Mojo-Marinated Pork Tenderloin (Pernil)

Mojo-Marinated Pork Tenderloin (Pernil)
Recipe photo may include foods and ingredients that are not a part of this recipe and not included in the nutrition analysis.

Author and chef Ronaldo Linares says, "This recipe takes the classic pork shoulder dish (pernil) and makes it healthier while still giving you the amazing Cubano flavor that we love. I have substituted pork tenderloin for pork shoulder in this version of the recipe. I can hear my father’s voice screaming at me, 'Oye, chico, what are you doing changing the dish?' I’m not changing the essence of the dish, I’m just modifying it so people can enjoy it in a healthier way."

  • Prep time
    25 min
  • Servings
    5 Servings
  • Serving size
    1 (4-ounce) piece pork
Nutrition Facts

Nutrition Facts

5 Servings

  • Serving Size
    1 (4-ounce) piece pork
  • Amount per serving Calories 160

  • Total Fat 3g
    • Saturated Fat 1g
  • Cholesterol 75mg
  • Sodium 450mg
  • Total Carbohydrate 10g
    • Dietary Fiber 2g
    • Total Sugars 5g
  • Protein 25g
  • Potassium 590mg
  • Phosphorus 300mg

Choices/Exchanges: 1/2 Fruit, 3 Lean protein



  • navel oranges (peeled and cut in half)
  • lemon (peeled)
  • Kosher Salt
    1 tsp
  • black pepper (cracked)
    1/2 tsp
  • ground cumin
    1/4 tsp
  • garlic powder
    1/4 tsp
  • distilled vinegar
    2 tbsp
  • fresh thyme (leaves removed from stem)
    2 sprig
  • pork tenderloin
    20 oz
  • Nonstick cooking spray


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.

  2. Grab your blender to make the mojo marinade. Add oranges, lemons, salt, pepper, cumin, garlic powder, vinegar, and fresh thyme leaves into the blender. Pulsate the mixture 4 times, then purée for 1 minute. Set aside 4 ounces mojo and add the rest to a resealable plastic bag.

  3. Remove the silver skin from the pork tenderloin. Add pork tenderloin to the resealable plastic bag with the mojo. Marinate pork for at least 20 minutes in the fridge.

  4. Remove the pork tenderloin from the bag (discarding the marinade in the bag) and pat dry with a paper towel. Preheat an ovenproof sauté pan over medium heat, spray with nonstick cooking spray, and wait 10 seconds for oil to come up to temperature. Brown both sides of pork tenderloin in the pan, then place pan in the oven for 15-20 minutes. Internal temperature of cooked pork should read 145°F.

  5. Remove pork from oven and let it rest for a few minutes so juices redistribute. Drizzle some of the reserved mojo marinade on the pork, and serve.