Featuring this juicy smoked rack of pork.
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Smoked Rack of Pork

Declare your master of the grill status with this incredibly juicy Smoked Rack of Pork that will instantly activate drooling with the first dripping slice. Smoky, meaty, savory, and impossibly tender, this impressive bone-in pork rib roast will have you skipping the fork and knife and gnawing straight from the bone. Just be warned, you might need a bib.

Say goodbye to the sad, gray, and tough pork that traumatized a few childhoods. Utilizing the easy process of slow and low smoking combined with a quick sear, this method for cooking a pork rib roast will give you succulent and moist pork every time.

Keep it simple with your favorite rub or give it a quick baste in one of our favorite homemade BBQ sauces, the results will be the same every time… pork that’s so good you’ll be devouring it straight from the cutting board.

Here's a plate of the rack of smoked pork.

Why This Method Works

Use Sedona Sand All-Purpose Seasoning on your pork rib roast.

kEY iNGREDIENTS

This list is short, so get ready:

  • Rack of pork
  • Seasoning
  • Apple cider vinegar for spritzing

Now, you can certainly use a binder such as hot sauce or mustard, but that’s completely optional. The real key is making sure that you use a seasoning you enjoy, that tastes absolutely delicious with pork.

We’ve got a nice variety of seasoning recipes if you’d like to browse, but our favorite is what you see!

Check out the Sedona Sand All-Purpose Seasoning, which is available in the shop. This is a sugar-free seasoning loaded with spices, herbs, and of course chiles. Your meat will have a nice, deep red color along with layers of flavors. Plus, the smell, oh my gosh. It’s incredible.

This is a large trimmed rack of pork, unseasoned.

How to Smoke Pork Rib Roast

  1. Trim up the rack of pork. To prevent any flare-ups, trim off excess fat. You’ll want to remove any little bits of uneven meat and also any silver skin. If your pork rib roast has a fat cap, slice a crosshatch or diamond pattern into it. This will allow the seasoning to permeate the meat while also preventing the fat cap from splitting during the cooking process.
  2. Remove the excess meat and cartilage from the between the bones. This term is called Frenching. Many roasts will come already Frenched but it doesn’t take long just to clean up the bones a little. This will allow for a gorgeous presentation and let the meat cook evenly. Plus once sliced your chops will have a built-in handle. We won’t judge if you use it.
  3. Season the pork generously. Make sure that all sides are evenly coated in seasoning. This is a large roast so feel free to use extra seasoning to cover all of the surface area.
  4. Allow the pork to rest. Place the pork on a baking sheet or wire rack fit into a baking sheet and let it refrigerate for at least two hours. If you have the time it’s best to allow it to refrigerate overnight. This will not only deeply season the meat but also allows the rub to set and adhere to the pork. The process of dry brining also gives you that juicy bite as the salt in the rub draws the juices out of the pork before the pork reabsorbs it, allowing it to retain its natural moisture during the cooking process.
This rack of pork is dry brining with the seasoning.
  1. Preheat the smoker to 250°F. If using a charcoal grill prepare your grill for indirect cooking, banking the charcoal to one side to create a hot zone and cooler zone. Add your wood chips to the charcoal.
  2. Place the rack of pork on the grill and allow it to cook. If using a charcoal grill place it on the indirect side of the grill. Close the lid and allow the pork to cook undisturbed for an hour.
  3. Spritz the pork. After an hour spritz the pork evenly with apple cider vinegar or your favorite spritz. You’ll want to spritz the pork every 45 minutes after that to ensure it stays moist.
  4. Remove the pork when it reaches 125°F. Depending on the size of your bone in pork roast it should take a couple of hours. Make sure that you check the internal temperature from the center and thickest portion of the roast, not touching the bones.
Smoked rack of pork is ready to come off and rest.
  1. Increase the heat of your grill or smoker for searing. If using a charcoal grill adjust the vents and let the grate heat up. If using a pellet grill increase the temperature of your grill to between 400-450°F.
  2. Sear to roast. Place the roast back on the grill and allow it to sear on all sides. When it reaches 140 degrees internal remove it from the grill.
  3. Let the pork rest! The pork will continue to cook as it rests. You’ve worked hard to ensure you’re serving up a succulent bite of pork, so let those juices redistribute into the meat. You’ll want to let it rest for at least 10-15 minutes. Then slice up your chops and enjoy! You’ve earned it!
Rest the smoked rack of pork before slicing in, for at least 10-15 minutes.

Important Tips

  • Not all racks of pork will have a fat cap. If yours does, make sure to score it so your seasoning can penetrate the meat. This will also prevent it from splitting during the cooking process. If your pork doesn’t have a fat cap, no worries, it will still be incredibly flavorful and juicy, and the seasoning will more evenly permeate the meat.
  • Use wood that compliments the mild, delicate, lightly sweet flavor of pork. Fruit woods are exceptionally perfect for pork. Applewood and cherry are classic options. Other woods such as pecan and maple will also give a slightly sweet note. For a bolder smoke flavor, hickory is a great option. Think hickory smoked bacon. Oak would is also a great option and falls in the middle flavorwise, bolder than a fruit wood, but not as bold as hickory.
  • The longer you can allow your roast to dry brine, the better. Allow for at least two hours but you can let it go up to 24 hours, especially for a larger 8-10 bone roast. There are three benefits to dry brining your pork rib roast. It allows the seasoning to adhere and set. It deeply seasons the meat, and it keeps the meat juicy.
  • This same method can also be used on a gas grill. Preheat your gas grill to 250°F, not lighting all of the burners. Place a foil pack with wood chips over the direct heat and allow it to begin smoldering before placing the pork on the indirect side. The rest of the instructions will be the same.
  • If you decide to glaze your pork, do it towards the end of the cooking process to prevent any sugars from burning and becoming acrid.
This bone-in pork rib roast was smoked and rested before slicing.

Variations for Smoked Rack of Pork

  • Serve this with a side of Cranberry Chimichurri
  • Season the pork with Korean barbecue seasoning and glaze it with Korean barbecue sauce.
  • Double up on the smoky flavor and baste this smoked rack of pork with Maple Chipotle barbecue sauce.
  • Want a little heat? Use your favorite hot sauce as a binder.
  • Pork and mustard just belong together. Serve pickled mustard seeds on the side.
  • Play around with your spritz. Apple juice, apple cider, and hard cider are all great options.
  • Create an herb crust. Hardy herbs like rosemary and thyme add a savory element to the delicate flavor of the pork.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take to smoke a rack of pork?

Always cook to temperature, not necessarily time. It depends on how large your roast is. A larger roast such as a 4-5 bone roast should take over two hours. For a larger roast like a 8-10 rib roast plan on at least four hours. You want to pull the roast off when it hits 140°F.

Can you smoke a rack of pork at 225°F?

Yes, however smoking at 250°F will not only cut down on the cooking time but give you the best results for both flavor and texture. Smoking at a lower temperature will leave the fat more gelatinous and doesn’t render it as well. Smoking the pork at 250°F will still give you a great smoke flavor while also helping to render the fat. Plus, you’re on your way to that Fred Flinstone gnawing-on-the-bone bite a little faster.

What size rack of pork should I buy?

You will want to allow at least one bone per person.

Do I need to use a binder for a smoked rack of pork?

No. If you allow the seasoning to refrigerate, or dry brine, on the pork chop a binder isn’t necessary. However, you can use one if you like. It will add a slight layer of flavor but not be the predominant flavor.

What is the difference between a rack of pork and a crown roast of pork?

They are both the same cut of pork. A crown roast of pork is made up of pork racks of ribs that have been tied together to stand upright, forming a crown.

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Featuring this juicy smoked rack of pork.

Smoked Rack of Pork

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Declare your master of the grill status with this incredibly juicy Smoked Rack of Pork that will instantly activate drooling with the first dripping slice. Smoky, meaty, savory, and impossibly tender, this impressive bone-in pork rib roast will have you skipping the fork and knife and gnawing straight from the bone. Just be warned, you might need a bib.

  • Total Time: 4-6 hours
  • Yield: Serves 510 1x

Ingredients

Scale

Instructions

Notes

  • Timing of cook will depend on the size of the roast. It will at least take 90 minutes on a smaller roast to reach the target temperature, and at least 2 hours for the larger roast.
  • Author: Brad Prose
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 4-6 hours
  • Category: Pork
  • Method: Smoking
  • Cuisine: Dinner, Holiday Meal
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