You can find 1000+ of my kitchen-tested recipes using the Recipes tab, watch nearly 100 of my Kitchen Encounters/WHVL-TV segments using the TV Videos tab, join the discussion about all of my creations using the Facebook tab, or Email your questions and comments directly to me--none go unanswered. Have fun!


~ Open Sesame -- Easiest Teriyaki Pork Tenderloins ~

IMG_0088Can a really, I mean REALLY good dinner entrée be made using three ingredients?  Yes, on occasion it can, and, let's be honest, whether your food world moves at a fast pace or a slow pace, a three-ingredient dinner entrée recipe in-the-style of this one (meaning you're proud to plate and serve it to your family, or, to a few guests), is: a recipe worth having -- it's "the stuff" good home cooks are made of.  There's no shame in shortcuts as long they are high-quality ones. For example:  Using a bottle of seriously-good store-bought teriyaki sauce, instead of making it from scratch.  If it looks and tastes great, does anyone really need to know?  I think not.

As a lover of Asian fare, teriyaki-in-general is one of my favorite ways to cook.  Teriyaki is as well known outside of Japan as sushi or ramen is, so, most American people, kids included, will give "teriyaki anything" a try.  A bottle of teriyaki sauce has been a staple condiment in my pantry for as long as I've had a pantry, standing right next to the elites:  Heinz ketchup, French's mustard, Hellman's mayonnaise and Lee & Perrin's worcestershire sauce.  That said, teriyaki sauce is seriously simple to make, and, it can be customized to suit your family's taste.  I typically prepare a double- or triple-sized batch, then keep what I don’t use in the refrigerator, so it's ready to reheat the next time a "teriyaki anything" craving hits me or mine -- as often as once a week.

6a0120a8551282970b0263e95ca6aa200bTeriyaki (tehr-uh-yah-kee):  Teriyaki is a Japanese term referring to a method of cooking beefchicken, ribs, or seafood that has been marinated (in a mixture of soy sauce, mirin, sugar, garlic and/or ginger) prior to being grilled, broiled or stir-fried. "Teri" is the Japanese word for "luster", and it is the sugar that gives the food its "teri" or shiny glaze.  It's interesting to note that in Japan, there is no official teriyaki sauce.  Teriyaki sauce was invented by the early Japanese settlers to the islands of Hawaii.  They created:

A slightly-sweet nicely-thickened marinade/basting sauce using local, readily-available, easy-to-acquire Hawaiian products.  For example: pineapple juice (in place of the mirin or sake of their homeland) and wild garlic (in conjuction with ginger they brought with them), mixed with soy sauce and thickened with cornstarch.  The subject at hand (beef, chicken, pork, fish or seafood) is marinated for a minimum of 30 minutes, longer for a more pronounced flavor, then cooked.

6a0120a8551282970b026be408b9ea200dHomemade teriyaki sauce is thick and drizzly.  At its thinnest, it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, and, at the discretion of the cook, in many cases thicker than that.  That said, many store-brought brands are watery (similar in consistency to soy sauce), and, they will not work in this recipe.  Ideally, the teriyaki sauce should be similar in consistency to a hearty barbecue sauce.  What I keep on-hand and recommend is: Panda Express Mandarin brand teriyaki sauce.

Three ingredients + two quick sides = one wonderful Asian entrée:

IMG_00341  vacuum-packed package of 2 whole pork tenderloins, about 3 1/2-4 pounds total

1/2  cup Mandarin brand teriyaki sauce, or your favorite brand

about 1 tablespoon sesame seeds

steamed basmati rice, suggested accompaniment

steam-in-bag Asian vegetables, suggested accompaniment

IMG_0036 IMG_0036 IMG_0041 IMG_0041 IMG_0049~Step 1.  One-at-a-time remove the tenderloins from the vacuum packaging, using a few paper towels to pat each one dry, placing them together in a 1-gallon food storage bag as you work.  Add 1/2  cup of teriyaki sauce to the bag, then securely seal the bag.  Using your fingertips, "smoosh" the bag around to make sure both tenderloins are fully-coated in the teriyaki sauce.  Refrigerate 4-8 hours or overnight -- overnight is best.

IMG_0052 IMG_0052 IMG_0052~ Step 2.  Line a 12 1/2" x 8 3/4" baking pan with aluminum foil, then place a piece of parchment paper atop the foil.  Remove the tenderloins from the marinade, shaking each one gently, to allow excess marinade to drizzle back into the bag.  Place the tenderloins, side-by-side, on prepared baking pan.  Sprinkle sesame seeds evenly over the surface of both tenderloins.  Discard the bag and the marinade.

IMG_0066 IMG_0066~ Step 3.  Bake tenderloins, uncovered, on center rack of preheated 350° oven, about 30-35 minutes, or until the desired degree of doneness is reached.  I always use an instant-read meat thermometer and remove them when they have reached 138°-140°.  When the tenderloins are removed from the oven, tightly cover the pan with aluminum foil rest for 15-30 minutes, during which time carryover heat will continue to work its magic.  For best results, follow my instructions, meaning, do NOT cook past 140° or they will dry out (you were warned).  While tenderloins are resting, prepare the recommended side-dishes.

Slice & serve tenderloins w/steamed basmati rice, steam-in-bag vegetables & additional teriyaki sauce for dipping & drizzling:

IMG_0079This is a meal I like to serve plated in perfect-sized portions:

IMG_0095Open Sesame -- Easiest Teriyaki Pork Tenderloins:  Recipe yields 8-12 servings/4-6 servings each pork tenderloin.

Special Equipment List: paper towels; 1-gallon food storage bag; 1 cup measuring container; 12 1/2" x 8 3/4" baking pan; parchment paper; aluminum foil; instant-read meat thermometer (optional but recommended); chef's knife

6a0120a8551282970b0263e95cb855200bCook's Note: Americans adore teriyaki-style almost anything.  This is not an assumption on my part. Beef or chicken teriyaki appear as a skewered appetizer option on menus in almost all Japanese-American and Chinese-American restaurants.  Make no mistake, teriyaki is a 100% Japanese-invented method of cooking (read paragraph three), and, once Americans here in the states got a taste for its soy- and ginger-based flavors (thanks to our soldiers returning to the homeland after WWII), Chinese-American restaurants adopted it, to please the palates of their customers.  For another super-easy recipe, try my ~ Japanese-Teriyaki-Style Roasted Chicken Quarters ~.

"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti

(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2021)


Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment