Roast pork tenderloin with a savory balsamic glaze looks elegant on the Christmas table and tastes even better. This recipe will steal the holiday show.
Pork tenderloin is a great choice for the holiday dinner. It’s a lean cut of meat, but provides enough protein for any eating plan.
The balsamic glaze keep the tenderloin moist and infused with a rich flavor. This recipe is gluten free, keto and Whole30 friendly and low carb. It’s a great way to ensure all your guests can eat the main dish and enjoy the holiday celebration.
What is a pork tenderloin?
In this recipe, we are cooking a pork tenderloin, not the loin. While it sounds confusing, these are two different cuts of meat. A pork loin is wide and thick. It’s basically a giant pork chop.
A pork tenderloin is long and narrow. It’s a very delicate muscle that runs along the back of the pig. It’s not used for movement so it never gets tough. It’s one of the most tender cuts of pork you can purchase.
Tenderloins sometimes have a tough silverskin when you buy them. This should be removed before cooking.
What temperature should I cook roast pork tenderloin?
You will cook your roast pork tenderloin at 350F. It will take about an hour to cook a two pound tenderloin at this temperature. If your tenderloin is a different size, you want to plan 25-30 minutes of cooking time per pound.
You know that it is completely cooked when the interior temperature is 145F. At that temperature it will be medium rare, but it will continue to cook as it sits for 15 minutes before serving. At the interior temperature of 165F, it will be cooked medium.
Do you cook it covered or uncovered?
A common problem with pork is shrinkage, especially when baking. This is a sign that the pork is losing moisture to the heat in the oven. After an hour of cooking, the pork could be quite dry.
To prevent this, you can take several precautionary measures:
- Cover your pork tenderloin with foil or a lid. This will preserve the juicy flavor of the meat.
- The salt you use on the pork before baking it will also help seal in the moisture.
- The juices that end up at the bottom of the pan is moisture that the meat has lost during cooking. Half way through the cooking time, baste your meat by spooning this juice back on top of the tenderloin.
The only negative of covering the pork is that it will not develop the brown crust that it would if uncovered in the oven. To solve this problem, I suggest browning it on the stove before putting it in the oven. This step is not necessary, but it does improve the flavor and appearance of the tenderloin.
More Pork Recipes to try:
Balsamic Roast Pork Tenderloin
- 2 lb pork tenderloin roast
- salt and fresh black pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 tablespoons butter - use ghee for Whole30.
- 4 cloves garlic - minced
- 3 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon dried herb mix - basil, Italian seasoning, oregano and/or thyme
- Garnish with rosemary
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Rinse and pat dry pork tenderloin, and then season with salt and pepper.
- Heat olive oil in an oven-safe skillet on medium-high heat. Heat for about 1 minute. Sear the pork loin on the sides until a brown crust forms. It should be 1 minute each side. Set aside.
- Remove the pan from the heat and add butter and garlic. Stir for about 30 seconds.
- Add balsamic and all the dried herb mix. Stir the sauce for 1 minute or until the butter is completely melted.
- Bring the pork tenderloin back to the skillet and spoon some sauce over it.
- Cover the pork tenderloin with foil and roast for 30 minutes. Remove foil, spoon more sauce on top of the pork loin, over it again with foil and cook for 30 minutes more or until it gets the interior temperature of 145°F.
- Remove from oven, cover it with foil to let it rest for about 15 minutes.
- Slice thin and garnish with rosemary.
If you make this recipe, follow @primaverakitchen on Instagram, snap a photo and hashtag it #primaverakitchen. I'd love to see what you're making!