I love grilling on the weekends, without the rush of getting out of work and feeding already hungry maniacs. This weekend I wanted to change up the usual burgers and dogs for grilled pork. This Lime Grilled Pork Tenderloin is marinated all day in a mix of lime and honey then quickly and easily grilled at night for a delicious dinner.
Pork tenderloin is also a perfect sized meal for the 4 1/2 of us. I use a 1 1/2 pound tenderloin and slice it to feed the four of us and dice up one slice really small for the little one. We had a few slices leftover so even as Alice grows it should be a good sized meal for all of us. You just have to fill the rest of the plate with veggies!
This is really simple to start in the morning for a dinner time grilling session. About 8 hours before dinner I gather the ingredients for the marinade and get the pork in it.
Into a gallon freezer bag I place 3 tablespoons olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon dried cilantro leaves, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, 2 cloves of garlic smashed, 1/4 cup of honey and a pinch of red pepper flakes.
Then I add the zest and juice from 2 limes. I mix that together in bag and place my pork tenderloin in it.
I take as much air out of bag as I can and roll it up and seal it. This goes onto a plate in the refrigerator to marinate until 1/2 hour before dinner. I take it out to let it come to room temperature before grilling.
Once the grill is preheated to medium high I transfer the pork to the grill and bring my trusty meat thermometer outside so I can tell when it is perfect.
The honey in the marinade will crust up fast on the grilled pork so I cook each side with the grill cover down for a couple minutes to blacken the exterior without burning it.
Once each side has a nice crust I finish grilling with the cover up to bring down the heat on the grill and allow the pork to cook through without burning exterior.
I am looking to hit 140-145 degrees in the thickest part of pork. For me it took about 20 minutes of grilling. 5 minutes with the cover down and 15 with the cover up. Then I remove to a plate and cover with tin foil to allow it to rest for 3 more minutes which will bring the final cooking temp a little over 145 degrees. Any more then that and you will dry out your pork.
The appropriate thing for the cook to do at this part is to slice off the extra crispy burnt ends and eat them while making plates for everyone else. They will never know the difference and you are rewarded with the best parts for your efforts in cooking this masterpiece of a dinner.
Thinner slices for the maniacs and thicker slices for the grown ups, work best in our house. The kids actually demolished this pork which was a nice surprise. Something has recently snapped in Spencer and all of a sudden he is trying new food that he would never have tried without a fight two weeks ago. He even ate his “green beans.” They were peas and I am starting to think he is intentionally misnaming his vegetables to drive me crazy. As long as he eats them I guess!
It was a great day for grilling and a great Grilled Pork dinner that everyone loved. It helped to eat outside because everyone knows food tastes better outdoors.
- 1 1/2 lb pork tenderloin
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon dried cilantro
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 2 cloves garlic, smashed
- pinch red pepper flakes
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2 limes, zest and juice
- In a gallon freezer bag combine oil, salt, cilantro, garlic, red and black pepper, honey, zest, and lime juice.
- Place pork into bag and remove as much air as possible before sealing.
- Place bag in refrigerator and allow to marinate 8 hours.
- Remove pork from refrigerator and preheat grill to medium high heat.
- Remove pork from bag and grill turning to brown each side.
- Cook until pork reaches 145 degrees in center on meat thermometer.
- Remove from grill and allow to rest under tin foil 5 minutes.
- Slice and enjoy!