Herb-Roasted Rack of Pork is an easy meal that's fancy enough to impress at Christmas, Easter, or any special-occasion dinner. The roast is cut into gigantic chops that are more than enough for one person.
What is rack of pork roast?
A rack of pork roast is the bone-in pork loin (a.k.a. pork rib roast): it makes a beautiful presentation for special-occasion meals.
The roast gets cut into gorgeous individual servings consisting of brontosaurus-sized chops (I exaggerate...slightly).
Where to buy rack of pork roasts
Right around the holidays, this beautiful roast appears in wholesale clubs.
The rack of pork Costco puts out (Kirkland rack of pork) is excellent quality and turns out juicy and delicious every time.
I always buy an extra roast to freeze for spontaneous special-occasion meals.
Tip: rack of pork roasts (and other great roasts like prime rib) are often on sale after the holidays: this is a great way to score fantastic meat at a great price!
How much rack of pork per person?
Rack of pork roasts vary in weight, but the general rule of thumb is that one bone (e.g., one chop) per person makes a generous serving.
I can never polish off an entire chop myself, but I never have to worry: Phil is always there to "help me."
An 8-bone rack of pork roast usually weighs in at around 7 lbs, but this does vary.
How to cook rack of pork
This easy rack of pork recipe starts with a rub of dijon mustard, garlic, and minced herbs.
It takes about 5 minutes to prep.
Preparing the roast
Kirkland's swift premium rack of pork roasts come vacuum-packed in brine.
You want to be sure to rinse this off, because it also contains sulfates.
Dry the roast well with paper toweling.
Next, score the top and bottom of the meat by making criss-cross cuts with a sharp knife.
Then, rub the meat with the mustard-herb mixture.
Now, set the roast (fat side up) on a rack set into a roasting pan and place in a 400º oven for 20 minutes.
Then reduce the heat to 350º.
Rack of pork cooking time per pound
Plan approximately 15 minutes per pound of roast.
However, keep in mind that a meat thermometer (preferably leave-in) is the final determination of when the roast can come out of the oven.
Note that the recommended final internal temperature for pork used to be 160º F.
But a few years ago, the USDA relaxed these guidelines: it now recommends cooking pork to a final internal temperature of 145º F: the pork is still succulent—and yes, still a bit on the pink side.
RELAX. It's delicious.
The total roasting time rarely exceeds 1.5 hours.
Remove the roast when its internal temperature reaches 5–8 degrees below your desired final temperature (5 for smaller roasts, 8 for larger); tent with foil.
This is important, because the roast will continue rising in temperature for at least 15 minutes. I suggest resting for 20.
145º F is medium doneness. If you still prefer your roast well done, cook it to 152–155º F: its final temperature will reach 160º F as it rests.
When the meat has rested sufficiently, I cut my herb-roasted rack of pork into chops, using the bones as guides.
What to serve with rack of pork
I love to serve these chops with stuffing (I added cranberries to this recipe), although I've also served with Meal-Prep Creamy Mashed Potatoes, Irish Colcannon with Cabbage and Leeks, or even a salad (like my Arugula-Shaved-Fennel Salad). Easy Skin-On Mashed Potatoes with Horseradish would also be fabulous!
Rack of pork with sauerkraut is a match made in heaven: for a delicious spin, try my Sweet and Sauerkraut – Cabbage Bacon Onion Saute.
If you have leftover Herb-Roasted Rack of Pork, slice it up thinly and use it in my decadent Cubano Quesadillas!
Check my herb-mustard crusted rack of pork on Pinterest: you can see photos and comments from people who have made it.
I hope your family loves this festive, show-stopping roast. Happy Holidays!
P.S. If you need some ideas for how to use up your leftovers, check out my post on Using up Leftovers!
- #CookBlogShare (coming soon!), a great food blogger recipe-share hosted this week at Everyday Healthy Recipes.
- #CookOnceEatTwice, for recipes that are just as good left-over as they are when you made them, hosted by Searching for Spice.
- The What’s For Dinner Sunday Linkup (coming soon!) at The Lazy Gastronome.
- Delicious Dishes Recipe Party, a weekly link party where bloggers share their most delicious recipes and check out other bloggers’ amazing recipes, hosted by Walking on Sunshine.
- 1 bone-in pork rib roast (minimum 6 bones), excess fat removed (leaving a thin fat layer on top)
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tbsp. fresh rosemary, chopped
- 3 tbsp. dijon mustard
- 1 ½ tsp. coarse salt
- ½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat oven to 400º F.
- Carefully rinse the pork and pat dry with paper toweling. Score the fat (make shallow cuts in a criss-cross pattern). Mix the remaining ingredients and rub the mixture evenly over the meat, down into the score cuts, and in between the rib bones. Place roast (fat side up) on a rack set in a roasting pan with ½" of water on the bottom. Place the roasting pan in the oven for 20 minutes. Reduce the temperature to 350º F and continue roasting until an instant-read thermometer (inserted into the thickest part of the meat) reads 5–8 degrees below your final desired temperature, 45 additional minutes to an hour (See Recipe Note #2).
- Remove the roast to a cutting board and tent with foil. Let rest for at least 20 minutes (the temperature will continue to rise as the meat rests—leave the thermometer in the meat and wait for the temperature to stop rising before you cut).
- Slice into chops, using the rib bones as guides. Arrange on a platter and serve.
- Wholesale clubs (e.g., Sam's or Costco) often sell these pork roasts around holidays. The roasts I've found are already Frenched: the bones protrude without any meat in between. You can ask the butcher to do this for you if necessary.
- Note that there may still be some pink in the pork roast. This is okay. As long as the roast reaches an internal final temperature of 145º F after it rests, the USDA says that this is fine. If you prefer your meat well-done, leave the roast in the oven until the meat reaches 152–155º F so that it reaches 160º after resting.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1 chop
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 266Total Fat: 21gSaturated Fat: 8gSodium: 832mgCarbohydrates: 1gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 17g
Nutrition data provided here is only an estimate: if you are tracking this information for medical purposes, please consult a trusted external source. Thanks!
Sweet and Sauerkraut – Cabbage Bacon Onion Saute: perhaps the perfect side dish for roast pork. Tangy, smoky, and slightly sweet, I almost named it "Sweet 'n' Sauerkraut".
Easy Sausage Stuffing: this vintage recipe has been a fixture on the Thanksgiving/ Christmas Day table for decades. Perfect for any festive occasion involving pork, turkey, duck, or Cornish game hens.
Perfect Meal-Prep Creamy Mashed Potatoes: great for busy weeknights or big events where you want to work ahead as much as possible. Peeling and pre-soaking ahead of time removes a lot of the hands-on work from go-time.
Ultimate Classic Roast Turkey turns out perfectly juicy every time thanks to a wine-and-butter-soaked cheesecloth that keeps the turkey from drying out for most of the roasting time.