Garlic Butter Pork Tenderloin

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Wondering how to cook garlic butter pork tenderloin? We give hints for how to cook pork tenderloin in the oven and have it juicy and tender. Don’t forget to brush it with garlic butter for an amazing flavor.

brushing butter on pork tenderloin

Garlic Butter Pork Tenderloin

Thanks to the Ohio Pork Council for sponsoring this post. As always, all opinions are my own.

Today I’m introducing you to my favorite cut of pork, the pork tenderloin. The first time I cooked pork tenderloin on the grill and sliced into it I was amazed. How could pork taste so good…like a fancy cut of steak? I’m going to show you today how to be sure to serve pork that is tender and cooked to perfection!

pork tenderloin in a skillet with parsley

What is the difference between a pork loin and tenderloin?

A pork loin and pork tenderloin are two very different cuts of meat. They obviously have a different look, but are also cut from a different part of the animal. Pork loin comes from the animal’s back, while comes from the muscle that runs alongside the backbone.

Both are lean cuts of meat, but they should be cooked differently. Tenderloins are small and are best cooked at high temperatures for short period of time. Pork loins are better for grilling or slow cooking in the oven.

These two types of meat generally should not be substituted for one another. The most important thing to remember for any cut of pork is that you don’t want to overcook it!

How do you cook a pork tenderloin?

Here’s the steps we take to cook a perfect pork tenderloin:

  1. Allow the pork to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before cooking. This allows the pork to cook more evenly.
  2. Season the pork with salt and pepper. No other seasonings needed for this delicately flavored meat.
  3. Heat an oven-safe skillet with oil in it. When it is hot, add the pork tenderloin and allow it to brown.
  4. Turn the tenderloins, browning the meat on all sides. This shouldn’t take long…about 5-6 minutes tops!
  5. Take pan and put it directly into an oven heated to 350 degrees. Allow the pork to cook for about 20 minutes. The exact timing will depend on how much it cooked in the skillet and the size of the pork tenderloins. Watch closely and don’t overcook it.
  6. Allow the pork to rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing it. This will keep those juices in the meat!

What temperature should a pork tenderloin be cooked to?

Pork tenderloin is the most tender and juicy when it is cooked to 145 degrees Fahrenheit. Test it with an internal probe thermometer. A blush of pink inside is totally fine and is what the FDA recommends as safe. Allow the meat to rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing into it.

A close up of a plate of food, with Pork Loin

How to Make Garlic Butter Pork Tenderloin

After the pork tenderloin has cooked, we like to brush it with garlic butter. Whip up the easy garlic butter before you start cooking the pork, or even the day before so the flavors have time to blend. Brushing meat with butter may sound strange, but it really makes the meat melt in your mouth delicious.

What to serve with pork tenderloin?

We like to have baked potatoes, Christmas green beans, butter rice, a side salad, and buttery rolls along with our pork tenderloin. It’s the ultimate comfort food dinner!

Pork Tenderloin Leftovers

Have leftovers of this amazing garlic butter pork tenderloin? Lucky! 🙂 We rarely have leftovers at our house with 3 hungry teenagers. If you do have leftovers, slice up the pork tenderloin and serve it on salad for lunch the next day. It’s an easy way to add protein to your lunch.

Other Pork Recipes

how to cook pork tenderloin
how to cook pork tenderloin

Garlic Butter Pork Tenderloin

4.72 from 7 votes
Wondering how to cook pork tenderloin? We give hints for how to cook pork tenderloin in the oven and have it juicy and tender. Don’t forget to brush it with garlic butter for an amazing flavor.
Servings 8
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes

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  • 2-3 pounds pork tenderloin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 cup olive oil

Garlic butter:

  • 1/2 cup salted butter  )softened)
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons freshly snipped parsley
  • 1/4 cup freshly snipped parsley (for topping)


  • Allow the pork to come to room temperature for 30 mins before baking.
  • Mix together the ingredients for the garlic butter and place in the fridge as the pork cooks.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Sprinkle salt and pepper over all sides of the pork tenderloin.
  • Heat oil in cast iron skillet over medium high heat.
  • Add pork tenderloin and brown on all sides, turning as the pork browns. This will take only about 5 minutes.
  • Place the entire pan (as long as it is oven-safe) in the preheated oven and bake for 20-25 minutes. The exact timing will depend on the thickness of the pork. Bake until the internal temperature reaches 145 degrees Fahrenheit for the juiciest pork.
  • Brush the garlic butter over the pork tenderloin when it comes out of the oven. Sprinkle with additional freshly snipped parsley.


YouTube video


The calories shown are based on the recipe serving 8 people (2.5 pounds pork), with 1 serving being ⅛ of the recipe and garlic butter. Since different brands of ingredients have different nutritional information, the calories shown are just an estimate. **We are not dietitians and recommend you seek a nutritionist for exact nutritional information.**


Calories: 332kcal | Protein: 29g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 122mg | Sodium: 393mg | Potassium: 557mg | Vitamin A: 355IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 12mg | Iron: 1.4mg
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Calories 332
Wondering how to cook garlic butter pork tenderloin? We give hints for how to cook pork tenderloin in the oven and have it juicy and tender. Don't forget to brush it with garlic butter for an amazing flavor.
About JulieJulie Clark

About Julie Clark

I'm Julie Clark, CEO and recipe developer of Tastes of Lizzy T. With my B.A. in Education and over 30 years of cooking and baking, I want to teach YOU the best of our family recipes.

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4.72 from 7 votes (7 ratings without comment)
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