How to Cook Pork Loin [VIDEO]

Catalina Castravet
By Catalina Castravet

Pork Loin recipe is very easy to prepare and results in a juicy, tender and very flavorful meal. The meat is cooked to perfection and seasoned with garlic and some brown sugar. Once cooked, it has an impressive appeal, and great to serve during the holidays or for a dinner party.

With only a few ingredients, you can have a delicious and elegant dish. This homemade recipe is great to serve with some roasted asparagus, crispy roasted potatoes, or brussels sprouts.

Pork Loin Recipe

Roasted Pork Loin

Pork Loin is a simple dish to prepare that requires only a few ingredients for an incredibly tender and delicious meal. Boneless pork loin (different than a pork tenderloin), is a budget-friendly and lean cut of meat that produces the most succulent and flavorful pork roast. It is a great cut of meat that comes with a thin layer of fat on top.

Once roasted, it has a crispy top and a juicy interior that is simply irresistible. We’ve been making this dish over many years and is always a huge hit with family and guests. Also, this is our favorite pork cut because it is very easy to work with. It can be flavored with your favorite seasonings or even just a simple sprinkle of salt and pepper. No matter how you end up cooking it, it is guaranteed to be a delicious and juicy meal.


Even though they might sound similar, the two cuts are very different cuts of meat, and should not be used interchangeably. They are both lean cuts but are totally different in appearance, cost, and size.

Pork Loin is from the animal’s back. In addition, it is larger in size, and also wider. A typical loin will be anywhere from two to five pounds. It also has a thin cap of fat on the top, that benefits it better during cooking as it keeps the meat moist, juicy and flavorful.

Pork tenderloin runs alongside the backbone and is a muscle. Each tenderloin averages about one pound and is boneless. It is best to roast it at higher heat.

Garlic Roasted Pork Loin Recipe


To get juicy, melt in your mouth meat results, simply do not overcook the meat. It is that simple, yet important. Since this is delicate meat cut on the leaner side, cooking time plays an important role here. Therefore, we recommend to always use a meat thermometer. Per USDA guidelines, it is safe to consume pork meat at the internal temperature of 145 degrees F.

Can Pork loin be served a little pink?

As stated above, when roasting it, it’s best to have internal meat temperature of 145° F. At this temperature, the meat is cooked to medium, which means it will be just slightly pink in the middle.

Important to remember, that resting it for about 5 minutes is essential for juicy and tender meat. It is best to cover it with foil and let it rest for a few minutes. As it rests, the internal temperature will naturally increase a bit, so keep this in mind.

Refer to the below internal temperature guidelines for the desired doneness.

  • Medium-Rare – 145 to 150 degrees F.
  • Medium – 150 to 155 degrees F.
  • Medium-Well – 155 to 160 degrees F.
  • Well-Done – 160-165 degrees F.


Since this is a larger meat cut, it is really important to cook it properly. For best results, you want to cook it for roughly 25 minutes per pound. So if you are cooking a 3-pound loin, the average cooking time should be about 65 minutes. But again, always check the final internal temperature with a thermometer, as it might vary based on oven.

How to Roast Pork Loin

How to Serve Juicy and Tender Roasted Pork Loin?

Once cooked, and it reaches 145°F on an instant-read thermometer, remove the meat from the oven. Cover the dish with an aluminum foil, and let it rest for about 5-10 minutes. This way the meat will reabsorb all its juices and aromas.

Once rested, we like cutting it thick, about 3/4- to 1-inch slices. But you can cut it thinner if preferred. Serve it with some mashed potatoes, by laying a few slices of pork over it.

Recipe Tips:

  • When cooking, make sure the white fat cap side is up.
  • Brown the meat in a heavy cast iron pan with some olive oil to have a nice golden-brown crust.
  • Cook at a high temperature so the outside will have a nice color.
  • Also, use a thermometer to achieve the desired temperature.
  • Similarly, do not overcook it, as it will result in dry meat.
  • Resting the meat is essential for a juicy and tender dish.

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5 from 5 reviews
How To Cook Pork Loin
Author: Catalina Castravet Serves: 6 servings
Prep time: 10 minutes Cook time: 1 hour Total time: 1 hr 10 mins


  • 2.5-3 pound  pork loin  (not tenderloin)
  • 2 tablespoons  olive oil  (plus more for the pan)
  • 9 cloves  garlic  (whole)
  • 5 cloves  garlic  (minced)
  • 1/2 teaspoon  Kosher salt 
  • 1/2 teaspoon  ground black pepper 
  • 1 teaspoon  smoked paprika 
  • 2 tablespoons  brown sugar 


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Lightly grease a baking dish with some olive oil.
  3. Add the pork loin to a large bowl, pierce with a small knife 9 holes on top. Fill those holes with 9 whole garlic cloves.
  4. Add the rest of the ingredients to the pork and rub well on all the sides.
  5. Add the pork loin to the prepared baking pan, fat side up.
  6. Cook for 60-70 minutes or until it has reached a temperature of 160-165 degrees F.

  7. Remove from the oven and let it rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing and serving.
Calories: 377 Carbohydrates: 4 Protein: 50 Fat: 16 Saturated Fat: 3 Cholesterol: 142 Sodium: 306 Potassium: 855 Fiber: 0 Sugar: 3 Vitamin A: 165 Calcium: 15 Iron: 1.3
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How to Cook Pork Loin Recipe

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I love pork loin. It's one of my favorite meals to prepare. I make it once or twice a week.


We make it a lot too.



This looks so darn delicious!! I would love some right now with some mashed potatoes and vegetables.


That's exactly how we served it!


Brandy O'Neill

Love pork loin! Can't wait to give this a go the next time I make!


You will love it!



So juicy and delicious! This is such a great meal.


I am so happy that you loved this pork recipe.


Marcie W.

Cooking pork always worries me because I can never tell when it's done and usually wind up drying it out. I look forward to putting some of these tips into action!


Checking the internal temperature always solves this problem!


Melanie Walsh

This is exactly what I needed. I'm a vegetarian, but my family members aren't. I often lack the confidence to know I'm doing it right. This is so clear and so helpful.



I love a good pork loin for dinner. It's one of my favorite cuts of pork. I'm going to have to make this one night soon.


Ruth I

Oh how tasty this dish looks! I need to make it for the whole family. I am sure everyone would love this.


Katerina @ diethood .com

Pork loin is a family favorite! This recipe sounds amazing!



This pork loin couldn't look any more perfect! Definitely a must try recipe!



I love pork loin, it's such an affordable piece of meat to make. I am always looking for new ways to enjoy it! 


Melanie Bauer

This dish is incredibly delicious! My family will surely love it, need to make this soon!


It's a big hit here too!


Erin | Dinners,Dishes and Dessert

Looks delicious and so easy to make! This looks heavenly!



I have never been brave enough to roast a pork loin in the oven. I have only used a crock pot.


Karen simpson

Love evert recipe that I have tried.  Thanks so much.


Thanks Karen for the nice words. Glad you like our recipes, we are trying our best!



I’m curious because I’m one who avoids cooking pork loin because I tend to overlook it: in the write up it says take out of the oven at 145° But in the recipe it says at 160°. I’m guessing the power is better so it can sit? I have a loin that needs to be cooked and would love to try this. 


The internal temperature of the meat should be 145-160, depends on how you like it. Between 145° F. is for medium rare and 160° F. medium.



Super easy to follow and always comes out perfect. I brown the meat before I put it in the oven cuz I like the browned crust. My teenage sons love all your recipes. They love the taste and easy for them to follow if by themselves and they have to make dinner.


so happy that you love it!


Marcy Hupp

I’m going to try this in my Power Fryer. Same recipe just quicker and hopefully the best!!  Thanks. 


Terry Johnson

I made this and it was perfect.. It is company worthy! Be sure to bury the garlic completely, mine burned on what was sticking up.. I cut them off, and it was perfect. 145 was the temp to remove it. Tender, juicy, and flavorful.


Kelli Cook

I’ll try this version. I’ve cooked two pork loins in my life. They were so dry, no one could stand it.


hope you like it



This pork loin is delicious! I read the comments and doubled the spice mixture, used minced garlic instead of cloves, scored the fat cap, and cooked it in the crockpot. It’s is so moist and tender and flavorful! Great recipe! I’ll certai prepare this dish again!


Marybeth Hope

I like how the instructions were given, I am older and slower and they were given in such a way as to be easily remembered! I plan to try this tonight! I was going to dopiek chops but this sounds too good to pass up!


Hi Marybeth, and thanks for stopping by. Please let me know how you liked them. It is a delicious recipe, and hope you enjoy it as much as we do!


Kris Deatherage

Seriously?! Wow! I cannot believe how AMAZING this recipe is! Super impressed. I normally brine pork loins and boil them with cabbage. I thought I would try something different. I am so glad that I did. I didn't have any paprika, but I had some creole seasoning, and I scored the fat. This was so easy, so lovely, very flavourful. My family loved it. I don't think I will boil this cut ever again!



FYI, Trichinosis has been virtually eliminated from US produced pork. Pork raising and processing methods have taken care of that for us. Plus, if the pork has been frozen, any parasites would be dead. Cooking to a temp of 130 for 30 minutes, or 140 for 1 minute also will kill them. So check the temp as suggested, and rest easy. The FDA lowered the recommended temperature for pork years ago.


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