smoking pork tenderloin

Discussion in 'Pork' started by john greenemay, Apr 11, 2013.

  1. I just bought a barrel smoker for the time and got a few questions.  I want to smoke Pork Tenderloin.  What should I get the temperature up to before throwing it on?  How long would you typically smoke a pork tenderloin?  Is the typical IT supposed to be at 140 degrees?  Where do you want it....away from the firebox or close?  Do you smoke it the same if doing multiple tenderloins?  Thanks for any help.

  2. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I have two large tenderloins in the garage fridge been marinating since Wednesday morning, gonna try my hand at 'em with my new MES30 tomorrow.

    Here remember, the search feature is your friend. Here's what I have been reading thru now for two days.

    Loads of ideas there. Something should fit your climate, smoker type, and ability. You can always cook it more if you under cook one, but if you over cook it, you have to bury it in BBQ sauce. Don't forget the rest and re-distribute.

    Tenderloins, not to be confused with loins, are low fat, high density, muscles. They are so small that  over cooking is extremely easy. I saw where some used bacon wraping or even injection to help add moisture. I am a thinkin that I am going to try the cool smoke, rest, refridge, smoke again to prefered doness. Is it doneness, donness, doness, are any of these right? But that is just my current idea, these I have are really large tenderloins (butcher has a sale, saw this huge package and put 'em aside..... gotta luv a well trained butcher...LOL

    Good luck!
  3. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I have a couple in the garage refridge been wrapped in the rub since yesterday morning, gonna throw 'em on tomorrow.

    Remember "Search" is your friend.

    This is what I have thumbed thru trying to plan tomorrow's "Attack of the Tenderloins!". Loads of ideas there. Something should fit your climate, smoker type, and ability.

    With todays IT thermometers, I would say, get it out the pit and wrapped for a good 5 to 7 degrees to not chance an over cooking ( I just don't like that much BBQ sauce on 'em hiding dry meat). 'Course a front came thru today have to check the ambient tomorow, but....... I am thinking maybe pulling mine about 150, and give it a 30 to 45 min wrap.

    I really like the thought of doing a cool smoke (sort of a novice at it), pull to refridge, and then bring back to smoker to finish.

    Seems the 225 cooking temp was about right. Those using lower (which is what I would have tried had I not read the posts), cooked to dryness because Tenderloin is fat free and an extremely dense muscle. But thats just what I read, you could read it different.

    BTW I tryed before with a post, guess it got ate by the smoke gods, but said this post didn't exist. My my mind hurts from thinking.

    Good luck!
  4. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    John, morning and welcome to the forum......  If you have a "real" tenderloin, about 1" in diameter, they can be overcooked real easy....  If you have a "loin", they are about 3-4" in diameter and are more forgiving when it comes to cooking....  Both have little internal muscular fat and can dry out very fast.... overcooking is the main enemy of low fat meat...   

    On the tenderloin, I would smoke it for an hour or two at 140, then up the temp to 160 and insert a temp probe....  then pull the meat at 138-140, cover with foil, rest, and let the temp finish cooking the meat.... the temp should rise to 143-145 and you will be good to go..  

    Below is a time temp chart for beef and poultry...  It is not for pork, but you get the idea of how time will kill stuff without overcooking it....

    Here is the FSIS Fact Sheet for pork....

    Please take a moment and stop into " /Roll Call/   " and introduce yourself and get a proper welcome from our members.... Also, if you would note your location in your profile, it will help in the future when answering questions about smokin'...   elevation, humidity etc....    

    We're glad you stopped in and joined our group...    Enjoy the long smokey ride....     Dave
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2013
  5. I prefer a high fast cook for such lean cuts.
  6. Thank you guys for the help.  I have to decide now between if I want a Loin or not.  I would like to smoke something that would take a little more time than 2 hours or so.  I haven't went by the butcher shop just yet.  So if you have any good ideas that would taste awesome would be great.  Other than ribs cause that is already a given that i will be doing those also. 

    Thanks for the help
  7. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    Either a Loin or Tenderloin are going to go fast 2 hours +/-...If you want to go longer Ribs go about 6 hours and Pork Butts for Pulled Pork will go 10 hours + depending on size. It's all about your smoker and how much time you have to play. If you are going with Loins or Tenders you may be disappointed in the tenderness and juiciness if you let them get  to an IT over 135-140*F. They will still be slightly Pink, which has been perfectly safe for more than 20 years, but will be all they can be in terms of quality eating. I just did a center cut Loin, 4 lbs and a uniform 5 inches after tying. it got away from me and I pulled at 143*F. It climbed to 150*F and although edible was disappointing and there was 5 ladies that expected better from me and made sure I knew it. Half of it ended up in Chili a week later as no one would touch it...JJ
  8. Well I ended up getting two full racks of baby backs and a 5lb. pork loin roast.  Do you have a typical step by step procedure you do for the pork?
  9. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Get to be the butchers friend. Tell the butcher what you would like to do, but always ask if he has some better idea or some great deal which would make you happy. The butcher knows meat, not just how to cut it, its his profession. Once he reconizes you he'll start throwing options you never thought of for your smoker. Its really amazing.
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2013
  10. Yeah he suggested the pork loin roast over the pork tenderloin.
  11. I've seen some posts where the pork tenderloin is trussed up. Is this necessary if it's not stuffed?
  12. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    The reason I tie up tenderloin and loins and butts and etc etc......

    It helps meat hold it form when cooking obviously but my Pop always said it helped encourage uniform cooking because it helpped maintain the density of the meat.

    I don't know its true, I am guessing it is, it doesn't take but a min. so why not. Try it both ways and see what you think.
  13. Sure makes sense to me. Thanks!

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