honey ginger pork tenderloin

So is the rest of the country grilling yet? Dave and I bought a grill in the middle of January, which, in southern New Mexico, is not at all bad grilling weather. And if you’re feeling jealous about our 70-degree sunshine because you’ve been buried in snow for months, keep in mind that the average high in July is 96 degrees. But it’s a dry heat!

For years, I’ve had to ignore the majority of food magazines in July and August because all of the recipes are designed for grilling. My apartment lifestyle didn’t mesh with my desire to cook outside.

Not anymore! Dave and I have grilled every weekend since we got the grill, and I think that we could possibly be getting the hang of it. Maybe.

After my lifelong grilling drought, I’ve been trying to make as many different recipes as possible – fish, steaks, burgers, boneless skinless chicken, bone-in skin-on chicken, lamb roasts, bacon-wrapped dates, all sorts of vegetables and potatoes, bread, and on and on. We’re grilling machines. This recipe knocked our socks off enough to make it two weekends in a row.

It’s simple too – you mix up a few ingredients, add the pork, and set it in the fridge while you go enjoy your perfect-hiking-weather-in-January. Then you get back from hiking, shower, drink a glass of wine (or take a nap, in Dave’s case), and fire up the grill. While it heats, skewer up some potatoes and vegetables. Spend 20 minutes cooking outside, then sit down to a fantastic, easy, smoky, flavorful meal with some more wine. Toast to the weekend and to winters in the desert.

One year ago: Spinach Bread
Two years ago: Classic Pound Cake (but, I think I’ll stick to this other pound cake from now on, with or without bourbon)

Printer Friendly Recipe
Honey-Gingered Pork Tenderloins (adapted from Gourmet via epicurious.com)

Serves 4-6

¼ cup honey
¼ cup soy sauce
¼ cup oyster sauce
2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon minced peeled fresh gingerroot
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon ketchup
¼ teaspoon onion powder
¼ teaspoon cayenne
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
two ¾-pound pork tenderloins, trimmed of silver skin

1. In a small bowl, whisk together all of the ingredients except the pork. Add the pork and the marinade to a gallon-size zipper-top bag and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or up to 1 day.

2. Prepare a medium-hot grill. (You should be able to hold your hands 5 inches above the grate for 3 to 4 seconds.) Remove the pork from the marinade, reserving the marinade.

3. Grill the pork, basting with the reserved marinade, for 12 minutes, turning a quarter turn every 3 minutes. Discard marinade. Continue to cook pork, turning every minute or so, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the tenderloin measures 145 degrees or the meat is slightly pink at the center. Let the pork rest 5 minutes before slicing.


  1. When you write “rest of the country”, I assume you are referring to only the United States, since you mentioned New Mexico :). I grilled just yesterday to make my Tandoori Butter Chicken/Murgh Makhani. I’m still green at grilling, but I was pretty successful yesterday.

    Now that I’m better at grilling, I must try out this recipe. Your pork looks amazing. I bet this would be good on chicken and steak as well. YUM!

  2. This looks delicious. Love these flavors! We’re just getting to the point that we don’t have snow all around our grill. I will be trying this one soon!

  3. That marinade sounds amazing! Grilling is one of my favorite things, though we don’t have one at our apartment — I’m so jealous! Will definitely save this recipe for my next trip to my parents house!

  4. We use our grill all the time, and we’re lucky that we can use it pretty much all year. Our favorite meat to have on the grill is pork tenderloin, so I know we will be giving this a try soon!

  5. Man, you sure know how to paint a picture. That sounds amazing!

  6. This looks like an amazing recipe I will be trying very soon!
    In the photos it looks like you have chopped onion in the marinade, but onions are not listed in the recipe (only onion powder). Are those onions, or something else?

  7. bridget says:

    Mel – Good point! I didn’t have onion powder, so I just used some chopped onion (both times I made this).

  8. This looks delicious! I love pork tenderloins, just wish my husband was a fan!

  9. This would make a good freezer recipe – just freeze after putting it all in the bag and it will marinade while defrosting. I’ll have to remember this for my next big cooking session.

  10. This looks really great – I just bookmarked it. We don’t grill pork tenderloin often, which is sad, because when we do it’s awesome. I think even my husband could handle this one, so I am passing it along to him 🙂

  11. LOVE pork tenderloin! This one is getting bookmarked 😉

  12. The recipe says first to save the marinade; then later it says to discard it. Shouldn’t it just say discard it as soon as you remove the pork for grilling?
    Could you set aside some of the marinade aside before pouring it on the pork to warm and use as a light sauce for the cooked pork?

  13. bridget says:

    deb – The reserved marinade is used to baste the pork during the first stages of cooking. You could certainly set some of the marinade aside for a sauce, but honestly, the pork is so flavorful it isn’t even necessary.

  14. I’m not grilling yet (nor will I ever be because I live in NYC and have no outdoor space 🙁 ) but this makes me want to find a grill and cook it!!! WOW are those photos amazing!

  15. diane says:

    YUM!!! We had this over the weekend and didn’t have a spec of it left – SO GOOD!!!!!

  16. A picture is worth a thousand words, and this tenderloin is just calling my name over and over. It looks so juicy and yet nicely blackened. Good job.

  17. snoopee says:

    could you have possibly cooked it any longer? can’t possibly imagine trying to choke down that dried out piece of meat.

  18. bridget says:

    snoopee – It does look blackened, doesn’t it? We’re definitely still getting the hang of grilling! Fortunately, while the outside was pretty dark, the inside wasn’t overcooked at all. Plus, the marinade is so wonderful that the meat was still moist and delicious.

  19. Karen says:

    I made this a couple weeks ago and man, did we love it!!! I didn’t have the oyster sauce, so I just added some more soy sauce. So tasty. I will make this again.

  20. I love the grill! I was in AZ. for 7 yrs. but I’m back in the UP of MI. I Grill everything! But I use things like fresh branches off a tree in my yard to smoke things and I never get bad results . I like your stuff. My grill works at 20 under zero! Lite it and do it. Make it your way and everybody loves it!

  21. LOVE pork tenderloin! This one is getting bookmarked 😉

  22. Had this for dinner again last night — so flavorful, thanks for the recipe!