Discover the Delight of Traeger Smoked Stuffed Pork Tenderloin

I can’t help but rave about how tender and flavorful pork tenderloin is. And when you stuff it with cheese, bacon, and spinach, it becomes an absolute delight! This smoked stuffed pork tenderloin recipe is my go-to favorite. The cajun spice rub gives it a delicious kick, and as soon as you slice into it, the creamy cheese filling oozes out. Trust me, just thinking about this recipe makes me hungry!

Sliced stuffed pork tenderloin with cajun rub and twine holding it together, cheese stuffing, cilantro and garlic cloves sitting on wood

Unveiling the Wonders of Pork Tenderloin

Let’s start with the basics. Pork tenderloin comes from the upper-midsection of the pig, just below the backbone. This non-weight-bearing muscle stays incredibly tender because the pig doesn’t use it much. It’s worth noting that pork tenderloin is distinct from pork loin, which is a larger cut of meat. A typical tenderloin weighs about 1-2 pounds.

Silhouette of pig with lines depicting different cuts of meat

Pork Tenderloin vs. Pork Loin: What Sets Them Apart?

Pork Tenderloin

  • Location on the pig: The tenderloin is situated in the upper back, just below the backbone.
  • How to buy it: Tenderloin is always boneless and usually packaged in pairs weighing about 1-2 pounds each.
  • Lean or fatty?: It’s relatively lean, but some silverskin needs to be trimmed before cooking.
  • How to cook it: Since it’s lean, it can become tough if overcooked. You can quickly grill it or roast it slowly in the oven, making sure the internal temperature stays below 145°F for perfect tenderness.
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Pork Loin

  • Location on the pig: The loin is a large slab of meat in the upper-midsection of the pig’s back.
  • How to buy it: It’s available bone-in or boneless, and you can find various cuts, including full loins, pork chops, and pork rack (with rib bones attached).
  • Lean or fatty?: It’s generally lean, but there may be a fat cap that needs trimming.
  • How to cook it: Due to its size, the loin takes longer to cook than the tenderloin. Low and slow cooking is best to preserve its tenderness.

Sliced stuffed pork tenderloin with cajun rub and twine holding it together, cheese stuffing, cilantro and garlic cloves sitting on wood

Tantalizingly Stuffed: The Art of Filling Tenderloin

When it comes to stuffing pork tenderloin, I want every bite to be filled with cheesy goodness. To achieve this, it’s essential to butterfly the tenderloin, flattening it out so you can evenly coat it with stuffing. Here’s how you do it:

  1. Butterfly the tenderloin: Cut the meat down the center lengthwise, allowing it to lay flat on your cutting board.
  2. Pound the pork flat: Cover the meat with plastic wrap and use a meat tenderizer to pound it until it’s about 1/4″ thick.
  3. Coat the meat evenly: For this recipe, I mixed cream cheese, cheddar cheese, mozzarella cheese, and frozen spinach. Spread the mixture evenly across the tenderloin.
  4. Roll the pork up: Carefully roll the tenderloin to create a meat log, ensuring a pinwheel of stuffing inside.
  5. Rub it in: Coat the pork tenderloin with your preferred dry rub for an extra punch of flavor. I highly recommend using a fantastic cajun seasoning mix.
  6. Tie it shut: To hold its shape while cooking, use three pieces of twine to tie the pork tenderloin securely.
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Adding Smoky Goodness: Smoking Pork Tenderloin

Pork tenderloin is a relatively small cut of meat, making it quick to smoke. For this recipe, I smoked it at 250°F for approximately one hour. If you’re in a hurry, you can raise the smoker’s temperature, but ensure the internal temperature doesn’t exceed 145°F. Remember that smoking imparts that incredible wood smoke flavor, so decreasing the cooking time may affect the final flavor.

  1. Preheat your smoker to 250°F.
  2. Trim off any excess fat, membrane, and silver skin using a sharp knife.
  3. Flavor the meat with your chosen seasoning mix, such as cajun seasoning.
  4. Smoke the meat for about an hour or until the internal temperature reaches 140°F.
  5. Sauce the pork during cooking if desired. Add sauce between 130°F – 135°F to allow it to caramelize.
  6. Rest and Enjoy! Once the internal temperature reaches 140°F – 143°F, remove the pork from the grill and let it rest for about 10 minutes before slicing.

Handy Tools and Equipment

To make your cooking experience smoother, I recommend having these tools on hand:

  • A pellet grill
  • A good sharp knife for precise cuts
  • A meat mallet to pound the pork loin into a thin sheet
  • Cooking twine to keep the pork tenderloin tightly rolled during cooking

How to stuff pork tenderloin, butterfly the meat, pound it thin, spread cheese evenly, roll up the pork, dry rub, tie shut with twine

Discover More Mouthwatering Recipes

Are you craving more delicious barbecue recipes? Don’t miss out on these mouthwatering smoked brisket burnt ends. Coated in Kansas City-Style BBQ Sauce, each bite offers a sweet and savory tang, amplified by the addition of brown sugar during the cook.

If you’re up for another incredible stuffed pork recipe, head over to Savor the Best and check out their apple-stuffed pork loin. The sweetness of the apples will make your taste buds dance!

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And because dessert is always a good idea, try making these irresistible air fryer apple fritters! They’re quick to cook and offer a unique twist on a classic treat.

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Oh, and if you’re looking for some mouthwatering barbecue, check out Rowdy Hog Smokin BBQ. They know how to make your taste buds sing!