Smoked Pork Chops – Reverse Seared

4.54 from 15 votes
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These Reverse Sear Smoked Pork Chops are smoked first for that awesome flavor, and then finished hot and fast medium rare for a perfectly cooked pork chop.

Reverse Seared Smoked Pork Chop on a cutting board
These ain’t your mama’s pork chops!

Sometimes when I hear people turn their noses at the idea of smoked pork chops, I can’t help but ask them why they dislike such an amazing cut of meat. Without fail, I hear the classic story of growing up with overcooked pork chops. (SHHHH DON’T TELL MY MOM!) So when that happens, I try to turn on my charm and convince them to rethink the classic pork chop oven bake, and try it out on a grill or smoker.

For these smoked pork chops we’re doing the reverse sear method to make sure you get that gorgeous slow smoke infusion, then finish on the grill, or in this case, a hot cast iron pan, for that great sear and char.

What is a Pork Chop?  The Cut

The pork chop is typically a loin cut of the pig, we’re using the t-bone steak of pork. You can get them bone in or boneless. I love bone in for flavor and presentation and I like the butcher to cut me a thick piece, like at least 1 ½ to 2 inches thick. You can also use this recipe with any thick cut pork steak.

Two raw pork steaks on a cutting board

It is relatively lean unlike its beef cousin, but you will still want to look for good marbling. Not all pork is created equal, consider the well marbled Kurobuta Pork from Snake River Farms as an example of well marbled and incredibly flavored pork. Or seek out some local pork farmers for the best local pork you can find.


This is really low maintenance. You may want to trim excess fat on edge of meat if there is any. For the most part, there is very little trimming needed for smoked pork chops.


Start with a small coating of olive oil, this will help the rub stick to the meat. Then follow with your dry rub. You can always go salt and pepper but we like our ultimate rub recipe for pork. It is what it was made for. It has a little sugar, a little savory, and a little spice.

Smoked Pork Chops

We are going to reverse sear the pork chops to lock in smoke flavor, then finish in a cast iron pan with a butter bath or baste as some call it.

Pork chop cooking on a smoker
  1. Preheat smoker to 225 degrees Fahrenheit (F) using fruitwood.
  2. Place seasoned pork chops on the smoker and smoke for 30 – 45 minutes.
  3. Preheat a cast-iron pan as the smoked pork chop temp rises to your desired finishing temperature. (but don’t add the butter yet)
  4. Pull the smoked pork chops when the internal temperature of the steaks is 130 degrees Fahrenheit. Use a good instant-read thermometer like the Thermoworks MK4 Thermapen for the best results.
  5. Place the butter in the preheated cast iron pan and then add Steaks and the herbs. The butter will melt quickly. Spoon the melted butter on the top of the grilled pork chop for 2 minutes.
  6. Flip and repeat spooning the butter over the top of the steak for another 2 minutes.
  7. Pull the steak (the internal temperature will be closer to 135 – 140 degrees F) and let it rest for 10 minutes.
  8. Serve and pour the browned butter right over the steaks.
Pan Searing a Smoked Pork Chop
Pre heat pan, then place the butter in, then the steak.

How Long to Smoke Pork Chops?

In the past, the USDA guidance was to cook pork to 165 degrees F. This is on the top end of well done and recently the guidance lowered that range to 145 degrees. We like our smoked pork chops cooked until its temp reaches 135 – 140 degrees for medium-rare. It is juicy and tender at that range.

What Wine to Pair with Smoked Pork Chops

Pork works great with so many red wines (Pinot Noir comes to mind). But it also works great with white wines, especially barrel-aged white wines like Chardonnay. Not only does the butteriness and creaminess of a barrel-aged Chardonnay a fantastic match for the pan sauce we created, but the oak notes are also a nice match for the sweet applewood we used in smoking the meat.

Other Grilled Pork Chop Ideas

Side Ideas for Smoked Pork Chops

This recipe was originally published in October of 2017 and updated October 2020 to include more recipe details, sides, and other pork dishes.

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Reverse Seared Smoked Pork Chop
4.54 from 15 votes

Smoked Pork Chops Recipe with Reverse Sear

Jazz up boring old pork chops by reverse searing them. Slowly smoke them for an hour then finish over high heat to sear the flavor.
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Resting Time: 10 minutes
Total: 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings: 2 servings


  • 2 1 1/2 inch Bone in Pork Chops
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons Ultimate Dry Rub
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 4 leaves of fresh sage


  • Preheat smoker to 225 degrees (F) using oak or apple wood.
  • Coat pork chops with olive oil and liberally apply the dry rub.
  • Place the pork chop on the smoker and cook until internal temperature is 130 degrees (F) and then remove (about 45 minutes).
  • When your temperature gets close to 130 degrees (F), preheat large cast iron skillet on stove top.
  • Place butter into the preheated skillet, then chop, then herbs.
  • Butter will melt quickly, be sure to quickly start basting the pork chops with the melted butter in the pan. Use a large spoon to do this. Flip after 2 minutes and repeat the basting for 2 more minutes.
  • Remove pork chops from pan and let rest for 10 minutes tented with aluminum foil to let the juices redistribute. The internal temperature of the pork should be about 135 – 140 degrees (F).
  • Cut and serve with your favorite sauce, we used the brown butter sauce from the pan. Just drizzle it right over the chops.



Calories: 340kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 37g | Saturated Fat: 16g | Cholesterol: 61mg | Sodium: 5mg | Potassium: 27mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 900IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 55mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Resting Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
Course: Entree
Cuisine: American
Servings: 2 servings
Calories: 340
Keyword: grilled pork chop, pork chop, reverse sear, smoked pork chop, smoked pork chop recipe
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About Mary

I'm Mary, a wine/food/travel writer, Certified Sommelier, mom of twins, former vegetarian turned BBQ fanatic, runner, founder of Vindulge, and author of Fire + Wine cookbook. Thanks for stopping by!

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  1. Can I smoke the pork chops and refrigerate or freeze them and pull them out later in the week and reverse sear them? I ask since they won’t be smoked to a done temperature and I’m worried about spoilage.

    1. Janie, yes you can smoke first and then put into the fridge for searing later. But, I would not freeze. I would smoke and fridge for no more than two days. Before searing let them sit for 30 minutes before cooking, and re-season.