Low and slow smoked pork tenderloin might just be the juiciest cut of meat you can pull out of a smoker. Soft and tender in the inside, wrapped in a coat of smokey goodness and perfectly paired seasonings, this will be the highlight of your BBQ!
Smoked Pork Tenderloin
The only thing that might be better than roasted pork tenderloin in smoked pork tenderloin. We’re not only talking about that soft tender cut of pork, but we’re adding some smokey goodness to an already amazing dish. It just doesn’t get much better than that! So simple to make, this one takes the prize for BBQ entrees.
Whether you quickly mix the seasoning right before cooking or have it prepared ahead of time, the whole dish will take only about an hour and 30 minutes once in the smoker. Pork tenderloin is a thin, long cut of meat that comes from the muscle running along the backbone. While it’s typically best to cook this very tender cut of meat quickly at high temperature, there is one exception to that rule, smoking!
If you have leftovers, try to heat it up as quickly as possible because it’s easy to overcook and dry it out. Leftovers will make amazing smokey sandwiches when paired up with some nice cheese and maybe even a little sauce. The options are endless here!
How to Make Smoked Pork Tenderloin
WHAT IS IN PORK RUB
Each seasoning mix has a little something different to complement the meats for which it’s used. I always start with the basics of salt, pepper, onion powder, and garlic powder. Then, I like to add a little sweetness with brown sugar. Adding a touch of sweetness is perfect for dry rubs meant to go on meats without sauce.
To elevate sweet and savory, you need some smoky flavor of paprika and a touch of spice with cayenne pepper. And of course, you can’t have pork without adding some mustard. To finish it off, I add some dried parsley for an herb flavor addition that is not overpowering.
All you have to do is combine salt, pepper, brown sugar, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne pepper, ground mustard, and dried parsley in a mixing bowl and give it a good stir. Once all ingredients are evenly incorporated, transfer it into a glass jar with an air-tight lid or use it right away.
PREPARING THE PORK TENDERLOIN
Remove the pork tenderloins from the package and pat them dry with a paper towel. Place the tenderloins on a large cutting board. Remove as much silver skin as you can, if there is some still attached.
HOW TO MAKE ROASTED PORK TENDERLOIN
Prepare your smoker as needed and preheat it to the temperature of 225°. For this dish we will be using maple wood. Everyone leans towards apple when thinking about what wood to use for smoking pork but as long as you use a nice sweet wood that compliments the pork, you can mix things up a bit.
In a small bowl, combine all ingredients for pork seasoning and mix them well.
Place the tenderloins into a rimmed baking dish or on a large cutting board and generously coat with the seasoning, pressing it into the meat.
Insert a meat thermometer into the center of the thickest part of meat and place the skillet into the oven.
With your smoker now maintaining a temperature of 225°, place your tenderloins into the center of the smoker. Allow the pork to cook undisturbed for about 1 and a half hours. One of the magical properties of smoking meats is how tender the end product is. This allows us to cook past most internal temperatures and cook to taste. However, as with most other meats, pork does have a minimum cooked temperature. You don’t want to remove the pork tenderloin before it hits the all important 145°.
Once your pork tenderloin has reach an internal temperature of 145°, remove it from the smoker. Let it rest for about 10 minutes.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, it is perfectly safe and even desired to be slightly pink in the middle. When the pork is slightly pink in the middle, the meat is done to safe temperature (145°) but not so done to be dry. Overcooking pork will result in tough, dry meat.
How to serve Smoked Pork Tenderloin
Once your pork tenderloin has rested for about 10 minutes, slice and enjoy.
Like chicken, pork can be paired with almost anything for a side dish. Looking for something light? Try the pork tenderloin with Our Favorite Potato Salad. Want something a little more hearty? Our Smoked Scalloped Potatoes are always a winner!
Smoked Pork Tenderloin
- 2.5 lbs pork tenderloin
Pork Dry Rub
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1 tbsp paprika
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- 2 tsp onion powder
- 3 tsp ground mustard
- 1 tbsp dried parsley
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- Prepare your smoker as needed and preheat it to the temperature of 225°. For this dish we will be using maple wood.
- In a small bowl, combine all ingredients for pork seasoning and mix them well.
- Take tenderloins out of the package and pat dry with a paper towel. Place them into a rimmed baking dish or on a large cutting board and generously coat with the seasoning, pressing it into the meat.
- Insert a meat thermometer into the center of the thickest part of meat and place in the smoker.
- Smoke for about 1 and a half hours, until internal temperature reaches 145°. (Exact time will depend on the size of the meat.)
- Take it out of the oven and onto a cutting board. Let it rest for about 10 minutes before cutting into it.