Adobo Marinated Pork Tenderloin Recipe

This Adobo Marinated Pork Tenderloin is a great main dish that marinates for several hours in a flavorful wet paste. Once baked it’s a delicious main course!

Adobo Marinated Pork Tenderloin sliced on a platter with lime slices.

Joel is a huge fan of pork tenderloins. They are lean and the perfect main course after a long day especially because they cook quickly. Often we will lightly season a tenderloin, grill it, make a salad and, voilà, dinner is served. Every once in awhile I like to change it up and add a different seasoning or sauce (and I don’t mean Heinz 57 or A1 Steak Sauce 😀). Recently, I remembered that I made Adobo Marinated Pork Tenderloin for Cinco de Mayo one year, and I decided to give it a try again. This recipe can be made ahead to give the pork time to marinate. Easy to prepare! Refrigerate the marinating tenderloin for several hours or overnight, pop it in the oven, and within 45 minutes your main course is ready.

Adobo Marinated Pork Tenderloin sliced with refried beans, rice and a green salad.

Although many times you will find a recipe for a dry adobo rub. This recipe is more of a wet rub paste or marinade. Originally adobo was made of salt, olives, vinegar or wine and spices and used as a preservative for meat before we had refrigeration. Of course now it is used as a seasoning for meat, vegetables, sauces, stews, beans, soups…

You can follow this recipe as is or open your spice cabinet and use what you have. If you don’t have Spanish paprika use chili powder or another paprika, add mustard seeds, or ground cumin instead of cumin seeds. Maybe add some thyme or use garlic powder instead of fresh garlic. It’s a marinade so play with the flavors and have some fun!

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Adobo Marinated Pork Tenderloin
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Adobo Marinated Pork Tenderloin

Here's an easy main dish for Cinco de Mayo or any time of the year! If you have the time, start early and give the pork time to marinade!
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time50 mins
marinate2 hrs
Total Time3 hrs 20 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: adobo marinated pork tenderloin
Servings: 8 servings
Author: Kyle


  • 3 pound pork tenderloin, or two 1 1/2 pound tenderloins


  • 3 Pasilla chile peppers, or Anaheim or other medium-hot chile
  • 1/2 cup orange juice or apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon mexican oregano
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Spanish paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  • Preheat oven to 400℉.
  • Lay the chile peppers on a baking sheet and put into the oven to roast for about 20 minutes. Long enough for the peppers to start to char and soften.
  • Remove from the oven and let cool long enough so that you can handle them. Remove as much of the blistered pepper skin as you can. You should be able to peel it off with your fingers.
  • Remove the stem and seeds. Place the peppers in the bowl of a food processor or blender.
  • To the bowl, also add the rest of the marinade ingredients.
  • Pulse until the peppers are finely chopped and the ingredients are combined.
    Adobo Marinated Pork Tenderloin
  • Cut the tenderloin(s) into 1-inch slices and lay in a baking dish with the slices next to each other.
    Adobo Marinated Pork Tenderloin Adobe raw cut
  • Spoon the marinade between each pork slice and on top of the tenderloin.
    Adobo Marinated Pork Tenderloin
  • Cover and refrigerate several hours or overnight.
  • Preheat the oven to 450℉.
  • When ready to bake, either remove the tenderloins to a new baking dish or if using the same dish that the meat was marinating in, remove as much of the liquid in the bottom of the pan that you would like to (or you can leave it in).
  • Bake uncovered for 10 minutes at 450℉.
  • Turn oven temperature to 325℉ and bake for approximately 30-40 minutes longer (145° for medium rare and 160° for medium).
  • Loosely tent the pan with foil and let the pork sit for about 3 minutes.
  • Serve on a bed of rice or shredded lettuce with radishes, limes, salsa, avocado, sour cream or any of your favorite garnishes.
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