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Thank you to the Missouri Beef Industry Council (MBIC) for partnering with me on this post! I’ll be sharing several delicious beef recipes over the coming year with MBIC.
This Bacon Wrapped Beef Tenderloin with Balsamic Fig Reduction is a total show stopper! Serve this for a special occasion or holiday meal!
Beef Tenderloin is something that I’ve always been intimidated of, because it can be expensive to purchase. But, it’s expensive for good reason! A beef tenderloin is essentially filet mignon roast, a cut that is so incredibly tender that it just melts in your mouth This makes beef tenderloin the perfect choice for special occasions. When you eat it, you and your guests will know that you’re eating something special!
The good news is that cooking beef tenderloin is not difficult, at all. If you do nothing else, just don’t overcook it! Investing in an instant read thermometer is a great idea.
I chose to wrap mine in bacon before roasting it, which is completely optional! Since beef tenderloin is leaner, the bacon adds additional fat back in during the cooking process. Full disclosure, wrapping this beef tenderloin in bacon does add some time and complexity to the process. If you’re a novice chef, you may choose to skip this part of the process and simply sear and roast the tenderloin.
I choose a balsamic and fig reduction sauce to top this decadent Bacon Wrapped Beef Tenderloin. The acid from the balsamic and the sweetness of the fig preserves provides the perfect amount of acid and sweetness to counterbalance the savory tenderloin. This recipe was designed for roasting the tenderloin in the oven, but I’ve also included smoker and grilled options below!
- 1 2.5lb whole beef tenderloin roast
- 1 lb thick cut bacon
- ¼ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp pepper
- ½ tsp dried thyme
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- 1 cup aged balsamic vinegar
- ¾ cup fig preserves
- Place a large sheet or plastic wrap on a large baking tray. Lay the bacon slices horizontally, having each slightly overlap, from one side to the other.
- Rub the beef tenderloin with salt, pepper, dried thyme and garlic powder.
- Place it vertically across the strips of bacon, along the bottom. Roll up the plastic and bacon around the beef so that it is wrapped tightly, and place in refrigerator for up to one hour to allow the bacon to naturally stick to the tenderloin.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Heat a large cast-iron pan or roaster over medium-high heat and add olive oil.
- Remove the tenderloin from the refrigerator and remove plastic. Check the tenderloin for weak spots, where the bacon does not seem secure. Use a toothpick in these areas to fix the bacon to the tenderloin, making sure to keep the toothpick threaded close to the tenderloin (not sticking out).
- Brown the tenderloin in your cast-iron pan or roaster, starting with the seam side. You will need 3-4 minutes per side. If you did not wrap the tenderloin in bacon, reduce the browning time per side by about one minute.
- After each side is browned, transfer the pan to the oven and roast for 25-30 minutes.
- While the tenderloin roasts, add balsamic vinegar to a small sauce pan and bring to a gentle simmer over medium heat, whisking frequently. Allow to reduce for about 10 minutes, until it becomes thick and syrupy in texture. Add fig jam, whisk to combine, and remove from heat.
- Once the tenderloin has reached an internal temperature of 125 degrees F (my preference for medium rare) or 145 degrees F (MBIC's recommendation) from the oven and transfer to a platter or cutting board. Tent with aluminum foil and allow to rest for 5-10 minutes to allow the juices to re-distribute.
- Cut the tenderloin into ½ inch slices and serve warm, with the balsamic fig reduction for topping.
Follow steps #1-8 in the recipe above, then transfer the seared tenderloin to a smoker preheated to 225 degrees F. Cook for 1 hour, until the internal temperature of the roast reads 130 degrees F. Follow steps 9-11 in the recipe above to complete the roast and sauce.
Follow steps #1-8 in the recipe above, then transfer the tenderloin to the grill. Cook over indirect heat for 20-30 minutes, until the internal temperature of the roast reads 130 degrees F. Follow steps 9-11 in the recipe above to complete the roast and sauce.
How Long to Cook Bacon Wrapped Beef Tenderloin
Rare: 125 degrees F
Medium Rare: 135 degrees F *my recommendation*
Medium: 145 degrees F *MBIC’s recommendation*
Medium well: 155 degrees F
Well done 160 degrees F
Remember that the tenderloin will continue to cook when you allow it to rest. I typically plan on the internal temperature increasing around 5 degrees F, and pull it out of the oven considering this.