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How to Grill the Perfect Pork Loin

How to Grill the Perfect Pork Loin

BBQ competitor, owner of Whiskey Bent BBQ, and our resident BBQ expert, Chad Ward, shares his tips and tricks for cooking delicious and tender pork loin.


Since pork loin is very lean with hardly any fat, Chad does not do much in the way of timming the cut, leaving any fat on it for added moisture.

Because it has a mild flavor, pork loin can act as an almost blank canvas, letting the flavors of whatever it was seasoned with shine. For that reason, Chad often uses it to try out new rubs, marinades, and sauces. If using a rub like Traeger's Perfect Pork Rub, Chad applies it amply all over the meat and lets it penetrate for at least 10 minutes before cooking.

Cooking Pork Loin

When it comes to cooking pork loin, the key is not to overcook it. This is easily done because the meat is lean and can dry out quickly. For that reason, no matter what method you are using to cook the loin, you will want to insert a leave-in meat thermometer, such as Traeger's Meater, to track its internal temperature. A good serving temperature is about 145°F, which means you will want to take the meat off the heat at 140°F to account for its temperature continuing to rise while it rests.

Chad like to begin by smoking his pork loin at a temperature no higher than 225°F and preferably using Super Smoke, if available. After smoking the meat for at least 30 minute and up to an hour, he raises the heat to between 275°F and 350°F to finish, keeping a careful eye on the internal temperature.

When the pork loin is finished cooking, it's important to let it rest for 10 or so minutes before slicing. This allows the juices to redistribute, keeping every bite tender and juicy.

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