I still can’t get over how wonderful this Praline Crusted Pork Loin turned out! To be honest, I didn’t have time to plan out our holiday meal and was scrambling on Christmas morning to figure it all out! I spent almost an hour on Pinterest looking at recipes and nothing really grabbed my attention. The majority of what I found called for dijon mustard. While I like mustard, nearly everyone else in my family does not, so I was hesitant to use any. Every time I make a pork roast, it seems I end up with garlic and rosemary and while its delicious, I wanted something a little different for our Christmas dinner. I noticed a container of some praline pecans on the counter that my guests had been snacking on the night before and I instantly knew this was going to be good!
Praline Crusted Pork Loin
- 5lb Pork Loin Roast
- Salt & Pepper, To Taste
- 1/2 Cup Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ Sauce
- 1 TBSP Dijon Mustard
- 2 Cups Praline Pecans, Crushed
- 1 TBSP Dried Minced Onion
- 1 TSP Dried Parsley
- 1/2-1 TSP Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a large roasting pan with cooking spray. I prefer to use a rack in my pan so the bottom of the roast isn’t soggy, but this is optional.
Remove roast from wrapping and pat dry with paper towels. Add salt and pepper to outside of the roast set aside.
In a large ziplock bag, add your praline pecans and seal. Crush them with either a rolling pin or the smooth side of a meat tenderizer, until evenly crushed. You will want them to be somewhat uniform in size, but do not pulverize into crumbs! Add in the dried onion, parsley and red pepper. Mix together in the bag, then set aside.
In a small bowl, combine the BBQ sauce and mustard. Generously cover the roast with this mixture. This is used to adhere the crust to the roast. Once completely covered, pecan mixture around the entire roast, then place on rack(or just in the pan). Spoon remaining mixture on top of the roast.
Bake 20 minutes per pound of meat at 350 degrees. Roast is done when internal temperature reaches 145 degrees. My roast took about 95 minutes in total. Be sure to allow meat to rest at least 10 minutes before cutting or all the juices will run out and roast will be dry!
I was so impressed with how moist, juicy and tender the roast was. We talked about it long after dinner was over! The combination of the pralines and the red pepper offered a nice savory and sweet flavor. I served it with garlic mashed potatoes, gravy, steamed green beans and hot baked rolls. There was plenty of leftovers and we couldn’t wait to have more the next day!
Speaking of the next day, I tried something a little different with the leftover roast that was an even bigger hit! We had French Dip Sandwiches! Can you believe I NEVER had a French Dip before? Seriously, never! I’m not sure what made me think to do this, but I’m so glad I did!
- Thinly sliced leftover roast
- 3 Cups *Au Jus
- French Rolls (I used Torta Rolls)
- Grilled Onions
- Gorgonzola (optional)
I had no idea how to make Au Jus and thought that I would just buy a packet, but when I was at the store, they were all out. I looked up recipes for Au Jus and I mostly found that it was beef broth, drippings from the roast and flour. I didn’t have any drippings at this point so I improvised and came up with this:
Quick Au Jus
- 3 Cups Beef Stock
- 1 Heaping TBSP Beef Flavored Better Than Bouillon
Add ingredients to a medium saucepan and heat thoroughly.
Then if you would like onions on your sandwiches, slice 1-2 onions, depending on how many people you are feeding in a large, oiled skillet. Cook until golden.
In the mean time, toast or grill your rolls. You can do this in the oven, toaster oven, on a griddle, BBQ grill or George Foreman Grill. (I use a Foreman Grill) *For added flavor, rub a peeled and cut garlic clove on your toasted bread. YUM!
Once your Au Jus is hot, add your very thinly sliced roast to the liquid. This will heat the meat without overcooking it or drying it out. Construct your sandwiches with meat and onions. You can also add the gorgonzola or even sautéed mushrooms if you like. Strain the Au Jus and pour into small ramekins for dipping. Enjoy! The meat was still tender and moist. The sandwiches were amazing and we had the remaining leftovers for lunch the next day!