Quick-cooking and delicious, this easy baked pork tenderloin recipe starts with a simple dry rub and delivers a delicious meal in just 30 minutes. Oven Roasted pork tenderloin is the perfect weeknight solution for an easy dinner recipe.
Cast Iron Skillet [See Note 1]
Digital Meat Thermometer [See Note 2]
1.5lbpork tenderloin(680 grams) [See Note 3]
1teaspoongarlic powderor granulated garlic
1/2teaspoonPaprikasweet, smoked, or regular.
1/4teaspooncayenne peppermore or less to taste
1teaspoonfine kosher saltor table salt, more or less to taste
1/2teaspoonground black peppermore or less to taste
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F / 204 degrees C.
Pat the tenderloin dry and cut off any large pieces of surface fat or silver skin covering the meat.
Mix all the spices in a small bowl. Rub the spice mix into the surface of the pork on all sides.
Place the skillet over medium-high heat and add the olive oil. When the pan is hot, add the pork in the pan, curving it to the shape of the pan if necessary. Cook the tenderloin 3-5 minutes to caramelize the top and then flip it and cook for another 3-5 minutes to caramelize the other side.
Remove the pan from the cooktop and place it into the preheated oven and continue to roast for another 15 minutes.
The pork is done when its internal temperature registers 145 degrees F (62.8 degrees C) in the thickest part of the meat. It is okay if the pork is a little pink inside as long as the correct temperature has been reached. [See Note 4]
Allow the meat to rest for about 5 minutes before slicing.
Serve meat as prepared or with a fresh chimichurri sauce. [See Note 5]
Serve with roasted fresh green beans (roasted in the same skillet), and quick-cooking steamed rice for an easy dinner.
Store leftovers in an air-tight container for up to 3 days in the refrigerator or freeze in a freezer-safe container or bag for up to 3 months.
Cast Iron Skillet - For this recipe, I use a 12-inch skillet. Cast iron absorbs, conducts, and retains heat very effectively. This creates the perfect crust on the outside of the tenderloin and this pan is also safe to go into the oven. If you do not have a cast-iron pan, stainless steel will work, too, but will not develop that incredible crust. Be sure any pan you use is oven safe and free of plastic handles.
Meat Thermometer: To have an accurate check on the doneness of your pork, I highly recommend investing in a quality digital cooking thermometer. These are very easy to use and ensure that your food is neither over or under-cooked.
Remote Digital Thermometer (affiliate link): I love this one because it can be used inside of the oven, grill, or smoker. You place the probe into the thickest part of the meat and close the door. It sends readings to the transponder so you know exactly the temperature without opening the oven door.
Digital kitchen thermometer (affiliate link): I find the digital series of thermometers much easier to use and more accurate than classic meat thermometers.
Pork loin and pork tenderloin are not cut from the same part of the animal, and in fact, look really different. Pork tenderloin is thin and small, while a pork loin roast (also called a tenderloin roast) is wide enough that you can cut steak-like pieces from it.
New pork cooking standards issued by the USDA say that it's fine for the pork to be a little pink inside, as long as it has reached the correct temperature in the thickest part of the meat. This new set of cooking temperatures was issued several years ago now and so it's become the new standard with pork.
Sauce for Pork Tenderloin - I suggest a chimichurri sauce. Chimichurri sauce is absolutely delicious with pork and would go perfectly with the dry rub we created for this dish.
According to current dietary guidelines, a serving of cooked lean pork is 2-3 ounces per person.
What's the best way to defrost Pork Tenderloin?
Refrigerator Thawing - Planning ahead is the key to this method because of the lengthy time involved. A pound of pork Tenderloin will require a full day to thaw. After thawing in the refrigerator, pork tenderloin should remain safe for an additional 3 to 5 days before cooking.
Cold Water Thawing - This method is faster than refrigerator thawing but requires more attention. Small packages of tenderloin should thaw in an hour or less.