Cooking with Lou

Grilled Pork Tenderloin

– Posted in: Pork

Don’t Put that Grill Away Yet: Try Grilled Pork Tenderloin

Fall, with the crisp air, blue skies,  cooler temperatures,  equals a spectacular time for grilling.  Grilled pork tenderloins and a side of spiced apples is the perfect combination for a cool fall evening.

Pork tenderloins usually are packaged two to a package. You can buy them already seasoned, but what’s the fun in that! You can always ask the butcher to cut you a whole one, if you don’t like the idea of prepackaged.

My method for preparing pork tenderloins is simple and mess free. Mess free makes me very happy. I use a dry marinade made of several spices that I think make the pork sing.


These measurements are approximate. You may need more or less depending on the size of your tenderloins.

  • 1 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh thyme OR basil (not both) If you are using dried, you will only need a teaspoon or 2.
  • 2 cloves fresh garlic, finely chopped
  • Several pinches of dry mustard (don’t substitute prepared mustard. If you don’t have dry mustard, skip this item.

For a  Mexican flair, substitute cumin for the dry mustard. A totally different flavor profile will emerge. If you like a hot spicy taste, add some quality chili powder, or some red pepper flakes, or chipotle powder. Be careful, chilpotle powder can be potent. A light sprinkle, unless you know your heat tolerance level.

If the tenderloins came two in a package, I’ll do one the more traditional pork seasoning method and the other, in a smokey Mexican style.


  1.  Remove the tenderloins from the fridge about an hour before you want to cook them. You need to bring them up to room temperature.
  2. Remove from packaging and using a paper towel remove excess liquid. Removing the liquid that ends up in the packaging enables the herbs and spices to stick to the meat. Let them sit, lightly covered for 15 to 30 minutes.
  3. If you are using fresh garlic and thyme or basil, finely chop each.
  4. Take a some plastic wrap or parchment paper and lay it out flat. Make sure the piece you is long enough to go around the tenderloin several times. I use a piece about 18 inches long.sprinkle spices
  5. Now, evenly sprinkle the salt and pepper, garlic, herbs and dry mustard over the plastic wrap.
  6. Roll the tenderloin over the seasonings. Roll back and forth until you have pretty much made all the roll tenderloin over the seasoningsseasonings stick to the meat.tightly wrapped tenderloin
  7. Now wrap the meat up in the plastic wrap and let sit for the remaining time (about 30 minutes).
  8. During this 30 minute wait, get your grill going. You want very hot coals.
  9. When your coals are red hot, place the tenderloins on the hottest part of the grill and sear them on all sides.
  10. When seared on all sides, move them to the outer edge of the coals and turn them every 2 to 3 minutes, to a different side. Since they’re round, a side is not a literal term. Just make sure you cook them evenly.
  11. When the internal temperature is 130 degrees, remove them from the grill.
  12. Wrap them securely in foil to rest.
  13. Let them rest for 5 – 10 minutes.
  14. Open the foil. Be careful, there will be juices inside the foil wrap. You can pour the juices into a bowl for serving as an au jus.grilled pork tenderloins
  15. Slice to serve. I like to slice about a 1/4 of an inch, but you can cut them much thicker.

Serve with your favorite sides. I like to add spiced apples to this meal. See recipe here.





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