is not to cook the meat all the way through, just to sear the outside. Do not crowd your pan; work in batches if necessary. Once all the meat has been browned, transfer to the bottom of your slow-cooker and then cover with water (or stock). Cook on high for about 2 hours, then reduce the heat to low for an additional 3 to 4 hours.
Now you could stop there…and believe me, with the smell emanating from your kitchen, it’s going to take some serious willpower not to just dig right in. But with a little extra effort you can mimic traditional southern pulled pork barbeque.
Preheat your oven to 425, or for the brave and impatient preheat the broiler.
Pour off the cooking liquid through a sieve, reserving about a cup.
“Fork” your pork!
After “forking” your meat should look like traditional pork barbeque. Pile into a foil lined baking sheet and then cover with your reserved cooking liquid.
Roast the pork, flipping every five to ten minutes (more frequently if you opt to use the broiler). Continue until the liquid evaporates and the edges of the pork become crispy. Set a timer and keep an eye out so you don’t burn the meat!
Once it’s finished, just add some fibrous veggies (yay broccoli!) and a quality fat source (avocado, anyone?) for a complete clean meal!
If you’re feeling really ambitious you can make your own vinegar based barbeque sauce:
- 2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar (go for the good stuff, raw and unfiltered)
- 2 Tbsp water
- 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (more or less depending on how spicy you prefer)
- salt and pepper to taste
- Stevia extract (or Splenda or a bit of honey can be substituted if you prefer)
Whisk ingredients together until well mixed. Serve over your pork! If you wind up microwaving leftover pork, the extra liquid will help to keep it from drying out.
If you don’t bother with the second step of the process, this meal will take you no more than 10 minutes of prep time.