Have you avoided pork tenderloin because it usually turns out dry and rubbery? You aren’t alone. It can be tricky. But this six-minute Paleo instant pot balsamic pork will change your mind and convert you to a fan in no time.
The pork tenderloin of my past was always overcooked, so I thought I didn’t like it. I only ate it when served at someone’s house and even then I took only a small portion and doused in a sauce to make it palatable, of course. I never ordered it at a restaurant, and never bought it because I imagined it must be difficult to get right.
My first positive experience with tenderloin was a slow cooker recipe I tried a few years ago. I still wasn’t convinced I could prepare one to slice though because this recipe required shredding, which can make even dry meats work in certain instances (more sauce, please).
The Instant PoT is a game changer
I don’t use the slow cooker anymore now that I have an Instant Pot, but I certainly did not think pressure cooking would be a good method because it cooks so fast and tenderloin is so lean.
I kept seeing recipes on Pinterest and figured I’d have to give it a shot at some point. I was just freaked out by the drastic cooking time discrepancies: they ranged from 7 minutes to 45! Six minutes didn’t seem nearly long enough, and 45 minutes is insane- don’t do that to your tenderloin, please.
I finally found one that seemed easy enough to alter to fit my needs and used ingredients I had on hand.
This easy six-minute Paleo instant pot balsamic pork tenderloin is one of those rare recipes that is effortless but will impress even the most particular of guests.
My recipe for six-minute Paleo instant pot balsamic pork tenderloin is inspired by another I found but I changed ingredients and reduced the cooking time to 6 minutes based on my end results.
If you cook lots of protein as I do, you should invest in a meat thermometer if you haven’t already. It really is the most reliable way to check for appropriate doneness and make sure your meats are reaching the proper temperatures for safety as well. I use one just like the one I linked to above. It has a feature that, when using the oven or grill, you can set the desired end temperature and the timer will beep when that temperature is reached. It’s kind of amazing.
For six-minute Paleo instant pot balsamic pork tenderloin, you want your tenderloin to be at 137 degrees when you remove it from the instant pot and 145 degrees after it rests for ten minutes while you reduce your sauce. Perfect.
Changes I made to convert the original recipe to my six-minute Paleo instant pot pork tenderloin recipe:
One of the ingredient changes I made was to swap cornstarch with tapioca flour/starch you can also use arrowroot!. If you have not used it as a thickening agent before you should know that the consistency will look a little different, but the taste will not be impacted at all. The tapioca flour adds a more gelatinous set to the sauce.
I also swapped brown sugar for organic honey and canola oil to coconut. I use flavorless and odorless coconut oil when I don’t want to have a coconut flavor in my food, but still want the health benefits of coconut oil.
If you are questioning whether Worcestershire sauce is Paleo or not, then we think the same way. I researched it before I added this to my weekly meal plan, and was happy with the answers I found. If you’d like to check it out for yourself, click here.
- 2 1/2 pounds pork tenderloin mine came in a pack of two
- 2 Tablespoons coconut oil
- 1 cup chicken stock water will work if you don't have stock
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 2 cloves minced garlic or 2 teaspoons paste
- 1 Tablespoon worcester sauce
- 1 Tablespoon mustard I used Grey Poupon because I had it in my fridge
- 1 teaspoon ground sage
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 3/4 Tablespoon tapioca starch
- 1/4 cup water mix with stach
Turn your Instant pot to saute, and add coconut oil. Once oil is heated through, brown the tenderloins.
Add remaining ingredients (except tapioca starch and water). Set on manual for 6 minutes.
Quick release the pressure when the timer rings. Check that pork tenderloin reaches 137F with a meat thermometer. Remove from pot and cover with aluminum foil to allow meat to rest.
Turn Instant Pot to saute. Add tapioca starch to water and mix thoroughly. Add to Instant Pot and bring to a boil. Then turn off and on to maintain a simmer, until liquid has decreased by 50%. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper as needed.
Once the sauce is ready, cut the pork into medallions. Pour sauce over pork tenderloin and serve.
I’d love to hear how you like this recipe! I hope you enjoy it!
Need help meal planning? I’ve got you covered here.