Pork is my least favorite protein (let’s face it – nothing beats a juicy rib-eye – if you are into meat, that is). But a pork tenderloin cooked properly can be a very nice change of pace from chicken or beef. My challenge was cooking it properly.

Pork Tenderloin

There were MANY times I would pop a tenderloin into the oven, roast it for 20-25 minutes thinking it was cooked through only to find out the middle was almost raw. (Yes, I’ve had my share of kitchen failures. Ask GFB about the red beans and rice I made once.) We also tried the grill a couple of times, but same issue. Then, I ran across the most bazaar but full-proof way to cook a tenderloin. Trust me – it works.

Perfect Pork Tenderloin

  • Determine exact weight of your pork. Most tenderloins will have the weight printed on the wrapper. (I typically use a 1.5-2lb tenderloin that is no more than 2.5 inches in diameter.)
  • Preheat oven to 500-550 degrees. (Yea, I know it’s hot. On my oven – it’s the “broil” setting…)
  • Line baking dish with aluminum foil and spray with a non-stick cooking spray. (This just makes clean up MUCH easier.)
  • Remove the pork from the package and season with your favorite herbs or spices. (I normally use S&P along with some Rosemary, but you could use any seasoning blend you prefer.)
  • Place tenderloin (uncovered) in the oven and bake for EXACTLY 5 1/2 minutes per pound.  For a 2lb. roast, you would cook for 11 minutes.
  • Once the time has elapsed, turn off the oven and DO NOT open the oven door for ONE HOUR. This allows the roast to continue to cook without the direct heat.
  • After one hour, remove the pork from the oven and let rest on the counter for 5-10 minutes. As Alton Brown taught us from the many segments on Good Eats, this allows the juices to redistribute.
After the 5-10 minutes, slice and top  with your favorite cranberry sauce, gravy or bbq sauce.
NOTE: This recipe does depend on the accuracy of your oven and how well it retains heat. I was lucky; the first time I tried the recipe on my 500degree oven, it worked PERFECT. You *might* have to adjust your settings slightly if you don’t achieve the desired doneness.
I, like many of you will, read the recipe and said to myself “Hell no that isn’t going to work.” Then read the more than 170 reviews from a website that posted about it and almost every one said “Oh hell yes it does.” (Ok, not in those words – but you get the idea.)

Try it out – and let me know what you think.

Happy Cooking~



Originally posted on food.com

59 Responses to How to cook the PERFECT Pork Tenderloin

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  2. Robert Kelley says:

    Just tried it. The best!
    It was wonderful.

  3. diane Robb says:

    ok, I am trying this for the first time, will let you now how it comes out! I LOVE pork loin and have done it in the crockpot, hopefully this done in the oven is great!

  4. Allaina says:

    My oven is old and won’t heat all the way up to 500 degrees… My oven thermometer says just over 450 degrees. Will this still work if I add a few more minutes to the cooking time?

  5. DJM says:

    I am cooking 2 roasts, each about 2.6 lbs. They are starting from a frozen state. How should I adjust the cooking times? I’ll be using a convection oven. Thank you!

  6. Melinda says:

    I have made this many times and for me it takes less time. I cook a 1.25lb for 5 min at 500 degrees and then turn off oven and leave in for only 40 minutes more to get the perfect tenderloin.

  7. Holly says:

    Ok…So, I dont know if I would have done this if it werent for the reviews. I found this great recipe for cumin and paprika rub and then serve with a Chimichurri. I already made the Chimichurri and the rub was all ready but I really wasnt going with the description of how I was supposed to cook tenderloin. This was a birthday dinner and I didnt want to ruin it. I found your site and decided to go for it. I live in an apartment in San Francisco so I have an apartment size oven. I cooked my 1.3 lb. tenderloin at 500 for 7 min turned it off and let my tenderloin cook for 40 min. in the oven till I checked it with a thermometer. (didnt want to overcook it in my tiny oven) It was perfect!!!!! Literally the best tenderloin I ever made!!!

  8. Amy Tucker says:

    I’ve made 7 this way & all but 1 turned out perfect & juicy toss well. Easiest & best way to cook pork tenderloin. Thanks


    I cant wait until tonight to try this out…. I LUV your communication style!!!!!!

  10. d says:

    Shasta be a b!!!!

  11. Simon says:

    We regularly use this for a 4-5 lb pork loin. It works perfectly and the family loves it.

  12. Kim says:

    I’ll admit I was skeptical about this. But my tenderloin turned out PERFECT! I used the convection option on my oven as well. So easy and very juicy! Thank you!!

  13. Alice Stapleton says:

    Do you use the same formula for cooking 2 tenderlions in the same roasting pan

  14. Samantha says:

    Hello, how does this work in a new convection oven? When the oven turns off, the fan for the convection keeps running for a while after, will this affect the temp? I had mine in for 45 minutes and the oven temp was down to 266 degrees, is that normal heat loss or was it losing heat too quickly?

    • Angelica Pickels says:

      I have a convection oven as well and tried this cooking method with a 1.5 lb pork tenderloin. I cooked the meat at 500 degrees for 8 minutes, turned the oven off and let it sit in the oven for 1 hour.
      It was the most juicy, well cooked tenderloin I have ever cooked!!!
      Does this method work with other meats?

  15. Pam says:

    I cooked my tenderloin last night and it came out beautifully. I had a 2.65 lb piece, rubbed it in olive oil seasoned with kosher salt & cracked pepper,thyme and rosemary. placed in roasting pan, surrounded by red potatoes, carrots and celery seasoned with rosemary and olive oil. Placed in over at 500 degrees for 14 minutes then turned oven off and kept in oven for exactly one hr. Came out perfect and served with cranberry sauce. Yum!

  16. Susan says:

    It was great
    Thank you

  17. Linda says:

    Would you comment on how to judge the time it will take to roast more than one pork tenderloin at a time in the same roasting pan?
    Thank you!

  18. lorene says:

    I am going to try this!!! Just searched for a recipe that can be done in an hour and leave the pork tenderloin juicy! So I am going to give it a shot!! And as for Shasta and his/her comment about your writing – leave it!! I like it when people write how they talk, you don’t need any tools to create a readable friendly post – it’s perfect!!! 🙂 Thanks for the recipe and I’ll let you know how mine turns out!!

  19. Pat says:

    I was looking for a recipe for a pork loin roast for my husband and I tonight. This was the first recipe I saw and said what the hey, I want to try this. It just seemed too good to be true, well guess what it was delicious. The roast came out great and melts in your mouth. Thank you for sharing.

  20. Sue Zee says:

    I have used this recipe for my Pork Tenderloins for years now. And as you said…’Hell yes, it does work’. You just have to be sure that your oven doesn’t have a heat vent fan that cools your oven immediately after you shut it off. Most newer ovens do have this fan.
    I have also used this time/temp recipe for beef roasts as well.
    The main thing is to not open the oven door for at least 1hr-1hr45-minutes.
    The meat turns out juicy & so tender that you’ll never want to make another roast any other way.
    Thanks for the article..

  21. Melissa says:

    This was fantastic! Made it tonight and it was so juicy and tender. I did my oven at 500° and it came out just perfect!

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