One of the cuts of meat that is always present in our weekly rotation is pork tenderloin, because it cooks fast and goes well with many types of seasonings. For that reason, I am always searching for new ways to prepare it. I found this recipe through a Google search, decided to give it a try without any  intention of blogging about it. Sometimes it’s nice to simply cook and eat dinner like normal people do. You know, without the need to scream at your partner “DO NOT DARE TOUCHING IT, I HAVE TO TAKE A PICTURE!”. It does get old after a while. So, I sliced the meat, served it, and Phil, very surprised asked me “You won’t be blogging about this?”.  No, I’ll let this one slide by.  Then, he took a first bite, and told me “Sally, this has got to be in the blog, it’s very good!”.   I had to agree, it turned out super tasty, and deserves to be shared with my readers. A picture was quickly snapped,  and we moved on with our dinner.


(adapted from Elly Says Opa)

1 Tbsp. grape seed oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/3 cup ancho chile powder
2 Tbsp. cider vinegar
1 tsp. dried oregano, preferably Mexican
1/2 tsp. sugar
3/4 tsp. salt
3/4 cup water
1 pork tenderloin, around 1.25 lb, butterflied

In a small saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant and golden, about 1 minute. Stir in the chile powder, vinegar, oregano, sugar, salt, and water. Simmer over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, for 5-10 minutes until flavors are combined. Let cool to room temperature (or, if making ahead, refrigerate). Set aside about 1/4 of the marinade.

Place the remaining marinade and the pork tenderloin in a shallow bowl or resealable bag, making sure to coat the pork with the marinade. Marinate for several hours or overnight.

Sprinkle a little extra salt on the tenderloin. Grill to your desired degree of doneness, brushing with the reserved marinade half way through cooking. Allow to rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing.


to print the recipe, click here

Comments: If you want to learn more about the concept of “carne adobada” in Mexican cooking, Wikipedia is waiting for you with a click here. This preparation ends up with a subtle heat, and the acidity of the vinegar brightens up the flavors. Very nice take on pork tenderloin, which should work equally well on boneless chicken breasts. You can cook the pork on a cast iron pan and finish it in the oven, or use any type of preparation you are comfortable with.  I always butterfly it to speed up cooking, but the original recipe did not call for it.

As I mentioned many times, we grill 12 months of the year. Phil grew up in Michigan and a little snow (less than 3 feet, that is) doesn’t scare him.  Me?  I inform that we will be grilling, which means “Darling, you light the grill, monitor the cooking, and bring it all back to the warmth of our home once it’s done”.  Sometimes I amaze myself at my efficiency.


ONE YEAR AGO: Braised Fennel with Saffron and Tomato

TWO YEARS AGO: Revenge of the Two Derelicts

THREE YEARS AGO: Plum-Glazed Duck Breasts

FOUR YEARS AGO: Peppery Cashew Crunch

FIVE YEARS AGO: Baked Shrimp and Feta Pasta



  1. How interesting! When I first read the title I honestly thought you meant the Filipino national dish: pork adobo – now I have discovered a different grilled variation from Mexico. And there are similarities besides the name in the usage of garlic and vinegar . . . must try this soonest . . . especially since I am not used to oregano and chillies in the same recipe! The dinner looks delicious 🙂 !


  2. Hi Sally,
    That adobo sounds great. I think I’ll try it on chicken thighs, since I have trouble getting quality pork.
    You’ve had your Blue Star range for over a year now. Has it lived up to your expectations? Have you had any problems with it? My old stove is about to die, and I’ve been contemplating a Blue Star for quite some time.

    While looking for your original post on the range, I ran across your article on Listeria. Beautifully presented information. As a medical technologist (never worked much in micro), I was fascinated to learn how it propagates from cell to cell.


    • Love the Blue Star! We haven’t had a single problem with it, works like a charm… Two things to keep in mind, the oven takes a long time to heat, longer than a “normal” oven, so make sure to take that in account. And the grates are heavy. I don’t mind cleaning them, but some people find it hard

      after a little over one year, you can notice a little wear on the grates, but nothing too bad, actually. I find that Dawn Ultra Power detergent is the best to wash them.

      of all the appliances and things we got, the ONLY disappointment was our hood. It sucks because it doesn’t suck. 😉


  3. John doesn’t grill. Australians don’t use the word grill, it’s a BBQ and you cook on it – it’s not a thing. It took me 3 years to stop saying, “Will you light the grill?” “It’s not a grill, it’s a BBQ,” he’d say. He lights it but that’s about it. It’s not cold enough here to worry about cooking inside so I have no excuse really. I love your pork tenderloin adobado. really like pork tenderloin too. It’s tender and it’s quick.


  4. This is why one should never get behind when blogging. Just tonight, I cooked a pork tenderloin and it was OK. I come here and you cooked one that looks far better than OK — and so easy to prepare. I’m pinning it for later, Sally. And I promise to try to keep current in the future. 🙂


  5. Do you know I always think of you when we make pork tenderloin. You are the guru! This one looks like a fantastic version to try. And of course, I love how efficiently you manage to grill through the winter. 😉


    • Oh, I love that you think of me when you cook it! It is my favorite cut of meat – in fact, guess what was my lunch today? Slices of leftover grilled (or barbecued, to please Maureen’s husband) – tenderloin…. So good!


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