New York Times best-selling author, slow cooking expert, mom of three
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A Year of Slow Cooking

Monday, February 2, 2009

Asian Peanut Butter Pork CrockPot Recipe


Happy February! I am slowly emerging from my piles of paper, and I can see the light at the end of the recipe-editing tunnel. Thank you for hanging in there. Something weird happens when you are only reading your own writing for weeks on end---your self-esteem goes on a crazy roller coaster ride. One minute you're high-fiving yourself, and in the next you think you completely suck. Over and over and over again. It's rather exhausting.

But! This peanut butter pork tenderloin doesn't suck. So I've been told. It came from an anonymous commenter back in the original pork post. Anon shares that she makes it every month for an ongoing potluck dinner and if she doesn't make it her friends get mad---it's that good.

The Ingredients
serves 4

1.5-2lbs pork tenderloin
1 onion, sliced in rings
1/4 cup soy sauce (I used La Choy; it's gluten free)
1/4 cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
3 tablespoons water
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 cup creamy natural peanut butter
2 tablespoons chopped peanuts (garnish; optional)
1 lime, cut in wedges (garnish; optional)


The Directions.

Use a 4-6 quart crockpot. Put onion slices into the bottom of your crockpot. Put the pork on top. Add brown sugar, soy sauce, vinegar, water, garlic, and peanut butter. No need to stir--the peanut butter needs to melt before you can do so. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours, or on high for 4-6. The pork will be more tender the longer you cook it. 1 hour before serving, flip the meat over in the crockpot to allow the other side to soak up the peanutbuttery goodness. Garnish with chopped peanuts, and serve with lime wedges. The lime juice mixed with the peanut butter is delicious.

The Verdict.

I snuck a taste. sshhh. Don't tell my mom. It was good; quite tender. I made some more of the sauce to spoon over some already-cooked chicken I had in the fridge---it was fantastic. I packed the meat up for my friend Stephanie and family. When I asked what she thought, she told me that she had a problem. Her husband, Bill, was home from work and ate it all. She and the kids didn't get to try any of it. I'm thinking that means he liked it.
Thank you anon, for sharing your dish with us!

84 comments:

T said...

It sounds just wonderful.
And, I love seeing these posts!! They're always fun to read.

The Wilsons said...

This looks yummy! Will be trying this soon!

I've been meaning to point you towards some Cafe Rio (a restaurant popular in Utah and other western states) pork. It is awesome and very addictive. You have to make the pork and also the creamy tomatillo dressing. The chicken is also very good! My cousin has all the awesome recipes on her blog: http://opp-family.blogspot.com/2007/08/cafe-rio.html

Anonymous said...

Would this work equally well with chicken instead of pork?

Crockpot Lady said...

thanks, T!
ooh, thanks, for that link, Wilsons--I'll check it out.
Anon, yes. I think it would be great on chicken. I'd go for boneless, skinless thighs, if I were to do it.

xox
steph

Heather said...

My hubby has been wanting to do something with a pork tenderloin and I've just never found anything good. This looks yummy.

Great to see you around bloggy world again!

Stephanie said...

I just found your blog recently and love it! This sounds great! I can't wait to try it... I think I even have all the ingredients already which is a treat too!

HiHoOhio said...

I like this one.
Next Blog title should be a "YEAR OF CRACK POTS" COMMENTS FROM MY CROCKPOT BLOG!"

Just a thought....still waitng for that book!

April said...

this looks fantastic!!! i think it will be something i try this weekend :-) ... or maybe sooner!

emily82 said...

This sounds really yummy! I found a recipe for Thai chicken that used peanut butter too and it's really easy. You just put about a lb or so of chicken thighs (or any chicken..I've even used boneless, skinless breasts) at the bottom of the crock pot w/a cup of salsa and a cup of peanut butter. Serve over rice.

biz319 said...

What an interesting combo! Never would have thought of peanut butter!

Joan said...

So, the pork tenderloin didn't get dried out and tough? Such lean cuts of meat generally don't fair well in the crockpot since they don't have all the connective tissue and fat to break down. Perhaps I'll have to try it!
I have made the Thai chix recipe referenced (salsa and PB) and it is a favorite!

Mo Diva said...

Steph, you amaze me. That is all.

aelfie said...

Oh I have got to try this when I've got some spare money to buy a pork loin.

We don't eat a lot of pork 'cause I have yet to find a place where I can buy a part share in a free range pig...but we love it!

Sandee said...

Do you think this would work using white wine instead of the white wine vinegar? After all I have some "cheap white wine" on hand from when I made a turkey breast!

This looks really good. I have made a similar thing with chicken and it also had a bit of red pepper flakes in it.

Crockpot Lady said...

Hi Joan, I don't have that experience with lean meat. I use lean meat pretty much all the time, because I have a weird fat phobia. If you are finding that your meat is drying out, you are probably using too big of a crockpot. If you only have a big guy, try putting a smaller oven-safe dish inside of your crock to create a smaller cooking vessel, or put a layer of foil right down near the food to create a lid-within-a-lid. There is no need to buy/eat fatty meat, imo.

Hi Sandee, sure! There isn't much of the vinegar in there, and I think the white wine would provide a nice flavor.

xoxo
steph

Jenna B said...

Thank you so much for your blog! I've never really cooked much before since I work all day, but now I have so many recipes to choose from because of your blog. My husband is much happier to not be eating Spaggetios for dinner!

pajama mom said...

i read the recipe this morning and made it right away. i had the pork, but nothing exciting to do with it...

i've already had one helping and i'm thinking of eating some more!

and i did use white wine (i didn't have the white wine vinegar) and it tastes yummy.

i made some noodles to go with, they soaked up some of the sauce. and my husband will probably put some hot pepper flakes on his.

great recipe! thanks!

Amanda @ Faith, Food and Family said...

I have enjoyed your blog for several months. I have even recommended it to friends! This recipe sounds really interesting. If it's that good, I just may have to try it! Thanks!
God bless,
Amanda

sandeestarlite said...

You are a mind reader! I was just thinking pork tenderloin for tomorrow. I miss your daily emails - can't wait for the cookbook.

Debbi said...

I'll be making this later in the week. I'll have to use chicken though as I have an entire freezer full of chicken. Thanks again!!

Leys said...

I just found your blog and I've got to tell you that I love the honesty of your labeled Flops. I'm a crock potter at heart and am SO excited to browse your year (and hopefully forthcoming year!) of crockpotting.
LOVE your humor too! :o)

Tiffani said...

Perfect! I needed something new to try this week and have lots of pork loin (hopefully that will work almost as well as tenderloin)in the freezer. We have some Thai chicken recipes with peanut butter that we love, and this sounds like it will be a nice addition to the repertoire!

MommyAmy said...

Oh that sounds wonderful! But then again, I pretty much love peanut butter on ANYTHING! My Hubs on the other hand... hates it. /CRY!!!

elizabeth said...

I gave my husband the choice of this or the apricot/orange pork. he went with the apricot/orange. I cooked it overnight last night so we will have it for dinner tonight - it smelled amazing this morning, can't wait to try it tonight. I really want to try this one too, very much like a chicken recipe I do occasionally - next time for sure.

The Bossy Yankee said...

I am making this today. It looked so yummy I knew I had to give it a try. I will let you know how it turned out.

Twisted Cinderella said...

Hmmm . . . that sounds yummy!!

amy said...

This recipe is in the crock pot right now, and it smells DIVINE! I can't wait to eat it tonight :)

Anonymous said...

I made this yesterday, except with some pork chops that I had in the freezer instead of the tenderloin. I shredded the pork into the sauce once it was done. Personally, I wanted a little more of the sour from the vinegar. Nevertheless, it smelled wonderful and the three of us ate with gusto served over rice noodles and with Asian cole slaw. Another keeper!

Lark said...

Just tasted this and it's fall-down-crying delicious!!! I'm going to use the immersion blender in the liquid/onions in the crock.

Breezy said...

mmmmmmm Made this today. It's a hit. I would just add salt and pepper.

leedof3 said...

I made this for my family and my mom and dad- no lime though, didn't have it. YUMMMMM! Will put this on our rotation. Thanks! Laura

tiggerr said...

I can't eat sugar, you use a lot of sugar in your recipes.
Any ideas?

Crockpot Lady said...

Hi Tigerr, the sugar is to balance out the salt and tang of the soy sauce. I am certain that you can use honey or a natural or synthetic substitute. For honey, I'd use the same amount, but I don't know the proper ratio for a substitute.
if you happen to have a no-sugar teriyaki in the house, you can use that instead of the soy and sugar.

xoxo
steph

Julia O'C said...

You're back! You're back!!! YAY!

Angela's Kitchen said...

I made this with boneless pork chops a couple of night ago. I only had to stir the peanut butter around a bit after it melted and never had to flip the meat as the liquid just covered the chops. Perfect! Thought you would like to know. It worked out great!

My family loved it, too, so I am adding it to our freezer/slow cooker rotation. As chops are on sale for us right now I am also going to dump all the ingredients in a bag with the chops to make an easy freezer meal that I can dump in the crock when I need it. I'll also be making a couple of bags with boneless skinless chicken thighs instead of the pork. Thank you!

haunish said...

am cooking this right now with chicken breast haleves..found your blog jus after christams when i was given a crockpot for christmas and complained I had no recipes...I have made lots of yours and all are divine, cant wait to try this one as well.

BranFlakes said...

We tried it and didn't like it much. The sauce was VERY think and the peanut butter was overwhelming. I followed your directions to a T, so I don't know what happened. I was really sad because it sounded so good and all your other recipes I've tried have been fantastic.

Anonymous said...

Hi, just tried this recipe today with tofu instead of pork and it's lovely. Unfortunately when I first tasted it, it was good but seemed to be missing something minor - I'd forgotten the vinegar. The addition of the lime juice probably would have been fine but I stirred some vinegar in anyway and turned it back on for an hour. Such a simple recipe and yet a good complex taste. I'm going to have with rice and some stir-fried cabbage tonight. Thanks for the easy tasty recipe - it converted to tofu very well.

dana gwen said...

i tried this on beef the other night because it's all i had. everybody loved it. i think it would be great on chicken too.

Amy O' said...

It's in my crockpot right now - just about 6 hours - and the sauce is yummy, the pork is falling apart. I did add about 2 tablespoons of sweet chili sauce at the beginning (love that stuff) and some additional soy sauce when I flipped the pork. I came back to the comments to see what people had been serving it with - looks like noodles and a quick veggie stir fry are in order. Thanks! I just discovered your site and I love it!

Colorado Sunflower said...

I omitted the peanut butter and peanuts, and changed the lime to liquid lemon since I had no limes on-hand (but thankfully, had the rest of the ingredients! I received this at just the right time).

This recipe is a HUGE hit, and I've got picky eaters. My husband took a leftover serving to work today and made a pulled-pork sandwich from it and he said he got a lot of inquiries as to what his lunch was when the aroma wafted around the office! He's asking for this again for supper tonight (it makes dollar-stretching servings), and it'll be his third time in 24 hrs. of having it as a main course!

Very versatile, too. Last night, I served it with mashed potatoes and a vegetable. As I said above, my hubby is having it as a sandwich for lunch, and tonight I'm planning to do a stir-fry dish with it.

FIVE STARS: Definitely a keeper now to add to the rotation of "staple" meals in our home!

- JOYE IN COLORADO

Kristine said...

My husband is a huge peanut fan, so I thought I'd make this for him, but I wasn't sure I'd like it. It was delicious!! My pork tenderloin was frozen, and after a couple hours on high, it shredded up nicely, and my husband didn't even recognize it as pork. It has a really good, complex flavor. Using the leftovers to make Pork Fried Rice from Work It! Mom (Ordering Disorder). Thanks for a delicious recipe!!

CraftyMamaMia said...

This sounds good! I am going to try it soon.

(I think I would be pretty upset with my husband if he devoured it all leaving none for me or the rest of the family...)

Mandy said...

I'm eating this right now! I used Rice Wine Vinegar in place of the White Wine Vinegar, just because I had it, and it's "Asian". I will add some red pepper flakes next time, because I like a little heat, too. All in all, I really enjoyed it! THanks.

inga said...

We loved this! I had cider vinegar and Splenda Brown Sugar Blend and cooked the pork loin on top of a cut up head of celery. It worked great. Celery in a crock pot seems to keeps the meat from drying out and adds to your daily veggie-count. I also added pepper before serving.

Barbara said...

I made this last Sunday with a pork roast instead of tenderloin, otherwise I followed the recipe, aside from adding some veggies (see below). While it was very good, it didn't pack quite the punch I was looking for... I have a "thai" PB-salsa recipe that I make with chicken or turkey in foil packets (on the grill or baked), I think that might be what I was expecting, the kick of the salsa. Also, I always like veggies in my crock-pot, kind of a side-dish "cheater" ;) When I flipped the roast toward the end, I added some julienned carrots and shredded cabbage. The carrots cooked and the cabbage softened nicely while the pork finished up. I served it all over brown rice, which promptly sucked up a lot of sauce, yum. Served with a salad, it was a nice meal - thank you!

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure what I did wrong but I just got home & my meat is all shriveled up & all the peanut buttery stuff is blackened and hardened. When I made it, it didn't seem like much liquid for a crockpot recipe, and I rechecked the recipe & definitely put everything in. I cooked it on low for 8 hrs & it has probably been on warm for maybe an hour but I don't think that would've dried everything completely up? I'm going to recreate the sauce on the stove, anyway, just to give it a try.

Jenna B said...

This is by far my favorite pork recipe to date. I made it last week to try it out (I'm not a pork fan usually) and this was amazing!!

Jenna B said...

Oh, and I used pork chops and cooked on low for 7 hours. Perfect!

Anonymous said...

I made this tonight but since I don't like peanut butter, I used almond butter instead. Tasted great!

Anna said...

This is really good with chicken breasts too! One of our new favorites. Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Yum this is going to be our Sunday meal next week! The hubby is excited. Asian-inspired recipes, especially with pork *and* peanut butter are faves in our house! Awesome blog! You are inspiring me to use my crockpot more! :)

Anonymous said...

Late to the party, but I bookmarked this recipe a while back and finally made it for a party. Heavenly. We didn't have a crockpot big enough for the pork loin we bought, so we did it in a tightly-covered roasting pan at 350. It worked out just fine. Thanks for the great recipe!

Liddy said...

I've made this twice. I think it's my favorite thing I've ever made in the crock pot! I had to thin out the sauce a little bit with water at the end and served it with linguine noodles and sugar snap peas. So yummy!!!

Anonymous said...

I just made this for dinner tonight and it was absolutely delicious! I used reduced-salt soy sauce and low fat peanut butter and cooked it for 6 hrs on low. The pork tenderloins were falling apart. I served it over brown rice. We look forward to eating the 2nd tenderloin later in the week. The lime juice at the end really cut the richness of the PB and it all worked well together. It was like eating Thai food without the takeout price! DELICIOUS! I will make this recipe often.

Jessica said...

My mother in law gave me a similar recipe but for pork chops cooked on the stovetop. It used 1/2 can of cream of mushroom soup (I assume not gluten free) and worcestershire sauce rather than soy, sugar, vinegar and water. When I cook her original recipe I add a little curry powder to make it a little more interesting. This sounds like a really yummy variation!

Anonymous said...

This was just so perfect and delicious! This is now a "regular" in our rotation of meals.

I love it so much that I gave the recipe out to friends and I am testing it out as a freezer meal to have at home and give to family/friends (of course minus freezing the onion). I want to make sure that the flavors survive freezing. If they do, we will be eating this plenty! Even if it doesn't freeze well, this goes together sooooo fast!

So satisfying AND a very low-cost meal! Fed 3 of us and only cost $5!!! (tenderloin on sale). Highly recommend!

Anonymous said...

Okay...I have to tell you you are my hero!!!! I LOOOOVE my crockpot and am beyond excited to find someone who fires up multiple crocks at a time....I own three and thought I was the only person crazy enough to cook in all three at the same time! I can't wait to dive into your recipes! I'm gonna try this one this week..bc limes are on sale and i always have pork tenderloins...hubby works in a meat dept....and peanut butter!

katy k said...

I made this with a wee little one pound tenderloin. I nestled it in the sauce in a small Corningware dish inside of my large oval crockpot. My husband gobbled it up. My kids liked it OK, but objected to the peanuttyness. Anyway, the small tenderloin that I had cooked to an internal temperature of 170 degrees in just over two hours.

Karen said...

O MY GOSH! This is wonderful. The first time I made it I set the crockpot on high to preheat and left home for 9 hours. I came home to wonderful aromas and a pot of bubbling sludge. My daughter still ate some of it and liked it so much that I figured if it was good overcooked I needed to try it again.

I made it yesterday and everyone loved it - my husband kept eating more of the sauce (served it with wheat noodles)

The best I've tried! Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Boy, oh, boy! Was this good?! Eat the 1st night with Basmati rice and tonight with baked potatoes. Tastes even better tonight!

Melissa said...

This was a GREAT recipe! Very easy (especially since I had everything on hand except for the limes!), and my husband thought it tasted just as good as I did! Yay for yummy recipes!
(I served it with rice and a green salad).
I will definitely be making it again...AND encouraging Hubby to make it, too. :o)

Beth Moore said...

Making this right now, only with chicken, and the whole house smells soooooo good! I can't wait for dinner!

Anonymous said...

I made this last night and it was excellent! I can't wait to try it again using chicken. The best part was, my very picky kids couldn't get enough of it. Tonight we had some leftover flank steak and my kids (3yr and 2yr) begged for more of the peanut sauce for tonight. Thank goodness I saved the leftover sauce. I'm thinking I could even get them to eat some veggies if I put this sauce on them. :)

Anonymous said...

I just found your blog and this is the first of your recipes I tried. I used it for pork chops. It was fantastic!! It's definitely a keeper. I look forward to some of your other recipes.

Molly said...

Just found your blog and have tried 3 dishes so far. I substituted SunButter (sun flower seed spread) because my kids are allergic to peanuts/tree nuts. It was great!! Oh, I also used bone-in pork chops, which worked well. Love getting into this and reading your posts!!

mel said...

ok, i made this cuz i love peanut butter and i love pork chops. omg...EPIC FAIL! it was all glumpy and gross. the only good thing is that my hubby loved the taste of the actual pork chop...said it tasted more like chicken.....so now i know to use the crock pot for pork chops again. i didnt eat hardly any.....bleh. i guess i did something wrong...but i'm not trying again to figure it out. hopefully i'll have better luck with your orange chicken recipe tomorrow :)

Sorta Southern Single Mom said...

I just bought the cookbook and this was the second recipe I made... YUM! I added 1 t ground ginger. It's a keeper!

K-Koira said...

I just decided to try this today, as I had a pork roast I wanted to use and I always use the crockpot on Thursdays.
I had to substitue Bragg for the soy sauce and mollassas/white sugar for the brown sugar, and rice vinegar for the white wine vinegar. It smells great though, and I'm looking forward to having it over cabbage tonight.

Megan E. said...

I have this in the crockpot right now-it smells SO good! I used crunchy peanut butter (because we had it) and chicken (because I don't like pork). I'm sure the peanuts in the peanut butter will be soggy but I don't care. :) I just think for chicken-or maybe it's just my crockpot-8 hours on low is too long. I'm going on 7 hours and I had to turn it down to warm for several of those hours. Maybe someone else has some insight on that issue!

Amy Faith said...

I serve over rice stir fry noodles. Complete meal. Also gluten free.

Amanda Nicole said...

This sounds fabulous! I just piled the ingredients into the slow cooker now, can't wait to taste it! Thanks! I'll be sure to link to my blog!

Sandi said...

I just made this yesterday, and oh, my goodness -- sooooooooooo good!!

Hootie said...

A good friend gave me some pork butt from a hunting trip and i wanted to do something different with it. It was very lean so i went with this recipe because the peanut butter is fatty for balance. It turned out so good I think i will add it to my potluck repertoire.

Raj said...

I tried this recipe and I'm not sure what was off but it wasn't terribly well received by my girlfriend and roommate. She said it maybe was the peanut butter (I did use natural chunky, figuring that once the peanut butter melted the chunky bits would be nice for texture.... The sides of my crock pot burned the sauce on, so I'm thinking maybe I need to add a bit more water. I did use two cloves of elephant garlic rather than regular garlic, but I don't think that could throw the taste off too significantly. What I did find, however, is that the Thai Beef recipe is fantastic and the sauce and carrots from that go fantastic with this recipe.. I added the sauce to this recipe and my roommate and girlfriend were very enthusiastic about it.. Weird how that works, but so far so good :) Thanks for having such great recipes! I'll bring up this site while shopping and decide on the fly what I'm having for dinner this week..

Maria said...

I'm making this tomorrow, but can't figure out what to serve it with? Woulditgo best with rice? Potatoes? Bread? Something else entirely?

Can't wait to try it - itsounds fantastic!

Stephanie O'Dea said...

Hi Maria,
I'd suggest rice or a baked sweet potato. Enjoy!!

fitchwitch said...

This is an awesome recipe! My husband is on a low salt, low carb diet, so I made the following modifications--I used the Splenda brown sugar blend, that mixes Splenda and real brown sugar, and instead of 1/4 cup of soy sauce, I used 1/8 cup of soy, and 1/8 cup of water with one packet of sodium free beef bullion in it. Those made it a little healthier for him, and just as yummy.

Unknown said...

Love this recipe. I've made it at least haf a dozen times so far. First time I made it with pork, every time since has been with chicken. So good!

Melinda Wheeler said...

I must be one of the rare ones that did not like this recipe. :( I just didn't like the taste of the "sauce" at all. Quite disappointing, but can't win 'em all. Hubby said it was "ok". I'm thinking it was the peanut butter that turned me off on it. Thanks for all the recipes though, I still like experimenting, just maybe not so much with peanut butter...lol

Victoria Zaldivar said...

This was tasty. Of course I had to add a little sriracha to give it some heat. Served with quinoa and cabbage. Yum!

geeksgirl said...

I tried this today and it was awesome!

Marianne K. (flyfriend) said...

Would this work with almond butter and almonds?

Stephanie O'Dea said...

Hi Marianne,

What an interesting idea! I think it would work just fine-- the consistency and moisture is quite similar.
I'd love to hear your results if you give it a go!

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