Garlic Thyme Studded Beef Tenderloin Roast with Red Wine Sauce

Garlic Herb Studded Beef Tenderloin Roast
Garlic Thyme Stuffed Beef Tenderloin Roast

The holiday season is the perfect time of year to make a nice beautiful roast. This year we are delighted to share one of our favorite Christmas Eve recipes with you! This Garlic Thyme Studded Beef Tenderloin Roast with Red Wine Sauce is perfect for a special occasion or holiday gathering!

Roasting a Beef Tenderloin

Roasting is a great way to cook beef tenderloin. It results in even cooking throughout so everyone gets a nice perfectly cooked filet once it is sliced.

Roasting it on low heat ensures that most of your tenderloin will be the perfect temperature, instead of just the very center being pink. This is really for two reasons:

  • First, the heat is relatively low at 300°F, therefore, the meat comes to temperature gradually. When you roast at higher temperatures, you risk the meat overcooking on the outside while the middle remains raw. This isn’t desirable and has the potential to ruin everyone’s meal aside from that one person who likes their beef to taste like a leather shoe.
  • Secondly, the carryover is not as aggressive at lower temperatures. Carryover is the process of the meat continuing to cook after it is out of the oven. At only 300°F, the carryover will be about 7-10 degrees because the meat doesn’t have as much internal energy as it would if you cooked it at 375° or 400°F. Therefore, when you temp your meat to check for doneness, you can account for this carryover to achieve the desired doneness you and your guests prefer.

We also choose to sear the meat at the end after it comes out of the oven. We do this to achieve a nice crust on the outside after it has been roasted. The searing should be done in a super hot skillet, and should only take a minute per side max so you don’t cook your meat more than necessary.

Garlic Thyme Stuffed Beef Tenderloin Roast
We stick sliced garlic and thyme right in the raw meat to give it extra flavor!

What does “Studded” mean?

While the meat is raw, we take garlic and thyme and insert it into the meat. This is done by taking a knife and cutting small slits all over the tenderloin and pushing the sliced garlic and thyme into the holes.

Studding the beef with garlic and thyme adds so much flavor to the meat and, when cut, it looks beautiful. Because the tenderloin doesn’t take much time to cook and is cooked at low heat, the garlic must be sautéed before studding the beef. Otherwise, the garlic will not cook, and you’ll have raw slices of garlic to eat with your beef, which isn’t ideal at all. But a little sauté beforehand goes a long way.

Why coat your tenderloin with compound butter?

Most of the compound butter you coat your beef with melts and falls off the roast in the oven. However, it really adds a delicious flavor to your roast and keeps it nice and juicy throughout the roasting process. We have cooked tenderloins with and without the compound butter, and by far, we prefer the ones with the compound butter in overall taste and texture.

Additionally, because you cut small holes all over your tenderloin to stud it, the butter will melt into these holes to make your meat even juicier.

Red Wine Sauce for Beef Tenderloin
The Red Wine Sauce for the Beef Tenderloin is so rich with flavor and complements the beef perfectly!

Aging Your Beef Tenderloin Prior to Roasting

So, how about aging your roast? I can’t tell you how much better it is if you let it sit on a roasting rack in the refrigerator, uncovered, for a good amount of time (about 6 hours or up to 2 days). You will definitely notice the aging in texture and flavor and will be converted to this easy technique for sure. You can do all the prep in the morning for a dinner, which will be enough time to enhance the flavors of your meat. We definitely prefer to prep the beef the night before and let it dry overnight and all the next day.

If you have the time and have planned it out, we highly recommend that you try aging your beef in this way!

Don’t skip the red wine sauce!

We are steak purists for the most part around here, so we don’t usually believe that steaks require sauces. This is especially true if you have a good quality cut of beef.

BUT, we beg you, DO NOT SKIP THE SAUCE in this recipe!

90+ Lot 94 Cabernet Sauvignon
90+ Cellars Lot 94 Cabernet Sauvignon pairs beautifully with the Beef Tenderloin
Please note: This post was sponsored by 90+ Cellars. All opinions are our own.

This particular sauce, which is based on a bordelaise, complements the steak instead of covering up the flavors and is absolutely amazing with the tenderloin. Honestly, licking the sauce off the plate is completely appropriate, and expected here! This sauce is so rich with layers of flavor that it elevates this tenderloin to a restaurant style dish that will WOW your guests!

Wine Pairing

Of course we cannot forget about the wine, especially for a delicious and beautiful beef tenderloin roast like this one!

A nice cut of red meat needs a bold and delicious red wine, of course. We are absolutely in love with the 90+ Cellars Lot 94 Cabernet Sauvignon for this meal. This Napa Valley Cab is a full-bodied beauty with aromas of black currant, herbs, and mocha with a smooth finish of bright cherries. It pairs so beautifully with this Garlic Thyme Studded Beef Tenderloin Roast and is lovely to enjoy on its own, as well!

Visit 90+ Cellars to find the Lot 94 Cabernet Sauvignon along with many more of their amazing wines!


We hope you enjoy this holiday food and wine pairing! If you give this Garlic Thyme Studded Beef Tenderloin Roast a try, leave us a comment below, or tag us on Instagram @cooking_with_wine!

Garlic Thyme Studded Beef Tenderloin Roast with Red Wine Sauce
Garlic Thyme Studded Beef Tenderloin Roast with Red Wine Sauce

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Garlic Thyme Studded Beef Tenderloin Roast with Red Wine Sauce

5 from 4 votes
Course: MainCuisine: AmericanDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time


Total time




  • For the Beef
  • 1 1 Beef Tenderloin Roast (about 2 lbs)

  • 4 4 garlic cloves

  • 3 Tbsp 3 unsalted butter

  • 12 12 thyme tips (just the tender end of the stalk, intact)

  • 1 small 1 shallot (15-20g), finely diced

  • 2 sprigs 2 thyme – leaves only, chopped

  • 8 Tbsp 8 unsalted butter – softened

  • 1 Tbsp 1 kosher salt

  • 1 tsp 1 black pepper

  • 2 Tbsp 2 clarified butter (or ghee) for searing

  • For the Sauce
  • 2 cups 2 beef stock

  • 1 Tbsp 1 unsalted butter

  • 1 medium 1 shallot (30g), finely diced

  • 1 cup 1 dry red wine

  • 3 3 peppercorns

  • 1 small 1 bay leaf

  • ½ tsp red wine vinegar

  • 2 Tbsp 2 unsalted butter


  • Prepare the Beef
  • Completely pat dry your beef tenderloin. Tie it with butchers’ twine in 3-5 places to ensure the roast stays uniform. Set aside.
  • Prepare your garlic by thinly slicing the peeled garlic cloves. Heat a small pan on medium heat and add the 3 Tbsp of butter. Once the butter has melted, add the thin slices of garlic and sauté for just a minute or two. The garlic should not brown (a little around the edges is OK) but should cook enough that it sweetens up and loses the bitterness of raw garlic. Remove the garlic and discard the butter or save for another use (garlic butter!).
  • Using a thin, sharp knife, make holes in the tenderloin roast. Slide the garlic and/or thyme tips down the knife and, if needed, use your finger to push the garlic/thyme deep into the cut. Do this in various places of the tenderloin (top, bottom, and sides). Most or all holes can have both garlic and thyme, but some can just have one or the other if you wish. Place the meat on a rack over a sheet-tray, uncovered, in the refrigerator for several hours before roasting or up to 2 days to air dry and age.
  • Preheat your oven to 300°F
  • When ready to cook, remove the beef from the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes.
  • While the meat rests, mix the softened butter with the thyme and shallot to make a compound butter. Season the roast with the salt and pepper. Smear the butter all over the tenderloin roast and then put it on a roasting rack over a sheet pan or roasting pan.
  • Put the roast in the oven and cook until an instant-read thermometer reads 125°F for medium rare (the carryover will be about 7-10°F while the beef rests after searing). This will take about 45 minutes, but after 40 minutes, you should start taking the temperature of the beef. Depending on your oven and how cold the meat was in the center when it went in, it could take up to 60 minutes. Temp it often so that you don’t overcook your beef.
  • When the meat is at 125° in the center, remove it from the oven. Heat a heavy pan (cast iron works best) on high heat. Add the clarified butter and sear your roast on all sides, about a minute per side MAX. Place the meat on your cutting board and allow it to rest for about 8-10 minutes. Slice and serve with the sauce.
  • Make the Sauce
  • While your beef tenderloin is roasting, add the beef stock in a saucepan over medium heat and reduce until you have 2/3 of a cup. This can be done ahead of time. Set aside.
  • To a saucepan, add the butter over medium heat. Add the shallot and cook, stirring, until the shallot is tender and just starts to brown. Add the wine, peppercorns, and bay leaf. Stir, and cook until there is only about ¼ cup of wine remaining.
  • Next, strain out the solids and put the liquid back into the pan. Add the vinegar and your reduced beef stock. Stir and cook until thickened. Taste for seasoning – you’ll probably need a little kosher salt here. Remove from the heat and stir in the butter (you can use more if desired). Keep warm until ready to serve but do not boil after the butter is added or your sauce will break.


  • We recommend prepping the meat by studding it and placing it uncovered on a rack in the fridge for a few hours and up to 2 days prior to roasting it to enhance the flavors of the beef.

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