In the BBQ world, there is a lot of pulled pork, but there is another cut that is just as flavorful and rewarding: pork tenderloin.
Smoked pork tenderloin is juicy and tender on its own, but wrap it in prosciutto and drizzle it with maple glaze to replace your Christmas ham.
In this recipe, I’ll teach you how to smoke pork tenderloin quickly and easily, resulting in a juicy taste every time.
- What is pork tenderloin?
- Why wrap with Prosciutto?
- How to make prosciutto-wrapped smoked pork tenderloin
- Make the maple glaze
- Glaze the pork tenderloin
- Serve the pork tenderloin
- Do you wrap a pork tenderloin when smoking?
- How do you keep pork tenderloin moist when smoking?
- How do you smoke a pork tenderloin without drying it out?
- How long to smoke pork tenderloin at 225?
- How long to smoke pork before wrapping in foil?
- Does smoking pork tenderloin dry it out?
- What liquid is best for smoking pork?
- What liquid keeps pulled pork moist?
- Should you spray pork while smoking?
- What is the best temp to smoke pork tenderloin?
What is pork tenderloin?
Tenderloin is a long, thin muscle that runs along the backbone of pork. It’s exceptionally lean and delicate, and it comes boneless.
But don’t mistake it with a regular pork loin. That’s a distinct cut that comes from the rear of the pig and is broader and flatter.
Both are easily overcooked, so keep an eye on the internal temperature while smoking your pork tenderloin.
Tenderloin of pork should be simple to get at your local butcher or supermarket, or you may treat yourself to Snake River Farms’ delicate Kurobuta tenderloin.
Why wrap with Prosciutto?
Prosciutto is Italian meaning ham, but in the United States it refers to a dry-cured ham that is eaten raw.
It’s a fatty, delicious piece of beef that’s been thinly sliced. It tastes salty-sweet and meaty, and it melts in your tongue like butter.
When we wrap the pork loin in prosciutto and smoke it low and long, the fats in the prosciutto gently melt and baste the pork loin, infusing it with a salty flavor and making it even more juicy than typical.
How to make prosciutto-wrapped smoked pork tenderloin
This dish is really straightforward and low-maintenance, particularly if you use a pellet grill with a meat probe. I’m using the Z Grill 700D3, which comes with two built-in meat probes.
What youll need:
- 1.5 pound pork tenderloin, with any visible silver skin removed
- 4 oz prosciutto
- Salt and pepper to taste
For the glaze:
- cup pure maple syrup
- cup apple cider vinegar
Prep the pork tenderloin
Remove the pork tenderloin from the package and blot dry with paper towels. Trim away any superfluous fat or silver skin with a sharp knife. Season with kosher salt and coarse ground pepper to taste.
Wrap each strip of prosciutto fully around the pork tenderloin. To ensure that the tenderloin is thoroughly coated, overlap a little portion of each slice. Fold the prosciutto over the tenderloin’s ends to cover.
Allow the tenderloin covered in prosciutto to come to room temperature for 30 minutes.
Prepare the smoker
Set the smoker to indirect heat at 250 degrees Fahrenheit. When it reaches the desired temperature, add your preferred smoking wood. I’m using oak pellets from Z Grills.
Whatever you normally use to smoke pig butt is also suitable for smoked tenderloin. My favorite woods are hickory, oak, apple, and cherry.
Smoke the pork tenderloin
When the smoker is hot and smoking, lay the pork tenderloin on the grates and shut the lid.
Allow it to ride until it achieves an internal temperature of 135 degrees Fahrenheit. Approximately 1 hour, depending on the size of your tenderloin.
Make the maple glaze
It’s time to create the maple glaze while the tenderloin is smoking. This is a simple glaze that will give the meat a subtle sweetness without overwhelming the meal. Its purpose is to offer another layer of complimentary taste rather than to dominate the bite.
In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine 1 cup pure maple syrup and 1 cup apple cider vinegar. When it begins to boil, lower the heat to medium-low and continue to simmer until the mixture is reduced to about half.
Glaze the pork tenderloin
When the tenderloin reaches 135°F, raise the temperature of the smoker to 300°F. Continue to cook while coating the meat with a layer of maple glaze. Glaze every 10 minutes for about thirty minutes, or until the interior temperature reaches 145F.
It’s OK if you run out of glaze before the pork tenderloin reaches the final temperature. It’s just enough glaze to stick to the meat.
Serve the pork tenderloin
Remove the pork tenderloin from the smoker and tent with foil when it reaches 145°F. Allow it rest for 10 to 15 minutes before slicing thinly to serve.
This smoked pork tenderloin is delicious on its own or as part of a holiday buffet. The prosciutto fat renders and bastes the meat throughout the cooking process, making it soft and moist.