Sous Vide Pork Tenderloin Recipe

At first glance, sous vide might sound like the type of cooking technique that you might need a culinary degree (or a French language course) to approach, but it is really a simple and delicious way to prepare a meal that any home cook can master. Today, we’re making delicious sous vide pork tenderloin!

Sous vide translates to “under vacuum” and is the process of using digitally monitored temperature control and vacuum sealing to produce consistent, flavorful results. It was originally developed in the 1970s by a French chef that found that wrapping foie gras in plastic during cooking prevented it from shrinking. 

In modern times, preparing a dish sous vide means placing prepared ingredients in a sealable bag which then has all of the air removed. Then, the bag is placed in a water bath that is kept at a constant set temperature and left there until the ingredients have reached the level of cookedness desired. Sous vide allows foods, especially meats, to attain optimal temperature without the risking of drying out or overcooking.

High-end restaurants have been using sous vide techniques for years to achieve the very finest textures and flavors in dishes. Sous vide devices used to be large, expensive, and mostly only available for professional kitchens. These days, the tools needed to ensure that level of precision temperature control are widely available and much more affordable for the home cook, affording you the opportunity to make restaurant-quality sous vide dishes at home. 

Pork tenderloin is a perfect example of an ingredient that can be made so much better using the sous vide technique versus the usual cooking methods. The tenderloin is the cut of the pig that comes from the center-back of the pig, toward the spine. It is long, thin, and, as the name suggests, very tender. Because of this tenderness, traditional recipes advise you to cook it over high heat for a very short amount of time in order to give it a crisp, brown exterior without drying out the meat. Grilling, pan-searing, and stir-frying are all common ways to prepare pork tenderloin, but these methods run the risk of overcooking the delicate pork and turning it tough. With sous vide, this is not an issue. Low temperature, sealed in moisture, and automatic monitoring mean that using sous vide yields a tender, flavorful cut of meat every time. Even better: cooking a piece of meat sous vide is very simple, as outlined in the pork loin sous vide recipe below.

Delicious Pork Recipe

Delicious Sous Vide Pork Tenderloin

This recipe will make a pork loin that is incredibly juicy that will surely be the centerpiece of your dinner table. A quick sear at the end will give the tenderloin a beautiful brown crust.

Ingredients:

  • One whole pork tenderloin (about 1 pound)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 5-7 sprigs of fresh aromatic herbs (such as thyme, oregano, or rosemary)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon neutral-flavored oil (canola or vegetable)
  • 2 cloves of garlic, smashed

 

Step 1: Preheat the water bath

Preheat your sous vide water bath to your desired temperature using the list below. The temperature will determine the level of doneness of the tenderloin.

  • Medium rare: 130 F
  • Medium: 140 F
  • Medium Well: 150 F
  • Well done: 160 F

 

Step 2: Prepare the pork loin for immersion

While the sous vide machine is heating the water, season the pork generously with kosher salt and pepper. Place the tenderloin into a vacuum seal or zippered bag with about half of the aromatic herbs and seal using either a food vacuum sealer or the displacement method. The displacement method involves closing the zippered bag containing the pork almost completely, leaving an inch of the zipper open. Then, slowly submerge the bag into a tub of water from the bottom up, using the water pressure to push the air out of the bag and sealing it before you reach the zipper of the bag. No water should enter the bag and all of the air should be pressed out before you seal. 

 

Step 3: Immerse and cook

Submerge the sealed bag into the sous vide water bath, using a binder clip or something similar to attach the bag to the side of the tub to ensure that it does not float around. Cook for at least one and no more than four hours. 

 

Step 4: Finish the sous vide pork tenderloin with a sear

Remove the pork from the bag, discarding the bag and any aromatics inside. Pat the surface of the pork dry with paper towels. 

In a cast-iron pan or heavy skillet, heat the oil and butter over high heat. When the oil is shimmering, carefully add the pork tenderloin and cook, flipping occasionally until all sides are brown. The pork should be browned on all sides in about two minutes. Before cooking the last side, add the smashed garlic and remaining aromatic herbs to the oil and spoon the oil over the tenderloin until the last side is browned. Turn off the heat and remove the tenderloin from the pan immediately to a wire rack in a rimmed baking sheet. Let rest for about four minutes, slice, then serve. 

Sous Vide Pork Tenderloin
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5 from 1 vote

Sous Vide Pork Tenderloin Recipe

This recipe will make a pork loin that is incredibly juicy that will surely be the centerpiece of your dinner table. A quick sear at the end will give the tenderloin a beautiful brown crust.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time3 hrs
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: French
Keyword: Pork Tenderloin, sous vide
Servings: 2
Calories: 90kcal

Equipment

Sous Vide Machine
Vaccuum seal bags
Cast iron pan

Ingredients

  • 1 whole pork tenderloin
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 5-7 sprigs fresh aromatic herbs (such as thyme, oregano, or rosemary)
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp neutral-flavored oil (canola or vegetable)
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed

Instructions

  • While sous vide machine is heating the water, season the pork generously with kosher salt and pepper. Place the tenderloin into a vacuum seal or zippered bag with about half of the aromatic herbs and seal using either a food vacuum sealer or the displacement method. 
  • Then, slowly submerge the bag into a tub of water from the bottom up, using the water pressure to push the air out of the bag and sealing it before you reach the zipper of the bag. 
  • Submerge the sealed bag into the sous vide water bath, using a binder clip or something similar to attach the bag to the side of the tub to ensure that it does not float around. 
  • Cook for at least one and no more than four hours. 
  • Remove the pork from the bag, discarding the bag and any aromatics inside. Pat the surface of the pork dry with paper towels.
  • In a cast-iron pan or heavy skillet, heat the oil and butter over high heat. When the oil is shimmering, carefully add the pork tenderloin and cook, flipping occasionally until all sides are brown. 
  • Before cooking the last side, add the smashed garlic and remaining aromatic herbs to the oil and spoon the oil over the tenderloin until the last side is browned. 
  • Turn off the heat and remove the tenderloin from the pan immediately to a wire rack in a rimmed baking sheet. Let rest for about four minutes, slice, then serve. 

Nutrition

Serving: 8oz | Calories: 90kcal

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Sous Vide Pork

As you can see, sous vide is an easy, hands-off cooking technique that will allow you to make restaurant-quality meals at home with minimal work. Meats aren’t the only ingredients that benefit from being cooked sous vide: eggs and vegetables can be massively improved by cooking them sous vide. Your sous vide machine can even be used for more complex dishes, such as desserts and sauces. Instead of risking dried out, overcooked dishes that lose their flavor in the pan you can sous vide them for delicious results. This isn’t even to mention the time you can save by cooking various dishes at once with your sous vide machine, assuming they can all be set to the same temperature. Once you become familiar with the equipment and techniques, adding sous vide components to your meal plans will become a regular occurrence; so you can sit back, relax, and let your sous vide machine do (almost) all the work.

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