Make the Most of Summer with this Blueberry BBQ Pork Tenderloin

Photo credit to Farrar Food Photography

I’ve often heard people refer to July as the “Sunday” of summer. Though we still have our fair share of warm days ahead, now’s the time to fit in some delicious food before school and other fall activities begin. After all – what better way is there to soak up summer than by gathering around a table with those you love?

This Blueberry BBQ Pork Tenderloin is one of my favorite seasonal recipes. It tackles a savory classic from a deliciously sweet angle and is sure to win over even the pickiest of guests. Plus, blueberries are a health superfood. Studies show they can improve memory in older adults and supply antioxidants. Who said barbecue was bad for you? Let’s get started!

Blueberry BBQ Sauce

• 2 T olive oil
• 1 onion, finely chopped
• 2 C blueberries
• 1 small can of tomato paste
• 1 small garlic clove, pressed
• ½ C apple cider vinegar
• 2 T brown sugar
• 1-2 tsp tamarind paste
• 1 T chili powder
• 1 tsp black pepper
• 1 tsp smoked paprika
• ½ tsp cinnamon

Spice Rub

• 2 T ground cumin
• 2 T ancho chili powder
• 2 tsp black powder
• 4 tsp brown sugar


• Prepare the sauce: Sautee chopped onion in olive oil. Combine ingredients in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat; reduce heat and simmer until thickened, about 25 minutes. Divide sauce between 2 bowls and set aside.
• Brine pork tenderloin with 1 ½ T salt, ¾ C sugar and 1 quart of water for 1 hour.
• Preheat grill to high heat.
• Coat pork with 4 T olive oil and rub with spice rub.
• Turn grill to medium high heat and grill tenderloin, turning to cook about 4 minutes on each of the 4 sides.
• Brush tenderloin with half of the BBQ sauce, turning frequently, until pork is thoroughly glazed, for about 2 minutes. The pork should have reached about 150F, if you are using a meat thermometer.
• Set aside and let rest for 5 minutes.
• Carve crosswise. Serve tenderloin with remaining BBQ sauce.

Want to really impress your guests? Drop a couple of blueberries on the side of the plate or on the tenderloin itself to give it that finished look. Also, you might want to make some additional barbecue sauce to use throughout the week. You won’t regret it.

Happy barbecuing, and happy last days of summer!