Happy first day of summer! It feels like it’s been the summer here for quite a few weeks already…the humidity is crazy, it didn’t rain for about two weeks, and bugs are everywhere. Yay Louisiana summer!
One of the great things about summer is that it’s grilling season. Man, I love grilled foods…the flavor…the pretty grill marks on food…the fact that I don’t do the grilling. Yeah…grilling outside is my husband’s thing. He’s great at it, and I don’t like dealing with fire.
We had a pork tenderloin in our fridge that I had other recipe plans for, but ultimately decided on grilling it, because it seemed quick/easy. This recipe is from Alton Brown, who has never steered me in the wrong direction. The marinade for the pork is flavorful and very simple to throw together. I was a bit worried with the addition of the chipotle pepper, but it just gave the pork a little bit of smokey flavor and heat. It was nothing over-bearing. I especially love that you just marinate the meat the day before, and the next day, just grill it. It’s perfect for a weeknight dinner!
The only thing we did differently is that once the grilling was done, we let it finish in the oven until it reached an internal temperature of 155 degrees. I know that 140 degrees is OK for pork (which is what Alton’s recipe is written for), but my preference is for the pork to be well-done.
Grilled Pork Tenderloin
Source: Alton Brown
- 1 whole pork tenderloin, appx. 1 pound
- 1 lime, zest finely grated
- 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 chipotle chile pepper in adobo sauce, chopped
- 1 tsp. vegetable oil
- 1 tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro
- Trim the fat and skin off of the pork tenderloin, and place it in a gallon ziploc bag. In a jar with a lid, add the lime juice, lime zest, honey, salt and garlic powder, and shake everything to combine. Add half of the marinade to the ziploc bag with the pork, as well as the chopped chipotle pepper, and seal the bag, making sure to remove as much air as possible. Place the bag in a container to catch any leaks, and allow the pork to marinate in the fridge for 24 hours (rotating the bag halfway through to make sure the marinade gets in on both sides). Place the rest of the marinade in the fridge for later use.
- Remove the tenderloin from the fridge, and allow it to sit at room temperature while the grill preheats. Also, remove the jar of marinade from the fridge. Preheat the grill to medium heat.
- Brush the grill area that you’ll be cooking on with the vegetable oil once it’s preheated. Remove the tenderloin from the bag, and place the pork in the center of the grill. You can discard the ziploc bag with the used marinade at this time. Cover and cook the pork for 12-15 minutes, turning every 2 minutes, until the pork reaches an internal temperature of 140 degrees. Move the tenderloin from the grill, and place it on a large piece of heavy-duty foil. Fold in the edges of the foil on the sides to create a packet, and pour in the reserved marinade. Wrap the top of the packet well.
- If you’d prefer the pork to be cooked more, place the foil packet in a preheated at 350 degrees oven, and let it finish cooking until it reaches 155 degrees (this took 7-10 minutes for us). Then, take it out of the oven, and allow it to rest for 10 minutes before serving. If you prefer the pork as it is, just allow it to rest in the foil packet for 10 minutes before serving.
- To serve, take the pork out of the foil, and garnish with cilantro. Then, slice the pork and enjoy!