How To Roast Pork Loin Perfectly

A delicious method for roasting pork loin that is juicy in the middle and brown and crusty on the outside.

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, you’d 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.

First, just to be clear, I’m talking about pork loin today, not about pork tenderloin. These are different things. If you’d like to know how to prepare pork tenderloin, head here:

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Now onto the loin!

Like with the roasted pork butt, I use the final-sear method that I first learned from roasting prime rib according to Serious Eats’ instructions. Basically, you put the roast into a moderate or low oven (I used 350°F for the pork loin). You take it out when it reaches the correct temperature (135-145°F for pork loin) and let it rest for a good 30 minutes. Finally, you crank up the oven really high (475°F) and give the roast a last blast in there for 10 minutes to brown and crisp up the outside of the roast. Then you carve it immediately and serve. Pretty cool, right?

So that’s what we’re going to do. Here are the step-by-step instructions for roasting pork loin:

Step#1:

Preheat oven to 350°F. Mix together 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder and 1/4 teaspoon salt.

Step#2:

Sprinkle it all over the pork loin roast.

 

Step#3:

Rub it all over until it’s coated.

Step#4:

Put the roast on a rack in a roasting pan. If you don’t have a rack that fits in your roasting pan, use 3 stalks of celery like this:

Step#5:

Put the roast into the oven.

Step#6:

Roast until the internal temperature is between 145-160°F. Some people like their pork really well cooked. If that’s you, then go with the 160° temperature. If you prefer it very slightly pink at the center, then go with 145°. For a 3-5 lb. roast, this will be 20-25 minutes per pound. (I actually take mine out at 135°F-140°F but that isn’t recommended to be safe. The 145°F temperature and the 20-25 minutes per pound are recommended to be safe and are the correct times and temperatures according to the the National Pork Board.

Step#7:

Cover roasting pan with foil and let rest for 30 minutes.

Step#8:

Heat oven up to 475°F. Uncover roast and remove the thermometer. Put it into a clean pan and roast for another 10 minutes.

 

Step#9:

Use those 10 minutes to make gravy, if desired. If you got nice roasting juices in your first roasting pan, then here is how to make a basic gravy using those drippings. If you didn’t get juices, then here is how to make gravy without drippings.

Remove roast from oven and serve immediately.

 

Here are the printable instructions for roasting pork loin:

Roast Pork Loin

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 3-5lb. pork loin roast
  • 3 ribs celery (optional)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Mix together black pepper, garlic powder and salt. Rub it all over pork.
  3. Put the roast on a rack in a roasting pan. If you don't have a rack use 3 stalks of celery lying side by side.
  4. Roast until internal temperature is between 145-160°F, 20-25 minutes per pound.
  5. Cover roasting pan with foil and let rest for 30 minutes.
  6. Heat oven to 475°F. Uncover roast and remove the thermometer. Put roast into a clean pan and roast for another 10 minutes.
  7. Carve and serve immediately.
A delicious method for roasting pork loin that is juicy in the middle and brown and crusty on the outside.

21 Responses to “How To Roast Pork Loin Perfectly”

  1. Joscelyn — April 12, 2018 @ 10:14 am (#)

    With such great reviews, I’m going to try this receipt out tonight with with my family!! I’ll let you know how it turns out.

  2. Tricia Strahan — April 8, 2018 @ 11:57 am (#)

    In the photos the roast is tied but that’s not in the directions. Would you please add instructions for tying? Thanks.

    • Christine Pittman — April 12, 2018 @ 1:31 pm (#)

      Tricia, The roast came from the grocery store like that. This video shows how though.

  3. Patricia Roberts — March 30, 2018 @ 12:23 pm (#)

    Can you add a little olive oil all over to coat before cooking. This adds oil but also tenderizes. I do this with pork chops in the oven. It works.

    • Christine Pittman — March 30, 2018 @ 1:47 pm (#)

      Patricia, You can add it. I’m not sure if it will do much but worth a try. It won’t hurt anything for sure!

  4. Ruth A Reuter — March 27, 2018 @ 6:41 pm (#)

    Love this recipe! Have made it twice in the last few weeks!

    • Christine Pittman — March 28, 2018 @ 9:56 am (#)

      That’s fantastic, Ruth! So happy you like it!

  5. Dan Clark — March 26, 2018 @ 12:23 am (#)

    Made this for my husband and a guest last night, It was absolutely perfect!
    will be following more of your recipes.
    I also made some easy home made apple sauce to go with this, and some Smashed Roast Potatoes and broccolini.

    IT WAS DIVINE~!!!!

    • Christine Pittman — March 26, 2018 @ 1:49 pm (#)

      Dan, That sounds amazing! Thanks for sharing!

  6. Janice Ainsley — March 25, 2018 @ 5:33 pm (#)

    Absolutely wonderful. Have been looking for a good pork loin recipe and this is it!

    • Christine Pittman — March 26, 2018 @ 1:49 pm (#)

      Janice, Thank you! I’m so happy you liked it!

  7. Jaquie — February 24, 2018 @ 7:43 pm (#)

    Do you cover while baking ?

  8. Sheldon — January 16, 2018 @ 7:16 pm (#)

    Re:  John Martin or anyone cooking a day ahead and reheating. I have cooked and served tons of meat both professionally and socially. Cooking roasts be it pork, beef, or fowl the day before service has its pros and cons but to address your question of reheating I have found this. Carve it cold, let it come to room temp, then run it through warmed aujaus or gravy just before service. Absolutely do not put your roast back in the oven to cook unless you want the serve well done dried out meat. 

  9. john martin — January 7, 2018 @ 7:07 pm (#)

    Making this a day ahead as roasting the day of the dinner is not an option. Any special trick to reheating ?

    • Christine Pittman — January 15, 2018 @ 12:34 pm (#)

      Hi John, I answered this question in the comments above and am copying and pasting it here for you…”You can also make this roast a day ahead…roast it and then let it rest and then do the high heat step and then carve it and put it in the fridge, covered, for up to 24 hours. Then put the slices in a single overlapping layer on a baking sheet and add about 1/8 cup of water in drips all over. Cover with foil and heat at 300F until heated through, about 20 minutes. Serve. (You won’t have that crispy top but you will still have all the flavor).”

  10. john martin — January 7, 2018 @ 7:04 pm (#)

    Making this the night before, won’t be able to roast it the day of the dinner. Any suggestions on how to reheat it ?

  11. Bev Frey — January 4, 2018 @ 12:19 am (#)

    WOW! Just WOW! I made this for dinner tonight. I’ve never had such good pork roast. Excellent, easy recipe. And I don’t really like to cook – my grocery store had pork loin for $1.89/lb so I got two and was looking for something other than crock pot pulled pork. This was so yummy. Thanks for all the tips!

    • Christine Pittman — January 15, 2018 @ 12:37 pm (#)

      Bev, You’re welcome. I’m really happy you liked it and found the article helpful.

  12. Krista Matheson — November 20, 2017 @ 9:12 pm (#)

    Made this tonight. My husband declared it the best pork loin he’d ever had! It was very good. Moist and flavorful. Thanks!

    • Christine Pittman — December 8, 2017 @ 12:35 pm (#)

      Krista, yay! So happy you guys liked it. Thanks for letting me know :-).

  13. flickr.com — October 5, 2017 @ 11:51 am (#)

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