Meat Cuts (Pork)

Visual Guide to Pork Cuts

Our last post discussed the different meat cuts from beef.  Today we will discuss the cuts from pork. There are four main cuts from pork. Those include the Shoulder, Loin, Leg, and Belly or Side/Sparerib. The Head and Hock can be used to flavor stocks and stews.


Lion-Loin, Tenderloin, Loin Roast, Baby Back Ribs (attached to loin muscle), Crown Roast, Pork Chop, Sirloin, T Bone, Porterhouse. Loin cuts are the leanest and most tender area of the pig. Any cut with the word loin cab be grilled, seared, or roasted. Watch cooking times as to not let the meat dry out.  Baby Back Ribs can be seasoned with a dry rub and slow cooked for hours, to have the meat fall right of the bone. And you can never go wrong throwing some Chops on the good ol’ Barb-E-que.

Leg– Ham. Fresh Ham is the upper hind leg of the pig and is usually very large so broken down into the butt and tapered shank. The tapered shank is great brined (to retain moisture), roasted, and sliced.

Shoulder-Country Style Ribs, Pork(Picnic) Shoulder, Blade Steak, Cubed Steak. Depending on the cut from the shoulder will determine your cooking method. Blade Steaks are great to marinate (30-2 hrs Depending on your time) and toss on the grill.

Belly (side, spare rib)-Slab Bacon, Sliced Bacon, Spare Ribs, Salt Pork.  Spare Ribs and Bacon are what mainly come from this area of the pig. We all know how good bacon is. We love roasting or barbequeing spare ribs.  You can always turn your bacon into pepper bacon, or applewood smoked bacon, maple bacon, etc. Get creative with your meats.

Hock– the bottom of the animals leg. You can buy these cured and smoked or do them yourself. Hock is great for flavoring stews, and soups.  You can roast hocks as well.

There are many great cuts of pork and great ways to cook each cut to bring out the best flavor.  There are many cuts that people know, such as bacon, tenderloin, and baby back ribs, and there are many other cuts that lead in flavor, but are just under explored.  If you have any questions email us at