This homemade Pork Rub Recipe For Smoker is perfect for all kinds of smoked pork dishes such as pulled pork, pork ribs, pork tenderloin, pork belly, pork butt, and pork shoulder. This bbq rub gives the pork a delicious flavor that your taste buds will love. Best of all, it's super easy to make. All you need is five minutes and a few simple ingredients.
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Pork is one of our favorite meats to cook on the electric smoker. Besides a good cut of meat, the most important ingredient is a good dry rub.
The best way to get the optimal flavor in your smoked meat is by using homemade spice blends. I started using my own rubs when I first got a pellet grill. A good pork rub should have a balance of sweet, savory, and spicy flavors.
Making pork rub at home is easy and it allows you to control the ingredients that go into it. This is especially important if you are trying to avoid MSG or other additives.
I love my own dry rub for smoked chicken and use it in all of my chicken dishes. I knew it was time to come up with another spice rub recipe to go with my favorite pork recipes such as pork tacos, smoked pork tenderloin, pork loin roast, thin pork chops, and pork chops. This rub also goes great on my Instant Pot Pork Ribs.
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Why use a dry rub?
A dry rub on your smoked meat gives it an extra layer of flavor. The delicious crust on the outside of the meat that the rub forms really takes the flavor to the next level.
In addition, a dry rub helps to lock in the natural juices of the meat, which prevents it from drying out during the smoking process.
For more information, check out the Barbecue Rubs Guide by Traeger Grills for everything you need to know about adding flavor to your barbeque, including information on wet rubs vs. dry rubs, how to select the right rub for you, application tips, and more.
Image Source: Traeger Grills.
Why this recipe works
- This pork rub recipe for smoker is a delicious way to add flavor to pork before cooking it.
- A super easy recipe that uses basic ingredients.
- This is, in my opinion, the best dry rub recipe. It has the perfect balance of sweet and savory with just a little bit of spice, and it goes great with the smoky flavor from the grill.
- This pork rub can be used on any type of pork, including pork chops, pork roast, pork tenderloin, pork shoulder, or pork ribs.
- This rub can also be used on pork that is cooked in the slow cooker or instant pot.
- Prep time is only 5 minutes.
- It is more economical to make your own instead of buying it at the store.
- There are no additives to the pork rub, you control the ingredients.
- Easily scalable, make a lot or make a little. This recipe makes about 3 tablespoons, which is enough for 4 large pork chops.
- It keeps for up to 6 months, great to have on hand.
This pork rub is quick to make with simple ingredients that are easy to find at any grocery store.
- Brown sugar. I used light brown sugar, but you can use any type of sugar. Dark brown sugar has a higher molasses content so it will have a richer flavor.
- Paprika. I highly recommend smoked paprika if you have it.
- Onion powder
- Garlic powder
- Chili powder
- Dry mustard powder. This is the secret ingredient in this spice rub. It gives it great flavor.
- Kosher salt, or use freshly ground sea salt.
- Black pepper, or use freshly ground peppercorns.
See the recipe card for quantities.
The instructions for this dry pork rub are so easy, that I feel silly even writing a recipe for it.
Combine all ingredients in a small bowl.
Use a spoon and stir to combine all of the ingredients.
You can also place spices and herbs in a glass mason jar. Place a lid on the jar and shake it for about 10 seconds to mix all the ingredients.
To use, sprinkle dry rub on meat liberally with a spoon.
Alternatively, place a couple of teaspoons of rub on a plate and roll a piece of pork in it to coat. Cover all areas, top, bottom, and sides.
If not grilling or smoking the meat right away, cover with plastic wrap and place it in the fridge until you are ready to cook it.
HINT: Make extra pork rub so you have it on hand when you need it.
How much dry rub do I put on pork?
A good rule of thumb is to use 1 tablespoon of dry rub for every pound of pork. This estimate has always worked for me. For example, I had 4 large bone-in pork chops that weighed approximately 3 pounds. I used all of the pork dry rub on the pork chops.
This easy pork rub recipe can be adapted to suit your individual taste, and it's perfect for both grilling and smoking.
You can easily switch up ingredients in this dry rub recipe to suit specific tastes. Experiment with different flavors and see what works best for you. Some ideas you might want to try are:
- Sweeter - add extra brown sugar to the spice rub for a sweeter taste.
- Less sweet: If you prefer your rub to be less sweet, use only 1-2 tablespoons of brown sugar
- Spicier: If you would like your spice rub spicier, increase the chili powder
- Extra spicy: If you want to add even more spice to this recipe, add some cayenne pepper. Just a pinch will do!
- Other spices: Ground cumin is also fabulous in this dry rub recipe!
Whatever spices you choose, this dry pork rub will be delicious on your meat. So go ahead and experiment - your taste buds will thank you!
- A small bowl
- A spoon
- Glass jar with lid to store leftover pork rub.
This pork rub can be stored in an air-tight container or a resealable bag in a dry place for future use. I like to store mine in a canning jar in the pantry. Keep the rub away from heat and sunlight.
If this rub is stored properly, it will keep for up to 6 months. However, for optimal flavor, use the rub within 2 months.
Make sure to date and label the jar or bag.
For optimal freshness, store smoked pork rub in the freezer in a resealable bag. It will stay fresh and fragrant for up to a year.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
If you have time, you can apply rub to the pork anywhere from a half hour to 8 hours before smoking. The longer it sits the longer it has for the flavor to penetrate the meat. However, you will still get great flavor if you apply the rub just before placing the meat on the smoker.
Rub is a mixture of herbs and spices that is applied to meat before cooking. Seasoning is a mixture of herbs and spices that is used to flavor food during or after cooking.
A dry rub is a mixture of herbs and spices that is rubbed into meat before cooking. A wet rub is a mixture of herbs and spices mixed with a liquid that is also rubbed into meat before cooking.
To help the dry rub stick to the meat, apply a little olive oil or avocado oil to the outside of the meat before applying the spice rub.
Yes, you can use your favorite bbq sauce with a dry rub. The sauce will add even more flavor to the meat. I like to apply the BBQ sauce during the last few minutes of the smoking process.
- Use the freshest ingredients possible.
- Make sure to mix everything together well to create a consistent flavor.
- Store any leftover rub in an airtight container in a cool, dark place.
- This rub is best used on any pork dish such as pork roast, pork chops, pork ribs, pork butt, or pork tenderloin.
- Apply the rub to the meat before cooking.
- Make sure to cut off the fat cap first if your cut of pork has one.
- Another pro tip is to use apple wood pellets when smoking pork, the apple flavor really complements it!
If you're looking for a delicious and easy way to add flavor to your pork dishes, then this five-minute bbq rub is just what you need. It's perfect for all kinds of pork, and it gives your food a delicious flavor.
If you try it out and like it, I would appreciate it if you could take a moment to leave a star rating and/or comment below. 🙂
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Pork rub recipe for smoker
- Small bowl or jar
- Small spoon
- 2 teaspoon brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- ½ teaspoon dry mustard powder
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
- Place all the spices in a small bowl or a glass jar with a lid and shake gently to combine.
- Sprinkle dry rub on meat liberally with a spoon, or place a couple of teaspoons of rub on a plate and roll the meat in it to coat. Cover all areas, top, bottom, and sides. If not grilling or smoking the meat right away, place it in the fridge until you are ready to cook it.
- Store in an airtight jar or a Ziploc bag in a cool, dry place.
- Do not use the same utensils on cooked food, that previously touched raw meat
- Wash hands after touching raw meat
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
These were awesome. Quick and sooooo easy
I'm so glad you liked them! 🙂
First time I have used a smoker. I tried ticket pork chops. I used your rub recipe and followed the recipe. They turned out amazing so moist. Best pork chops we have ever had! I have since then fixed ribs, have they were awesome! I am getting ready to fix a pork loin. This is going to be my every time rub!
Hi Nina! Thank you so much for trying out my pork rub recipe and for letting me know how much you enjoyed it! Pork chops are one of my favorite things to cook on the smoker, and I'm so thrilled you loved them too! 🙂