Say goodbye to dry and tasteless pork! This Citrus Dijon Pork Tenderloin is ultra succulent and tender thanks to the easy orange juice-based marinade.
In our house, pork tenderloin is always adored but often forgotten. Every time we make it, it's cherished and disappears quickly. When it comes time to meal plan for the week, though, it almost never makes the list. I don't know if this is because I think of it mainly as a holiday dish or somewhere along the line got the impression that it's an expensive cut of meat. I do know, however, that this Citrus Pork Tenderloin recipe will be changing all of that for us. It's going to be showing up on our menu a lot more often now.
Aside from the flavor and how delicate the meat is, I realized that -- contrary to my previous notions -- the meat is pretty well priced for how lean and healthy of a cut it is.
Also, though the recipe calls for a marinade, it only takes 5 minutes to whip it up. Toss the pork in it before leaving for work in the morning and after a quick 30-35 minute bake in the evening, it's ready to go: producing the accomplishment of a holiday-worthy weeknight meal, making any weekday better.
This Citrus Dijon Pork Tenderloin is...
- A healthy everyday main dish
- An easy but impressive holiday recipe
- Perfect for the whole family
- Delicious for leftovers
- One of the most flavorful tenderloins I've ever had (seriously!)
- ... and delicious in any season!
What should I serve with pork tenderloin?
Great question! There are so many possibilities. If I make this on a regular weeknight, I love it with mashed sweet potatoes and sauteed or blistered green beans. It also would be delicious with some roasted broccoli or these Portuguese Potatoes!
For a holiday dinner, however, I'd serve it with healthy mashed potatoes, some balsamic roasted beets, and an herbed salad.
Is a pork tenderloin healthy?
Yes, it is one of the healthiest cuts of pork if it's prepared healthfully! This is a healthy recipe because it contains minimal oil and the oil it does have is healthy. Furthermore, the orange marinade has no processed sugar in it and relies only on natural sweeteners, citrus, mustard, and herbs for flavor.
If a pork tenderloin is breaded and fried or fried heavily in oil, though, it won't be as healthy!
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How do you keep pork loin from drying out?
There are two main ways to do this: don't overcook the tenderloin and marinate it in a marinade that will tenderize it and keep it juicy. The vinegar and orange juice in this marinade keep the tenderloin tender whereas the salt in the marinade keeps it super succulent, acting almost like a brine for the meat.
Can you marinate pork tenderloin too long?
Whereas you can definitely marinate it too long, that time might be longer than you think. The ideal range for this easy pork tenderloin marinade is 2-24 hours. If you go too much over that the acids in the marinade will over-tenderize the meat, breaking it down too much and leaving it tasting overcooked after roasting. 24 hours is a perfect balance and produces the juiciest, most flavorful pork though. 🙂
What temperature do you cook pork tenderloin to?
Cook the tenderloin to an internal temperature of 145 degrees at the thickest part of the cut. After this, left it sit about 5 minutes before carving.
Other Cooking Notes:
- The longer you marinate the tenderloins, the juicier and more flavorful they will be but they are still delicious and succulent after only 2 hours of marinating. I tend to marinate for 2 hours when cooking this for an everyday meal and marinate for 24 hours when cooking this for a holiday meal.
- This recipe is fit for a crowd -- or at least for some ample leftovers. If it's too much for your family, just halve the marinade and use only one tenderloin. That should still serve at least 3-4 people.
Like this recipe? Check out our other delicious main dishes:
- Grilled Steak Chimichurri Cream Pasta
- Oven-Fried Lemon Panko Breaded Chicken Tenders
- Juicy Chicken Sausage Meatballs
- Thai Salmon Panang Curry
- Grilled Sesame Chicken Thighs
- Authentic Thai Green Chicken Curry
- Pressure Cooker Italian Beef Ragu
- Instant Pot Turkey Chili
- Spicy Bourbon Glazed Salmon
Looking for another way to enjoy pork? Check out my good friend, Norine's, Slow Cooker Cuban Pork. It's so flavorful, easy to make, and perfect as leftovers!
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A succulent & juicy pork tenderloin with a quick and flavorful marinade. Marinade for at least 2 hours, but up to 24 hours.
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons orange zest
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoons smooth dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons honey or maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
- 2, 1-1.25 lb pork tenderloin
- 2 tablespoons flat leaf parsley, chopped (optional)
- Combine the olive oil through black pepper in a large bowl or measuring cup and whisk well until combined.
- Pour marinade over pork in a large bag. Seal shut and massage the pork around in the marinade. Place bag in a large bowl and refrigerate for 2 hours but up to 24 hours.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a 8 x 13 or so inch baking dish with cooking spray and pour pork and marinade into the dish.
- Bake pork for 30-35 minutes, or until the inside has reached an internal temperature of 145 degrees in the thickest part.
- Remove pork from oven and let rest at room temperature. Slice, drizzle hot marinade over the pork, garnish with parsley if using, and serve!
- Leftovers will store covered in the fridge for 3-5 days.
- Fresh or refrigerated orange juice will do.
- I prefer using honey as a sweetener, but maple syrup would also be delicious!
Amount Per Serving Calories 453Total Fat 15gSaturated Fat 4gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 10gCholesterol 186mgSodium 577mgCarbohydrates 8gFiber 0gSugar 7gProtein 67g
Nutritional breakdown is for roast with the marinade not drained from it. This nutrition breakdown is an estimate of the nutritional value of this recipe and cannot be taken as facts. The owners of Mae's Menu are not nutritionists or dieticians and therefore cannot be held accountable for this nutrition estimate. Please contact your nutritionist or medical professional for a nutritional breakdown of this food. Furthermore, this food is not intended to prevent, diagnose, cure, or treat any disease.