The Best Pork Loin Recipe

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Pork Loin is one of the best comfort food that is perfect for any occasion. If you are looking for a delicious weekend meal or something special to cook for a family gathering, this Pork Loin recipe is the way to go. Firstly, it is super easy to make it. You simply need to marinate the meat and bake it in the oven. As a result, you will be rewarded with a tender and super flavorful dinner.

Also, pork is one of my favorite meats to cook because it is affordable and very versatile. You can cook grill it, bake it, or pan fry it. If you follow the proper technique and timing, you are guaranteed to end up with a juicy and moist pork meal.

In this post, I will share with you how to perfectly cook the Pork Loin. It is one of my favorite ways to cook it, as it results in a super flavorful and juicy meat. I have adjusted this recipe over many years, to come up with one of the best pork loin recipes out there. Follow the easy steps below, and you will be rewarded with a perfectly cooked pork loin on your dinner table.

What do you need to cook Pork Loin?

⦁ 2.5-3 pound pork loin – make sure you are getting a loin cut, not tenderloin

⦁ 2 tablespoons olive oil

⦁ 9 whole cloves garlic – these are optional

⦁ 5 minced cloves garlic

⦁ 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt 

⦁ 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper 

⦁ 1 teaspoon smoked paprika 

⦁ 2 tablespoons brown sugar

How to cook Pork Loin?

⦁ First, preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Anytime you are cooking or baking something in the oven it is very important to preheat it first.

⦁ Next, use a bit of oil to grease a baking dish that would fit the pork loin cut.

⦁ If you are a garlic lover, I highly recommend using a small knife, to pierce 9 holes in the loin ad stuff them with the 9 whole garlic cloves.

⦁ Add the rest of the ingredients to the pork loin and rub well all over it.

⦁ Transfer the pork loin to the prepared baking dish, and place it fat side up.

⦁ If you prefer your pork medium-well done, then cook it for 50-55 minutes or an internal temperature of 150-155 degrees F. For well-done, cook it for 60-70 minutes, or an internal temperature of 160-165 degrees F.

⦁ Once done, remove it from the oven and let it rest for 10 minutes before slicing.

Is there a difference between pork loin and pork tenderloin?

Yes! Pork Loin is from the animal’s back and is larger and wider in size. You basically can cut steak-like pieces from it. On the other hand, the pork tenderloin runs alongside the backbone and is all muscle. It is also thinner and smaller in size. 

What temperature should the pork loin be cooked to?

For safe consumption, it should be cooked to 145 degrees F. However, please note, that I highly recommend resting the meat prior to consumption for about 5 to 10 minutes. During the resting time, the internal temperature will increase by about 5 degrees F. 

Therefore, it is best to remove it from the oven when it reaches 140 degrees F, and then leaving it to rest for another 5 to 10 minutes. This way, the meat will rest, and reach the recommended internal temperature of 145 degrees F. 

What to serve with Pork Loin?

You can complement this dish with mashed potatoes. Also, if you are looking for a healthier option, go with steamed broccoli or a simple cucumber salad. 

But don’t limit yourself to only a few side dishes. Feel free to rotate it with other ingredients, such as mac and cheese, roasted asparagus, cornbread, corn salad, and many others. This dish is very versatile and can be served with pretty much anything you enjoy the most. So, do not limit yourself to only a few side dishes!

Recipe tips:

⦁ I highly recommend browning the meat in some olive oil for a few minutes on both sides. This step is optional, but it looks in the flavors and it gives the loin a nice color as well. 

⦁ If you like your meat on a little pink, you should reduce the cooking time by 5 to 10 minutes. Also, check the internal temperature prior to consumption. As stated above, it is recommended to consumer pork loin when it reaches the internal temperature of 145 degrees F. 

⦁ Also, ensure to rest the meat for at least 5 minutes prior to serving. 

⦁     Feel free to garnish it with freshly chopped cilantro or parsley.