Irresistible Roasted Beef Tenderloin
The juiciest roasted beef tenderloin recipe – complete with pan gravy! Sear the tenderloin and let it roast in the oven right over the gravy ingredients. Then create an irresistible pan sauce to serve alongside our roast!
The kind of beef tenderloin recipe where the meat just melts in your mouth!
We start by tying the tenderloin into a neat little package. Don’t sweat it if it’s not your thing. You can easily ask the butchers at the grocery store to take care of that for you. I bet if you ask nicely, they’ll do it! Then, we’ll season the roast and let it sit in the refrigerator so that the salt seasons the whole roast and so that the beef dries out on the outside. That’s what gives it that beautiful sear when it hits the hot cast iron!
I like to sweat down onions, garlic, and lots of sliced mushrooms once we sear the meat in the same pan. I’m not leaving any of that flavor on the table! Then we’ll roast the tenderloin on a rack on top of the pan gravy to pick up all of that delicious flavor that melts off the roast. Trust me, I’m not messing around here. This is the only roast beef tenderloin recipe you’ll need from here on out. So good it’ll make a grown man or woman cry!
Perfect to make for Christmas dinner, Thanksgiving, or the holidays in general if you’re in charge of putting together the spread. I would even serve this for an intimate New Year’s Eve dinner party.
Ingredients for the best homemade roast beef tenderloin:
- Beed Tenderloin: You’ll want the roast trimmed of excess fat and silverskin. Usually, you can ask the butcher to do this for you and they’ll take care of it. But if for some reason your roast hasn’t been trimmed just remove and much of the fat on the outside of the roast as you can.
- Mushrooms: You’ll need dried porcini mushrooms and baby Bella mushrooms for this recipe. We’ll rehydrate the porcini mushrooms in boiling water then use some of that strained liquid in our pan gravy! The umami in that gravy is OUT OF THIS WORLD. Porcini mushrooms are usually found in the international aisle of most grocery stores. You can also purchase them online here. I highly encourage you to using them, but if you must, you can omit them from the recipe. I suggest adding additional beef stock for the liquid and using a splash of soy sauce to help make up for some of that missing umami.
- Beef Broth or Stock: You want to use good-quality beef stock for this recipe.
- Oil: You’ll need a splash of oil to help sear the beef roast before we pop it in the oven.
- Onions + Garlic: Aromatics that help flavor the pan gravy. The natural acid in the onions will help pick up all the left-on flavor bits from searing the roast. Garlic cloves help flavor the pan gravy and it’s also used to baste the roast with.
- Fresh Thyme: Fresh thyme is used in the pan sauce and it’s also added to the butter baste that we’ll make for the roast.
- White Wine Vinegar: Help deglaze the pan and help cut some of the richness in the sauce.
- Dijon Mustard: Is used to baste the roast.
- Prepared Horseradish: Adds heat and another ingredient needed to baste the roast. The flavors will drip into that mushroom gravy and the beef roasts – it’s insanely good!
- Butter: You’ll need the butter in two ways here. You’ll need some softened butter to cook down the mushrooms and also to make the butter baste for the roast. You’ll also need a cold pat of butter at the end to help thicken and bring the pan sauce together at the end. The butter will help thicken and add a nice finish sheen to the sauce (this is a chef’s secret to the best pan gravies!)
How to make roast beef tenderloin:
- Do Ahead. A day before you plan on making the tenderloin, tie the tenderloin down with kitchen twine (there are several videos you can watch on the internet where you can learn to do this or you can just ask your butcher to do it for you when you purchase the roast.) Pat the meat down with a paper towel. This will help the salt and black pepper adhere better to the meat. Generously season the meat and press to make sure that it adheres to the roast. Allow the roast to sit uncovered in the refrigerator (preferably on a wire rack) for at least 1 hour and ideally, overnight. Remove the roast from the refrigerator 1 hour before cooking.
- Sear the roast tenderloin. Preheat the oven while you’re searing the roast and sauteeing the base for the pan gravy. Start by heating a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Gently cook beef tenderloin and allow it to sear on one side before flipping it over. You want to from a nice crust on the exterior of the roast. Then remove the roast to a plate.
- Pan gravy comes together in the same pan. Lower the flame to medium heat. Add the remaining oil and a couple tablespoons of butter. Then saute the onions wth a big pinch of salt. Add the mushrooms slices and continue to saute them until most of the liquid disappears from the pan and the mushrooms brown. Season with minced garlic and fresh thyme. Deglaze the roasting pan with white wine vinegar scraping the pan with a wooden spoon to pick up any stuck on flavor bits! Pour in the prepared stock and allow it to reach a simmer. Add the porcini mushrooms and simmer for a couple of minutes. Then remove from heat.
- Slather and roast. In a bowl combine the room temperature butter, dijon mustard, prepared horseradish, minced garlic, and thyme. Rub this all over the exterior of the roast. Then, if you have a small wire rack, place it in the skillet where you prepared the gravy and place the roast on top of that rack. Roast for 40-52 min for a medium rare roast. I like to use an instant-reast thermometer to check the temperature. Remember, you want the meat thermometer to read 10 degrees less than your ideal temperature (it’ll continue to rise as it rests.) So if you’re looking to hit 125ºF as your ideal cook, remove the roast around 115ºF.
- Let it rest while you finish the pan sauce. Remove the roast to a cutting board and allow it to rest. You can tent it loosely with foil if you’d like, I usually don’t though. Slicing it immediately will cause the juices to run out. You also want it to rest so that it can come up to your ideal doneness. Remove the wire rack and heat the skillet over medium-high heat. Allow the sauce to reduce into a gravy-like consistency. Taste and adjust with kosher salt and black pepper as you’d like. Then turn the stove temperature down to low, toss it a pat of cold butter, and allow it to melt right into the sauce. This will give the gravy luster and flavor! Cut the twine off the roast and slice the roast with a sharp knife. The steak should be so tender that it cuts through like butter! Serve the dish with prepared pan sauce, maybe some green beans and we also love this with mashed potatoes!
FAQs about beef tenderloin roasts:
- Is beef tenderloin and filet mignon the same thing? The filet mignon and beef tenderloin come from the same cut of beef but, the filet mignon it is the smaller portion that tapers into the short loin. Beef tenderloin refers to the entire piece of meat whereas filet mignon is pieces cut out from the tenderloin.
- Is it important to remove excess fat trimmings and silverskin from the roast? Yes, you don’t want the roast to be extremely fatty! You also don’t want all that dripping into the pan sauce we’re working on, so it’s important to trim as much of that off the roast as you can! Ask your butcher, a lot of times, they’ll do it for you!
- Do I have to roast the tenderloin on a wire rack? No, you don’t have too! But it is helpful because you want everything on the roast to drip right into the pan sauce we’re creating. I use the wire rack that came with my instant pot! If you don’t have a rack, you can use a couple of scrunched up wads of foil to elevate the tenderloin. I’ve also linked a very afforable one below.
- Do you have serving suggestions? What can you serve alongside this roast for a fancy meal? If you’re making this for Christmas or New Years, I’d say you need rosemary roasted potatoes, creamy asiago roasted garlic mashed potatoes, or these quick 20-minute mashed potatoes. You could also do creamed spinach, cheesy cauliflower casserole, golden garlic butter carrots, sauteed green beans, or roasted asparagus spears! For starters, I’d suggest cauliflower soup with truffle oil or a hearty minestrone!
Recommended kitchen equipment for this roast:
- Kitchen twine
- Sharp Knife
- Boning Knife (if you trim your own roast)
- Instant-read thermometer
- Small Wire Rack
- Cast Iron Pan
- 2 ½-3 pounds beef tenderloin, trimmed
- ¼ cup dried porcini mushrooms, soaked (see notes first)
- 1 ½ cups porcini beef stock (see notes)
- Kosher salt + medium ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons high heat oil
- 4 tablespoons softened butter, divided
- ½ cup yellow onion, chopped
- 1 pound baby Bella mushrooms, thinly sliced
- 4 teaspoons EACH: fresh minced garlic AND fresh thyme leaves, chopped
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoons EACH: dijon mustard AND prepared horseradish
- 1 tablespoon cold butter, optional
- DO AHEAD: Pat tenderloin down with a paper towel. Tuck any long thin piece under the roast. Use kitchen twine to tie into an even log, placing the kitchen twine about 1-inch apart. Sprinkle the roast with 1 ½ teaspoon kosher salt and 1 teaspoon black pepper, press to make sure it adheres. Allow the roast to sit in the refrigerator, uncovered, for a minimum of 1 hour or ideally, 8-10 hours. Remove the roast from the refrigerator 1 hour before cooking.
- SEAR: Position a rack in the center of the oven + preheat the oven to 300ºF. Place 1 tablespoon oil in a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Gently place the tenderloin in the skillet and allow it to sear evenly on each side for about 3-4 minutes or until each side gets a golden-brown crust. Remove to a plate.
- PAN GRAVY: Lower heat to medium. Add the remaining tablespoon of oil and 2 tablespoons of butter. Add onions and a pinch of salt. Scrape to pick up any stuck-on bits and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add the baby Bella mushrooms and continue to cook for another 6-7 minutes or until mushrooms turn golden brown. You may need to cradle the heat between medium and medium-high to help evaporate the liquid and brown the mushrooms. Sprinkle with half the garlic and half the thyme and saute for 30 seconds. Deglaze pan with vinegar, stir, and simmer until it evaporates. Pour in the prepared stock and allow it to come to a simmer. Add the porcini mushrooms. Simmer for 2 minutes, remove from heat.
- SLATHER: In a bowl, combine 2 tablespoons softened butter, dijon, horseradish, remaining minced garlic, and thyme. Brush or rub this all over the tenderloin.
- ROAST: Place the tenderloin on a wire rack (see notes) in the center of the prepared pan gravy. Roast until the center of the roast registers between 120-135ºF based on preference. It will take about 40-52 mins for medium-rare and 53-65 mins for medium. You want the temperature of the roast to be about 10 degrees less than your ideal cook (see notes.) Remove the tenderloin from the pan to a cutting board. Let rest 15 minutes, undisturbed.
- SERVE: Place the gravy back on the stove over medium heat and cook until it reduces to a gravy-like consistency. Taste + adjust with salt and pepper as desired. Stir 1 tablespoon cold butter into the sauce if you want it to have shine and luster, this is optional. Remove twine and cut meat crosswise into ½ inch thick slices. Serve with prepared pan sauce.
- Porcini mushrooms: soak the mushrooms in 1 cup of boiling water for about 30 minutes. Lift the mushrooms with a slotted spoon and give them a rough chop. Set these aside for now. Strain ½ cup of the porcini liquid into a 2 cup measuring cup. Then add 1 cup beef stock to this liquid.
- Beef stock: If you don’t have or replace the porcini with more baby Bellas, just use 1 ½ cups beef stock for this recipe.
- If you don't have a wire rack: Use two wads of aluminum foil to rest the steak on that above the pan sauce.
- Roasting: If you want the roast to be a medium-rare (125ºF) you want to pull the roast out when it reads 115ºF. The roast will continue to rise another 10 degrees in temperature as it rests.
- Roasting temps: Rare: 120ºF Medium Rare: 125ºF Medium: 135ºF