Make this delicious air fryer pork loin for a fast roast pork dinner. The pork loin is brown and crispy outside with tender, juicy pork inside. Finished off with a honey mustard glaze this pork roast is fancy enough for a holiday dinner but simple enough for a weeknight meal.
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Pork loin is one of my favorite cuts of meat to make for my family. It is affordable and it feeds a family with extra pork remaining for leftovers like sandwiches.
In the past I have posted recipes for oven roasted pork loin and Instant Pot pork loin. So naturally as I have been using my air fryer more and more I started to wonder, “Can I cook a pork roast in the air fryer?”.
The answer is yes, not only can you cook a pork roast in the air fryer it tastes amazing and is ready very quickly!
Pork Loin vs Pork Tenderloin
But before I get to the recipe it is important to realize that pork loin and pork tenderloin are two completely different cuts of meat. The names sound similar, but they are different and require different recipes.
Many people get them confused and some recipes get them confused too! Many times if you search for a pork loin recipe on google or Pinterest you will get a recipe for pork tenderloin instead, which adds to the confusion.
- Pork loin – This cut of meat is wide and usually has a layer of fat on top. It ranges from 2-5 pounds in size, so it is relatively large. The cut is also called pork loin roast or center cut pork roast. It is occasionally sold with the ribs attached.
- Pork tenderloin – This cut of meat is long and skinny and has very little fat. It is usually about 1 1/2 pounds in size, so much smaller than a pork loin. It is always sold boneless.
Despite the fact these are both cuts of pork you can’t substitute one for the other in recipes!
If you have a pork tenderloin and landed here because a search engine doesn’t understand the difference between pork loin and pork tenderloin head over to my Air Fryer Pork Tenderloin recipe instead!
Why You Will Love Air Fryer Pork Loin
- This recipe is very simple with only a few ingredients making it perfect for a busy day. The pork is flavored with an easy honey mustard glaze and there are no extra steps or any marinade needed.
- The pork loin roast is done fast, in about half the time it would take to cook in the oven.
- The outside of the pork loin is crispy and golden.
- The size of the pork roast means you can feed a bunch of people or just plan to use the leftovers for sandwiches or meal prep.
Step by Step Instructions
1. Check the fit
The first thing to do is make sure your pork loin will fit into your air fryer. I have a 5.8 quart air fryer and my pork loin, which was a little over 3 pounds, fit diagonally.
Fitting a pork loin in a circular air fryer basket will probably be trickier. If you pork loin is a little bit too big you can always slice a bit off the ends so that it fits. You can cook the slices another day as pork chops.
First take mustard and smear it all over the top of the pork roast. Then top the pork roast with rosemary, salt and pepper.
If you prefer you could use a dry rub without the mustard. The mustard helps the spices stick to the pork and adds some flavor, but it isn’t essential.
3. Air Fry the Pork
Put the pork roast in the air fryer and cook it at 370 F for 45 minutes. After 25 minutes take the air fryer basket out and flip the pork loin roast to the other side.
When the air fryer is done cooking check the internal temperature of the pork with an instant read thermometer. The pork needs to read 145 F to be safe to eat.
Air fryers differ in how fast they cook and pork loins will have different sizes. So always check the temperature, don’t rely on the amount of time that it has cooked!
4. Add honey
Once the pork is done I like to add a little bit of honey to glaze it. The honey caramelizes and give the final roast some honey mustard flavor.
Use a pastry brush to brush a few tablespoons of honey on top of the pork loin. Then put it back in the air fryer and cook it at 300 F for 2 minutes.
How to Serve
After the pork is done remove it to a serving platter and let it rest for at least 5 minutes before slicing. This gives it time reabsorb the juices and keep the pork moist and delicious.
Then slice the pork and serve it with your desired side dishes. I love to serve pork with Instant Pot mashed potatoes or apple sauce.
When I was growing up we frequently served sauerkraut with pork, which is also a traditional New Year’s dish for good luck.
How to Store
Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. Leftover pork loin is delicious on sandwiches – a Cuban sandwich or Ba Minh sandwich are my favorites!
Frequently Asked Questions
You can trim the fat cap if you like, but it isn’t necessary. I generally don’t bother, but it will decrease the calorie count of the pork.
Brining the pork increases the amount of water that is inside it which makes for juicier meat. The air fryer cooks the pork fast and at a high enough temperature that brining isn’t necessary, but it won’t hurt either.
I like to brine a pork loin if I am slow cooking it or oven roasting it, but I don’t usually bother for air frying or pressure cooking, because those methods retain moisture anyway. But if you want to brine it check out my apple cider brine recipe.
Find More Air Fryer Dinner Ideas
- 3-5 pound pork loin
- 2 Tablespoons mustard
- 2 teaspoons rosemary
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 2 Tablespoons honey
- Make sure your pork loin roast fits in your air fryer basket. You can trim the end off the roast if it is just a little bit too big.
- Take the pork loin out of its package and pat it dry. Then smear the mustard all over the pork roast.
- Sprinkle the rosemary, salt and pepper over the pork roast on top of the mustard.
- Put the pork in the air fryer at 370 F for 45 minutes. After 25 minutes take out the air fryer basket and flip the pork loin over to the other side.
- After 45 minutes check the pork with an instant read thermometer and make sure it has reached 145 F in the middle. If it hasn't put it back in for another 5-10 minutes and check it again.
- Once the pork reaches 145 F use a pastry brush to brush the honey over the top of the roast. Then put the basket back in the air fryer and cook it at 300 F for 2 minutes. This lets the honey caramelize on the pork and gives it some honey mustard flavor.
- Once the pork is done put it on a serving platter and let it rest for at least 5 minutes before slicing.
You can skip the mustard and just use a dry rub on the pork if you prefer. Any spice rub that goes well with pork will work fine in this recipe.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 564Total Fat: 25gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 227mgSodium: 437mgCarbohydrates: 5gFiber: 0gSugar: 4gProtein: 75g
Nutrition facts are estimates.