How To Roast Pork Loin Perfectly
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A delicious method for roasting pork loin that is juicy in the middle and brown and crusty on the outside.
Awhile ago I posted my method for roasting pork perfectly. That post has gotten a lot of great feedback in the comment section. There are also a lot of questions there too. One that comes up often is whether you can use the same method on pork loin, or just on pork butt as the recipe calls for.
My answer is always no. Pork loin is much leaner than pork butt so if you cook it in the long method I used, youd end up with very dry pork.
Because I get asked about it often, I decided to test out some ways of roasting pork loin and share the best with you here.
The Cooking Times For The Pork Roast Seem To Decrease As The Roast Gets Bigger 20
I think this is because pork loin roasts are cylindrical. Theyre essentially the same thickness no matter how much they weigh. The differences in weight come from how long the roast is. An 8-pound pork loin roast will be the same circumference as a 4-pound roast but it will be twice as long. Cooking times for roasts are calculated to figure out how long it takes the heat to penetrate from the outside to the inside. Thus, its not going to take that much longer for the heat to get to the middle of the 8-pounder than the 4-pounder since they have the same distance from the side edges to the middle.
What Is The Difference Between A Pork Loin And Pork Tenderloin
Before you make this Baked Pork Tenderloin recipe, its important you purchase pork tenderloin and NOT pork loin they are not the same. If you use pork loin, your pork wont be done cooking in the allotted time or emerge nearly as juicy.
- Cut of Meat:
- Pork tenderloin comes from theloin of the pig, which runs from the hip to the shoulder.
- Pork loin, however, comes from the back of a pig and is much wider and longer.
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How Do You Know When Pork Tenderloin Is Done
My #1 tip for cooking this perfect pork tenderloin recipe in the oven is to buy a meat thermometer! Even better, if you can buy an in-oven thermometer that will beep as soon as the pork reaches the desired temperature, you will have perfect pork every time. I frequently use my in-oven thermometer for pork loin and tenderloin, chicken breast, and roasting whole chickens and can’t recommend it enough!
Oven Baked Pork Tenderloin
Easy Oven Baked Pork Tenderloin with veggies quick, effortless, easy and delicious one pot meal, what is perfect for a weeknight dinner. No marinating or pan searing involved in this simple recipe. Pork tenderloin is perfect for low-carb and Keto diets.
Roasting pork tenderloin in the oven at high temperature is one of the fastest and easiest ways to prepare it and it produces juicy and perfectly cooked meat. This oven baked pork tenderloin recipe requires no marinating, simple seasoning and the best part is that you can roast some veggies with and meat together for the ultimate sheet pan meal.
Unlike my popular Roasted Pork Tenderloin Recipe, which combines searing of the pork tenderloin on the stove top and then finishing cooking it in the oven, todays recipe is made exclusively in the oven.
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Pork Tenderloin Cooking Temp
Pork tenderloin should be cooked for a short time in a hot oven to prevent it from drying out.
Bake pork tenderloin in a 400 degree Fahrenheit oven for 20-25 minutes. The exact cooking time will depend on the size of the tenderloins and how long you seared them. For the best results, use an instant-read thermometer and remove the pork from the oven when it reaches 145 degrees.
READ MORE: Primavera Pork Tenderloin
Today’s Pork Is Leaner Than Ever
Modern pork is much leaner than it was in decades past, making it much more prone to drying out if it’s overcooked. Even so, people kept right on cooking their pork to 160 F, despite the fact that 160 F was always too high and trichinella had been wiped out in any case. It was just the way they’d always been told to cook pork. Additionally, the USDA continued to recommend cooking pork to a minimum internal temperature of 160 F.
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Pork Loin Recipe Ingredients
- Pork Loin: You can use a 3 4 lb loin here. 3 lbs will bake closer to the lesser time the 4 lb closer to the greater time.
- Olive oil: Youll need this to sear the roast and coat the garlic and herbs.
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper: Table salt or kosher salt work well. I like a fair amount of pepper with pork.
- Thyme, rosemary and sage: Fresh are best but dried will work fine too. You can look for a package of fresh poultry herbs which should have a blend of the three herbs.
- Garlic: Use fresh garlic for best flavor.
- Lemon zest or orange zest: This is an optional ingredient for a little extra flavor.
- Butter: Olive oil will work fine too. This is just used to make the roux for the gravy.
- Flour: This helps thicken the gravy.
- Low-sodium chicken broth: Needed for base for the gravy to add some extra flavor and moisture to the pork. Dont sub water.
- Heavy cream: This is completely optional. It just adds some extra creaminess to the gravy.
Scroll below for recipe with ingredient amounts and print option.
So What Are Company Potatoes Anyway
These potatoes are a combination of grated hashbrown-style potatoes, sharp cheddar cheese, made-from-scratch cream of chicken soup , sour cream and two important seasonings McCormick Garlic Powder and McCormick Onion Powder. These two spices are the key to super flavorful company potatoes! Theres a difference in quality when it comes to spices and thats why my mother always used McCormick red cap spices, and why I do too.
Thanksgiving dinner at my house just isnt complete without these potatoes and the only thing better than getting to have them once in November, is getting to have them twice! Hallelujah for Friendsgiving! Getting together with friends and sharing recipes from your home is what this holiday is all about and these Company Potatoes are what Ill be bringing this year and every year!
And now for the fun part share your favorite Thanksgiving or Friendsgiving dish with the hashtag #NoFlavorLikeHome on Instagram for the chance to win a prize pack of McCormick spices. You can also enter here: http://bit.ly/2APfUF2
Be sure to tag Creme de la Crumb on Instagram or Facebook l when you post a picture of your favorite recipe youre making for your holiday meal and use the hashtag #noflavorlikehome. Cant wait to see all of your tasty recipes!
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How To Cook Pork Tenderloin In The Oven
While we also love grilling pork tenderloin , today’s technique is dedicated to how to roast pork tenderloin in the oven, because it’s the most accessible cooking method year-round. Once you have marinated your pork tenderloin, it’s time to get cooking! Just follow the steps below to perfect pork tenderloin.
Tips For Baking The Best Pork Tenderloin
- Do not overcook it. As with any lean cut of meat, if it is overcooked, it will be dry. The key is to cook it to 145 degrees Fahrenheit and no more. The pork will be a tiny bit pink in the center and buttery soft.
- Use an instant-read meat thermometer. It’s an inexpensive kitchen tool that every kitchen should have. Using a thermometer will ensure that your meat is perfectly cooked.
- Sear the pork before you bake it. Taking the 6ish minutes to do this step will not only give it a beautiful color, but it also adds flavor and seals in the juices, so it stays more tender.
- Add a little liquid. We deglaze the searing pan with some beef stock and add this to the roasting pan. It adds a fantastic flavor and helps keep the tenderloin juicy.
- Pour a little apple cider vinegar over the pork. It will help tenderize the meat and give a delicious flavor to the sauce.
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How To Make Teriyaki Pork Tenderloin
Drizzle sauce over pork tenderloin and garnish with green onions and sesame seeds if desired.
KITCHEN TIP: When cooking meat, I recommend an instant-read thermometer. You can find them as low as $15. This will ensure that your meats are cooked to a safe temperature yet come out tender and juicy.
What Color Is Cooked Pork Tenderloin
*The USDA now recommends letting the tenderloin get to 145F and letting it rest at least 3 minutes. With a perfect pork tenderloin temperature of 145F, the meat will still be slightly pink in the middle.
I highly recommend a digital thermometer like this one will help you achieve the perfect doneness.
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How Can You Tell If Pork Tenderloin Is Done Without A Thermometer
Although thermometers are the best way to determine if your pork is done cooking, you can gauge the doneness of pork by the color of the juices that come out of it when you poke a hole in it with a knife or fork. If the juices that come out of the pork run clear or are very faintly pink, the pork is done cooking.
How To Make The Gravy
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Give This A Try And See Why It Is The Best Pork Tenderloin Recipe
Recipes like this one allow me to cook delicious dinners for my family and also guests without breaking the bank. I keep these recipes on the regular rotation and its so nice knowing I have easy recipes to rely on.
It sure keeps us from getting take out in a pinch. I try to pick up several pork tenderloins when they go on sale.
I love being able to pull something out of the freezer knowing I got a great deal. This is how I keep our grocery budget reasonable.
By shopping when things are on sale I save money on groceries and it really helps our budget.
In fact, I cut our grocery bill by 50% off by following these 8 Tips for for Saving Money on Groceries by Menu Planning! Save that money for a family vacation or maybe just some wiggle room in the budget.
Its so nice saving money and serving a meal that the entire family will enjoy. Plus, it does not require hours in the kitchen.
How To Cook Pork Tenderloin
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.
This tender roasted Pork Tenderloin recipe is so simple to prepare and incredibly tender, juicy and delicious!
Pork tenderloin is lean, healthy and becomes fork-tender when roasted in the oven with just a little bit of seasoning.
A delicious main dish alongside is fast enough to make on a busy weeknight and elegant enough to serve to guests at a dinner party!
Thank you to our friends at the National Pork Board for sponsoring this post!x
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Make A Quick Pan Sauce
For the juiciest pork tenderloin, make a quick pan sauce. To do this, using the same skillet you cooked the pork in, add about 3/4 cup of liquid. You could use apple cider , wine, chicken stock, vegetable stock or even beef broth. Cook that liquid until reduced by half then swirl in a tablespoon of butter.
How Do You Keep Pork Loin From Drying Out
Although potentially daunting due to the need to thoroughly cook pork to avoid the parasite Trichinosis, the secret to preparing loin roasts is to take the time for slow cooking with a bit of liquid to keep the meat moist. Cooking pork loin in aluminum foil adds an extra layer of protection to keep it from drying out.
Tips For The Best Pork Tenderloin Recipe
Brining pork tenderloin is the first step to achieve the best pork but it also gets help from some other key steps. Here is how you make the juiciest oven baked pork tenderloin:
- Sear before baking: searing the pork creates the Maillard reaction resulting in rich, deep, complex flavor and locks in the juices which prevents the surface of the tenderloin from becoming dehydrated when cooked at high heat or for an extended period of time.
- Drizzle with lemon juice: in this oven baked pork tenderloin recipe, we drizzle each tenderloin with 1 tablespoon lemon juice. The lemon juice brightens the flavors without tasting too lemony. You can also swap the lemon juice for orange juice or lime juice any citrus will do. The acid from the lemon juice breaks down the meat while it roasts, yielding a more tender result.
- Bake in foil: before we pop the pork tenderloin into the oven, we wrap it tightly in foil. This creates a hot steaming environment that locks in all the juices so the surface doesnt dry out.
- Butter: the three pads of butter on top of the pork melt as the pork bakes, essentially self-basting the pork in buttery moisture. The foil also traps the butter so it seeps back into the pork as it sits in the buttery pool.
- Dont overcook: Ive gone into greater detail below, but because pork is so lean, it can dry out very easily if overcooked. Use your meat thermometer and check your pork right at 15 minutes then every few minutes as needed to achieve the correct temperature.
Can Pork Tenderloin Be A Little Pink
The short answer is definitely YES!
When roasting this lean cut, youll want to be sure your pork tenderloin temp is at a tender 145° F.
This is the optimal temperature for a tender juicy meal. Your pork may have a little bit of pink in the middle.
Always remember to rest your meat for about 5 minutes before cutting it. Properly cooked and rested tenderloin will be juicy and fork tender!
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Now That You Know How To Cook Pork Tenderloin In Oven With Foil Try These Tips:
We use heavy duty foil to line the baking pan. It makes clean up super easy and just make the entire process so much simpler.
It saves a ton of time and dont we all need to save time? I highly recommend using heavy duty foil.
It holds up better to baking and is much stronger and thicker than traditional foil. Dont even mess with the cheap stuff.
You can also sit the baking pan on a baking sheet to catch any spills for easy clean up.
Also, we like to dip the pork tenderloin in more barbecue sauce. Its totally optional but something we just love.
If you are the same way, make sure you to leave some out for dipping. I use a small ramekin for the sauce and it keeps everything mess free.
How Long To Cook Pork Tenderloin/pork Tenderloin Temperature
This pork tenderloin recipe takes about 20-25 minutes to cook in the oven at 400° F. The cook time will depend on how much you brown the pork in the skillet and also the thickness/size of your pork tenderloin. Brush the pork with the glaze when it has just a few minutes left in the oven.
According to the USDA, pork tenderloin should be cooked to at least 145° F and then allowed to rest for 3 minutes before serving. At 145° F, pork may be a little pink in the center. If you like your pork more well done you can cook it to 155° F. Use an instant read thermometer to test the meat for doneness.
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Cooking Pork Tenderloin On The Grill
Cooking pork tenderloin on the grill is similar to the stovetop and oven method detailed above in that you will sear the tenderloin on the outside on high heat and then cook it on the cooler side of the grill.
- If using a gas grill, preheat it to medium-high heat with one side cooler than the other
- If using a charcoal grill, build a two-zone fire with 75 percent of your coals in one area and the rest next to it.
- Rub olive oil all over the outside and then season the tenderloin with whatever you desire.
- Sear the tenderloin on all sides for a minute or two on the hot part of the grill and then move it to the cool side. Insert an oven-safe meat thermometer probe into the tenderloin, making sure to keep the probe and the cord away from the heat and off the grill grates. Set your temperature alert for 138 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Pull the tenderloin off the heat at 138 degrees Fahrenheit and let it rest for 5 minutes. Slice and serve.