Only 5 simple ingredients and done in less than 30 minutes. Tender and juicy on the inside, with a flavorful seared outside.
This dish is so easy and has tons of flavor. It’s one of our favorites! For more pork recipes, check out my 3-ingredient kalua pork, slow cooker sweet pork tacos and pan roasted herbed pork tenderloin.
Pork tenderloin is one of our favorite weeknight dinners. It’s super simple to cook and has amazing flavor. Plus it’s ready in less than 30 minutes, which is always a win in my book.
I love to sear the meat on the stove first, giving the outsides a nice golden color before going in the oven. Then it continues cooking in the oven until it’s perfectly tender and juicy.
You can serve as-is, or make a simple apricot sauce to pair with it. Then don’t forget the yummy side dishes, like green beans or mashed potatoes. So delicious and comforting!
Pork loin vs. pork tenderloin
Although they are often confused for each other, the two types of meat are actually different cuts. Tenderloin is smaller and more narrow, usually weighing in about 1 to 1 1/2 pounds. The pork loin is a bigger and more thick cut of pork, typically as wide as a steak.
Different cooking methods are also used for the two cuts of meat. Pork tenderloin tends to cook much faster than pork loin, so it’s usually seared on high heat. Pork loin is often slow cooked or grilled.
I like to keep it really simple when seasoning my meat. You could always add in extra spices, but below is my favorite blend.
- Kosher salt
- Black pepper
- Italian seasoning
- Rosemary sprigs (optional)
TIP: If you let this rub sit on the meat for 5 or 10 minutes before cooking, it gives the salt time to soften and really flavor the meat.
Cooking time and temperature
How long to cook in the oven at 400ºF? Because you’re searing the sides of the meat first, it only needs to cook in the oven at 400ºF for about 13-15 minutes.
What temp should it be cooked to? I remove my meat from the oven once it’s reached an internal temperature of 145ºF on my meat thermometer. It may look a little pink, but as long as it’s 145ºF then it’s ready. It will also continue to cook as it rests.
How to cook pork tenderloin
Step 1: Rub seasoning on tenderloin
Mix together salt, Italian seasoning and black pepper in a small bowl. Rub mixture over pork and let sit for a few minutes.
Step 2: Brown pork in skillet
Heat an oven-proof skillet over medium-high heat. Add pork and cook until golden brown all over (turning occasionally), about 6-8 minutes total. Then place pan in oven. Add fresh rosemary sprig on top if desired.
Step 3: Bake in oven
Bake uncovered at 400ºF for 13-15 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the pork has reached 145ºF. Then carefully remove from oven with an oven mitt (the handle of the pan will be hot!).
Step 4: Let rest, then slice
Transfer pork to a cutting board and tent with foil. Let rest 5-10 minutes, then slice. Serve and enjoy!
Below are a few sides and sauces that taste delicious with this dish.
- Green beans
- Instant pot mashed potatoes
- Roasted red potatoes
- Oven roasted vegetables
- Rice pilaf
- Dinner rolls
- Garlic mashed red potatoes
- Mac and cheese
- A-1 sauce
- Apricot sauce (instructions below)
- BBQ sauce
Instructions for apricot sauce: Heat chicken broth, apricot jam and a rosemary sprig over medium-heat in a pan. Simmer about 4 to 6 minutes. Slice tenderloin and serve with sauce. Garnish with rosemary if desired.
More main dish meals:
- 5-Ingredient Pot Roast
- How to Cook Steak in the Oven
- One-Hour Oven Roasted Chicken
- Easy Meatloaf Recipe
- Slow Cooker Beef Stroganoff
- Easy Homemade Meatballs
Pork Tenderloin Recipe
Optional: rosemary sprigs
- Preheat oven to 400ºF. Combine salt, Italian seasoning and black pepper. Rub all over tenderloin and let sit for a few minutes.
- Heat an oven-proof skillet over medium-high heat. Add tenderloin and cook, turning occasionally, until golden brown all over, about 6-8 minutes total. Transfer pan to the oven and top with rosemary if desired.
- Bake uncovered for 13-15 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the pork is 145ºF. Remove from oven, being careful of the hot pan handle. Transfer tenderloin to a cutting board and tent with foil. Allow to rest 5-10 minutes.
- Slice tenderloin and serve with sauce if desired.
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
- 1/2 cup apricot jam
- Rosemary sprig