Pork loins are one of the most versatile pieces of meat you can buy. Cut it raw into thick slices for delicious pork chops, cook it in a slow cooker and pull it apart for a version of BBQ, or simply roast the whole loin.
Honestly, I just wanted to use my new gadget, a probe thermometer.
Probe thermometers take the guesswork out of knowing when your meat is done cooking, and for roasts especially, it’s quickly becoming one of my favorite kitchen tools. You can see how it works in just a minute.
As you can see, pork loins are pretty inexpensive, and if I was patient enough to find a sale somewhere around town, it would’ve been much cheaper.
For this roast, start by grabbing your favorite spices. Use your preferences and creativity here, but if you’d like to follow what I did, grab the paprika, onion powder, rosemary, oregano, thyme, sage, salt and pepper.
I don’t measure spices for rubs but if you need a little guidance, something like 2 parts paprika, 2 parts onion powder, 2 parts rosemary, 1 part salt, pepper, oregano, thyme, and sage. Then add about 1-2 T. olive oil. Mix well and set aside.
Then clean up a whole head of garlic. If you have a few really big pieces, feel free to cut them in half.
I’m learning to love my cast iron skillet, so if you have one, feel free to stick this in the oven at about 400. By heating up the pan, it will cook the loin faster and give a nice sear on the bottom as well.
Massage the spice rub all over the loin.
Then cut a deep hole in the pork for every clove of garlic you have. Stick the garlic in the holes.
Feel free to keep them close to the surface or way far down in the meat–your call.
If you don’t have a probe thermometer, skip this part.
If you do, go ahead and stick the probe in the biggest area of the loin until the tip has reached the center.
Cover with foil so the garlic doesn’t burn and stick the pan in the oven, keeping the probe thermometer out on the counter.
Notice that the thermometer temp on the left side is too cold to register here. I’ve set the thermometer to alert me when it reaches 145, a great temperature for a pork roast to be.
Pull it out of the oven when it reaches 145.
You may be wondering how long it should cook. Well, that’s why you need a meat thermometer. Every loin in the store is a little different in size so cooking times will vary. If you don’t want to purchase a probe thermometer, a simple meat thermometer is very cheap and should always be in your kitchen.
Feel free to slice it thin or thick. I preferred very thin slices so the garlic would also be nice and thin and I could put it on a sandwich.
Side note: If you want the garlic to be a bit less raw, try roasting the garlic before you place it in the pork.
- 1 Pork Loin at $3.30/lb: $5.56
- 1 Head of Garlic: 35¢
- 4 Servings: $5.91
- 1 Serving: $1.47