Beef Tenderloin with Red Wine Sauce

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There are show-stopper roasts and then there is this one.  

We love this entree for so many reasons.  First and foremost is taste and texture with melt-in-your-mouth tender and incredible flavor.  What else makes this roast so awesome is that it’s really foolproof. The prep is simple and the cooking method is straightforward. And the red wine sauce can be made in advance.  Perfect for the big holiday feast!

An oval white platter filled with slices of beef tenderloin with sprigs of rosemary along the edge and a glass or red wine sitting in the rear.

How To Make Beef Tenderloin with Red Wine Sauce

As mentioned, the preparation for this stellar entree is simple and not time-consuming at all.

We get started on the red wine sauce a day or two before serving the roast.

And the smell in your house when bringing it all together is incredible.


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What is a Beef Tenderloin?

Of all the cuts of beef available, the beef tenderloin is (in our opinion) the most tender and flavorful.

It is an entire roast of filet mignon. Yeah, you heard that right.

EXPERT TIP: You can typically find a whole beef tenderloin at your local butcher. A whole loin is usually about 4 to 5 lbs and will easily feed 8 to 10 people. Ask your butcher to fold in the ends and tie up. If you are feeding four people, then you’ll only need a 2 lb cut.

A simple rub of chopped rosemary, minced garlic, salt, and pepper is all that’s needed to produce a deeply flavorful roast.

A person rubbing chopped herbs, garlic, salt, and pepper into a large uncooked beef tenderloin.

If you have a large cast-iron skillet, this is the time to pull it out.

You’ll want to sear the roast in the skillet for about 7 minutes until nicely browned all over.

If you don’t have an oven-proof skillet or Dutch oven, no problem. Sear the roast first in a large skillet, and then transfer to a roasting pan to cook the tenderloin.

A large beef tenderloin roast that has been seared in a large black cast-iron skillet.

How to Serve a Beef Tenderloin

Beef tenderloin is typically cooked to medium-rare, which is an internal temperature of 130° – 135°F.

You’ll want the roast to sit after cooking for at least 15 to 20 minutes before slicing. The meat will continue to cook as it rests, which is why you’ll want to remove the roast at 125°F.

The end slices will cook a little more than the center slices. Serve these to folks who prefer beef that is more well-done.

EXPERT TIP: If you want your roast cooked to medium or medium-well, see the NOTES.

A large meat fork piercing a beef tenderloin roast with a knife cutting away slices from it.

As mentioned, this beef tenderloin with red wine sauce is truly a gorgeous roast to serve, especially during the holidays.

Here are a few of our favorite sides dishes to serve with it:

French Gratin Potatoes (Dauphinoise)
Best Mashed Potatoes
Brussels Sprouts Gratin
Maple Glazed Carrots
Creamed Spinach
Steakhouse Mushrooms
Ultimate Macaroni and Cheese

But, there is no doubt who is the star of this production.

Two rows of sliced of beef tenderloin on a white serving platter.

Tips for Beef Tenderloin with Red Wine Sauce

Do Ahead – Get the sauce started in advance of preparing the roast. In fact, you can make it up to 3 days in advance. You’ll just need to reheat it and then add in the juices from the pan and then strain it.
Room Temperature – The roast cooks best when it’s room temperature. After adding the oil, rosemary, garlic, salt, and pepper, allow it to sit on a cutting board for 1 hour. This will allow the flavors to penetrate the roast and help in the cooking process.
Let the Juices Settle – Resist cutting into the roast too soon after you take it out of the oven. The juices need to settle into the roast. The roast is so flavorful, it’s even perfectly acceptable to serve it at room temperature.

An oval white platter filled with thick slices of beef tenderloin surrounded by fresh rosemary and sitting next to a gravy boat filled with red wine sauce.

This is definitely one of those “special occasion” roasts.  Beef tenderloin is not an inexpensive cut of meat, but the end result (and the ease of preparation) makes it worth it.

And folks, just wait until you drizzle on the red wine sauce. Amazing.

Your loved ones will be so impressed and so grateful for this one-of-a-kind roast.

Red wine sauce being poured from a glass gravy boat onto two slices of beef tenderloin on a plate next to mashed potatoes and green beans.

Ready to make a roast that your family and friends will be talking about for years to come? Go for it!

And when you do, be sure to take a photo of it, post it on Instagram, and tag @HowToFeedaLoon and hashtag #HowToFeedaLoon!

An oval white platter filled with slices of beef tenderloin with sprigs of rosemary along the edge and a glass or red wine sitting in the rear.

Beef Tenderloin with Red Wine Sauce

Beef Tenderloin with Red Wine Sauce is a show-stopper of a roast. Pick up a whole tenderloin from your butcher to serve 8 to 12 people. Get a 2 to 3 lb roast for 4 servings. The red wine sauce can be started days in advance. And the leftovers are insanely delicious.
5 from 7 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Entree
Cuisine: American
Keyword: beef tenderloin recipe, holiday roast recipe, how to cook a beef tenderloin
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 28 minutes
Resting time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 43 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 187kcal


  • Ovenproof skillet or Dutch oven (see NOTES)


For the Sauce

  • 6 tbsp unsalted butter divided
  • 2 shallots chopped
  • 1⅓ cups red wine
  • cups beef broth divided
  • 3 sprigs thyme fresh
  • ½ tsp Kosher salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper

For the Roast

  • 1 4 lb beef tenderloin ends folded over and tied with twine
  • 4 tbsp olive oil or canola, divided
  • 4 tbsp rosemary fresh, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic finely minced
  • salt and pepper
  • finishing salt such as Maldon or coarse sea salt, optional


Start the Sauce

  • In a medium saucepan, melt 4 tbsp of the butter over medium heat. Add the shallots and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 4 minutes.
  • Add the wine, 2 cups of broth, thyme, salt, and pepper, and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to medium and simmer for 20 minutes, or until reduced by half. Turn off heat. This can be done up to 3 days in advance. See NOTES.

Prepare the Roast and Finish the Sauce

  • Meanwhile, rub 2 tbsp of the oil all over the roast. Use your fingers to rub in the rosemary and garlic all over the roast. Liberally salt and pepper the entire roast. Allow the roast to sit at room temperature for 1 hour.
  • Preheat oven to 425°F.
  • Heat 2 tbsp oil and 2 tbsp butter in a large oven-proof skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the roast and sear until browned all over, about 7 minutes. It's okay if you have to bend the roast to fit in the skillet.
  • Place the skillet in the oven and cook until an internal temperature of 125°F is reached (for medium-rare). If you don't have an oven-proof skillet, transfer the roast to a baking pan. An instant-read thermometer ensures the correct internal temperature. See NOTES regarding cooking temperatures.
  • Remove the roast from the skillet/pan, and allow to rest while you finish the sauce.
  • Place the skillet (or pan) on the stove over medium heat. Add the remaining ¼ cup of beef broth and use a spatula to scrape up the bits stuck to the pan. Bring to a simmer and sprinkle with another ¼ tsp of salt. Pour the broth into the pan with reserved sauce. Stir to combine. Strain into a gravy boat if serving immediately. If not serving immediately, store the sauce and then gently reheat over low heat on the stove in a pan.
  • Cut the twine from the meat and then slice the roast into ½-inch medallions. Place on a serving platter and serve warm, or at room temperature, with sauce on the side. Sprinkle the slices with finishing salt, if desired.


See the video near the top of the blog post for visual guidance.  If you liked the video, please subscribe to our YouTube channel.  
A whole beef tenderloin feeds 8 to 12 people.  A 2 to 3 lb tenderloin will feed 4 to 6 people.   Be sure to have the ends tied up with twine. 
Doneness Temperatures:
  • 130 - 135°F: Medium-Rare
  • 140 - 145°F: Medium
  • 150 - 155°F: Medium Well (not recommended)
The sauce can be reduced up to 3 days in advance.  The roast can be marinated with the oil, rosemary, and garlic up to 12 hours in advance.  Allow to come to room temperature (sitting at room temp for an hour) and then liberally add salt and pepper.
Leftovers will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days and can be frozen for up to 2 months.  
For the best French dip of all time, gently reheat a slice of the roast (don't overcook).  Place a slice of Provolone cheese over the top and place on a bun.  Gently reheat the sauce for dipping.  Amazing.   


Calories: 187kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 23mg | Sodium: 429mg | Potassium: 134mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 313IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 30mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe? Take a Picture!Mention @HowToFeedALoon or tag #HowToFeedALoon!


  • 5 stars
    This is not only Christmas Day worthy, it was my least stressful Christmas dinner ever, at age 68! It was cooked PERFECTLY. Made the red wine sauce the day before. Served it with mashed potatoes, steakhouse mushrooms, grilled asparagus and a winter salad with citrus vinaigrette. Even our chef guest was impressed. 5++stars.

    • Hi Valerie! You are after our hears! We LOVE that you made the beef tenderloin and had such great success!! Sounds like an absolutely perfect feast! Thank you so so much for sharing and for the wonderful review. That means the world to us! Please stay in touch! Best, Kris & Wesley

  • 5 stars
    Made this for Christmas dinner…it was a hit! SOO Tender & delicious! Definitely a special dinner!! The recipe was easy to follow…but it did take a little longer to sear than 7 minutes and took about 30 min in the oven to come to Medium (temp 130).
    Other than the timing…everything went without a hitch! The meat actually rested for about an hour before serving – warm & still juicy! I did read comments before making & was thankful about the notes about the smoke while searing! I definitely will make it again! Thank you!!!

    • Hi Terri!! Woo hoo! We are so so happy you had such great success with the tenderloin roast! And we hope you and your loved ones had a glorious holiday and we wish you a wonderfully happy new year!!!! Thank you for sharing and for the GREAT review. That means the world to us!! Please stay in touch! All the best, Kris & Wesley

  • Can this tenderloin be cooked the day before and served at room temp the next day? Going to our son’s home for x-mas and his oven doesn’t work. Thank you!!!! Glad to have discovered your wonderful videos. Merry Christmas!

    • Hi Cynthia! You could serve this roast at room temperature and it should be okay. It will certainly lose some of the yummy texture and the taste won’t be quite as good soon after the roasting, but, again, it will still be tasty. Have you considered ham? That’s wonderful served room temperature. You can’t go wrong either way. Merry Christmas to you and your family! Let us know how everything turns out! xoxo Kris & Wesley

    • Hi Roger! Woo hoo! We’re so glad you had such great success with the beef tenderloin! We think it’s pretty spectacular, too! Thank you so so much for sharing and for the GREAT review. That means so much to us! Please stay in touch! All the best, Kris & Wesley

  • This looks amazing. Unfortunately, I don’t have a good stove top hood which means when I sear the meat it creates a lot of smoke in my condo. I don’t suppose I could sear it earlier before my guests arrive and put it in the oven when I’m ready to get dinner started??!!
    Thank you

    • Hi Tim! You can sear the roast in advance. Tent it with foil and then roast to your desired doneness. We hope you have a wonderful dinner party! Please let us know how it turns out! Happy Holidays and good luck! Kris & Wesley

      • Hi Kris. I made this on Thursday for a Christmas dinner with my best friends. It was spectacular!!! Even though I seared it before my guests arrived, it turned out perfectly. The flavor of the sauce was amazing. It was an amazing dinner and honestly very easy to make. I did the wine sauce the day before. Thank you for sharing this recipe. Happy New Year!’n

      • Hi Timothy! FANTASTIC NEWS!!! We are so so thrilled you had such great success with the tenderloin and sauce. Thank you so much for sharing! Happy New Year! Stay in touch!

  • Aloha,
    Your recipe looks divine for me. However, if I make it for friends, is there an alternative non-alcoholic sauce that may be used?

  • 5 stars
    Absolutely delicious! I have used this recipe various times now and have always produced an amazing tenderloin. Thank you so much for sharing!

    • Hi Zarah! So sorry for the delayed response! We LOVE that you are enjoying our beef tenderloin with red wine sauce recipe! It makes for a pretty spectacular meal, right? Thank you so so much for sharing and for the awesome review. That means the world to us! All the best, Kris & Wesley

  • 5 stars
    OK !! You’ve got me 1000% HOOKED !
    I’m going to cook this for Christmas. The kids will love it. I will love it, we will love it. I’ll let you know how it goes…
    so excited….
    You guys are a hoot

  • 5 stars
    Thank you so much for your response, Kris, I have always been a bit confused when a recipe calls for wine if it means cooking wine or drinking wine. I love a nice bottle of wine, so I have absolutely no shortage of a nice red in my house. I do wish some chefs would explain what kind of wine they prefer with their dish. I know I sound a bit uneducated in the cooking arena but that is exactly what I am! HA Merry Christmas to you and Wesley and your family!
    I can’t wait to make this!

    • No worries at all, Judy! That’s absolutely a great question! And that’s a good point about offering suggestions for what kind of wine to use in a recipe. We’ll do that for sure. I think we do mention it the blog post, but you could never go wrong with a nice cabernet, shiraz, or zinfandel. You’ll want a nice hearty red for this amazing sauce. Hope this helps and Merry Christmas to you and your family, too!!

  • 5 stars
    I can’t wait to try this recipe! I do have a question for you, every time a recipe calls for red or white wine, I am confused about what wine to use. Is there a “standard” to which wine is appropriate? Do you use cooking wine or a table wine?

    • Hi Judy! We would always recommend a wine that you would be comfortable serving to guests to cook with. When you are going to invest in a roast such as beef tenderloin, then you’ll want to use a nice red wine for the sauce. It really does make a difference in the taste and texture. We always say: If you wouldn’t drink the wine, then don’t cook with it either! Hope this helps, Judy, and please let us know if you make this dish and how it turns out. It’s a winner!! Merry Christmas!

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