Brazilian Steakhouse-Inspired Parmesan Pork

Chima Brazilian Steakhouse is an amazing restaurant.  If you’ve never been to a Brazilian steakhouse, I suggest you find one, and book your reservation.  It is a place where top sirloin, filet, ribs, lamb, pork, sausage, and chicken on rotisserie skewers literally surround you, and you flip a coin that says “yes please” or “no thank you.”  In addition, there is an incredible salad bar that I would happily fill up on if there weren’t an overwhelming number of delicious proteins.  It is obviously difficult NOT to overeat.  I must also admit, that no matter how full I feel, I always flip it back over to “yes please” when I see the server with the parmesan pork.  All of the meat is slow cooked over a wood burning flame, and it develops a beautiful, salty crust. on the parmesan pork.  I know that my oven will not be able to achieve the same perfection, but I have been craving the flavor enough to experiment.

The verdict?  I’m giving myself a big pat on the tummy.  I perused several parmesan pork recipes online, and even searched the restaurant’s site, but all they mention on the pork is parmesan.  Therefore, I settled on my food memories for seasoning, and they were pretty spot on.  My inspiration for the crust was based off of watching Sandra Lee make baked Eggplant Parmesan.  I did not use bread crumbs, and used almond meal instead.  This recipe is far from Paleo though, because I clearly use a LOT of parmigiano-reggiano.

The cooking time was a bit nerve-wracking because I feel WAY more comfortable putting pork in the slow cooker.  The cooking time will vary, depending on the thickness of your pork tenderloin, whether you cut it into slices, and your oven.  A meat thermometer runs only a few bucks, and will help demystify the process.  The internal temperature should reach 160 degrees.  I had two large tenderloins that I cut in half, and they cooked for about 28 minutes at 375, then I broiled them for about a minute to get the “crust” nice and brown.  For most tenderloins, I would say from 22-28 minutes would do the trick.  The flavors are definitely worth the extra attention, and the cooking process is less than thirty minutes!  Make sure to let it rest about 5 minutes before cutting into the pork to ensure that it stays juicy.  Enjoy this on a salad, or with any side of your choice!  If you truly want to go Brazilian… have it with even more meat! 🙂

A note on preparation: Make sure to rinse, pat dry, and trim the pork.  I saw Chef Michael Simon (an Iron Chef) mention that you should always remove the “silver skin.”  It is the metallic membrane often on the tenderloin.  If you don’t remove it, it will seize up in the cooking process, and make the meat tougher.  It should only take a few minutes, and it is worth it!

When you are ready to “bread” the pork, you can keep the process a little less messy by keeping one hand dry and one hand wet, or by using tongs.

Originally I placed the pork on aluminum foil to prevent it sticking to the pan.  However, after my Mom made this recipe she suggested parchment paper.  I would suggest using a wire rack inside of the baking pan, covered with parchment paper, trimming the paper close to the pork like in my Crispy Pork Shoulder recipe.  That way, the heat can better circulate around the pork.  The bottom of the pork will have a better chance of getting a similar treatment to the rotisserie cooking of a Brazilian Steakhouse.


  • 1-2 pork tenderloins (At the commissary, they come in packages of 2 tenderloins) This recipe is based on two.
  • 2 eggs, beaten, and a little water added
  • 1 tbs minced garlic (jarred minced garlic is a huge time-saver)
  • 1/4 tsp white pepper
  • 1/4 tsp mustard powder
  • 1/8 tsp sea salt
  • 1/3 block parmigiano-reggiano (1-2 cups grated)
  • About 1 cup almond meal (enough to coat first layer of tenderloin)


  • 1. Rinse, pat dry, and trim pork tenderloin(s) making sure to remove the “silver skin”
  • 2. Prepare wet and dry for “breading”
  • 3. Pour almond meal into a shallow dish
  • 4. In a large bowl, crack eggs and beat them
  • 5. To eggs, add garlic, pepper, salt, and mustard powder
  • 6. Grate parmigiano-reggiano onto a large shallow plate
  • 7. Line a wire rack with parchment paper and place inside a baking pan
  • 8. Set up your assembly line: pork, almond meal, egg wash, parmesan and baking pans
  • 9. Dredge each piece of pork in almond meal, then egg wash, then coat in parmesan
  • 10. Place coated pieces on parchment paper, trimming close to loin with scissors
  • 11. Repeat process until all pieces are coated and in pan
  • 12. Cook for 20-28 minutes at 375 degrees, or until internal temperature of pork is 160 degrees (or until juices run clear)
  • 13. If pork isn’t brown enough, move up to top rack and broil for one minute… don’t walk away!
  • 14. Let rest for at least five minutes before cutting into the tenderloins
  • 15. Enjoy!