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Beef Tenderloin

  • Serves: 8
  • Prep Time:  1 hr 30 min
  • Cook Time:  30 min
  • Calories: 574
homemade beef tenderloin cooked with garlic herb butter sliced on a serving platter served with horseradish sauce
Photography by Gayle McLeod

A true showstopper, beef tenderloin is the festive dish that we all deserve! Our recipe results in a slightly crusty outside, perfectly pink tender inside and is topped with creamy horseradish sauce.

The Best Recipe For Beef Tenderloin

This beef tenderloin roast hits all the check marks of easy to make, impressive to serve, and melt-in-your-mouth delicious, no fancy carving skills needed. It’s great for a small crowd of close friends or family. The horseradish sauce and garlic herb butter complement the tender beef, leaving room for the flavor to really shine through. The best way to cook beef tenderloin is a hard sear in the pan followed by a slow roast for a nicely browned crusty exterior and soft, fork-tender interior.

Ingredients in bowls to make beef tenderloin, garlic herb butter and horseradish sauce including spices and fresh herbs

What Do You Need For The Best Beef Tenderloin?

In our beef tenderloin recipe, you’ll need the following:


For the Beef Tenderloin

  • Center-cut beef tenderloin roast (also called a chateaubriand)

  • Kosher salt

  • Fresh cracked pepper

  • Vegetable oil


For the Horseradish Sauce

  • Heavy whipping cream

  • Sour cream

  • Mayonnaise

  • Horseradish sauce

  • Chives

  • Sea salt


For the Garlic Herb Butter

  • Salted butter

  • Garlic

  • Fresh thyme, fresh rosemary, and fresh sage


Feel free to make it your own by trying it with one of our other Compound Butters!

garlic herb butter in a bowl made with garlic cloves, fresh thyme, fresh rosemary and fresh sage
beef tenderloin wrapped in twine being seasoned with salt and pepper on a baking sheet
Beef tenderloin halved and tied with twine seasoned with salt and pepper being seared in a skillet
beef tenderloin seasoned with salt & pepper and seared in a skillet covered with garlic herb butter ready for the oven

Is Beef Tenderloin The Same as Filet Mignon?

Don’t be confused; beef tenderloin is not the same as filet mignon. In fact, filet mignon is actually cut from a beef tenderloin. Both cuts are very tender and provide a silky, buttery bite without much fat. Whole beef tenderloin is typically uneven, with one side being leaner than the other, and can weigh anywhere from 3lbs-5lbs, which is why we suggest asking your local butcher for a center-cut piece – usually a bit more cylindrical. If you’re asking yourself, is beef tenderloin a good piece of meat, or is beef tenderloin expensive? While it’s definitely on the spendier side, it is so worth the splurge for a special occasion due to it being such a good cut of meat. We also like to save this recipe for when beef tenderloin goes on sale at our local market.

beef tenderloin seasoned with salt, pepper and garlic herb butter in a skillet just out of the oven
homemade beef tenderloin cooked with garlic herb butter being sliced on a wood cutting board

What To Serve With Beef Tenderloin

This celebratory roasted beef tenderloin in oven deserves to be served with menu items that match its elegance. To start, we love little bites such as Bacon-Wrapped Scallops or Pecan Stuffed Mushrooms. For a carby pairing, we suggest Scalloped Potatoes, Rosemary Roasted Potatoes, or Crispy Shallot Mashed Potatoes. When it comes to veggies, you can never go wrong with Broccolini, Roast Fennel, Green Bean Almondine, Roasted Asparagus, or try a nice big green salad like Roasted Sweet Potato Salad with Orange Vinaigrette, Shaved Snap Pea Salad with Goat Cheese and Dates, Simple Butter Lettuce Salad or check out our 30 Best Salad Recipes. End the meal with a luxurious, chocolate-rich dessert, like Bailey’s Chocolate Bundt Cake or a velvety chocolate mousse.

How to Cook Beef Tenderloin

Follow these step-by-step instructions for a tender inside and caramelized outside:

  1. Make the horseradish sauce! This creamy, punchy sauce makes for the perfect bite with the roast beef tenderloin. It’s super easy to make: simply whip the cream until soft peaks form, then fold in the remaining ingredients. Pop into the fridge until you’re ready to serve. The flavors will continue to marry all the while you’re finishing up the dish.

  2. Make the garlic butter! Pro tip: soften the butter by placing a warm bowl face down over the stick! It’ll result in a soft, spreadable consistency. Once the butter is ready, add the remaining ingredients.

  3. Roast! You’ll do this in two steps! First, season with salt and pepper, then brown in a hot pan. Then, cover it with the garlic butter and pop it into the oven. The most precise way to measure the doneness of meat is with an instant-read thermometer. Time and temperatures are changeable, but a measurement is a measurement. For beef, rare is 125°F; medium-rare is 135°F; medium is 145°F, medium-well is 150°F; and well is 160°F. Medium-rare is our preferred doneness for beef tenderloin, but feel free to enjoy it at whatever temperature or doneness you like!

  4. Rest and garnish! Once it reaches your desired doneness, place it onto your cutting board and let it sit, tented with foil, for 15 minutes. The juices will reabsorb into the cut, making a buttery-smooth bite! When it’s rested, cut into 1-inch slices and drizzle it with horseradish sauce. Dig in!

homemade beef tenderloin cooked with garlic herb butter sliced on a serving platter garnished with fresh herbs

Tools You’ll Need For Beef Tenderloin Roast


Make it Look Fancy (Without Too Much Hassle!)

When we’re looking for easy and elegant recipes, we turn to a simple protein that we can elevate. Some of our favorites are:

homemade beef tenderloin cooked with garlic herb butter sliced on a serving platter
homemade beef tenderloin cooked with garlic herb butter sliced on a serving platter served with horseradish sauce

You Deserve A Delicious Roast!

Try this juicy, tender beef tenderloin for your next festive occasion, and let us know how it turns out! Snap a photo and tag us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper. Happy eating!

Beef Tenderloin

  • Serves: 8
  • Prep Time:  1 hr 30 min
  • Cook Time:  30 min
  • Calories: 574

Ingredients

For the Horseradish Sauce

  • ½ cup heavy whipping cream, chilled
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • 3 to 6 tablespoons horseradish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons minced chives
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt

For the Garlic Herb Butter

  • 6 tablespoons salted butter, softened
  • 4 garlic cloves, grated
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped, fresh thyme
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped, fresh rosemary
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped, fresh sage

For the Beef Tenderloin

  • 1 (4 to 4½-pound) center-cut beef tenderloin roast, fat trimmed and tied, at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F with a rack in the center position.

  2. Make the horseradish sauce. In a small bowl, whisk the cream until soft peaks form. Gently fold in the sour cream, mayonnaise, horseradish sauce, chives, and salt. Cover and place in the refrigerator until ready to use. Store refrigerated in an airtight container for up to one week.

  3. Make the garlic herb butter. In a separate small bowl combine the butter, garlic, thyme, rosemary, and sage. Store refrigerated in an airtight container for up to one week.

  4. Make the beef tenderloin. Halve the tenderloin and tie it up using kitchen twine. Pat the beef dry and season all over with salt and pepper.

  5. Heat the oil in a large oven-proof skillet over high heat. Once the oil is glistening, add the tenderloin and brown on all sides, 10-12 minutes. Cover the tenderloin with the garlic herb butter and bake until the internal temperature reaches 135°F for medium-rare, 15-25 minutes. (See Note)

  6. Remove from the oven and transfer the tenderloin to a cutting board. Let rest for 15 minutes.

  7. Cut tenderloin into 1-inch slices and serve with horseradish sauce.


Note: The most precise way to measure the doneness of meat is with an instant-read thermometer. Time and temperatures are changeable, but a measurement is a measurement. For beef, rare is 125°F; medium-rare is 135°F; medium is 145°F, medium-well is 150°F; and well is 160°F. Medium-rare is our preferred doneness for beef tenderloin, but feel free to enjoy it at whatever temperature or doneness you like!

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories574
  • Protein51 g
  • Carbohydrates4 g
  • Total Fat40 g
  • Dietary Fiber0 g
  • Cholesterol170 mg
  • sodium1151 mg
  • Total Sugars0 g

Beef Tenderloin

Questions & Reviews

Join the discussion below.

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  • Heather

    I don't have kitchen twine, is that needed?

    It should be ok without it. Hope you enjoy Heather.

  • Karen Peterson

    Step 5 do you cook for 15-25 minutes in the oven to get to med rare?

    Yes! Hoe you enjoy Karen!

  • Carol Causey

    I bought prepared horseradish. Will that work as well?

    Yep!

  • Beth Norman

    For the Horseradish sauce for your beef tenderloin it says in the ingredients horseradish sauce. Do you mean 3-6 tablespoons of horseradish or am I adding 3-6 tablespoons of already made horseradish sauce? Thank you!

    It is the creamy horseradish in a jar or squeeze tube from the store. Hope you enjoy Beth!

  • Karen Peterson

    This was simple to prepare and the garlic herb butter added so much flavor to the tenderloin. The horseradish sauce was a nice complement to the meat without being overpowering. Definitely making again!

    Thanks Karen, so glad you loved it!

  • Jenn

    Stunning dish, can't wait to make it again for Christmas dinner.

    yay! happy you loved it!