Try out this simple method for Baked Pork Tenderloin that is packed with big garlic and herb flavor.
While pork tenderloin is always tender, it’s so mild tasting that it often comes across as being bland. This can work in your favor, though, because the mild flavor of the pork allows any aromatics to shine through.
I’m going to share with you the easiest way to stuff pork with flavor. No need to butterfly and roll back up your tenderloin, like we do in this version with spinach and mushroom. We’re cutting slits all around the pork to pack big taste into this Baked Pork Tenderloin and then packing it with a compound butter.
What Should I Stuff Pork Tenderloin With?
There are dozens of combinations of aromatics that can be used, like:
- Pancetta or bacon and onion
- Honey, Dijon, and garlic
- Raspberry jam and shallot
- Mushrooms and sun-dried tomatoes
Garlic and herbs, however, is my favorite.
The herbs can be whatever you love. Here I’m using a combination of fresh parsley and rosemary, but you can use Herbs de Provence, tarragon, mint, oregano – anything you’d like – along with a lot of garlic. If you have leftover store-bought or homemade garlic butter, you can use that instead of making a new batch. Or, one of my favorite things lately is to put into the freezer any butter with toppings left from these butter boards, and then thaw them to use on meats like in the recipe below.
Seasoning the outside of the pork tenderloin will certainly help add more flavor, but to really get the most out of this cut of pork, the flavor has to penetrate below the surface. A brine could work well here, but it can take a long time. When you’ve got to get dinner on the table quickly, a better option is to create a minced herb and garlic mixture that is stuffed into small slits that have been cut all around the tenderloin.
Safety Tips For Stovetop To Oven
This recipe begins on the stovetop and finishes in the oven, all in one pan. And, if you’d like, the pan drippings can be made into a sauce after the pork comes out of the oven.
Some safety tips for cooking stovetop-to-oven and making a pan sauce afterward. Place the oven mitt on the handle of the hot pan after it comes out of the oven. This will prevent you from accidentally burning your hand while making the pan sauce if you go to grab the handle to move the pan during the cooking process.
The food-safe temperature for pork these days is 145°F, which is hot enough to kill any harmful pathogens without overcooking the meat. This temperature will leave the pork a little pink in the center, which is perfectly safe. However, if you prefer pork a little more well done without any pink, pork tenderloin is the perfect cut for you because it will still remain tender if you cook to 155°F.
Making The Garlic Herb Butter
A mini food processor or stick blender with a food processor attachment will cut your prep time in half when it comes to making the flavored butter for stuffing the pork tenderloin. If you do not have one, however, simply mince the garlic and herbs and stir them together with the butter, mustard, salt, and pepper.
Make the butter mixture and then set aside two tablespoons for stuffing into the pork tenderloin. The remaining butter mixture is for serving at the table.
How To Make Baked Pork Tenderloin With Garlic Butter
To stuff the pork tenderloin with the flavored butter mixture, cut shallow slits, about ¼-inch deep and ¼-inch long, 1-inch apart from each other, all over the top and bottom of the tenderloin using a paring knife. (As a reference, the top and bottom are the two long sides of the tenderloin.)
Use your index finger to widen each of the slits and then stuff a little bit of the butter mixture into each, filling them with as much as they will hold. Spread any butter that has remained on the surface of the tenderloin all around the outside of it.
Preheat the oven and heat olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat until it begins to shimmer in the pan. Add the tenderloin and brown on all sides, which will take about two to three minutes on each side.
Place the oven-safe skillet in the oven and bake for about 25 minutes, or until an instant-read thermometer registers 140°F when inserted into the thickest part of the tenderloin. Remove the skillet from the oven and transfer the tenderloin to a cutting board. As it rests, the internal temperature of the pork will rise to 145°F.
Meanwhile, heat the same skillet over medium-high heat, and add the remaining tablespoon of the mustard and the chicken broth. Stir vigorously, scraping up any browned bits on the bottom of the pan. Bring to boiling, then reduce to a simmer. The pan sauce will thicken slightly. You could also add ¼ cup of heavy cream at this point to make a mustard-cream sauce.
Slice the pork tenderloin into ½-inch medallions and serve immediately with the pan sauce and the remaining two tablespoons of the butter mixture. It’s so delicious.Print
Baked Pork Tenderloin With Garlic Butter
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Rest Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 25 minutes
- Total Time: 45 minutes
- Yield: 4 servings 1x
- Category: Entrée
- Method: Stovetop + Oven
- Cuisine: American
Listen to me explain briefly about how to make this pork, with some great tips along the way, by clicking the play button below:
- 4 Tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
- 2 Tbsp. grainy mustard, divided
- ¼ cup fresh parsley leaves
- 1 tsp. fresh rosemary leaves (optional)
- 5 garlic cloves, peeled
- ¾ tsp. salt, divided
- ¼ tsp. black pepper
- 1 (2 lb.) pork tenderloin
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- ½ cup low-sodium chicken stock
- In the bowl of a mini food processor* add butter, 1 tablespoon of the mustard, parsley, rosemary (if using), garlic, ½ teaspoon of the salt, and pepper. Cover and pulse on high until ingredients are well minced.
- Transfer 2 tablespoons of the butter mixture to a small bowl; set aside.
- Using a paring knife cut shallow, ¼-inch deep, ¼-inch long slits, about 1-inch apart, all over the tenderloin. Fill each of the slits with the reserved 2 tablespoons of the butter mixture.
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- In a 12-inch, oven-safe skillet heat olive oil over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add pork tenderloin to skillet. Cook 2 to 3 minutes each side or until lightly browned.
- Place skillet in oven. Bake 25 minutes or until an instant-read thermometer reaches 140°F when inserted into the thickest part of the tenderloin.
- Remove skillet from oven. Transfer tenderloin to a cutting board; let rest 10 minutes.
- Place skillet on burner. Add the remaining tablespoon of mustard and chicken stock, scraping up any browned bits on bottom of pan. Bring to boiling, reduce to a simmer. Simmer until sauce thickens, about 30 seconds.
- Slice pork tenderloin into ½-inch medallions; serve with pan sauce and remaining 2 tablespoons of the butter mixture.
*If you don’t have a mini food processor, the garlic and herbs can be minced using a knife and then in a small bowl, combined with the butter, mustard, salt, and pepper.
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