Sweet and smoky almond crusted pork bites are the perfect game-day appetizer or easy dinner entree. They are baked to perfection with a crispy golden crust and tender, juicy inside. Dipped in your favorite sauce, they are fun to eat and SO easy to enjoy.
As fantastically wonderful as Thanksgiving was and as excited as I was to start hearing the N’Sync holiday album on the radio today, my palette has been craving something un-holiday like. Something different that will remind my taste buds that foods exist outside of turkey, stuffing and casseroles. Thanks to endless Thanksgiving leftovers, i’ll actually be fine not looking at another casserole until 2018.
So if you’ve been around the ol’ blog for a minute, you may know how much I love using almonds as crusts on meats and fish. They create a crunchy, flavorful crust that bakes beautifully. No need for deep frying or even pan frying.
In addition to using almonds as crusts, they are the ideal food to snack on while watching football games or tailgating with family or friends. Blue Diamond almonds come in an assortment of game changing flavors that can satisfy just about any palette. Some of my personal favorites fall into their bold flavor category: Smokehouse, Sriracha and Habanero BBQ. Total flavor parties!
Almonds are almost always included in my charcuterie trays and are an absolute must in my appetizer spreads. One of my go-to appetizer combinations include a tin of Blue Diamond almonds, grapes, olives (or olive tapenade with crackers) and either a smoked mozzarella or creamy Gruyere cheese. Appetizer spreads like this put standard chips and dip to shame!
As delicious as these snack combos are, we still gotta include something with a little substance, right? Enter: Sweet and Smoky Almond Crusted Pork Bites.
These are essentially chicken nuggets with a major facelift. And tastelift. The smoky flavor of Smokehouse almonds combined with brown sugar, garlic and italian herbs is outrageously delicious. Making them into bite-sized pieces makes them optimal for dipping, however you could also turn them into pork cutlets for dinner.
Speaking of dipping, if I may suggest barbecue sauce (personal fav), spicy ketchup (Sriracha mixed with ketchup), honey mustard, apple sauce or your favorite salsa. Options are endless!
This post is sponsored by Blue Diamond Almonds. Ditch the chips and grab some Game Changing Flavors this football season! Enter for a chance to win the Ultimate Football Party Prize Pack, get great savings and ideas for delicious snack hacks at GameChangingFlavors.com.
- 1 lb pork tenderloin, cut into small pieces
- ½ cup Blue Diamond Smokehouse almonds
- 1 tbsp + 1 tsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 2 tsp Italian seasoning
- 1 egg + 1 egg white
- Dipping sauce of choice - I recommend BBQ, honey mustard, spicy ketchup, apple sauce or salsa
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and line a baking sheet with foil. Lightly grease with non-stick cooking spray.
- In a food processor or blender, pulverize almonds into crumbs. Be careful to not over-process almonds into almond butter!
- In a small bowl, combine processed almonds and seasonings
- In a separate bowl, whisk 1 egg with 1 egg white and 1 tsp of water
- Drop pork pieces into egg wash and fully cover. Transfer pork pieces to spice mixture and coat evenly. Place on baking sheet. Repeat until all pieces are coated
- Bake for 15 minutes, flip pork over and bake for an additional 12-13 minutes, or until golden and crispy
- Serve hot with your favorite dipping sauce!