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Smoked Pork Tenderloin

Smoked pork tenderloin is a great way to add flavor and texture to your smoked meat repertoire. Traeger pork tenderloin is moist and tender, easy to prepare, and can be enjoyed in a variety of ways.

Looking for a great new Traeger recipe?

You should think about smoked pork tenderloin. Tender, juicy, and smoky with just the right amount of fat to make it melt in your mouth.

Get ready for some serious flavor by smoking some pork! I'll walk you through how to smoke pork tenderloin so that you're left with a succulent meal the whole family will love.

Smoking your pork tenderloin will give you the most flavorful meat possible! Plus, this recipe requires few ingredients. But don't forget about our secret ingredient... apple juice! This helps keep the meat moist while cooking by breaking down some of its proteins into sugars which then caramelize on the surface of the meat as it smokes. Talk about finger-licking good!

This smoked pork tenderloin recipe is dedicated to finger-lickin!

Sliced smoked pork tenderloin medallions on a place

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Tips + tricks

No. 1 --> Don't confuse the pork loin with the pork tenderloin! This recipe is specific to the pork tenderloin and will not apply to pork loin.

No. 2 --> The pork tenderloin is a very, very lean cut of meat and it takes a bit of special treatment when preparing and cooking to ensure a moist, succulent meal every time. The brine in this recipe is highly recommended, but not completely necessary.

No. 3 --> It's important to remove the silver skin from your pork tenderloin before it hits the smoker. This is done because the silver skin is a tough connective tissue that does not render during the cooking process.

No. 4 --> Check out my super cool hack for brining my pork tenderloin in minutes instead of hours below!

Ingredients for dry rub in a glass bowl.

Key Ingredients

Pork tenderloin: The tenderloin is the long, lean muscle that runs along the pig's backbone. This small boneless cut generally weighs around 1 pound. This cut is tender with a mild flavor.

Brine: Lean muscles can be challenging to cook properly, but brining a lean cut like pork tenderloin helps to ensure a moist, tender end result.

Ingredients required for smoked pork tenderloin.

How to smoke pork tenderloin

Prepare the tenderloin:

  1. Prepare pork tenderloin by removing any silver skin. To do this, you'll need to remove any fat on the tenderloin - this can be removed simply by pulling with your fingers, then locate the silvery layer. To remove, insert a sharp knife, I like to use a boning knife, under the silver membrane and cut it away from the loin to make something to hold on to. Once you've got a tab to hold on to, pull the silver-skin taut and slide the knife, blade side angled towards the top of the membrane down the length of the tenderloin - avoid cutting into the meat.

Make the brine:

  1. In a large container, add 1 cup of hot water and 1/4 cup of coarse kosher salt. Mix until the salt is completely dissolved, then add 1/4 cup maple syrup, and 2 cups of ice water.
  2. Add the prepared tenderloin to the brine and place in the fridge for up to 12 hours.
  3. If using a vacuum sealer to speed up the brine, see the section below for directions.

Prepare the tenderloin for smoking:

  1. Before removing the tenderloins from the brine, make your dry rub. If using store-bought rub, skip to step 3.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine 3 tablespoons brown sugar, 2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt, 2 teaspoons coarse ground black pepper, 1 teaspoon paprika, 1 teaspoon onion powder, and 1 teaspoon garlic powder.
  3. Remove the pork tenderloin from the brine, and blot dry with a paper towel. Place the tenderloin on a rimmed baking sheet then generously apply rub to all sides of the tenderloin.

Smoke the pork tenderloin:

  1. Once the pork tenderloin has been rubbed, preheat the smoker to 225f. Allow the tenderloin to rest at room temperature until the smoker is heated.
  2. When the smoker reaches cooking temperature, place the loin on the smoker, we like to cook on the middle rack with a tin foil lined baking sheet on the bottom rack.
  3. Smoke the tenderloins at 225f until the internal temperature reaches 135f. This will take about an hour and a half.
  4. Once the tenderloin has reached an internal temperature of 135f, brush it with your favorite BBQ sauce - I love Traeger Apricot Glaze for this recipe, then continue cooking for another hour or until the internal temperature reaches 145f.
  5. Allow the tenderloins to rest for 5 minutes before slicing into medallions and serving.
Smoked pork tenderloin sliced into medallions.

Brining Hack

Here's a genius way to speed up the brining time for your pork tenderloin!

Vacuum seal it! Here's how I do it:

Prepare a half batch of brine, then add it to a vacuum seal bag, and add pork tenderloin to the bag too. I place the prepared bag into my amazing Avid Armor chamber vacuum sealer. Then hit that marinade button. At this point, the machine pulls a 99-second vacuum but does not seal the bag. Once the cycle is complete, I repeat twice more.

Then boom - brining DONE! in minutes instead of hours!

Gif showing the vacuum sealer quick brining the pork tenderloin.

You can see in the video above that under vacuum our brine liquid literally boils!

What to serve with smoked pork tenderloin

Batch + storage information

Batch:

This recipe as written will cook two pork tenderloins as I always find them in a two pack at the grocery store, it can be halved or doubled as required.

In my experience, two pork tenderloins are usually enough for two meals for my family of four.

Storage:

Leftover smoked pork tenderloin can be kept in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days. But don't hold yourself to eating it in medallions! Try your leftovers on sandwiches, in salads, in tacos.

Sliced Traeger smoked pork tenderloin.

Variations + substitutions

  • Smash the easy button and use store bought rub instead of making your own. I like Traeger Pork And Poultry!
  • Make your own BBQ sauce if you don't have one you love - Try this Sweet Bourbon Sauce from Hey Grill Hey!

AVID ARMOR Chamber Vacuum Sealer: I cannot get over how much better a CHAMBER VACUUM SEALER works than a bar-style sealer. This well-made sealer makes marinading a breeze! If you cook, hunt, or harvest a lot, you'll definitely be interested in this unit. Use the discount code CRAVE to save on your purchase 🙂

Pellet Grill: Kevy and I purchased a TRAEGER TIMBERLINE 1300 in June 2019. Our life has changed! It's such a great machine - we've run thousands of pounds of pellets through it and would buy it again and again! Check out all the great SMOKED RECIPES we've developed.

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📖 Printable Recipe

Sliced smoked pork tenderloin medallions on a place
Yield: 8 servings

Smoked Pork Tenderloin

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Rest Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 45 minutes

This brined then smoked pork tenderloin is so juicy and flavorful that it simply melts in your mouth. Use this easy to follow smoked pork tenderloin recipe for perfect results every time!

Ingredients

  • 2 pork tenderloins

brine:

  • 1 cup of hot water
  • 14 cup coarse kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 2 cups ice water

rub:

  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 2 teaspooons coarse ground kosher salt
  • 2 teaspooons coarse ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder

Sauce:

  • 1/4 - 1/2 cup your favorite bbq sauce

Instructions

  1. Prepare pork tenderloin by removing any excess fat and silver skin.
  2. In a large container, add 1 cup of hot water and 1/4 cup of coarse kosher salt. Mix until the salt is completely dissolved, then add 1/4 cup maple syrup, and 2 cups of ice water.
  3. Add the prepared tenderloin to the brine and place in the fridge for up to 12 hours. If using a vacuum sealer to speed up the brine, see the notes section below for directions.
  4. Before removing the tenderloins from the brine, make your dry rub. If using store-bought rub, skip to the next step. In a medium bowl, combine 3 tablespoons brown sugar, 2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt, 2 teaspoons coarse ground black pepper, 1 teaspoon paprika, 1 teaspoon onion powder, and 1 teaspoon garlic powder.
  5. Remove the pork tenderloin from the brine, and blot dry with a paper towel. Place the tenderloin on a rimmed baking sheet then generously apply rub to all sides of the tenderloin.
  6. Once the pork tenderloin has been rubbed, preheat the smoker to 225f. Allow the tenderloin to rest at room temperature until the smoker is heated.
  7. When the smoker reaches cooking temperature, place the loin on the smoker, we like to cook on the middle rack with a tin foil lined baking sheet on the bottom rack.
  8. Smoke the tenderloins at 225f until the internal temperature reaches 135f. This will take about an hour and a half.
  9. Once the tenderloin has reached an internal temperature of 135f, brush it with your favorite BBQ sauce - I love Traeger Apricot Glaze for this recipe, then continue cooking for another hour or until the internal temperature reaches 145f.
  10. Allow the tenderloins to rest for 5 minutes before slicing into medallions and serving.

Notes

brining hack

Prepare a half batch of brine, then add it to a vacuum seal bag, and add pork tenderloin to the bag too. I place the prepared bag into your  AVID ARMOR CHAMBER VACUUM sealer. Then hit that marinade button. Allow the machine to complete 3 marinade cycles before removing the pork from the chamber vacuum.

Batch:

This recipe as written will cook two pork tenderloins as I always find them in a two pack at the grocery store, it can be halved or doubled as required.

In my experience, two pork tenderloins are usually enough for two meals for my family of four.


Storage:

Leftover smoked pork tenderloin can be kept in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days. But don't hold yourself to eating it in medallions! Try your leftovers on sandwiches, in salads, in tacos.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

4

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 171Total Fat: 2gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 31mgSodium: 211825mgCarbohydrates: 27gFiber: 1gSugar: 23gProtein: 12g

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