Want an easy dinner with barely any hands-on time that everyone will love? Then make this classic family favorite juicy pork tenderloin recipe and you’ll be all set. Despite its simplicity, this main dish makes the perfect presentation for company. No one realizes that it literally takes 5 minutes to prep this classic!
Best Pork Tenderloin Recipe
The best pork tenderloin has a juicy texture and brims with a savory array of herbs and spices. It’s the kind of dish that brings everyone to the table, whether it’s just your little family or you’ve got dinner guests and it never fails to impress!
Pork Tenderloin Ingredients
- Pork tenderloin – if you don’t see one in the meat section, ask the butcher!
- Butter – this adds richness to combine with the herbs which creates a natural sauce for pork tenderloin.
- Fresh herbs – while you can use dried ones if that’s all you’ve got, using fresh rosemary, sage, thyme, and parsley will make your tenderloin even better. A fresh herb rub is a truly unique taste over a generic sauce or pork tenderloin marinade!
- Garlic – because it is the quintessential spice! Always go for fresh garlic over garlic powder for this recipe.
- Italian seasoning – adds just a little something to the flavor.
Easy Pork Tenderloin Recipe
I am often asked what is the best way to cook pork tenderloin? Pork tenderloin only looks difficult to make. This easy pork tenderloin recipe features minimal ingredients and only 5 minutes of your hands-on time, freeing you up to do other things without feeling rushed.
Put pork on your fork.
How to Cook Pork Tenderloin
Cooking pork tenderloin in the oven is a snap! All you need is to season your meat with salt and pepper, sear it, coat it with the herbs and spices, add it to the preheated oven, and cook until the internal pork temperature reaches the proper internal temperature of 145°F. After that, you have to let it rest before slicing to lock in those juices and keep it from drying out.
Expert Tips and Tricks for the Perfect Pork Tenderloin Every Time
- Color matters for pork tenderloin – Choose one that is pinkish-red with a little marbling. Decline any that are pale or with dark spots in the fatty parts.
- Use fresh herbs whenever you can – This lends your tenderloin a restaurant-quality flavor.
- Make sure you let it rest – Part of the perfection in this dish is knowing when to cut your pork tenderloin to keep the juices intact.
What’s the Difference Between Pork Loin and Pork Tenderloin?
Although the sound very similar, they are actually two completely different cuts of pork. A pork tenderloin cut is a longer, and more narrow boneless cut of pork that is praised for being more tender. A standard pork loin is a wider and flatter cut that can either come boneless or with the bone still in.
How do I prepare pork tenderloin?
Roasted pork tenderloin is a very simple dish that looks very elegant. You simply need a great cut of it and then you can season it up. Then combine each of the ingredients in a bowl and then rub it onto the tenderloin.
What temp should I cook pork tenderloin?
You’ll preheat your oven to 350F to make this pork tenderloin. At 25 minutes, that should be plenty. Have your meat thermometer ready to check that the pork tenderloin internal temp has reached 145°F.
Do you cook a pork tenderloin covered or uncovered?
A baked pork tenderloin recipe needs to be covered if you want to keep it from drying out. This will ensure you get juicy and delicious meat when you’re ready to serve dinner!
How long should a pork tenderloin be cooked?
Your pork tenderloin cook time will depend on the size of your cut. For an an average size cut, you really only need to bake pork tenderloin for about 25 minutes or until the internal pork tenderloin temperature reaches 145°F. After that, it will rest for about 7 minutes so the juices don’t run out and spoil the texture.
Does pork tenderloin get more tender the longer you cook it?
Quite the opposite, actually! Pork tenderloin should be cooked quickly and then left to rest to ensure it stays tender. If you cook it too long, it will become tough and chewy.
Should pork tenderloin be cooked fast or slow?
Pork tenderloin should be cooked quickly. It’s a great dinner for a weeknight because of this. The key is in letting it rest right after cooking.
Should I cover my pork tenderloin in the oven?
Yes, you will cover your pork tenderloin when it goes in the oven. Before that, you’ll sear it on the stovetop which will seal in the juices and render it tender.
How to cook pork tenderloin in oven with foil?
After searing it on all sides, you’ll add in the herbs, spices, and butter and wrap it in foil to bake. The meat should reach 170F at the thickest part
What temperature should pork tenderloin be cooked at?
Determining how long to cook pork tenderloin in the oven will depend on the size and thickness of your cut. A good temperature to cook pork tenderloin is 350°F. You want to make sure your pork tenderloin internal temp reaches about 150°F. The best way to not overcook or undercook your pork tenderloin is to use a meat thermometer to check the temp internally to make sure it reaches 150°F.
How long to cook pork tenderloin in the oven at 325?
At 325°F a pork tenderloin will take about 30 minutes for the pork tenderloin internal temp to reach 150°F.
How long to cook pork tenderloin in the oven at 350?
At 350°F a pork tenderloin will take about 25 minutes for the pork tenderloin internal temp to reach 150°F.
How long to cook pork tenderloin in the oven at 375?
At 375°F a pork tenderloin will take about 20 minutes for the pork tenderloin internal temp to reach 150°F.
How long to cook pork tenderloin in the oven at 400?
At 400°F a pork tenderloin will take about 18 minutes for the pork tenderloin internal temp to reach 150°F.
How to cook pork tenderloin in oven without searing?
I don’t recommend skipping the searing step. You’ll get a nice golden crust on it first which won’t happen if you shove it in the oven. Also, it helps lock in those juices to make it nice and juicy inside.
Can pork tenderloin be a little pink?
Yes, it can. What matters is that the internal temperature of your pork tenderloin is at the recommendation by the USDA guidelines which is 145°F. I always bring the internal temp to 150°F just to be sure.
How do you keep pork tenderloin from drying out?
When you sear it, you seal the outside from the juices escaping your pork tenderloin. Wrapping it in foil also helps, but the key in keeping it nice, tender, and juicy inside is letting it rest for 45 minutes before slicing it.
What to Serve with Pork Tenderloin (Side Dishes)
Pork tenderloin goes great with potatoes. Anything from mashed to roasted garlic-parmesan potatoes would be divine. Brussels sprouts, sauteed spinach, roasted cauliflower, polenta, even a fig and arugula salad would all complement this main dish quite nicely.
How to Store Pork Tenderloin
Pork tenderloin keeps in your fridge for around 2 days prior to cooking. After cooking it, you shouldn’t keep it in the fridge longer than 3 days. Should you still have leftovers around day 3, you should freeze them. One of my favorite ways to use leftover pork tenderloin is to make pork sandwiches. So quick and easy!
Can You Freeze Pork Tenderloin?
Yes, of course you can! When it’s kept properly in the freezer, it will be good for as long as 6 months. On the rare occasions we have leftovers, I wrap them well and freeze them so I can pull them out on a busy day when I don’t really feel like cooking.
How to Reheat Frozen Pork Tenderloin
You’ll want to thaw it in the fridge first overnight. When you want to reheat it, put your tenderloin in a baking dish with a little bit of chicken broth and add softened butter to the top. Cover it with foil and heat at 325F for about 25 minutes. The internal temperature needs to be 150F so once it gets there, let it rest 10 minutes and slice.
Perfect Pork Tenderloin Recipe
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil ((or olive oil))
- 1/2 tbsp salt
- 1/2 tbsp pepper
- 2 lbs pork tenderloin
- 4 tbsp butter (sliced into 4-6 parts)
- 1 1/2 tsp rosemary
- 1 1/2 tsp sage
- 1 1/2 tsp thyme
- 1 1/2 tsp parsley
- 1 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
- 6 garlic cloves (minced)
- Preheat the oven to 350F. While the oven is heating up, line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
- In a small bowl combine the rosemary, sage, thyme, parsley, Italian seasoning, and garlic and set aside. Then, generously season meat with salt and pepper before searing. In a large pan or cast iron skillet, heat oil on medium-high heat until hot then add the tenderloin to the pan rotating to cook evenly on all sides until dark golden brown. Once properly seared, lay the tenderloin out on to the baking sheet.
- Generously cover the tenderloin with the blend of herbs and spices and add cubes of butter on top. Wrap the tenderloin in the foil and bake until the meat reaches at least 170F degrees inside at widest part of the tenderloin. This can be easily checked using a meat thermometer. When the pork has finished cooking, let it rest for at least 5 minutes before slicing. Once rested, slice equal medallions and serve immediately.
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