Pork with Rhubarb-Orange Sauce

Rhubarb Plants

Sandra Spee is the Kitchener’s mom, his Young Assistants’ Oma, and a great cook!  She has cooked real food for as long as the Kitchener can remember and always makes use of whatever is growing in the huge garden that she and her husband/Opa have next to their home.  She lives in Olympia, WA and prefers sunny weather.  

More than thirty years ago when we bought our house, we also acquired a very large rhubarb patch.  I am not a huge fan of rhubarb although I can enjoy it in bread or pie with the usual ton of sugar.  However, I live with a diabetic and work hard to maintain my own weight, so making sweet desserts all the time isn’t such a good idea.

Consequently, I was delighted this spring when our local paper, The Olympian, published a savory recipe using two whole cups of sliced rhubarb and ONLY two teaspoons of sugar…oh, and orange juice.  We didn’t have pork tenderloin so we just used a couple of frozen pork steaks well trimmed of fat.  (The pork was locally raised by my coworker…or should I say the pig was?)  Also didn’t have shallot so just used a bulbous but garden fresh over wintered scallion from the garden.  We did have the fresh chives!

Recently, my husband and I spent an evening with our youngest son and his wife who live an hour or so north of us in Washington.  They are both huge rhubarb fans and always get some from us in the spring.  So to my newest daughter-in-law, here is the savory recipe I promised you.

Pork Tenderloin Medallions with Rhubarb Orange Sauce

My compliments to Sara Moulton for her very cute article as well as original recipe.


  • 2 pork tenderloins (1 ½ pounds total), fat trimmed
  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 cups thinly sliced rhubarb
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons minced shallot (or large scallion)
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 2 teaspoons water
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • Chopped fresh chives

In a large skillet over medium-high, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil. Working in batches, add the pork to the skillet. Cook, turning to brown on all sides, for about 4 to 5 minutes, or until the pork is just pink at the center (about 145 degrees). Transfer pork to a plate, and cover with foil.

Return the skillet to the heat and add the remaining tablespoon of oil, the rhubarb and the sugar. Sauté for 2 minutes. Add the shallots and garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the orange juice and simmer for 2 minutes.

In a small bowl or glass, whisk together the water and cornstarch, then add to the simmering broth in a stream, whisking. Return the sauce to a boil, then whisk in the mustard and any juices on the plate from the pork.

To serve, spoon the pork onto plates, then top with some of the sauce, and garnish with chives.


Here are some other savory rhubarb recipes:

two true spring pizzas

Rhubarb, Cranberry, and Goat Cheese Pizza

Honey Roasted Rhubarb Salad