Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Chimicnurri – is there a better way to kick off the summer grill season? Tender, juicy pork loin topped with the fresh, tangy, brightness of a homemade Chimichurri brings the backyard barbecue to life with absolute ease.
There’s a few things that make this the perfect summer barbecue treat. First, the chimichurri. Originating in Argentina, chimichurri is a tangy sauce with just a little kick. Blending oregano, garlic, parsley, salt, pepper, and some crushed red pepper and wine vinegar. It is a great marinade and topping for pork, giving a nice, zesty flavor.
Second, well, the pork. Tender and juicy, a well grilled pork loin holds onto its flavor until it melts perfectly into your mouth. This recipe delivers on both fronts.
Finally, this recipe is so easy. While it tastes and presents like it came from a master chef, putting together a great chimichurri pork tenderloin is secretly one of the easiest dishes you can make, if you just know a few simple tricks, so let’s get cooking!
What Ingredients Do I Need for Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Chimichurri?
First off, pick up a nice pork tenderloin in the meat section of your market. Buying a pork tenderloin isn’t difficult, but you do want the right, nice cut of meat. Make sure you have found a tenderloin and not a loin. Tenderloin is a leaner, smaller cut of meat than a loin. It cooks faster than a pork loin, so it’s important to get the right cut.
When finding your pork tenderloin look for a reddish pink cut of meat, and yes, you want it as fresh as possible. We prefer something that hasn’t been frozen, but if you do end up with a frozen cut of meat, make sure it’s thoroughly thawed prior to cooking.
Now for the Chimichurri
Chimichurri is a traditional sauce from Argentina that is perfect for meats. For this recipe we will be using the chimichurri both as a marinade and as a topping, and it’s delicious! A little tangy with the nice earthy flavor of parsley, it’s a great compliment to the pork tenderloin.
The main ingredient for the chimichurri is parsley, so get a nice, big, fresh bunch of parsley. You’ll see recipes that mix in cilantro, or use only cilantro. Cilantro is more of a citrusy flavor, so it will change the flavor of your chimichurri. You can certainly play around with these flavors if it’s something you are looking for, but for this particular recipe, we’re going with straight parsley.
While in the produce section make sure to pick up some fresh garlic.
The spice and condiment aisles round out the rest of your ingredient list, with crushed red pepper, olive oil (lots of olive oil!), coarse salt, pepper, and a little bit of red wine vinegar.
Making Your Chimichurri
Since you will be using some of your chimichurri as your marinade, we’ll put this together first.
Trim the stems off of your parsley. You don’t need to get off every single stem, but cut them down so that you are working with the leaves. Do a coarse chop of the parsley leaves – no need to do a fine dice or get them to incredibly small.
Now put about half of the parsley leaves in a mini food processor. We use the Cuisinart Mini-Prep Plus. It’s a great small size that is easy to manage, store, and clean.
Add your salt, pepper, crushed red pepper, and a couple of tablespoons of the olive oil.
Pulse the mix together a few times in the food processor. The leaf size will reduce as it starts to take in the olive oil and get cut.
Add the rest of the parsley and another couple of tablespoons of olive oil. Pulse again until the leaves start to get a finer chop on them. You are not creating a puree here, so you don’t want to just blend the whole mixture into a straight liquid, but you will want it runny enough to be able to marinate your meat.
Continue to add a couple of tablespoons of olive oil until you have a slightly runny consistency with small chunk of parsley leaves. You want to have the leaves maintain a little of their texture- don’t blend into a puree.
Preparing the Pork Tenderloin
Now we’re ready for the Pork Tenderloin. Place your pork tenderloin in a gallon ziplock bag, a marinade bag, or a container you will be able to seal. Add 3/4 of the Chimichurri sauce to the bag, leaving some to top the grilled pork tenderloin with. Seal the bag and shake until the chimichurri evenly coats the pork tenderloin.
Marinade the pork tenderloin for at least 30 minutes. You will be grilling on a relatively high heat and having the pork tenderloin at room temperature prior to being grilling will provide an even cook.
Warm up your grill to 500 degrees and brush off the racks so they are smooth and debris free. When the grill is ready, place the pork tenderloin on the rack. If you are able with your grill, only warm up one rack to 500, keeping the other half on low.
Remove the pork tenderloin from the marinade and drain the excess liquid off the meat.
Place the pork tenderloin on the hot side of the grill, sear for two minutes, then flip, until you have seared each of the four sides of the tenderloin.
Move the chimichurri grilled pork tenderloin to the side of the grill that is on low heat. This can also be done by moving the pork tenderloin to a higher rack that is not on the direct heat.
With the grill on low and the pork tenderloin not over direct heat, cover the grill and let cook for 10-15 minutes. The Chimichurri grilled pork tenderloin needs to reach 145 degrees in the center. We use the Thermopro Digital Instant Read meat Thermometor to temp our meat, as it is small, very easy to use, and quickly and easily temps meat.
Once the meat is at temp, pull off of the heat. Allow tenderloin to rest for at least ten minutes. Resting the meat is where you are going to keep all of that juiciness. Once the meat has rested, cut into medallions.
Drizzle the remainder of the Chimichurri sauce over the top of the medallions, and you have yourself a tender, juicy, absolutely delicious chimichurri grilled pork tenderloin!
Tips and Tricks for Chimichurri Grilled Pork Tenderloin
Resting the Grilled Pork Tenderloin allows the juices to soak into the meat. Cutting into the meat without allowing it to rest releases the juices and will leave a drier meat.
Having the meat at room temperature prior to putting on the grill allows the meat to cook evenly, so the center can heat without having to overcook the outside.
If you are having trouble getting the stems off the leaves of the parsley, a simple trick is to pull the leaves the holes of a sieve. This will strip the leaves off of the stem.
If your mouth is watering but you’re leaning more toward the vegan side of things, take a look at our grilled portabello mushroom recipe, as it is a great pairing with the chimichurri sauce as well!
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Delicious Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Chimichurri
This chimichurri grilled pork loin gives a zesty flavor to a tender and juicy pork loin, making at the perfect addition to the summer barbecue menu.
Grilled Pork Loin
Finely chop the parsley, fresh oregano, and garlic. Place in a food processor.If you do not have a food processor, use a bowl that you will whisk everything together in.
Add in the olive oil, vinegar, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Pulse everything together in 3-4 quick pulses. If hand mixing, whisk together briskly until flavors and color are evenly dispersed.Please note that the video is for a single serving of Chimichurri - if you are making both the topping and marinade, follow the amounts in the ingredient section.
Serve immediately or refrigerate. If chilled, return to room temperature before serving.
Grilled Pork Loin
Place the raw pork loin and 1/3 cup chimichurri sauce in a ziplock bag or well sealed marinading tupperware. Shake the pork and chimichurri sauce until sauce is evenly distributed on the pork. Allow to marinade for 30 minutes.You will want the pork at room temperature prior to putting on the grill to allow for an even cooking temperature. If you are going to marinade the meat longer than 30 minutes, place in a refrigerator and remove from the refrigerator for the last 30 minutes of the process.
Preheat grill. 500 degrees with 1/2 of the grill on med/hi, and 1/2 set to med/low.You can bake this in an oven as an alternative to the grill. 400 degrees for 25-30 minutes.
Remove pork loin from marinade and drain excess marinade from pork into a bowl or measuring cup.
First we're going to sear the pork. Place the pork loin on the hotter grill side and close the lid. every 2 minutes, rotate closing lid each turn until each side is golden brown (3-4 turns). You'll only need a minute or so on each side.
Once the searing process has been completed, place pork on indirect heat on grill and close lid. Cook 15-20 minutes. Periodically flip meat and baste with leftover marinade you drained off of pork.Make sure pork temps at 145 degrees prior to serving. You can cook to desired temperature above this if you choose. It is ok for pork to be slightly pink in the middle.
Remove pork from heat and let rest for at least 10 minutes prior to cutting.Resting meat is what allows it to retain its juices. Cutting into the meat too early will release the juice and dry out the meat.
Once meat is rested, cut into medallions. Top with the unused chimichurri sauce and serve with the side of your choice!