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Menu featuring beef tenderloin

I'm planning to make beef tenderloin with a port sauce for Christmas Eve. Can I do french onion soup with it? If so, what sides would you suggest to complement? Potatoes feel too heavy; don't want to do popovers as the soup will include bread. Green beans seem too ordinary. Thoughts?

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  1. I think french onion soup works fine if you're serving it as a starter before the tenderloin. Before you said it I was going to say something good and simple would be roasted red potatoes and green beans. You could make potatoes lighter by putting them through a food mill.

    Since you're looking for something different, maybe you could do a celeriac or parsnip puree? Pretty much any kind of root vegetable would work. Some wild mushrooms would work if you're okay making them a la minute.

      1. what about a vegetable and cheese tart (tomato and goat cheese for example?), light veggie gratin (cauliflower maybe?) or ratatoullie, polenta or corn pudding, or a lemony risotto, or a wild rice or israeli couscous pilaf type dish.

        potatoes dont have to be heavy depending on how you cook them. roasting them with dill and lemon makes them feel very light i think!

        2 Replies
        1. re: mattstolz

          tomato, corn, ratatouille, cous cous, etc. all are very summery to me. is the op in the southern hemisphere?

          1. re: hotoynoodle

            I was more focusing on lighter options than seasonal. To me, corn pudding can be a pretty traditional holiday side though.

            Also, I am a little skewed on seasonality, because here in Florida it's still tomato season, since it's 80 degrees today!

            And Israeli couscous I think of as slightly heavier than normal couscous. Probably because I normally add a bunch of cheese and thicker sauces to it

        2. french onion soup would be a great classic starter. you don't "need" a starch with the beef. roasted brussel sprouts with a bit of bacon would be great alongside.

          2 Replies
            1. I just don't get why potatoes are "heavy". Frankly, I'd 86 the soup (because I think of French onion soup as a food group and a meal of its own) and start with a classic Caesar salad. But hey, that's me ;)
              I think pommes dauphinois would be lovely with the tenderloin. Roasted brussel sprouts (so many ways to put a great twist on) would be my choice of greens.

              1 Reply
              1. re: monavano

                I'm with you monavano. I think two courses with the rick beef taste is too much, so I'd nix the soup. Those potatoes are one of my favorites and I think the brussels sprouts are a great counterpoint, maybe with a little lemon peel and juice.

              2. I'd do a risotto with it. I'd start it by frying off some bacon lardons and then cooking my onions in the bacon fat instead of olive oil. From there, it's a normal risotto. I'm not sure I'd do much outside of standard risotto (maybe mushrooms) and then finish it with the lardons. We all know how well bacon goes with beef ternderloin.

                1. I'm doing a beef tenderloin as well. For starters, I'm doing a gumbo (only because my sons begged for it)..With the beef, I"m making a Madiera sauce, and we will have mashed potatoes and roasted brussels sprouts with candied bacon. After dinner and before dessert, I'm just going to put a couple of cheeses out. Keeping it real simple..we'll wind up with a buche de noel.

                  1. We have tenderloin for dinner on Christmas every year. It is always served with Yorkshire pudding; if I tried any other starch side, I'd never be forgiven.

                    5 Replies
                    1. re: masha

                      Tenderloins are going on sale this time of year. I've seen it for 6.99 per pound, fully trimmed. I'm so getting one.
                      Also, must try my hand at Yorkshire pudding. I think I'l do that with my rib roast.

                      1. re: monavano

                        I know it is tenderloin - but I still think "steakhouse foods" and what comes to mind is creamed spinich.

                        1. re: monavano

                          Honey, where are you? I just purchased mine - they 'cryovacked'??? it?? and it was $25.99 a pound! No sale here!

                          1. re: mhcpita

                            This was at a local chain called Magruder's. I'd have to see it with my own eyes to see if it's truly fully trimmed.

                      2. I really like the French onion soup idea. If it were me, for sides, I'd really like roasted asparagus and mashed roasted cauliflower / garlic. I'm a huge fan of beets with beef, so there would be a marinated beet salad on the side. It's also a nice acidic counterpoint to the rich food

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: Feed Me

                          Roasted beets are so simple and satisfying, they would be great too.