Mother's Day Grilling: Orange, Sage, and Garlic Rubbed Pork Tenderloin Recipe

Mother's Day Grilling: Orange, Sage, and Garlic Rubbed Pork Tenderloin Recipe

My poor Mom, she bought herself a Weber Q only to be told by her condo board that she can't use it, since the odor of grilling may disturb other residents. So this Mother's Day I decided to ask her what she'd like in order to bring a little bit of grilled joy back into her life. Like any good mother, she quickly responded, "Pork," directly referring to a pulled pork I made for her a couple years back. Seeing as that may not be the most universal holiday meal, I used it as starting point and found a fitting recipe for an Orange, Sage, and Garlic Rubbed Pork Tenderloin.

When assembling the rub, the aroma of orange and sage conjured up memories of Sunday brunches with Mom. Unfortunately, the smells did not translate as well to taste after grilled. The tenderloin was hit or miss with each bite. If a piece had retained enough rub through grilling, it was sweet and succulent, but if not, it was a bit bland. I think this can easily be fixed by either glopping on more rub before cooking or reapplying after moving the tenderloin to the cool side of the grill to finish cooking. I still recommend this as a good choice for Mother's Day, and one of the best parts is it's fast, so you can deliver the two best gifts to mom: food and time together.

  • Yield:2 to 3


  • 3 medium garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon grated zest from 1 orange
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage leaves
  • 1 tablespoon orange marmalade
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pork tenderloin (about 1lb), trimmed of silver skin


  1. 1.

    Light 1 chimney full of charcoal. While the charcoal is lighting, mix all ingredients for the rub in a small bowl. Rub the trimmed tenderloin with the mixture. When the charcoal is all lit and covered in gray ash, pour out and spread the coals over half of the charcoal grate. Cover and let the grill heat up for 5 minutes.

  2. 2.

    Cook the tenderloin uncovered, directly over the coals until browned on all four sides, about 2 1/2 minutes per side. Move the pork to the cool side of the grill, cover, and continue to cook until an instant-read thermometer registers 145 degrees in the thickest part of the tenderloin, about 5-10 minutes longer.

  3. 3.

    Transfer the tenderloin to a cutting board, tent with foil, and let rest for 10 minutes. Slice crosswise into 1-inch-thick pieces and serve.