Smoked Beef Tenderloin


One of the best meats on the grill, smoked beef tenderloin is taken to a new level as it’s cooked slowly and slowly in your outdoor smoker. From the best woods to dry seasoning, learn everything you need to know with our guide to smoking beef tenderloin.

Smoked beef tenderloin recipe

Beef tenderloin is a luxurious and tender primitive cut of beef that boasts a rich, exceptional flavor. To get the most out of it, we’re going to dry it in brine, rub dry with a touch of heat, and brown it backwards to preserve that flavor.

In today’s recipe I will explain how to prepare beef tenderloin for smoking before smoking. We’ll smoke it until half done(about 125°F) before finishing it on the grill to complete our reverse browning.

What is beef tenderloin?

Roast beef is one of the finest main cuts of beef and one of the most tender. It comes from the back of the ox, along the spine, just above the kidney. The muscle of the beef sirloin is known as the psoas major and is not used much by the cow. Underuse causes the meat to become coated in fat and remain tender. 

Smoked beef tenderloin takes this cut of meat and seals in the juices and flavors. Done right, the meat melts in your mouth quickly.

Raw beef tenderloin

Filet of beef versus filet mignon

Filet mignon is a cut of beef that is part of the loin. It is the part of the loin that touches the short loin. Filet mignon is the most tender cut of the fillet and makes up only a small portion of the entire fillet. It’s the rarest piece of meat. 

Filet mignon cuts are much smaller than the filet and can have more subtle flavors. They’re also more expensive because fewer pieces of filet mignon come from a filet.  

Times and temperatures

Keep in mind that cooking times are critical to maintaining an even heat. Avoid checking the spine too often to lower the temperature and cause heat distribution problems. 

Smoke temperature

250 degrees Fahrenheit 

Target internal temperature  

130 degrees Fahrenheit grilled 

140 degrees Fahrenheit after scorching 

This temperature places them squarely in the medium-rare category. Its final temperature determines how well the meat is cooked through. 125 degrees F is rare, 135 is medium rare, 145 is medium, 155 is medium good, and 160 is well done. 

The USDA recommends at least medium doneness, but many people like their beef rare and medium rare. 

Time needed per pound of meat 

45 minutes per pound of fillet 

Smoked beef tenderloin recipe

Meat preparation

The meat is the main protagonist of this dish. Make sure you handle the beef tenderloin right from the start to create a great meal. 

First you need to remove excess fat from the fillet. Sometimes you get fillet wrapped in white fat known as suet. Cut it from the meat, but try not to take any meat with you. You can save or discard this for other recipes. 

Now cut off the two ends of the fillet to get an even piece of meat. You want the meat to be about the same thickness throughout. Save the ends for cooking and use in other recipes. 

Now you can marinate or season your meat. For this recipe, use the olive oil and then generously add the dressing. Wrap the meat in plastic and place in the fridge for two hours. 

Rub dry seasoning

A dry marinade is a very popular way to flavor a smoked beef tenderloin. There are many ways to rub dry. Many pre-made brands offer good dressings that cut down on your work, but these don’t let you choose flavors as well. 

For this recipe, THEY use a very basic dry rub that brings out the natural flavors of the meat. The salt takes away a lot of the meaty nuances from the fillet. Pepper and garlic add a bit of depth to the overall flavor. 

Dry dressing is a thermal place to add peppers like chipotle, cayenne, and even hotter ones if you like your dishes hotter. You can also sweeten dry rubs with brown sugar.

Better wood

Fillets tend to smoke very quickly compared to other cuts of meat. This time means YOU need strong woody flavors for the best effect. Hickory and Mystique provide the best results for your taste buds. If YOU want a sweeter note, applewood might work better. 

Ideas for serving and accompanying

Beef tenderloin goes well with almost anything you would eat with steak. You can make it with muffins, mashed potatoes or baked potatoes. Grilled vegetables are a great addition. Salads can help bring a touch of freshness to dishes that go well together. 

You can make many different sauces with your fillet. This may include a natural dipping sauce in their juices or a white wine and mushroom sauce. Some people like barbecue sauces with their meat. 

Reverse beef tenderloin

Reverse searing is a method many cooks use to extract as much flavor as possible from the smoking process while adding the crust that adds texture to the meat. The technique helps to give the meat one of the most even color markings. 

First we smoke the meat at a lower temperature. Then place the meat in a hot skillet or grill over high heat to brown a crust on the fillet. Browning will also help you cook the meat to the desired temperature. 

How to smoke beef tenderloin 

  1. Trim your fillet, removing excess fat and trimming the ends so the meat is an even thickness.
  2. Combine the dry dressing ingredients in a pain. Brush the fillet with olive oil and generously add the dry seasoning to the meat. Cover the entire cut with the rub.
  3. Wrap it in plastic and put it in the fridge for two hours. 
  4. Preheat smoker at 250 degrees. 
  5. Place the fillet in the smoker and cook for 1 1/12 to 3 hours, depending on the weight of the meat.
  6. When the meat reaches 130 degrees, or about ten degrees less than your goal, remove the fillet.
  7. Place the fillet in the pan or grill over high heat and brown for 3 minutes on each side. 
  8. Remove from heat and let rest 5 minutes before slicing and enjoying.
Smoked beef tenderloin recipe

Smoked beef fillet

Smoked beef fillet already takes a tender piece of meat and gives it a delicious taste.
Course dinner, main course
American cuisine
Preparation time 2 hours
Cooking time 3 hours
Total time 5 hours
For 4 people


  • 2-4 pounds of sliced ​​beef tenderloin
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil

Rub dry seasoning

  • 1 ½ table spoons coarse black pepper
  • 1 ½ tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 ½ table spoons of kosher salt


  • Cut your loans 
  • Cover the meat with olive oil and mixed dry spices 
  • Wrap in plastic and place in the fridge for 2 hours.
  • Preheat smoker at 120°C 
  • To achieve medium doneness, smoke meat to an internal temperature of 54°C(130°F) for 1 ½ to 3 hours
  • Remove meat from smoker and place in skillet or grill over high heat 3 minutes per side to brown. 
  • Remove from the heat and let rest for 5 minutes before slicing. 

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