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Sear-Roasted Beef Tenderloin

Scott Phillips

Servings: 8

Tenderloin has a wonderful texture, but its flavor can be a bit bland. This recipe brings out its natural goodness by salting ahead to concentrate flavors, searing to develop a rich crust, and glazing with ingredients that add depth. Punch up the flavor with one (or more!) of our make-ahead sauces.


  • 1 trimmed whole beef tenderloin (3-1/2 to 4 lb.)
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 Tbs. Dijon mustard
  • 1 Tbs. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 medium clove garlic, mashed to a paste
  • 1 tsp. honey
  • 1 tsp. soy sauce
  • 1 tsp. finely chopped fresh thyme
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil

Nutritional Information

  • Calories (kcal) : 420
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 250
  • Fat (g): 28
  • Saturated Fat (g): 10
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 1.5
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 13
  • Cholesterol (mg): 140
  • Sodium (mg): 610
  • Carbohydrates (g): 2
  • Fiber (g): 0
  • Protein (g): 38


  • Fold the thinner end of the tenderloin under to create an evenly thick roast; secure with twine. Rub the beef all over with 1 Tbs. salt. Wrap it in butcher paper or plastic wrap, put it on a platter or rimmed baking sheet, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 2 days.
  • Remove the beef from the refrigerator and let sit for about an hour before roasting. Meanwhile, position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 475°F.
  • In a small bowl, combine the mustard, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, honey, soy sauce, thyme, and a few grinds of pepper; set aside.
  • Heat a flame-proof roasting pan over medium-high heat, using 2 burners if necessary. Add the oil, swirling the pan to coat, and then add the beef. Cook, turning with tongs, until well browned on all sides, about 12 minutes total. Transfer to a cutting board; wipe out the pan.
  • Brush the glaze over all of the beef, return it to the roasting pan, and roast to an internal temperature of 120°F for rare, 16 to 20 minutes, or 125°F for medium rare, 22 to 26 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board, tent with foil, and let rest for at least 15 minutes (and up to 1 hour if serving at room temperature). If serving warm or at room temperature, slice the tenderloin 1/2 inch thick and pour any juice that has accumulated over the sliced beef, if you like. If serving cold, wrap the tenderloin in plastic wrap once it has cooled and refrigerate it for up to 24 hours.


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Reviews (5 reviews)

  • user-3876836 | 12/26/2018

    This has been our Christmas dinner for the last several years. If I have a crowd, I make a couple of sauces; this year, just the parmesan-peppercorn one (I find it needs lots more parmesan for the flavor of the cheese to be noticeable).

    One caution: both during browning and roasting, the kitchen will get smoky! Next time, I'm going to cook this outside on my gas grill, searing the outside over direct heat first, applying the glaze, and then finishing it with indirect heat.

    I purchase a whole tenderloin from Costco and break it down to just the roast--saving all the trimmings for other delicious meals. It's not exactly economical, but we get several meals out of one roast, so it's not as costly as it seems at first.

    Well worth the effort!

  • Christi2015 | 12/24/2018

    Had the butcher trim the fat and twine it accordingly. Followed the recipe exactly. Everyone loved it. We did not any need extra sauce on the side. We may add a horse radish type sauce on the side next year. This dish will be served every year. It was the favorite at our holiday meal. Delicious.

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