Dill Pickle Brined Grilled Pork is the juiciest, tender, and best pork tenderloin I’ve ever had!
What’s the Difference Between Pork Loin & Pork Tenderloin?
I see and hear people refer to pork loin as pork tenderloin all the time. They are not the same! Pork loin and pork tenderloin are not cut from the same part of the animal. Pork tenderloin is thin and small. The tenderloin is the muscle that runs alongside the backbone. Pork loin is also from the animal’s back but is wide and thick. It’s sometimes sold with the ribs attached.
HOW LONG TO MARINATE
I brined my pork tenderloin for about 8 hours. The longer you brined it the more you’ll taste the pickle flavor. However, it will not have a strong dill pickle flavor even you marinate it for 24 hours. At 8 hours marinated, it had a very faint pickle flavor. It was quite lovely, actually.
As with most meats, you want to bring it to room temperature for about 30 minutes before grilling. Otherwise, the outside may char before the insides cook.
DILL PICKLE BRINED GRILLED PORK
Before putting my pork tenderloin on the grill, I sprinkled on salt, freshly ground black pepper, a dusting of paprika, and minced garlic. Furthermore, if you want to really bring in the dill flavor, you can rub dried dill over your tenderloin.
Taste note – If you always use bought ground black pepper, I highly recommend getting a pepper mill and grinding black pepper fresh. It makes a world of difference in the flavor. You can get a nice, reasonably priced salt and pepper mill here. When you run out of peppercorns, you can find them here or with the spices at your local grocery store.
I used pork tenderloin, but pork loin and pork chops would also be tasty in this marinade. Additionally, I tried both chicken thighs and chicken breasts on the grill after marinating them in dill pickle juice and they were wonderful. I think you can taste the pickle flavor more with chicken so be conscious of that when you’re timing your meat.
WHAT SHOULD DILL PICKLE BRINED PORK TENDERLOIN LOOK LIKE WHEN DONE?
Your pork tenderloin is safe to consume when a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meat registers 145 degrees F. However, it will be slightly pink inside which is okay.
This 145-degrees temperature is 15 degrees less than the old standards of 160 degrees F. However, research shows that at 145 degrees F the meat as safe as cooking pork to 160 degrees F. Furthermore, at 145 degrees F you will have much more tender pork.
As with any other meat allow pork tenderloin to rest for 5 to 10 minutes before cutting into it. This is what your pork will look like with a 5-minute resting time:
- take the pork out at 145 F, will rise to 150 F – slices will be pink and moist
- remove pork from the heat at 150 F, will rise to 155 F – slices will be slightly pink and moist
- take the pork out at 160 F, will rise to 165 F – slices will not be pink but still should be relatively moist
WHAT IS GOOD WITH PORK TENDERLOIN?
- Black-Eyed Pea Salad Stuffed Avocados
- Bacon Ranch Twice Baked Potato Salad
- Instant Vanilla Pudding Fruit Salad
- Blue Cheese Biscuits
- 10 Kicked up Corn Bread Recipes
- Roasted Vegetables with Blue Cheese Avocado Dipping Sauce
Dill Pickle Brined Grilled Pork
- 2 cups pickle juice I used dill pickle juice
- 2 (2 - 2½ pounds) pork tenderloins Most packages come with 2 tenderloins in it. You can use one or both
- 1 teaspoon garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper freshly ground
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- Trim tenderloins. Place pork tenderloin in a shallow bowl and cover with the pickle juice. Cover and marinate for 2 to 12 hours in the fridge. Rotate the tenderloins periodically if the marinade doesn't cover them completely.
- Bring meat to room temperature for about 30 minutes before grilling.
- Preheat gas grill before grilling to 400° F.
- Drain the pork and pat completely dry with paper towels. Discard the marinade.
- Sprinkle garlic, salt, pepper, and paprika over the entire tenderloins and rub.
- Lightly grease the grill grates. Place tenderloin in the center of the grill and close the lid. Grill 4 to 5 minutes, or until the bottom has sear marks.
- Rotate the meat, close lid, and grill 3 to 4 minutes. Repeat for the other two sides for a total of about 14 to 16 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches at least 145° F.
- Remove pork from the grill and let rest at least 5 minutes before slicing and serving.