Air Fryer Mojo Pork Tenderloin

published Jan 5, 2024
Air Fryer Mojo Pork Tenderloin Recipe

No slow cooker? No problem! Give this weeknight-friendly version of lechón asado a try.

Serves4 to 6

Prep15 minutes

Cook20 minutes to 25 minutes

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Overhead shot of a partially sliced mojo pork tenderloin on a wooden cutting board.
Credit: Photo: Vicky Wasik ; Food Stylist: Rachel Perlmutter

Traditional Cuban mojo roast pork, or lechón asado, is incredible (I love it so much I made a slow-cooker version!). But because it’s slow-cooked and made with a huge piece of meat, it’s not the most weeknight-friendly dish. My solution? Air fryer mojo pork tenderloin. It only takes 20 minutes to cook and has just as much flavor. 

While you can roast pork tenderloin, I prefer to cook it in the air fryer. It’s easier and it won’t dry out! 

Ingredients in Air Fryer Mojo Pork Tenderloin 

Mojo is a super traditional marinade and flavor profile in Cuban cuisine. It’s usually used to flavor pork and sometimes chicken. My mom often used the marinade for pork chops or roast chicken. For this pork tenderloin recipe, you’ll need the following: 

  • Pork tenderloins: These are often sold in packs of 2 about a pound each. 
  • Onion: The Spanish or sweet variety will complement the flavors of the citrus and spices best. 
  • Garlic: Mojo must be garlicky! 
  • Sour orange juice: I highly recommend you look for bottled sour orange juice or fresh sour oranges. In a pinch, you can sub in a combo of regular orange juice and lemon juice.   
  • Oregano: Don’t be shy with it — you’ll want the full tablespoon in the marinade. 
  • Cumin: The warmth of ground cumin balances out the sour OJ and garlic flavors. 

What to Serve with Air Fryer Mojo Pork Tenderloin 

You can serve this air fryer pork tenderloin with anything you’d usually enjoy with pork. If you want to stick with a more Cuban theme, I’d serve it with some rice and prepared beans along with fried plantains. You could also serve the pork with a simple avocado salad, a fruit that’s very beloved in Cuban cuisine. 

Air Fryer Mojo Pork Tenderloin Recipe

No slow cooker? No problem! Give this weeknight-friendly version of lechón asado a try.

Prep time 15 minutes

Cook time 20 minutes to 25 minutes

Serves 4 to 6

Nutritional Info

Ingredients

  • 1/2

    small Spanish or sweet onion

  • 3

    large cloves garlic

  • 1 cup

    sour orange juice (see Recipe Notes)

  • 1 tablespoon

    dried oregano

  • 1 teaspoon

    kosher salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon

    ground cumin

  • 1.4 teaspoon

    freshly ground black pepper

  • 2

    (about 1-pound) pork tenderloins

  • Cooking spray

Instructions

  1. Coarsely chop 1/2 small Spanish or sweet onion and 3 large garlic cloves. Add the onion, garlic, 1 cup sour orange juice, 1 tablespoon dried oregano, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper in a blender or food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Pulse until the mixture is mostly blended together and still a little bit chunky, 3 to 4 (1-second) pulses.

  2. Pat 2 (about 1-pound) pork tenderloins dry with paper towels. Place in a large zip-top bag. Pour the marinade into the bag and massage the pork with the marinade so that the pork is evenly coated. Seal the bag and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or up to overnight.

  3. Let the pork sit at room temperature for at least 10 minutes. Meanwhile, heat an air fryer to 400ºF for about 5 minutes.

  4. Coat the air fryer basket with cooking spray. Remove the pork tenderloins from the bag (air fry in 2 batches if needed), letting the excess marinade drip back into the bag, and place in the air fryer basket; discard the remaining marinade. Air fry for 15 minutes. Flip the pork and continue air frying until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of the thickest part registers at least 145˚F, 4 to 5 minutes more.

  5. Transfer the pork to a clean cutting board and let rest for about 5 minutes. Cut crosswise into slices of desired thickness.

Recipe Notes

Sour orange juice substitution: You can substitute 3/4 cup orange juice plus 1/4 cup lemon juice for the sour orange juice.

Storage: Leftovers can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 4 days.