This festive Pork Roast with Cranberry Relish Glaze is special enough to serve your family and friends over the holidays, but you'll never have to tell your guests just how easy it was to make. That can be our little secret!
While this glazed pork roast is very festive to serve during the holiday season, it would also be utterly delicious in the summer when cooked on the grill.
**Please Note - The printable recipe card with detailed instructions, complete ingredient measurements, and nutritional information for making Pork Roast with Cranberry Relish Glaze is available near the end of this post. OR click on the "jump to recipe" button (found above) to be taken directly to the recipe.
The ingredient list:
**Note - The following lists of ingredients plus kitchen tools and equipment contain affiliate links (highlighted in blue) for your consideration and shopping convenience. #CommissionsEarned
- 3 - 3½ pound pork roast
- red onion
- Granny Smith apple
- balsamic vinegar
- whole berry cranberry sauce, store-bought or homemade
- fresh thyme, rosemary, sage
- salt and pepper
- garlic powder
- fresh cranberries for garnish, optional
Kitchen tools and equipment needed:
- roasting pan
- measuring cups and spoons
- chef's knife
- cutting board
- meat thermometer
- carving knife and fork
Why this recipe works:
One of my favorite ways to ensure tenderness when it comes to cooking a protein (almost any type), is to first give the meat a little splash of balsamic vinegar, and then let it sit for about 20 minutes before cooking.
That's my trick, and it's one that lends a tenderness, and slight sweetness to this recipe for Christmas Pork Roast with Cranberry Relish Glaze.
Here is my favorite recipe for homemade cranberry relish.
Why use vinegar in a pork roast recipe?
As I mentioned earlier, I use balsamic vinegar often when it comes to adding flavor and to tenderize cuts of meat.
It works like a charm. I've used the method many times.
Another ingredient I also like to use is apple cider vinegar to tenderize proteins.
However, apple cider vinegar doesn't lend the touch of sweetness that a balsamic vinegar will.
How long does it take to make this recipe?
Dinner will be on the table in a little over an hour!
The prep work is minimal, and then the oven will do all the hard work while you rest and relax until dinner time.
What is the proper temperature for cooked pork?
The proper minimum internal temperature for cooked pork is 145-degrees Fahrenheit.
Take the pork roast out of the oven when the temperature is 140-degrees as it will increase in temperature as it sits before carving.
The benefit of a balsamic vinegar marinade:
Since pork can sometimes be dry, using the balsamic vinegar along with the topping of the cranberry relish makes each slice of this Christmas Pork Roast so juicy and delectable that a knife is almost optional!
How to ensure your pork roast isn't dry:
Remove the pork roast from the oven once the internal temperature reaches 140-degrees Fahrenheit on an instant-read thermometer.
Cover the pork roast loosely with foil and allow it to rest before carving for at least 10-15 minutes.
How to make pork roast with cranberry relish glaze:
- Place one sliced red onion, one sliced granny smith apple, whole fresh sage leaves, and several sprigs of fresh rosemary in the bottom of a roasting pan.
- Place a 3 - 3½ pork roast on top of the onions, apples, and herbs, fat side up.
- Pour ½ cup of balsamic vinegar evenly over the entire roast.
- Allow the roast to sit for at least 20 minutes on the counter.
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
- Liberally season the roast with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
- Top the roast with additional fresh rosemary sprigs, and some fresh thyme.
- Place the roast in the oven (on the center rack) for approximately 60 minutes.
- Remove the roast from the oven and top evenly with a can of whole berry cranberry sauce.
- Return the roast back into the oven and continue cooking until the internal temperature of the pork reaches 140 degrees (approximately 30 additional minutes).
- Remove the roast and cover with foil.
- Allow the meat to rest at least 10 minutes before placing the roast on a carving board and slicing to your desired thickness.
Additional main course recipes using vinegar marinade:
The first one uses balsamic vinegar to impart a touch of sweetness, and the second uses apple cider vinegar to give a bit of tartness.
Both methods tenderize the proteins, making them juicy and succulent.
- Better Than Brined Balsamic Herbed Butter Roast Turkey (shown below)
This make-ahead roast turkey will be the most succulent and flavorful turkey you’ve ever made, thanks to the herb butter and balsamic vinegar!
- Mouth Watering Slow Roasted Baby Back Ribs (shown below)
Cooking these slow-roasted baby back ribs in the oven, or on the outdoor BBQ, you can achieve maximum flavor with minimum ingredients that will ensure great meaty flavor, and quality tenderness.
On the off chance that you have any leftovers of this Glazed Pork Roast, it makes the best sandwiches!
Might I suggest adding a thick slice (or two) on a Kaiser roll with a touch of mayonnaise, a little mustard, and add a big appetite!
Open wide!! 🙂
Dishes to serve alongside Roast Pork with Cranberry Glaze:
*Pimento Cheese Mashed Potatoes (shown below)
Why not give traditional mashed potatoes a little update? Pimento Cheese Mashed Potatoes are easy to make and taste amazing!!
*Sautéed Brussels Sprout with Candied Bacon (shown below)
If you’ve never been a fresh Brussels sprouts fan before this recipe for Sautéed Brussels Sprouts with Sweet & Spicy Candied Bacon just may change your mind!
Below is the printable recipe card along with the exact ingredient measurements and nutritional information for making today's easy and festive pork roast recipe.
⭐If you've made this recipe, or are excited to make this recipe, I'd appreciate it if you'd take a moment to leave it a star rating on the recipe card, along with a comment of why you rated as you did.
Google loves ratings and will show my recipes to more people if they have them. Thank you. 🙂
Printable Recipe Card
Pork Roast with Cranberry Relish Glaze
- 1 - 3 - 3½ pound boneless pork roast
- 1 red onion sliced
- 1 Granny Smith apple cored and sliced
- ½ cup balsamic vinegar
- 8 fresh rosemary sprigs
- 8 fresh sage leaves
- 8 fresh thyme sprigs
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1½ teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 15 ounce can whole berry cranberry sauce
- Additional fresh herbs for garnish optional
- Fresh cranberries for garnish optional
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Place the sliced apples, onions and some of the fresh herbs in the bottom of the roasting pan, reserving some of the fresh herbs for later.
- Place the pork roast on top of the onions and apples, fat side up.
- Pour the balsamic vinegar evenly over the roast.
- Allow the roast to rest for at least 20 minutes.
- Season the roast with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
- Add a few additional rosemary and thyme sprigs on top of the roast.
- Place the roast into the preheated oven (center rack) and roast for 60 minutes.
- Remove the roast from the oven and cover the top of the roast evenly with the whole berry cranberry sauce.
- Return the roast to the oven and continue cooking until the internal temperature of the roast reaches 140 degrees (approximately an additional 30 minutes).
- Remove the roast from the oven, and cover with foil.
- Allow the roast to sit for at least 10 minutes before placing it on a serving platter and slicing to your desired thickness.
- Garnish with fresh cranberries and additional fresh herbs if desired.
- Serve and enjoy!
I sincerely hope you've enjoyed today's festive pork roast recipe as much as I've enjoyed bringing it to you!
This is such a fabulous mix of flavors! I love the sweet tart combo and it makes such a pretty finished dish!
Thanks, Wilhelmina! I'm so glad you think so, also.
Pork is usually first choice for my list food, so I often look for more recipe of pork. So I saved it and cook it soon . Thanks a lot for the post.
You're welcome! Enjoy the recipe!
Not only for Christmas, I also can cook it for family’s small party, especially my family love roast food. I think I can also try it with chicken. Many thanks for sharing.
Thank you so much for your comment and I LOVE that you'll serve this throughout the entire year. I also think the cranberry glaze will be excellent on chicken!!! Great idea!
Enjoy, and have a great day!
This is such an amazing centerpiece for Christmas! Really gorgeous!
Thank you, Toni!!
I love glazes with balsamic and the cranberries make this look so elegant! What a showstopper!
Liren | Kitchen Confidante says
Balsamic vinegar is one of my favorite secret ingredients too - that glaze looks incredible!
It works wonders! Thanks, Liren!
The seasoning sounds fantastic with your pork roast. Just the way I like it. I wish I could have some now.
Thank you so much, Helene! I do hope you'll try it!
Delicious bit the cooking time was off. Took over an hour and a half
Every oven is different, which is why I made sure to add the correct internal pork temperature of 160 in the recipe.
I'm really happy you enjoyed the flavor. This recipe can also be made with larger pork roasts, but then the cooking time would be even longer.
Best practice is always taking the internal temperature of any protein before slicing and serving.
Wishing you a wonderful day!
Is it 160* or 140*
The proper internal temperature for a pork roast that isn't overcooked and dry is 140 degrees.
Thank you for your question.
Enjoy the recipe and happy holidays!!
I always make the same boring roast! Ive been looking to try something different! This did not disappoint! It was melt in your mouth delicious! Sweet and savory!
This is such a good idea. I can just taste the acid from the vinegar, the sweet, and the tang of the cranberry! What a perfect match for pork!
Pork can sometimes be dry, so the cranberry and balsamic work well for flavoring and tenderness. Thanks, Beth!
Lauren @ Hall Nesting says
Move over turkey I want pork and cranberry relish!
Lauren Keating says
This looks amazing, what a great presentation!
I had no idea you could use balsamic vinegar in this way...thank you so much for the tip.
Kimberly @ The Daring Gourmet says
That looks out of this world delicious!!
I just love that glaze, and the roast looks amazing -- perfect for our New Year's Day dinner!
Lynne | 365 Days of Baking and More says
Renee, that pork looks SO very inviting and will be perfect for Christmas dinner! Thanks for the recipe!
What a festive, GORGEOUS pork roast! I especially love that cranberry relish glaze - such a great flavor for this season!
This looks so incredible!!!!
I love the cranberry glaze, gives it the final touch of perfection!