1(1-oz) packageRanch seasoning mixOR your favorite herb-based seasoning mix OR make your own (see notes for my recipe)
3sprigs fresh herbsI used rosemary and thyme, optional
Heat oven to 350°F. Line a rimmed baking pan with aluminum foil.
Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Lightly season pork tenderloin with salt and pepper, then brown in the hot skillet for 1-2 minutes on all sides.
Mash together butter, Ranch seasoning and minced garlic in a small bowl until combined.
Place browned pork loin on lined baking pan. Spread ¾ of butter mixture over pork. If using fresh herbs, tuck next to pork.
Tent aluminum foil over pork and seal. Bake pork in hot oven for 12-20 minutes, until thickest part registers an internal temperature of 135°F.
Carefully remove pork from oven and open foil (hot!). Spread pork with remaining compound butter, then return to oven and bake uncovered for 5-10 minutes, until thickest part of pork registers an internal temperature of 145°F.
Rest pork for 5 minutes on the counter, then slice to serve.
Seasoning: If you don’t like Ranch, you can also use Italian seasoning for a different flavor, or use any dried herbs plus garlic/onion powder you like.
Homemade or store-bought: I used homemade Ranch seasoning without buttermilk (not by choice but out of necessity because I was out!) so the pork tenderloin is a little heavy on the herbs in the photos. I just combined garlic powder, onion powder, dried parsley, dried dill, dried chives, a little salt and pepper. Honestly, it tastes great either way – seasoning packet or homemade.
Butter: I recommend using real butter here – margarine doesn’t bring the same flavor. If you want to make it dairy free, use 1-2 tablespoons oil instead.
Garlic: If you don’t have fresh, use ½ teaspoon dried.
Homemade Ranch Seasoning:
1 tablespoon dried parsley
½ tablespoon dried chives
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
½ teaspoon dried dill
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
If you don’t have a meat thermometer, you can also check if the juices run clear or very nearly clear. Another option would be to stick a knife into the pork tenderloin to check for a tender middle. Finally, you can also just slice the pork open and check if it’s opaque and only just very slightly pink in the middle. If it is still too raw, just return it to the oven.
Pork tenderloin is very lean, so it’s important not to overcook it. If you overcook the pork loin, it turns out very dry. Remember: It already cooks a little in the skillet, so it might be done quicker than you think.
If you want to avoid aluminum foil, just make the pork loin in a Dutch oven. You can brown the pork in the Dutch oven on the stove, then carefully spread with the compound butter and place the fresh herbs next to the pork in the pot. Close with the lid and roast in the oven as directed in the recipe.