For some home cooks, beef tenderloin takes center stage during special occasions, and a large, 8-to-10-pound tenderloin feeds a crowd. Because the tenderloin is a tender selection, it’s typically more expensive than other cuts of beef. Although the expenditure may prohibit it from appearing on the weekly dinner menu, tenderloin is boneless, so leftovers – if there are any, given the premium flavor of this cut – can also elevate humdrum meals to savory delights, maximizing the expense of the cut.
Allow beef to stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before cooking.
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. In the kitchen, the oven is the most ideal method for cooking as it seals in the flavorful juices while roasting.
Fit a roasting rack into a large, shallow roasting pan. With the large size of this cut, you may have to fit two racks side by side into a large jelly roll pan.
Place the tenderloin directly onto the rack. While this cut is delicious without any seasoning, consider adding your own culinary flair. Roll the tenderloin in cracked pepper or pat a seasoning mix into the meat. Chopped herbs or vegetables, such as parsley, oregano, tarragon, basil, finely minced onions and garlic blend well with the rich flavors of the meat and create flavorful juices. Olive oil may be added to the mixture to form a paste that better adheres to the beef. Sea salt can also be added to the herb mixture, but should be used sparingly to limit the amount of sodium.
Roast the tenderloin for 12 to 14 minutes per pound for rare, 14 to 16 minutes per pound for medium-rare or 20 to 25 minutes per pound for a well-done tenderloin. To reach a medium-rare state, allow about two and a half hours of cooking time. The USDA recommends cooking beef tenderloin to a minimum internal temperature of 145 F for safe consumption, which is medium.
Insert a meat thermometer into the center of the tenderloin to ensure it has reached the desired level of doneness.
Remove the roasting pan from the oven.
Transfer the tenderloin to a cutting board designated solely for meat and tent with foil for 15 to 20 minutes. The roast will continue to cook, raising the internal temperature by 5 to 10 degrees, so bear that in mind while monitoring the cooking temperature. Allowing the tenderloin to rest pulls the juices back toward the center of the meat, preventing them from running out as you carve.
Preheat a gas grill to medium-high or allow a charcoal grill to reduce to a medium-hot ash.
Brush olive oil on the cooking grate and place the tenderloin directly onto the grate. Given the large size of the tenderloin, the grill may be an easier method of cooking as grills can typically accommodate larger cuts of meat.
Char the outside of the tenderloin, turning the meat with tongs to ensure even blackening.
Move the tenderloin away from the center part of the grill and insert a meat thermometer into the beef.
Close the lid to the grill and cook for 15 to 20 minutes per pound until the meat thermometer registers the desired temperature.
Remove the tenderloin from the grill, tent with foil and allow it to rest before carving.
Things You'll Need
Although there is some fat within this cut, a serving of tenderloin is only 164 calories with 7 grams of fat. Even if you double the size of that serving, it remains a choice for the health-conscious eater.
Sauces are wonderful accompaniments to tenderloin and classics such as a red-wine reduction or béarnaise enhance the flavors of the beef.
Remove all of the silvery, papery skin and extra fat that is on the surface of the tenderloin before cooking.
- Chicago Tribune: Time for Tender Lovin’, JeanMarie Brownson
- Beef It’s What’s For Dinner: Tenderloin Roast
- The New York Times Cookbook, Craig Claiborne
- Beef It’s What’s For Dinner: Pepper Herb-Crusted Beef Tenderloin
- USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service: Beef from Farm to Table
- Weber’s Art of the Grill; Jamie Purviance