Mom's Garlic-Rubbed Roast Filet of Beef with Mushroom Sauce

October  9, 2011
5 Ratings
Photo by Bobbi Lin
  • Serves 4 to 6
Author Notes

This is my mother's special occasion dish. She pronounces it "fee-lay" with emphasis on the "fee." There are cuts of meat that are more flavorful, and seasoning techniques that are more creative, but this roast will never fail you as long as you time it correctly and don't overcook it. My mom usually serves it for Chanukah with potato latkes. Make extra—it's great the next day sliced on a sandwich with some coarse mustard. —drbabs

Test Kitchen Notes

WHO: Drbabs is a longtime Food52-er with an impressive array of recipes—52 of which are Community Picks!
WHAT: Classic without being old-fashioned, this is a deceptively simple Sunday-worthy roast with big flavors.
HOW: Rub beef tenderloin with smashed garlic, and roast while you make a savory red wine-mushroom sauce to serve it with.
WHY WE LOVE IT: A perfect Sunday or company roast, it’s easy to put together, smells amazing while in the oven, and delivers an absolutely delicious meal. The meat is tender and infused with garlicky, peppery goodness, while the mushroom sauce is rich and deep in flavor. This is a dish that you can keep in your back pocket and pull out when you need to feed your guests (or are just in the mood for a special dinner!). —The Editors

What You'll Need
  • 1 3- to 4-pound beef tenderloin roast, trimmed
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 to 2 cloves garlic, lightly smashed
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 ounces butter
  • 1 large shallot, sliced
  • 1/2 pound white mushrooms, wiped clean and sliced
  • 3/4 cup dry red wine
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce (or to taste)
  1. Heat the oven to 450° F. Rub the filet all over with about 1 tablespoon of olive oil and the smashed garlic, and generously sprinkle it with salt and pepper. Roast the beef until an instant-read thermometer registers 120° F to 125° F for rare, about 25 minutes. (Add about 5 minutes if you want it medium-rare—about 130° F.) Lightly cover the beef in foil and let it rest on a carving board for 10 to 15 minutes.
  2. While the beef roasts, make the sauce. Heat 2 tablespoons of the butter with 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the shallots and mushrooms and cook, stirring often, until they soften and turn golden brown, 10 to 15 minutes. Add the wine and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Boil until the volume of wine reduces by about half. Reduce the heat to low. Stir in thyme and Worcestershire sauce and add the rest of the butter a little at a time, stirring constantly.
  3. Unwrap the filet (fee-lay) and stir any accumulated juices into the sauce. Season the sauce to taste with salt and pepper. Slice the meat and serve with the sauce.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • awbauer
  • june_altomare_ashley
  • drbabs
  • AntoniaJames
  • cookinginvictoria

25 Reviews

Tinab99 January 2, 2019
This was wonderful. Made for NYE. I added one step of salting and refrigerating uncovered for 12 hours, then bringing to room temp before garlic rub and popping in oven. Meat was so tender, and didn’t need the sauce.
drbabs January 2, 2019
Thanks for letting me know. Happy new year!
Cary June 3, 2017
Thanks drbabs' mom. So easy and delicious!
drbabs June 3, 2017
Thanks, Cary. My mom will be thrilled.
Virginia August 23, 2016
Summer is almost over and looking to the Holidays (Halloween counts lol). With Beef prices at an all time high in my area, is there an acceptable cut of beef to substitute for the Beef Tenderloin Roast?
drbabs August 23, 2016
Maybe an eye of round, but I'd be concerned that it might be tough and chewy.
myob December 31, 2015
I'm making this for New Year's Eve tonight (I know, a little late for questions), and am unsure about the amount of butter for the sauce. The ingredients list says 4 ounces of butter, but the directions say to use 2 Tablespoons for sauteeing the mushrooms and shallots, and "the rest" to finish the sauce. A Tablespoon of butter is equivalent to .5 oz, according to Google, so 2 Tablespoons would be the same as 1 oz. So, should I use a total of 4 Tablespoons (2 oz) or 4 oz (2 Tablespoons) of butter?
drbabs December 31, 2015
Here's what I do to make the sauce. I take a stick of butter. (4 ounces; 8 tablespoons) I use about two tablespoons of it to sauté the mushrooms and shallots. when they're softened and starting to brown, I add the red wine. I cook the sauce on high heat till it's reduced by about half. (Note the word about in this. You seriously can't mess this up.) Then I stir in the thyme and Worcestershire sauce. To that, i add butter, a little at a time, till it's the taste and consistency I want. Sometimes I use the whole stick, sometimes not, because it depends on so many other things (how much liquid the mushrooms threw off, how much wine is there, how much Worcestershire I use, etc.). But the sauce is so forgiving….just try it, and I hope it works out for you. Happy New Year.
myob January 1, 2016
It turned out beautifully, and was a big hit with everyone. Thanks for all your wonderful recipes, drbabs, and Happy New Year
drbabs January 1, 2016
Oh, I'm so glad. Thank you, myob, and Happy New Year to you as well.
awbauer December 21, 2015
Is Beef tenderloin "roast" the same as a beef tenderloin? Making for christmas eve and want to make sure I get the right cut!
drbabs December 21, 2015
Sounds like it should be, but check wwith the butcher. It's hard to know what labels mean.
june_altomare_ashley December 21, 2015
I had never made a beef roast before and this was so good and so easy! I cooked it in a Dutch oven then used the same pan to make the sauce to incorporate the pan drippings. Thank you for sharing!!
drbabs December 21, 2015
Thank you!
drbabs December 4, 2015
Oh, thank you so much, everyone! My mother is especially excited! This is really quite a nice surprise.
AntoniaJames December 4, 2015
Congrats, Barbara. Such a handsome entree. I do something quite similar with pork tenderloin, except that I use finely chopped rosemary instead of thyme (and rub a bit into the meat beforehand as well) and add horseradish mustard to the wine + mushroom sauce. Really looking forward to trying this - most likely will do so on Christmas. Our kind of special meal! ;o)
cookinginvictoria December 4, 2015
Congratulations drbabs! This sounds delicious, especially the mushroom and red wine sauce. On my list of recipes to make this holiday season!
EmilyC December 4, 2015
Congrats drbabs! This looks and sounds so simple and delicious.
lakelurelady December 4, 2015
Great recipe drbabs! I'm honored to be in the running with you.
JanetFL November 20, 2015
Thank you (and your Mother!) for another great recipe!
drbabs November 20, 2015
Thanks, Janet. I hope you enjoy it!
cpc April 6, 2015
Really good! I made this for Easter. It's very easy and the sauce is wonderful! Everyone loved it.
drbabs April 6, 2015
Thank you! My mother will be so pleased!
Bevi October 13, 2011
Simply divine. A nice holiday recipe.
dymnyno October 9, 2011
This recipe is just basic goodness! Perfect for an occasion.