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Easy Smoked Pork Loin

5 from 5 votes

Want to smoke something delicious? Smoked Pork Loin is easy to smoke and is so crazy good! The very size and nature of the pork loin means lots of smoke gets to it, and with a simple rub to enhance the flavor, you’ll go back for seconds and thirds!

sliced smoked pork loin on a cutting board

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With oodles of flavor from the sweet and spicy rub and a gorgeous smoke ring, smoking pork loin is one of my top 5 favorite things to smoke. I LOVE smoked pork loin – I love it sliced thinly for sandwiches (Cubano sandwiches, anyone?), cut thicker for meals, cubed on top of salads, and more! It’s so versatile!

And easy. Versatile AND easy. There are few types of meat that cook as easily on the Traeger – or any other electric pellet smoker – as pork loin. And, with no brining, no dry-aging, and no fussing, you can go from fridge to table in just a few hours.

What you’ll love about Smoked Pork Loin


  • The sweet and spicy rub adds oodles of flavor to the pork.
  • Smoked pork loin smokes pretty quickly.
  • Use your favorite applewood pellets for this smoked recipe.

What Is Pork Loin?

Pork loin vs pork tenderloin – what’s the difference? Pork loin is the muscle that runs between the ribs and the back fat. It is attached to rib bones, and if not separated from the bones, it is sold as a rack of pork, also known as a pork crown roast. It is lighter in color than tenderloin and has a thin layer of fat that runs along the top. Pork tenderloin is the tenderloin. It is a much smaller cut of meat and is darker in color.

You’ll often find long slabs of pork loin cryovaced (vacuum sealed inside thick plastic) at Costco and in some grocery stores, but it is more often sold in smaller chunks. I will buy the whole pork loin and cut it into pork chops, and roasts, and leave one big ole hunk for the smoker.

sliced smoked pork loin on a cutting board

Ingredients

With a sweet and spicy rub to absorb all the smoke and accentuate the flavor, this Smoked Pork Tenderloin will win you rave reviews!

  • Pork loin – About a 3 pound piece.
  • Brown sugar – Light or dark brown sugar, packed.
  • Chili powder
  • Chipotle powder – Or cayenne powder.
  • Paprika
  • Dried mustard powder
  • Garlic powder
  • Onion powder
  • Salt and pepper

You’ll Also Need:

How To Make Smoked Pork Loin

For a full list of ingredients and instructions, please scroll down to the recipe at the bottom of this page.

  1. Remove the pork from the fridge and rinse it off, then pat it dry with paper towels. Allow it to rest at room temperature for about 30 minutes.
  2. Make the sweet and spicy pork rub by combining the brown sugar, chili powder, chipotle powder, paprika, mustard powder, garlic powder, onion powder, and salt and pepper in a small bowl.
  3. Rub the pork loin with a thin layer of cooking oil (avocado oil works great.)
  4. Score the pork loin creating a few shallow diagonal cuts.
  5. Put the pork loin into a large bowl and sprinkle the rub over the pork loin. Get your hands in there, flipping the pork loin around and pressing the rub onto all surfaces.
  6. Preheat your smoker to 180-F according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  7. Smoke the pork loin at 180-F for about an hour, then turn the heat up to 225-F and continue smoking until the internal temperature reaches 145-F.
  8. Remove the pork from the smoker, tent it with foil, and let it rest for 10-15 minutes before carving. Enjoy!

Recommended

Why Score Pork Loin?

It’s all about the flavor, and when you create shallow scores in the pork loin, that rub gets further into the meat. The smoke gets into the meat more. And when you slice it, you’ll see the deeper penetration of spice rub and smoke!

Chef Jenn’s Tips

  • Pork loin is amazing, but if you overcook it – if you dry it out – it’ll taste like shoe leather. Temperature is everything to this dish. Cook it to 140-145F maximum, then pull it off to rest. Use an instant-read digital meat thermometer to nail the cook temp.
  • Resting is very important for smoked meats. Resting lets the meat relax, and the juices won’t run out when you slice it. You want the juices to stay in the meat!
  • The rub has a bit of kick to it! Feel free to adjust the chipotle – adding more or less – to get the spice level just how you like it.

Make It A Meal

Smoking pork loin is easy, which means you have time to make some amazing side dishes! Pair your sliced smoked pork loin with tasty picks like:

very thinly sliced smoked pork loin

Storage

Store any leftover Smoked Pork Loin in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days. Warm it gently, so you don’t overcook it, or eat it cold!

Frequently Asked Questions

How long to smoke a pork loin?

Starting at about 180-F for 30 minutes, then turning the heat up to 225-F, your pork loin should be ready to eat in about 2-2.5 hours. If it is really cold when it goes onto the smoker, it’ll take a bit longer.

Is smoking pork loin easy?

Pork loin is one of the easiest cuts of meat to smoke. It is lean, tender, juicy, and delicious – can you tell it’s one of my favorites?

Can you shred or pull pork loin?

No, not unless you cook it to death in a liquid. Pork loin won’t pull because there’s very little fat and no connective tissue in the meat which is what allows the pork to shred or pull apart.

Step By Step Process

sliced smoked pork loin on a cutting board
Print Pin
5 from 5 votes

Smoked Pork Loin

Juicy, tender, smoky, and with a sweet and spicy rub, Smoked Pork Loin is some good eats! Ready in under 3 hours, you can be eating this amazing meat feast in no time!
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword pellet smoker, pork, pork rub, smoked, smoked pork, smoked pork loin, traeger
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Servings 8 servings
Calories 262kcal
Author Chef Jenn

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds pork loin scored
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar packed
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons chipotle powder
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 2 teaspoons mustard powder
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  • Remove the pork from the fridge and rinse it off, then pat it dry with paper towels. Allow it to rest at room temperature for about 30 minutes.
  • Make the sweet and spicy pork rub by combining the brown sugar, chili powder, chipotle powder, paprika, mustard powder, garlic powder, onion powder, and salt and pepper in a small bowl.
  • Rub the pork loin with a thin layer of cooking oil (avocado oil works great.)
  • Score the pork loin creating a few shallow diagonal cuts.
  • Put the pork loin into a large bowl and sprinkle the rub over the pork loin. Get your hands in there, flipping the pork loin around and pressing the rub onto all surfaces.
  • Preheat your smoker to 180-F according to the manufacturer's instructions.
  • Smoke the pork loin at 180-F for about an hour, then turn the heat up to 225-F and continue smoking until the internal temperature reaches 145-F.
  • Remove the pork from the smoker, tent it with foil, and let it rest for 10-15 minutes before carving. Enjoy!

Notes

Chef Jenn’s Tips

  • Pork loin is amazing, but if you overcook it – if you dry it out – it’ll taste like shoe leather. Temperature is everything to this dish. Cook it to 140-145F maximum, then pull it off to rest. Use an instant-read digital meat thermometer to nail the cook temp.
  • Resting is very important for smoked meats. Resting lets the meat relax, and the juices won’t run out when you slice it. You want the juices to stay in the meat!
  • The rub has a bit of kick to it! Feel free to adjust the chipotle – adding more or less – to get the spice level just how you like it.

Nutrition

Serving: 2slices | Calories: 262kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 39g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 107mg | Sodium: 684mg | Potassium: 692mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 338IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 24mg | Iron: 1mg

A Note on Nutritional Information

Nutritional information for this recipe is provided as a courtesy and is calculated based on available online ingredient information. It is only an approximate value. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site cannot be guaranteed.

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By Chef Jenn