Expect moist, tender delicious pork with this simple sous vide pork tenderloin – stress free. The easy maple mustard sauce adds a delicious tangy-sweet flavor boost.
Pork tenderloin is the filet mignon or beef tenderloin of the pork family. Very lean and very tender if cooked right. If overcooked, however, it can be dry and chalky. Enter sous vide…
The sous vide method creates a soft, moist and tender texture edge to edge. Guaranteed.
Because pork tenderloin is fairly bland on its own, you need a good robust sauce or seasoning. The maple-mustard sauce blends grainy and Dijon mustard, maple syrup, apple cider vinegar, garlic and thyme – and adds great flavors to the pork.
Ingredients – tailored to your taste
The two components of this recipe are the pork tenderloin and the maple-mustard sauce. Here are a few variations to try.
- In addition to salt and pepper, feel free to sprinkle a bit of curry powder or cumin on the tenderloin. And add a sprig of rosemary or thyme (or a pinch of dried herbs). Don’t overdo it with the rosemary as it can be quite overpowering.
- Instead of the maple mustard sauce, try
Step by step instructions
Cook time and temperature
Back in the old days, we were always cautioned to cook pork to 160F/71C to avoid trichinosis. Pink pork was a no-no.
Nowadays, pink pork is just as safe as beef. While the US Food and Drug Administration now recommends cooking pork to 145F/62.7C, safe cooking with sous vide can be as low 130F/54.4C. Bacteria are destroyed at that temperature.
The 130F, however, looks like medium rare beef and, for those of us who had the pork safety issue drummed into our heads for so many years, reddish pink pork is still a bit of a stretch.
I sous vide pork tenderloin at 138-140F (59-60C) and then sear it in a hot pan for 2 minutes. In the pictures, you can see the meat is just slightly pink at 140F/60C. It is soft and tender, but if you prefer it a little juicier, try 138F (58C) – my preference. For medium-well (and less juicy), use 150F (65.6C) For me, anything above that is way too dry.
The cook time is 1 1/2 to 4 hours. I usually aim for 2 hours.
What to serve with pork tenderloin
- Skip the homemade sauce and use a favorite bottled sauce (BBQ, teriyaki, chimichurri), a store-bought apple sauce, salsa or a fruit chutney (peach, mango, apple)
- The tenderloin can be cooked in 1 1/2 hours and can be left in the water bath for up to 4 hours without any affect on the result. You can even rest it for another half an hour before browning it in a hot pan or grill.
Yes, no problem. You will need to use the displacement method which means lowering the bag with the meat into the water, unsealed, until it is an inch above the water line. When the air is pushed out, seal the bag.
Yes. Cook it an extra hour. So a minimum of 2 1/2 hours. You can season ahead, freeze it in a bag, the pop the frozen meat in the bag into the water bath.
Absolutely. I do this often.
No, it’s not necessary to brine the pork tenderloin before cooking it sous vide.
Only if you leave it in the water bath for longer than 4 hours. The texture will change and become drier and, eventually, mushy.
Use it in a sandwich, warmed up, in a quesadilla or cut up in a salad.
More sous vide pork recipes
- sous vide pork chops with apple chutney
- sous vide pork loin with raspberry balsamic sauce
- Vietnamese pork chops (sous vide)
- best pork roast sous vide
For recipes and tips on sous vide cooking as well as handy charts for timing and temperature for various proteins, check out our best sous vide recipes and tips.
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Sous Vide Pork Tenderloin (with Maple Mustard Sauce)
- Sous vide equipment: Immersion circulator or oven-type sous vide
- 1 pound – 1 1/2 lbs (0.45-0.68kg) pork tenderloin, Note 1
- seasonings: kosher salt, black pepper, garlic powder, sprig of thyme or rosemary sprig (or 1/2 tsp dried)
Maple Mustard Sauce, Note 2
- 2 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon grainy old fashioned mustard
- 3 tablespoon maple syrup or honey (or brown sugar)
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic (or pinch, garlic powder)
- 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
- HEAT SOUS VIDE WATER BATH: Set sous vide temperature to:°140F/60C for medium (slightly pink, tender, moist but not super juicy)°138F/59C for closer to medium rare (pinkish-red, soft, moist, juicy) or°150F/65.6C for medium well.
- PREPARE TENDERLOIN FOR SOUS VIDE AND COOK: Remove silver skin from tenderloin (thin coating of sinew attached to meat). Sprinkle generously with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Go easy on the fresh herb sprigs as they get quite powerful in sous vide. Place tenderloin in ziploc bag and zip up part way only. When water reaches correct temperature, slowly lower bag into water. This will push air out (water displacement method). When top of bag is just above water line, zip it shut. Submerge bag. (Alternatively, use a vacuum sealer with sous vide bag and plunge into water). If you are using a sous vide self contained 'oven', put on lid. Cook for 1.5 hours minimum and 4 hours maximum.
- PREPARE SAUCE: While tenderloin is cooking sous vide, whisk all sauce ingredients together in a microwave-safe glass measuring cup or small bowl. Microwave for 1 minute on high or until sauce is slightly thickened. Taste and adjust seasonings if needed.
- FINISH TENDERLOIN: Remove tenderloin from ziplock bag and pat dry with paper towels. Let rest for 10 minutes while you prepare pan or grill. The browning step is not technically needed as the meat is cooked perfectly, but as you see in the picture, meat does not look appetizing straight out of the water bath. To sear:: Heat cast iron skillet or other large skillet to very hot. Add a drizzle of vegetable oil. Sear on all sides for maximum 2 minutes total. Use hands or tongs to press meat down in pan to create brown crust. To grill: Heat gas grill to high. Brush tenderloin with 1-2 tablespoons of sauce and grill on all sides for 2 minutes total to achieve a few grill marks. Slice, drizzle with sauce and serve.
- For frozen pork tenderloin
- If pork is frozen, cook it an extra hour. So a minimum of 2 1/2 hours. You can season ahead, freeze it in a bag, the pop the frozen meat in the bag into the water bath.
- If doubling the recipe, you can put two tenderloins in one ziploc bag.
- Sauce shortcuts: Skip the homemade sauce and use a favorite bottled sauce (BBQ, teriyaki, chimichurri), a store-bought apple sauce, salsa or a fruit chutney (peach, mango, apple)
- Make Ahead:
- The pork tenderloin can be cooked in 1 1/2 hours and can be left in the water bath for up to 4 hours without any affect on the result. You can even rest it for another half an hour before browning it in a hot pan or grill.
- To make it a day or two ahead, sous vide tenderloin, cool for 10 minutes in an ice bath in bag, then refrigerate. To rewarm, heat sous vide water bath to 130F/54C and put tenderloin in bag into water for 30-45 minutes to rewarm. Then pan sear if you like.
The sous vide pork tenderloin recipe with maple mustard sauce was originally published in 2017. It is now updated with updated new information and image edits.