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Southern-Style Smoked Pork Loin Recipe


Holle loves to cook. She creates a lot of delicious recipes and enjoys sharing them.

Smoked pork is a big favorite with most lovers of Southern food, and hubby and I make it quite often. I usually include it in my Thanksgiving recipes. We enjoy a variety of pork cuts on our meat smoker, including pork shoulders, fresh and cured hams, spareribs, baby back ribs, pork tenderloins, pork chops, pork steaks, and bone-in pork loins. I do any seasoning that’s required, which might include a marinade, a wet rub, or a dry rub. Johnny is in charge of the actual smoking. He uses a Brinkmann electric smoker for the job. With electric smokers, there’s little mess or bother, so the job is really easy. The results are practically foolproof, too, and they’re mouthwatering!

Hang with me, and I’ll share our process for how to cook pork loin on a BBQ smoker. I suggest, however, that you make the BBQ rub recipe your own. If you don’t like one of the spices I use, leave it off. If I haven’t used one of your favorite herbs or spices in my wet rub, add it! We like to use a bone-in pork loin for this smoked pork recipe because I love the section of baby back ribs attached to the roast. In fact, that’s my favorite part. Another reason we prefer a bone-in loin roast is because of the price. The one we enjoyed today was just $1.69 per pound.

How to Cook Pork Loin on an Electric Smoker

Holle’s Southern-Style Smoked Pork Loin recipe

What you’ll need:

  • Bone-in pork loin
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon cooking oil
  • 1 tablespoon Lawry’s garlic salt
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 2 teaspoons black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons Louisiana hot sauce
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • Pecan wood
  • Apple juice
  • Molasses


  1. Rinse pork loin and pat dry. Combine vinegar, oil, garlic salt, paprika, black pepper, onion powder, hot sauce, cayenne, and cinnamon in a small bowl. This will serve as the BBQ rub, and it’s a wet rub, obviously. The apple cider vinegar will help the spices to soak into the meat more. Rub the BBQ rub all over the meat. Place the rubbed pork loin in a shallow baking pan and cover it loosely with plastic food wrap. Leave the meat in the fridge overnight.
  2. Take your pecan chips, pecan twigs, or pecan chunks and place them in a small bucket. Add enough water and apple juice—a half and half mixture—to cover the wood. Put a heavy plate on the wood to keep it under water/apple juice. Allow the pecan wood to soak for several hours or overnight.
  3. When you’re ready to start the meat smoker, fill the water pan and place the pecan wood on the burner. Plug in the BBQ smoker and let it heat for about 30 minutes.
  4. Remove the pork loin from the fridge and drizzle it with molasses. Rub the molasses all over the meat. Place the pork on the top rack of the meat smoker, fat side-down, with the rib bones up. Close the smoker lid and go find something else to do.
  5. After six hours, check the water pan and the wood supply. Add more if needed. Close the smoker lid again and go find something else to entertain yourself for about 5-6 more hours. The pork loin should be done by then.
  6. Remove the meat from the BBQ smoker and allow it to rest at room temperature for about 15-20 minutes before carving. If you’re the one doing the slicing, be sure to cut off and hide a section of ribs for yourself!

This pork loin recipe is one of our faves! It’s so good, that you might not even want to use any kind of sauce on the smoked pork. If you do, try a sweet and tangy tomato-based BBQ sauce, a mustard-based BBQ sauce, a vinegar-based sauce, or sweet-and-sour sauce.

Questions & Answers

Question: What temperature do you set the smoker on for smoking meats?

Answer: Around 225 degrees for most meats.


Holle Abee (author) from Georgia on June 27, 2016:

Big Daddy, our smoker doesn't have a thermometer, but I think it cooks at around 225 degrees. Best of luck with your Southern BBQ!

BigDaddy on June 27, 2016:

At what temp am I cooking this wonderful hunk a chunk? Looks delicious.

Holle Abee (author) from Georgia on November 28, 2011:

Clover and HH, thanks to both of you for reading about how to cook a pork loin - southern style!

Holle Abee (author) from Georgia on November 28, 2011:

Random, is it legal there not to have a smoker?? It's required by law in the Deep South! lol

Hello, hello, from London, UK on October 24, 2011:

That looks absolutely delicious. You are super and thank you for sharing.

Cloverleaf from Calgary, AB, Canada on October 23, 2011:

Right, that's it. I've got to buy an electric smoker!!!

I just showed my hubby your pictures and I think I've convinced him that we simply have to try this! I'm bookmarking and adding to my recipe collection. Voted up!

Rose Clearfield from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on October 23, 2011:

This sounds like a great recipe! Whenever I've had meat cooked on someone's smoker at home, it's always been amazing. Maybe someday we'll get one!

Holle Abee (author) from Georgia on October 23, 2011:

Mary, we smoke a ham and a turkey for Thanksgiving, with the ham over the turkey. Both are awesome!

Holle Abee (author) from Georgia on October 23, 2011:

jenu, I do a cherry ham, too! I soak the ham overnight in cherry and/or apple juice before we put it on the smoker.

Holle Abee (author) from Georgia on October 23, 2011:

Hi, John! You could always invite some friends over. lol

Mary Hyatt from Florida on October 23, 2011:

Being an ole Southern gal, we love our pork! I do turkey in the smoker, but never tried pork. Sounds great for something a little different for Thanksgiving. Thanks.

jenubouka on October 23, 2011:

Oh, yea. I prefer doing any kind of hams myself so I can control the sodium and flavor, I tend to get crazy with it. I did a cherry infused ham, that was awesome!!!!

Hmrjmr1 from Georgia, USA on October 23, 2011:

Great Recipe Habee! Got me hungry just looking at the pics, but alas without family to do this stuff for, I have to limit myself to what I know I can eat in one or (if its really good) two sittings. I loved our smoker when I had a good reason to use it. Great stuff I do like your rub!

Holle Abee (author) from Georgia on October 23, 2011:

jenu, aren't electric smokers "da bomb"?? We absolutely love ours. Have you ever tried a cured ham on the smoker?

Holle Abee (author) from Georgia on October 23, 2011:

Hi, LL! How do you survive without an electric smoker?? lol. Seriously, we use ours all the time. It's especially helpful at Thanksgiving and Christmas because it frees up my oven for cooking other dishes.

Holle Abee (author) from Georgia on October 23, 2011:

Thanks, Samantha!

jenubouka on October 23, 2011:

What a good looking piece of meat, and the pork looks good too! I do have an electric smoker probably used by cavemen, but still works. The molasses must give this a killer flavor and seal in the moisture, I have a black walnut tree, so I am going to use that. Have you ever used oak wine barrels for smoking? Pretty good.

L.L. Woodard from Oklahoma City on October 22, 2011:

I'm printing this recipe out to accompany the roasted potatoes with rosemary recipe. We don't have a smoker yet, but still going to give this a try, slow-cooked in the oven. It might just be on the table this holiday season. Thanks for sharing.

samanthamsmith from Small Town USA on October 22, 2011:

Looks so good.

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