When it comes to easy weeknight dinners, pork tenderloin is a great option. It's a flavorful and lean cut of meat, sometimes called the filet mignon of pork. This dish combines flavor and simplicity with just 6 ingredients- half of which are salt, pepper, and the tenderloin itself. Making it in the air fryer gives you that perfect combination of a crisp exterior with a tender, juicy inside. Most importantly, it helps you get a delicious meal on the table fast!
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Why You'll Love This Juicy Pork Tenderloin:
- Simple Preparation: We don't need a lot of ingredients or prep time. Getting your ingredients out takes as long as actually making the marinade!
- Flavorful: Keeping the ingredients list short means using a combination that gives us a lot of extra flavor.
- Fast Cooking: Slicing the pork into medallions cuts down the cook time- and we'd have to slice it after cooking anyways!
- Versatile: This entree pairs well with a wide variety of side dishes, making it easy to work into almost any meal plan.
Let's Get Started! Here's What You'll Need:
Whole Pork Tenderloin- An entire tenderloin runs about a pound to a pound and a half, but don't worry about the exact weight. We'll be slicing the tenderloin into equal pieces so that they all need the same cook time. If your package is about double that there are probably two tenderloins in there- the pack I have here is a 2-pack.
Dijon Mustard- This lends a certain creaminess and flavor to the marinade that makes it the best choice for this dish, but if you don't have any you can swap in yellow or spicy brown mustard.
Worcestershire Sauce- This is our critical ingredient. Worcestershire sauce contains a variety of spices that bring a lot of savory flavor without us having to add a bunch of different things like soy sauce and garlic powder. If you are gluten free be sure to check your bottle. Most sold in the United States are, but if they are made with the traditional malt vinegar instead of white vinegar, then that won't be the case.
Olive Oil- this adds some moisture and helps carry our flavors.
Sea Salt & Black Pepper- Our best spice buddies. I like to add them to the marinade for simplicity, but you could sprinkle them on directly too.
The star of course is our air fryer itself. To prepare for cooking we'll need a small bowl and measuring spoons, or a graduated measuring cup that we can measure the marinade ingredients in, along with a whisk or fork for mixing. We'll also need a zip top bag to marinate the pork in, and a sharp knife and cutting board to slice it. I recommend using a meat thermometer to make sure the temperature hits 145 as well.
How to Make This Air Fryer Pork Tenderloin Recipe:
Step 1: Make the Marinade
Combine the olive oil, dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, salt, and pepper in a small bowl or graduated measuring cup. If you're doubling this recipe like I am here, 4 tablespoon is equal to ¼ cup, so you can reach for that instead when measuring the liquid ingredients. This freezes well, so it definitely lends itself to doubling and freezing one for another day. Whisk with either a fork or an actual whisk until it is well combined and looks like a salad dressing.
Step 2: Marinate the Pork
Place the pork in a gallon zip top or other flexible container, and pour the marinade over it. Push most of the air out of the bag and seal it, then toss the bag around, making sure the pork is well coated all over. Place in the fridge to marinate for at least half an hour, but you can do this a full day ahead if you're more on the ball than I usually am.
Step 3: Slice Tenderloin Equally
We're not doing 1 or 2 inch slices here- we're going to cut them so that all the pork medallions are the same size no matter exactly how long your specific tenderloin is. For the first cut, slice it in half. Then slice the halfs in half, and then finally slice each quarter in half. This helps avoid having a small slice at the end that gets overcooked, or a big slice that needs more cooking time than the rest.
Step 4: Air Fry Pork Tenderloin
Place each little pork filet on the surface of your air fryer basket or grill pan, whatever set up you prefer. For best results make sure the slices aren't touching. If you have a smaller air fryer you might need to either use a rack that sits in the basket, which I have but couldn't find, or work in batches, like I did. I did not use cooking spray, if you want to then choose one that doesn't have a propellant, as those build up on nonstick coating over time. Air fry at 350 degrees F for 9-12 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the pork reaches 145 degrees F with an instant-read thermometer.
Step 5: Serve & Enjoy
Like almost all pork, this pairs well with sweet potatoes. It's also great with rice and a roasted vegetable, or a simple salad. If you have any leftover pork tenderloin make sure to store it in an airtight container and eat within 3 days or so. The leftovers would make great pork tenderloin sandwiches or added to a pasta with mushrooms. To reheat the pork tenderloin slices, I recommend wrapping the slices in aluminum foil and reheating in your air fryer for about 3 minutes.
Sure thing- it just takes a bit longer. Cook time will be about twice as long to hit a safe internal temperature, and after cooking you'll want to let the pork rest 5-10 minutes before slicing. When sliced ahead of cooking I find by the time people get their plates made and to the table it's more than ready to be cut into.
Absolutely. This marinade freezes well so it's a great one for preparing in advance. Simply freeze in the zip top bag with as much air removed as possible to reduce freezer burn. I recommend thawing before cooking, if you want to cook a frozen pork tenderloin then you'll want to do so at a lower temperature to reduce the risk of having dry pork on the outside by the time the middle of the meat reaches a safe temerature.
No, there's no need to flip this. You can if you want to get the griddle or basket marks on the bottom side, but it doesn't need that.
Yes, and if you have a convection oven the cook time should be similar. That's because another term for air fryer is a countertop convection oven. For a traditional oven, your cook time will be about 15 minutes.
More Easy Dinner Ideas
If you're looking for more pork tenderloin recipes, be sure to try this sous vide pork tenderloin- for cooking from frozen I prefer that method to air frying. For ground pork, try these baked pork meatballs with italian seasoning.
I hope you and your family love this pork tenderloin, and that it becomes one of your favorite recipes! Be sure to come back and let me know how it went for you, and happy eating!
Air Fryer Pork Tenderloin Medallions
- 1 lb pork tenderloin
- 2 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 2 tablespoon Olive oil
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- Mix all ingredients except the pork in a small or medium bowl. Once well combined pour over the pork tenderloin in a zip top bag and marinate in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
- After marinating, slice the pork tenderloin into 8 equal pieces by cutting in half, then each half in half, then each quarter in half. Air fry at 350 degrees F for 9-12 minutes, until pork reaches an internal temperature of 145.
Nutrition information is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate. It is recommended to use your preferred calculator with the actual ingredients you use for optimal accuracy.