Easy crock pot pork tenderloin takes less than 10 minutes to prepare and slow cooks to perfection in 4 hours. Made with wholesome ingredients and no onion soup mix packet, this melt in your pork comes with its own gravy.
Why you should make Crock Pot Pork Tenderloin
If you like pork tenderloin, onions, garlic and red wine, then you will love this pork! Why? Here are a few reasons:
- It takes less than 10 minutes to prepare and is super fantastically easy thanks to the slow cooker.
- Not only do you get a lean but amazingly flavorful slice of pork that practically melts in your melt, it also makes this to-die-for gravy that is literally made for mashed potatoes.
It is hands-down the most popular recipe on my blog and has been since I originally posted it in 2013. I’ve also made it countless times (namely so I could test out different versions and alternatives to report back to you!)
Why this recipe works
The red wine, dried onions, and garlic make a very flavorful sauce that pairs really well with the pork tenderloin, so you have your own gravy already made when you cook this.
The cornstarch in the spice mixture helps to thicken the gravy a wee bit, but you can also add a little more at the end to thicken it if desired.
Cost of Crock Pot Pork Tenderloin:
This meal is pretty inexpensive. One pound of pork tenderloin is around $6, frozen green beans were on sale for 89 cents at my neighborhood grocery store at the time, and my Instant Pot mashed potatoes were leftovers.
So I spent less than $10 for the entire meal pictured. Score!
How to make slow cooker pork tenderloin
It’s quite simple to make…
- Place the pork in your slow cooker.
- Add in liquid.
- Top with garlic.
- Stir together the spices, and sprinkle them over the pork.
- Cook and enjoy!
Tips for cooking Crock Pot Pork Tenderloin
What I love is that you do not have to sear the meat before cooking, and you don’t have to cut off fat from the pork tenderloin.
Consider slicing off the silver skin which is a tough, shiny membrane of connective tissue. When you don’t remove it, you’ll have a few slightly unpleasant bites of tough, chewy meat because silver skin does not break down.
I like to use kitchen scissors to remove the silver skin because I find it easier than using a knife. But you can easily slice it off using a knife.
About the sauce this Crock Pot Pork Tenderloin has
Because the sauce is made up of wine and water with only a little cornstarch sprinkled over the pork, you will find that it is a rather thin gravy. I personally like this.
However, if you’d like a thicker gravy, you can whisk together 1 tablespoon of cornstarch and 1/3 cup cold water until no lumps remain. When the pork is done, remove from slow cooker and pour the gravy into a small-medium saucepan. Heat over medium-low and stir the cornstarch mixture into the hot liquid. Whisk until combined and it slightly thickens. Then serve this over the pork tenderloin.
The best ingredients for this Crock Pot Pork Tenderloin recipe
Wine: Be sure you pick a really tasty red wine to use. You want to use a wine that you would actually drink because you will taste the wine in this dish. I have tested the recipe using Pinot Noir, Syrah, and Merlot. All were tasty in my opinion.
Pork: I use a pork tenderloin that is between 1 and 2 pounds. You can cook 2 (one pound) tenderloins as well. See below for tips to double the recipe since the ingredient measurements are listed for a 1 to 1.25-pound pork tenderloin.
Garlic: You’ll use fresh garlic as well as dried garlic powder, so this has a lot of garlic flavor which I love. If you are out of fresh garlic, there is an option to only use garlic powder: use 1/2 teaspoon in place of the 3 cloves garlic.
Make Ahead Tips
There isn’t much prep time, but if you want to do anything ahead of time, you can stir together the spices and chop the garlic up to 24 hours in advance.
You can also put everything into the slow cooker and refrigerate until ready to cook. However, be sure that you take the slow cooker out of the refrigerator at least 60 minutes before cooking, so the slow cooker doesn’t go from cold to hold too soon. This could cause the slow cooker to crack.
Variations for the Pork Tenderloin in the Crock Pot:
Wine: Make sure that when you make this you use a wine that you enjoy drinking because you will absolutely taste the wine.
However, I tested this recipe using chicken broth and found it to be not nearly as flavorful as the pork made with the wine. So I highly suggest adding a little extra salt and seasoning when cooking the pork.
Something else to note is that when I tested with chicken broth, I strained the gravy to remove any fat rendered from slow cooking. For whatever reason, when I cook this in wine, it doesn’t need to be strained.
Fresh Garlic: If you do not have fresh garlic, you can substitute it with additional garlic powder. Use 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder in place of the garlic cloves.
Is pork tenderloin healthy?
Pork tenderloin is a lean cut of pork and typically has very little visible fat, so it also makes it an easy choice when you’re preparing this meal since you don’t have to bother cutting off any fat.
Plus, pork tenderloin is a great change from your typical chicken dish. I feel like people always eat chicken because it’s familiar and lean and whatever. But pork is so underrated and it’s nutritious.
According to the Pork Checkoff website, pork is an excellent source (more than 20% of the recommended daily value) of thiamin, niacin, riboflavin, vitamin B-6, phosphorus and protein. It’s a good source (meaning it has between 10% and 19% of the recommended daily value) of riboflavin, zinc and potassium.
Is this crockpot pork tenderloin healthy?
While everyone has different definitions of healthy, this crock pot pork tenderloin is quite nutritious. As you see above, pork tenderloin is a great protein choice with many vitamins and minerals your body needs.
Because you are not using an onion soup mix packet (like similar recipes recommend), you are able to control the amount of sodium and other ingredients that goes in this recipe. Compared to the recipe I based this off of, this has only 400mg sodium while the other has 918mg.
When paired with some carbohydrates and a veggie or two, you get a hearty, satisfying and healthy meal your whole family will love and you will love feeding it to them!
Tips for buying pork tenderloin:
- Make sure you buy the pork that has no added solutions or marinade.
- The marinade or solution won’t add anything to your meal other than a lot of sodium and flavorings that might negatively affect this recipe. Not to mention that this pork totally beats any pre-marinated pork you’d buy at the store.
- This recipe is for pork tenderloin, but other people have had success with using pork loin. Pork loin is usually thicker, so you will need to cook it for a longer period of time. Be sure to use a thermometer and cook it to an internal temperature of at least 145°F.
- If you’re worried about putting pork tenderloin in the slow-cooker because you think it might dry out, don’t be! It is seriously falling apart, and I could hardly slice it without it shredding. You definitely do not need a knife for this meal! And all that gravy in the slow cooker goes beautifully served over the pork.
After cooking, transfer to an airtight container and keep in the fridge for up to 5 days. You can also freeze this in an airtight container for up to one month. I like the freeze it sliced in single sized containers, so I can defrost only what I need.
To reheat from frozen, add to a microwave safe bowl and heat at 50% power in 90 second intervals until defrosted and warmed through.
To reheat from the fridge, add to a microwave safe bowl and heat at 75% power at 60 second intervals until warmed through.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you double this Crock Pot Pork Tenderloin recipe?
If you want to double this recipe, you can double all the ingredients except the liquid and onions. I found that it was too much onion when I doubled all the ingredients.
To double the recipe, double all the ingredients except the wine, water, dried minced onion and onion powder. Use only 1 cup water, 1 cup wine, 2 tablespoons onion flakes, 1/4 teaspoon onion powder.
As for time, you can add about 2 hours on LOW. Since slow cookers can vary, I recommend using a meat thermometer to check to see if the internal temperature of 145°F.
Can you use pork loin in this recipe?
Technically, you can make this slow cooker pork tenderloin recipe using pork loin, but I have only tested it using pork tenderloin. A pork loin is usually larger, so be sure to look for a 1-2 pound pork loin if you use it in this recipe.
What to serve with Crock Pot Pork Tenderloin:
Basically, I have a big serving of veggies + a carbohydrate for my main meals. In this case, the crock pot pork tenderloin has a lovely gravy that is perfect served with mashed potatoes to soak up the goodness.
This is the most popular recipe on my blog and for good reason. It is simple and delicious. 10/10 would recommend!
MORE MAIN COURSE SLOW COOKER RECIPES:
- Beef Carnitas Tacos
- Slow Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala
- Vegetarian Lasagna
- Slow Cooker Maple Mustard Pork Chops and Onions
- Chicken, Sweet potatoes and Peppers
Crock Pot Pork Tenderloin
- 1 pound pork tenderloin
- 3/4 cup water
- 3/4 cup red wine or broth (see notes)
- 4 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic about 3 cloves
- 2 tablespoons dried minced onion or dried chopped onion or onion flakes
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon onion powder or additional dried minced onion
- 1/4 teaspoon paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- dash turmeric optional
- dash nutmeg optional
- Put the pork tenderloin in the bottom of a slow cooker.
- Pour in water, wine, and Worcestershire sauce into the slow cooker.
- Top the pork with minced garlic.
- In a small bowl, stir together remaining ingredients. Sprinkle mixture over pork.
- Cover slow cooker and cook on LOW for 4-5 hours (if possible, flip pork over halfway through cooking) or HIGH for 2-3 hours.
- Serve pork with the gravy in the slow cooker.
Use only 1 cup water, 1 cup wine, 2 tablespoons onion flakes, 1/4 teaspoon onion powder. *Be sure to use a wine you enjoy drinking! *You can use less wine if you want or skip the wine altogether. Unsalted chicken or beef broth is ok, but you will likely need to add more spices. Make sure the liquid totals 1 1/2 cups.
What to use in this recipe:
This recipe was originally published on January 15th, 2013. Recipe was re-tested, and text was updated.
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