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WGN’s Dean Richards is sharing delicious recipes for Sheet Pan Pork with Sweet Potatoes and Apples and Air Fryer Mini-Apple Pies.

Sheet-Pan Pork with Sweet Potatoes and Apples 


  • ½ cup butter, melted 
  • tablespoon thinly sliced fresh sage leaves 
  • teaspoon salt 
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper 
  • medium sweet potatoes, quartered lengthwise 
  • medium Gala apples, cored and quartered 
  • medium sweet onion, cut into 1-inch pieces 
  • 1lb pork tenderloin 
  • ½ cup real maple syrup 
  • tablespoon fresh lemon juice 
  • ¼ cup chopped pecans, toasted 


1.  Heat oven to 425°F. Spray large, rimmed sheet pan with cooking spray. 

2.  In large bowl, mix melted butter, sage, salt and pepper. Add sweet potatoes, apples and onion; toss to coat. Using tongs or slotted spoon, transfer to pan in single layer. Add pork to bowl with mixture, and toss to coat. Add to pan with vegetables. Roast 23 to 27 minutes or until pork is no longer pink (145°F) and potatoes are fork-tender. 

3.  In 1 1/2-quart saucepan, heat maple syrup just to boiling over medium heat. Immediately reduce heat to low; cook 7 to 8 minutes or until reduced to 1/3 cup. Remove from heat. Stir in lemon juice. Set aside. 

4. Slice pork, and divide among 4 plates. Divide potato mixture on top of pork; drizzle with maple syrup. Top with pecans. 

Hot Air Fryer Mini-Apple Pies 


  • 1 (14.1 ounce) package refrigerated pie crusts (2 pie crusts) 
  • 1 (21 ounce) can apple pie filling or homemade cinnamon baked apples (recipe below) 
  • 1 egg, beaten  
  • 2 tablespoons cinnamon sugar, or to taste 
  • 1 serving cooking spray  

Preheat the air fryer to 360 degrees F.  

  1. Place 1 piecrust onto a lightly floured surface and roll out the dough with a rolling pin. Using a 2-1/4-inch round biscuit or cookie cutter cut the piecrust into 10 circles. Repeat with the second piecrust for a total of 20 piecrust circles. 
  2. Fill about 1/2 of each circle with can apple pie filling or homemade cinnamon baked apples (preferred – recipe below).  
  3. Place a second piecrust circle on top, making a mini pie. Do not overfill. Press down the edges of the mini pies, crimping with a fork to seal. Brush tops with beaten egg and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. 
  4. Lightly spray the air fryer basket with cooking spray. Place a batch of the mini pies in the air fryer basket, leaving space around each for air circulation. 
  5. Bake until golden brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from the basket and bake remaining pies. Serve warm or at room temperature. 

Cinnamon Spiced Apple filling for Hot Air Fryer Mini-Apple Pies 


  • 4-5 medium apples, sliced thinly with skins (I used a variety of gala and honey crisp) 


  • 2 tsp cornstarch 
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar 
  • 1 tsp cinnamon 
  • sprinkling of turbinado sugar 


  • juice of half a lemon 
  • juice of a whole lemon 
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup 
  • 1-2 tbsp water 
  • 1 tbsp butter 
  • whipped cream or vanilla ice cream (optional) 


  1. Preheat oven to 350. Slice your apples thinly, making sure they are even so they can cook evenly.  If you’re not going to bake the apples right away, place the sliced apples in a bowl of water with the juice of a lemon.   
  2. In a bowl, mix the dry ingredients (cornstarch, cinnamon and brown sugar.) Set aside.  
  3. In another bowl, mix the wet ingredients (maple syrup, water, lemon juice.) Set aside.  
  4. When ready to combine ingredients, add apples to a baking dish. Mix well with wet ingredients.   Mix in dry ingredients.  Mix together thoroughly.   
  5. Bake for 50 minutes. Take out and stir. Add in 1 tbsp of butter and a top the apples with a sprinkle of turbinado sugar. Bake for an additional 5 minutes.  
  6. Once done, eat immediately while warm! Add on whipped cream or vanilla ice cream for garnish if desired.  Or set aside to use in hot air mini-apple pies as filling.     

More recipes from Dean on his Dean Cooks page of the website. Tune in Wednesdays on the WGN Morning News for more!