Aromatic, hearty stovetop pork stew is perfect for cold winter nights and truly easy to make. Serve it in soup bowls, or atop rice, cauliflower rice, or spaghetti squash noodles.
This hearty stew is so tasty and comforting! Leftovers are great too, so sometimes I double the recipe to ensure I have yummy leftovers for the next few days.
I love stews. They are such a classic comfort food. But many of them require quite a bit of work, and I'm not a very patient person. This pork stew is not just delicious, but also very easy to make.
The ingredients you'll need
Here's an overview of what you'll need to make this recipe. The exact measurements are included in the recipe card below:
Olive oil: I love cooking with this delicious oil. Another tasty option is to use ghee.
Pork tenderloin: Readily available at the supermarket or at Whole Foods. I use a sharp chef's knife and cut it into 1-inch cubes.
Kosher salt and black pepper: If you use a fine salt, you should probably use less of it, or the dish could end up too salty.
Minced garlic: I use a full tablespoon, which may seem like a lot. But it adds great flavor to the stew. If you don't have fresh garlic, it's OK to use a teaspoon of garlic powder.
Spices: Paprika and dried thyme. since we add 2 teaspoons of paprika, which is quite a bit, you should make sure it's very fresh. A stale spice can easily ruin a dish.
Chicken broth: I use a low-sodium broth by Pacific Natural, which has a very low sodium content. This enables me to better control the saltiness of the pork stew.
Canned tomato sauce: A link to the product I use is provided in the recipe card below.
Dried bay leaf: Adds an extra - subtle - layer of flavor to the stew. It's not strictly needed here, so don't buy it especially, but it does make a difference in the flavor profile of the dish.
Cornstarch: Acts as a thickener in case you feel the stew is not thick enough. Another option is to add just a bit of coconut flour, which is a very powerful thickener. The small amount needed to thicken the stew won't impart a coconut flavor onto the dish.
Parsley: Used for garnish. You can skip it if you don't have any on hand.
What cut of pork to use?
But an interesting way to cook pork tenderloin is to make this aromatic, hearty dish. It's very flavorful and so easy to make.
How to make a stovetop pork stew
Scroll down to the recipe card for the full recipe. Here are the basic steps:
1. Brown the pork. Cook the pork cubes in olive oil on all sides.
2. Add aromatics. Now add the garlic, paprika and thyme, and cook them briefly.
3. Deglaze. Add the broth and use it to deglaze the pan.
4. Simmer. Add the tomato sauce and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer until the meat is cooked through. This should take about 10 minutes.
Variations and substitutions
Here are a few ideas for changing up this recipe:
- Use dry white wine instead of chicken broth. You can then serve the stew with the same wine. Sauvignon Blanc works well.
- Use smoked paprika instead of sweet paprika.
- Add a bit of cayenne pepper - about ⅛ teaspoon - to add some heat to the dish.
- During the last 5 minutes of simmering the stew, mix in a chopped vegetable such as broccoli or cauliflower florets.
What side dishes go with pork stew?
What about leftovers?
You can keep the leftovers in the fridge, in an airtight container, for 3-4 days. Reheat them gently, covered (to prevent splatters), in the microwave on 50% power. You can also freeze leftovers in individual containers for up to 3 months.
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- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 lb. pork tenderloin cubed into 1-inch pieces
- 1 teaspoon Diamond Crystal kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- ½ cup low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 cup canned tomato sauce
- 1 dried bay leaf
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch (optional, used to thicken the stew)*
- 2 tablespoons chopped parsley (optional, for garnish)
- In a large, heavy saucepan, add the oil. Heat over medium-high heat, about 2 minutes.
- Add the pork, kosher salt, and black pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until the meat is no longer raw, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in the garlic, paprika, and dried thyme.
- Add the broth and use it to deglaze the pan – scrape the bottom of the pan to loosen any tasty bits stuck to the bottom.
- Stir in the tomato sauce and the bay leaf. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat to medium and simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, just until the pork is cooked through.
- If the stew hasn't thickened enough at this point, you can mix in a cornstarch slurry (1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 1 ½ tablespoon cold water). Or try mixing in 1 teaspoon of coconut flour, which is a very powerful thickener.
- Remove the bay leaf, garnish with chopped parsley, and serve.