Pork tenderloin can be grilled in 15 minutes. This healthy, easy grilling recipe will make your meat fork tender, with a sizzling taste, and is foolproof.
Pork tenderloin is one of my favorite meat cuts to feed my family. Pork tenderloin is not only inexpensive but also versatile. It rivals filet-mignon when it comes to being fork-tender, especially if grilled.
Grilled pork tenderloin is an absolute slam-dunk. The pork tenderloin is unbelievably delicious and juicy. This pork tenderloin is foolproof and ready in under 15 minutes.
Grilled Pork Tenderloin
How do I love you, grilled pork tenderloin? How do I love you? This is…
- Foolproof. Whether you are a grilling novice or an expert, this recipe works. It works every time. The outside is sizzling, and the inside is juicy and tender.
- Fork-tender. As a child, I had to cook my pork roast to 160 degrees to make it “shoe leather.” Since then, the USDA has updated its guidelines, and pork tenderloins only need to be cooked until they reach an internal temperature of about 145 degrees. This makes them juicy, tender, and mouthwatering.
- Affordable. Pork tenderloin is available at my grocery store for $3.99/lb. I can feed my family comfortably with about 1 1/2 lbs. This is a great dinner option when paired with grilled vegetables like zucchini or asparagus.
- Simple! There’s no need to marinate first. Just season the tenderloin with your favorite seasonings and then grill it. Grilling a pork tenderloin with a dry rub is much easier than using flavored marinades like honey, brown sugar, or maple syrup. You can add sweetness to the grilled tenderloin by adding a sauce.
Pork Tenderloin vs. Pork Loin
It’s important to know that pork TENDERLOIN and pork LOIN are different.
- Pork tenderloin: this is a lean cut of pork meat that comes from the muscle along the backbone of an animal.
- Pork loin: This cut is from the back and is more extensive. This is usually slow-cooked as a whole roast.
While you can grill pork loin, the thickness and size of this cut would require lower heat and a longer cooking time than tenderloin.
Perfect Grilled Pork Tenderloin: The Secret to Perfect Grilled Pork Tenderloin
Are you ready? Are you ready?
Then, move the tenderloin to the indirect side to finish cooking.
Grilled Pork Tenderloin Tips
- Prepare the grill. Be sure that your grill is screamingly hot before you start cooking. I heat mine to 450 and 500 degrees before creating the two heat zones.
- Keep the lid closed. This is so important! Keep the grill lid closed between flipping the pork tenderloin. The indirect heat side of the grill relies on the direct heat side to create an oven-like atmosphere inside the grill. If the lid stays open, you’ll lose all your heat.
- Use a digital thermometer. Although it’s on the spendy side, we love this digital thermometer and have used the same one for years. It’s held up and is incredibly accurate.
- Let the meat rest. This is another Top Tip for perfect grilled pork tenderloin — let the meat rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing into it; otherwise, the juices will run out everywhere, and you’ll have dry pork.
I like to slice the grilled pork into 1/2” thick slices; honestly, they’re fork-tender. If we’re making pork sandwiches, I’ll cut the tenderloin into thin pieces and then pile them onto buns. Either way, you can go right with this recipe — try it once, and you’ll make it again, and again, and again!
How to Grill Pork Tenderloin
Step 1: Prepare the Pork Tenderloin
Start by trimming a 1-1/2lb pork tenderloin of any silver skin or membranes, then brush it all over with extra virgin olive oil or vegetable oil and sprinkle on your desired seasonings.
I typically go with my homemade seasoned salt, which contains garlic, onion powders, salt, paprika, and pepper, though you can use whatever seasonings you like.
Step 2: Prepare the Grill
Heat your grill until it reaches between 450 and 500 degrees. If you’re using a gas grill, that’s all burners blazing! This could take up to 10 minutes.
This is an XL Big Green Egg; we use their natural hardwood charcoal.
Step 3: Prepare the Two Zones
Once the grill is hot, scoot the charcoal over to one side of the grill if using a charcoal grill.
If using a gas grill, turn half or one-third of the burners (depending on how many burners you’ve got) to low.
Step 4: Grill the Pork Tenderloin
- Place the pork tenderloin on the direct heat side of the grill, then grill for 1-1/2 minutes on all four sides (envision the pork tenderloin as being rectangular and not circular), keeping the lid closed between turning.
- Move the tenderloin to the indirect heat side of the grill, then grill for 4 minutes on each of the two larger sides (you will sear on four sides in step 1 above, but two sides will end up being fatter/flatter) or until an instant-read thermometer or meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the tenderloin reads 145 degrees. Again, keep the lid closed between flipping.
How Long Does it Take to Grill the Pork Tenderloin?
Between the searing step, which takes 6 minutes total (1-1/2 minutes on each of the four sides), and the indirect cooking step, which takes 8 minutes (4 minutes on each of the larger two sides), you should have perfectly grilled pork tenderloin in 14 minutes!
Step 5: Let the Pork Tenderloin Rest
Remove the pork tenderloin from the grill, then place it on a platter or cutting board (something with a lip to catch any juices that naturally seep out) and let it rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing.
I usually use that time to grill sliced zucchini, asparagus, or corn on the cob. Thanks to the grill — dinner’s done! I call dish duty!
Serve the grilled pork tenderloin with BBQ sauce, Bachan’s Japanese BBQ Sauce, chimichurri sauce, or…ketchup if you’re my 6-year-old. 😉
Store any leftover pork tenderloin in an airtight container or wrapped in foil in the fridge for 3-4 days. It is truly delicious cold, so I usually eat the slices from the refrigerator. Otherwise, you can reheat it in the Air Fryer or microwave.
Chop leftover grilled pork tenderloin, then add to Easy Fried Rice, Thai Crunch Salad, Cauliflower Fried Rice, BBQ Cheddar Quesadillas, or enchiladas. It can replace chicken as a protein in almost any meal.
However you serve it, I hope you LOVE this easy, delicious, economical, foolproof grilled pork tenderloin recipe! Enjoy!
Grilled Pork Tenderloin
- 1-1/2lb pork tenderloin (NOT pork loin), trimmed
- extra virgin olive oil or vegetable oil
- Seasonings: salt, pepper, garlic powder, steak rub, etc.
- Heat the grill on high until it reaches b50-500 degrees, then create two heat zones — a direct and a direct heat side. If using a charcoal grill, scoot the charcoal over to one side of the grill. If using a gas grill, turn half or 1/3 of the burners low. Please read the post above in its entirety for tips on two-zone grilling.
- Rub or brush the pork tenderloin with oil, then season with desired seasonings. Add pork to the direct heat side of the grill, then grill for 1-1/2 minutes on all four sides (envision the pork tenderloin as being rectangular vs circular) for 6 minutes. Keep the lid closed between flipping.
- Move the pork tenderloin to the indirect heat side of the grill, then grill for 4 minutes on each of the two larger sides, for eight more minutes, or until an instant-read thermometer or meat thermometer reads 145 degrees. Keep the lid closed between flipping.
- Let pork rest for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.
- Leave a comment and star rating if you loved the recipe! Thank you for considering!
- I don’t recommend marinating the pork in anything containing sugars (honey, brown sugar, maple syrup, etc.) as it will burn while searing the outside of the pork.