Grilled BBQ Pork w/ Spicy Cajun Sweet Potato Fries

apricotporkpicWe seem to have picked up a pork tenderloin habit recently. I say that because we’ve been eating more of it for some reason. When I start looking at why we’re eating more pork a few things jump out at me. First, pork tenderloins are easy to cook and if done right taste fantastic. Second, they are lean protein so they allow you to customize the meal to your dietary goals. Finally, seasoned pork tenderloins are easy to find. Yes, that’s right sometimes we make our sauces and rubs for our meals and then there are times when we just don’t have the time and we grab a pre-seasoned one. That’s what we used for this dish. Before you go and start yelling about how these may have preservatives and crap that we shouldn’t put in our bodies. Let’s look at the nutrition facts. seasonedporknutritionBefore we do, I have a confession. I didn’t look at this until after we made this meal. I didn’t really care what was in it. Why? Sometimes you need to eat and it doesn’t matter. Why doesn’t it matter? Don’t sweat the small things. Back to the Mesquite BBQ pork tenderloin nutrition facts. What do we find? Nothing of much concern that I see because we use most of the same ingredients in our own dry rubs. The only thing that I wouldn’t use the soybean oil. If you pat dry the tenderloin, most of the oil will be absorbed anyway. So, now that we’re on the same page that these pre-seasoned pork tenderloins are great, then let’s move on to why this meal was on fire! Check out the instruction video here.

What was the macro breakdown?

At first glance, this meal had uneven macros, which is not the goal for every meal. The goal is to have a consistent macro breakdown, but we usually do not plan ahead. We make the meal and then figure the macro’s after we eat. Seems backward, right? That’s the point when you eat whole food, that you made at home, it’s tasty and usually, it’s good for you. Yes, I’ve said that before but I want to keep reiterating it until it sinks in. grilledporkmarcrosThis meal, however, had 475 k/cals for me because I ended up going back for more sweet potato fries, even though they were on fire! Eating sweet potato fries always seems like you’re cheating the system. Since I ate more than I should have that brought the grand total to 39g of carbohydrates. The fat grams were well below where they usually are coming in at 25g and most of that came from the olive oil that we baked the fries in. Finally, the part we all care about, or at least us meatheads, this meal had 21g of protein.

What did we like about this meal?

The sweet potatoes fries are always a great addition to any meal but the ease of the pre-seasoned pork took the cake. It actually tasted better than we thought. Since all I had to do was trim the fat and pat it dry this meal was done in under an hour. Remember all good things in life take time. Again, this goes without saying but you almost can’t eat too many sweet potato fries when you bake them in the oven.

What would we change next time?

After I took the picture of the final presentation I noticed that all the colors were the same, down to the plates we use. I wish we had added a salad, fruit or some kind of color other than orange. That’s the unseen side effect of doing a food blog and videos. You see what your meals really look like and this allows you to see your food for what it really is. While this meal wasn’t bad in that regard, it could be even better. There’s always room for improvement. Another point is when I patted and trimmed the fat from the pork I forgot to spray the grill with cooking spray. The pork stuck a little after the first flip. That’s something I had to adjust on the fly and the pork still turned out great. Finally, the one thing that really was not good was the cajun spice on the fries. In the recipe, I talk about the cajun spices being too hot, which prompted me to add brown sugar. Needless to say, the brown sugar did not help. The fries were like biting into a fresh jalapeno. I couldn’t stop eating them but wifey thought they were way too spicy. Next time, less spice and less brown sugar. Way too much sweet and spice! Live and learn.

Did you miss our last recipe? Check it out here…

Watch the YouTube Instruction Video Here!

 

Quick Recipe Breakdown:

Cut sweet potatoes into fries
– Soak in water 4-6 hours
**we only let them soak for 1hr because we’re busy people but longer is usually better!
– Pat Dry
– Bake 20-30 minutes @ 450*
– Flip and rotate halfway through
– 5 minutes under broiler for extra crispy fries

Heat Grill to 450*

– Pat Pork Dry
– Trim fat
– Have pork tenderloin at room temperature
– Sear all sides (6-8 minutes)
– Cook another 24 minutes (off direct heat & covered) or until pork hits 145* internal temp
– Flip after 12 minutes
– Let it rest 5-10 minutes
– Slice and enjoy!

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