Pork tenderloin has the potential to be incredibly delicious. When you cook pork tenderloin just right, the thin cut of meat is going to be so juicy that you won’t be able to resist it.
Many pork tenderloin recipes call for you to sear it to get the job done. This is going to be a great option when you’re cooking a pork tenderloin without using a rub.
However, when you are using a rub, you might be a bit worried that the searing process will throw things off. If you sear the pork tenderloin, then you might burn the spices that you’ve placed on it.
Is there a good way to cook pork tenderloin without searing it? Read on to learn more about your options.
1 – You Could Just Cook it in the Oven
It’s very possible to just cook pork tenderloin in the oven and get good results. There might be some issues with this method, but that doesn’t mean that it can’t work out for you.
Under normal circumstances, you’ll want to sear a pork tenderloin before you roast it in the oven. In your situation, you might be worried about ruining the seasoning, and you’re looking for a good alternative.
The searing process is important when you’re trying to form a crust on the pork tenderloin. This is the traditional appearance of pork tenderloin, and it might seem weird not having a crust.
However, there’s nothing preventing you from just roasting the pork tenderloin and not worrying about the crust. Roasting a pork tenderloin in the oven slowly and then eating it without a crust is perfectly acceptable.
If you don’t care about the traditional aspect of the crust, then you can just roast the pork tenderloin and be done with it. Many people like to roast pork tenderloins for a long time at lower temperatures so that they will turn out very juicy.
The lack of searing won’t negatively impact the taste of the pork tenderloin. Simply roasting it will allow you to keep the seasoning that you’ve placed on the pork tenderloin intact as well.
There is a method to still form the crust without searing the pork tenderloin. The only issue is that it’s a bit of an involved process, and your oven might not have the necessary components depending on what type of oven you have.
2 – Grilling the Pork Tenderloin Before Roasting it
The reason why you can’t form a crust by simply roasting a pork tenderloin in the oven is that the oven won’t get hot enough. Standard ovens that people buy for their homes aren’t capable of producing enough heat to get the job done.
If you don’t want to use the searing method, then all hope is not lost. You don’t need to pan-sear the pork tenderloin if your oven has a grill that you can utilize.
Starting out by grilling the pork tenderloin is going to be just fine. You can still finish it off with roasting after the skin has browned properly using the grilling method.
There’s another way to approach this as well that can work out okay. Some people roast the pork tenderloin first and then they take it out of the oven and start grilling it.
Essentially, you’d just be grilling it enough to get the crust to form, and then you’d be done. Either approach should be just as easy as the other, and it’ll really just come down to which method you prefer.
The only potential downside to grilling the pork tenderloin is that you might have a tough time counting the time that the pork has been under heat. You’re likely going to want to have an oven thermometer so that you can keep track of things easier.
Thankfully, oven thermometers are very affordable and you can buy one from almost any department store or order one online. Having an oven thermometer will come in handy for much more than just making pork tenderloin, too.
3 – You Could Also Use an Outdoor Grill
If your oven doesn’t have a grill that you can use, then you could easily use an outdoor grill. The idea would be the same as roasting the pork tenderloin and then placing it on the oven grill to finish it off and form the crust.
In this instance, you’d just need to transfer the pork tenderloin from the oven to the outdoor grill. An outdoor grill isn’t good for cooking a roast all the way through, but it’ll be fine since you’ve already pre-roasted the pork tenderloin.
All you’re really doing is using the outdoor grill to finish it off and get the crust just right. It shouldn’t take all that long and it’s convenient for anyone who owns a simple charcoal grill.
If you really want to ensure that the pork tenderloin has the traditional crust that people expect, then you should go this route. When you don’t have a grill on your oven, it’s still going to be easy to get the job done using an outdoor grill.
4 – Some People Have Used Cooking Torches
Cooking blow torches can get the job done if you happen to own one. The only issue with this idea is that it’s probably going to burn the spices off.
This might be a worse option than simply searing the pork tenderloin in a pan ahead of roasting it. Regardless, it still fits the bill when you’re looking for ways that you can prepare pork tenderloin traditionally without using searing methods.
All you’d need to do is take the time to use the cooking torch on the pork tenderloin to brown things properly. The cooking torch will allow you to form the crust just fine, and then you’ll be able to roast the pork tenderloin as usual.
You can also roast the pork tenderloin and then finish things off with the cooking torch. It doesn’t really matter which way you decide to do things.
If you don’t want to sear the pork tenderloin, then you don’t have to. It’s possible to simply roast pork tenderloin in the oven and eat it without forming a crust.
Pork tenderloin is traditionally supposed to have a crust, and you’d form that by searing it in a pan before roasting it. You might not wish to do this because you’ll be too worried about burning off the spices that you’ve put on the pork tenderloin.
In this case, you can simply grill the pork tenderloin for a bit to form the crust. After grilling it, you’ll be able to easily roast the pork tenderloin until it’s ready.
If you don’t have an oven with a grill, then you can use an outdoor charcoal grill. It’s also possible to use a cooking torch to form a crust on pork tenderloin, but you could burn the spices off very easily.
This is why you need to consider whether having a crust is important to you or not. It isn’t completely necessary, but if you want to enjoy the crust, then you’ll likely want to use one of the grilling methods if you’re using a rub on the pork tenderloin.
Pick the method that makes the most sense for your situation. You’ll be able to enjoy eating pork tenderloin that has turned out just right soon enough.
Sarah is the founder of Baking Kneads, LLC, a blog sharing guides, tips, and recipes for those learning how to bake. Growing up as the daughter of a baker, she spent much of her childhood learning the basics in a local bakery.