We’re sharing our 3 favorite pork tenderloin marinades with you today! These marinades will ensure flavorful, delicious pork tenderloin every single time.

3 pork tenderloin marinades - sesame ginger, maple dijon, and balsamic rosemary in white bowls on a marble countertop

Pork tenderloin has always been a go-to dinner in my house. It cooks up quickly, is delicious (when cooked to perfection!), makes for great leftovers, and feels just fancy enough to get me out of the weeknight dinner rut. Too often, pork gets the reputation of dry and flavorless, but that’s not the case when you use one of these 3 absolutely delicious marinades!

Pork Loin Marinade

Pork tenderloin is a very lean cut of meat – but what exactly does that mean? In addition to being a low-fat choice of protein, it is also very low on flavor. If you want a flavorful pork tenderloin, you’re going to have to add in the flavor yourself. The good news is that since it is so mild, pork tenderloin takes on flavor easily – you just have to give it a little time.

What are the best pork tenderloin marinades?

When it comes to marinating your pork tenderloin, you can really use anything! Personally, we like a wet marinade because it is easy to throw together and really gets into the pork. A combination of salt, sweet, and acidity to make the pork even more tender is ideal. Here are our three favorites:

  • Sesame Ginger. This marinade is great if you want to give your pork tenderloin a bit of Asian flare! For this marinade, we whisk together coconut aminos (or soy sauce), fresh ginger, sesame oil, rice wine vinegar, honey, and red pepper flakes. It’s the perfect balance of salty, sweet, and tangy, with just a hint of spice.
  • Balsamic Rosemary. Balsamic pork tenderloin is a classic. This marinade is slightly sweet, tangy, and filled with fresh rosemary flavor. For this one, we combine balsamic vinegar, extra-virgin olive oil, fresh rosemary, dijon mustard, garlic powder, and salt.
  • Maple Dijon. This marinade is pretty much a universal crowd-pleaser, great for picky kids (or husbands)! In this marinade, we simply combine dijon mustard with maple syrup, apple cider vinegar, dried thyme, and salt.

Ingredients for Pork Tenderloin Marinades

Balsamic and Rosemary Marinade

Maple Dijon Marinade

Sesame and Ginger Marinade

How to Make a Pork Tenderloin Marinade Recipe

It’s really simple! All you’ll need to do is whisk together your marinade ingredients and then pour the marinade over top of your pork tenderloin! You can let the pork tenderloin marinade in a lidded bowl, a large Ziplock bag, or a reusable bag!

How long do you marinate pork tenderloin for?

If you’re in a rush, we recommend giving your pork tenderloin at least 30 minutes to marinate, and you can help speed up the process by poking a few holes in it with a fork. If you’ve got extra time though, 4-24 hours is ideal to make sure it really takes on the flavor!

3 baked pork tenderloins on a stainless steel sheet pan

How to Cook Pork Tenderloin

Now that your pork is marinated, it’s ready to be cooked! While you can absolutely grill pork tenderloin, our favorite way to cook it is in the oven because it’s an accessible cooking method year-round and results in some seriously juicy, flavorful pork!

  1. Sear it in a Cast-Iron Pan – When cooking your pork tenderloin in the oven, you’ll first want to sear it in a cast-iron pan.
  2. Bake It (allowing the internal temperature to reach 145 degrees F)
  3. Let it rest for about 10 minutes before serving it.

(Here’s our full breakdown on this fail-proof cooking method: Perfect Oven-Roasted Pork Tenderloin). In addition to a flavorful marinade, following these three simple steps will ensure perfect pork tenderloin every single time! For more in-depth instructions, see our guide to cooking pork tenderloin in the oven.

Pork Tenderloin Video

Tips for Perfection

Here are a few simple tips to ensure the juiciest, most flavorful pork tenderloin!

  • Let Your Pork Marinate – we recommend letting your pork tenderloin marinate for 4-24 hours. This ensures that the pork really takes on the flavor of the marinade!
  • Use a Thermometer – my #1 tip for cooking pork tenderloin in the oven is to buy a meat thermometer! Even better, if you can buy an in-oven thermometer that will beep as soon as the pork reaches the desired temperature (145°F).
  • Let the Pork Rest – you’ll want to let your finished pork tenderloin rest for 8-10 minutes before serving. If you skip this step and cut into it immediately, the juices will run out of it and you’ll be left with dry pork.
How do you make pork tenderloin juicy?

We always opt for searing our pork tenderloin and then baking it! Searing it locks in flavor and moisture, and then baking it for just 15-20 minutes gets it perfectly cooked (but not dried out!).

Can you freeze pork tenderloin marinade?

Totally! You can go one of two routes here – you can either freeze the marinade on its own or freeze the marinade and pork tenderloin together. If you decide to freeze the marinade on its own, these mason jars will work great. When you’re ready to use the marinade, just let it thaw completely (either overnight in the fridge or in a bowl of water for a quicker thaw) and then pour it over the pork and let marinate as normal. On the other hand, if you’d like to freeze the pork and marinade together, we recommend using a gallon size Ziplock bag and squeezing out as much air as possible before freezing. Be sure to label your bag with the date and contents so that your frozen pork tenderloin doesn’t become a freezer mystery! When you’re ready to cook the frozen pork tenderloin+ marinade duo, simply let it thaw completely and then cook using our perfect-every-time oven method!

3 Pork Tenderloin Marinades – Balsamic, Sesame Ginger, and Maple Dijon

4.25 — Votes 60 votes
By Cassy Joy Garcia
Prep: 10 minutes
Total: 10 minutes
Servings: 4 Servings
This method will give you perfectly juicy, flavorful pork tenderloin every time!


Balsamic and Rosemary Marinade

Maple Dijon Marinade

Sesame and Ginger Marinade


  • Whisk together the ingredients for the marinade of your choice, then set aside.
  • Trim the silver skin off of the pork – the silver skin is the white, tough strip of connective tissue that runs about halfway down the pork tenderloin. Once you have removed it, season pork tenderloin with 1/2 teaspoon coarse sea salt and 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper. Note: if you are using soy sauce for the ginger-sesame marinade, omit the salt.
  • Pour the marinade over the pork tenderloin. Refrigerate for 30 minutes up to 24 hours.
  • Remove or from the marinade and drain off any excess, then grill or bake the pork until it reaches a temperature of 145 F. For full instructions, see our oven pork tenderloin recipe.

Recipe Notes

Nutrition is for Balsamic variation.


Calories: 110kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 0.4g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Sodium: 336mg | Potassium: 36mg | Fiber: 0.3g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 17IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 8mg | Iron: 0.3mg

Additional Info

Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4 Servings
Calories: 110
Keyword: asian, balsamic, dijon, easy, ginger, healthy, herb, oven, sesame

Like this recipe?

Leave a comment

About the Author

Cassy Joy Garcia, NC

Cassy Joy Garcia, a New York Times best-selling author, of Cook Once Dinner Fix, Cook Once Eat All Week, and Fed and Fit as well as the creative force behind the popular food blog Fed & Fit.

More Like This

4.25 from 60 votes (47 ratings without comment)

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating


    1. I’m so glad to hear that, Aaron! Thanks for sharing this with us!

  1. 5 stars
    This was one of those recipes that I will add to my permanent rotation.
    I use the maple syrup marinade and opt to sear the tenderloins in a pan and then bake for 15 to 20 minutes at 425 f. We double the marinade when we have a pkg. of 2 tenderloins.

    1. Glad you love it, Dardona. Thank you for the notes!

  2. 5 stars
    Did the balsamic one , used spicy yellow mustard and thyme instead of Dijon and rosemary (all I had )

    Came out amazing (and I don’t know how to cook )

    Great recipe

    1. That’s awesome, James! We’re so glad you loved it. Thank you so much for sharing this with us!

    1. That’s so awesome, Cynda! Thank you so much for sharing this with us!

    1. Hi Jean! This recipe is just for the marinades themselves. You can find cooking instructions HERE.

  3. 4 stars
    Overall, great recipes. However, had an issue with at least one of the recipes (balsamic) in that I marinated for over 4 hours and the tenderloin was “mushy.” Wondering if the acidic ingredient(s) begin to “cook” the meat and then actual cooking it contributed? It wasn’t dry or overcooked–just a mushy texture.

    1. Hmmm, that’s so odd! We didn’t have that experience. We’ll look into it for sure!

    2. 5 stars
      The pork tenderloin you purchased was probably enhanced or injected with a high sodium solution. Most grocery stores sell only enhanced pork as well as chicken. I’m not talking about the flavored marinated pork tenderloins but a plain pork tenderloin. The label on the meat has to state if it was enhanced but it is usually in very small print. It will state the following or something similar; 20% natural solution added. Do an internet search for enhanced meat USDA rule. In other words, you are paying for water. Meats that are enhanced will generally be mushy or have sponge like consistency. That consistency tends to get worse if you marinate the meat. If you can, buy your from a local butcher shop or find a grocery store were enhanced meat is not sold. I have made both the balsamic and maple Dijon marinade both are excellent, will try the sesame ginger next.

  4. I searched the recipe several times but did not see the oven temperature listed. Please advise

  5. If I have an 8 lb tenderloin, how much marinade? Do I cut into smaller pieces so it can cook faster

    1. Hi Denise! Is it a pork tenderloin or a pork loin? Tenderloins tend to be pretty small, while pork loins are a bit bigger. This balsamic pork loin roast recipe will help you with cooking times, and as for the marinade, I’d quadruple it!

  6. 5 stars
    Love the dijon marinade, so easy to make and so flavourful. Today will be our 3rd time following this recipe!

  7. Used the Balsamic w/ Rosemary marinade. First time (in my 82 years) ever making these tenderloins this way and praise from everyone. Great flavor and so very tender. Needless to say; however, NO LEFOVERS.

  8. I’m hopping to try this for family this weekend. Will marinade tomorrow in zip lock bags and make on Sunday with fingers crossed it turns out. This an old computer with a non working printer and an even older user (in my 80’s), so I hope I can find it again. Sounds easy enough. Thanks for sharing.

  9. Excited to try this tonight! What approximate size pork tenderloins are the marinades intended for? Size can vary widely in stores. Nothing worse than a bland tenderloin! LOL.

  10. 4 stars
    Made the Sesame Ginger marinade for our tenderloin , it was tasty . This is the second time that I have made this . The first time the red pepper was too much , the second time I cut the red pepper in half , and it was much better.

    1. So glad you liked it and made it work for you, Heidi!