Ever thought about making Smoked Pork Crown Roast on the Grill? Well it’s easier than you thought!
There is almost nothing as beautiful in the center of your dinner table as a pork crown roast; the way the bones stand at attention like wooden soldiers is truly something to behold. The best part about it is that even though it may look very daunting to attempt, the recipe for pork crown roast is fairly simple to pull off. To top it all off, the beer gravy will have everyone asking for a straw to drink it right out of the gravy boat! While we created this on a Big Green Egg, you can adapt it to whatever grill you are using, even (gasp) a gas grill.
What is a Pork Crown Roast?
A Pork Crown Roast is merely a rack of pork bones that has been cleaned and tied together to create a circular roast. It is like having a bunch of bone-in pork chops that are connected together. Don’t worry though—you don’t have to be a pork artist to pull this off. Simply ask your butcher and they will do all of the work for you. They will “French” the bones and most will even supply you with the paper hats to cover the end of the bones. I actually got this crown roast pork at my local Publix. Just be sure to give a day or two notice in order for them to have the time to prepare it.
How much meat do I need?
Your butcher can help you figure out how much you’ll need so that nobody leaves the table hungry, but here is a general rule of thumb: 1 ½ to 2 ribs or ¾ to 1 pound per person. With this calculation, you will surely have some leftovers but that’s OK, it’s a great treat the next day as well.
How do you brine the Pork Crown Roast?
I made up a remarkably simple brine for this recipe for Pork Crown Roast that works out very well. A brine is simply a way to help ensure that you create a very moist piece of meat to serve your guests. It does require a bit of advanced planning, but it is a step that will help create the best possible meal. I brined mine for 48 hours, but 24 hours should be more than sufficient.
To stuff or not to stuff, that is the question!
Many recipes for Pork Crown Roast you will find calls for a stuffing to be cooked inside of the center cavity of the roast. Personally, I am not a big fan of this for a number of reasons. I feel that it does not allow the heat to get to the meat properly and will cause the roast to cook unevenly. The outside will be dry as the heat is constantly in direct contact with it. It will take much longer for the center to get to the recommended safe temperature of pork (145°).
The other reason that I am not a fan of making the stuffing in the roast is that the stuffing will absorb the juices from the meat. Yes, it will give great flavor, but the stuffing may not reach food-safe temperatures by the time the roast itself is done cooking. Nobody wants to spend an evening with a house full of sick guests! The last reason is that most stuffing is bread based.
Bread products tend to really soak up the smoke flavor and to me, it can become very overbearing and take away from the beautiful flavors of this incredible meal.
How do I monitor the temperature?
The one tool that I’d highly recommend for this meal is the use of a good “leave in” digital thermometer. Pork is one meat that can very easily get over cooked and become dry. This, we do not want! We would highly recommend the use of a Thermoworks brand thermometer such as their Signals model. You simply place the probe in the thickest part of the roast near, but not touching the bone. It will monitor the temperature and sound an alarm when the roast is done roasting.
Carving the Pork Crown Roast
This may be one of the easiest pieces of meat to carve once it is done cooking. Simply place the roast on a sturdy cutting board. Using a sharp knife, slice down in between each bone to create beautiful pork chops. (Here at GrillGirl.com we recommend Dalstrong Knives). You can do this prior to serving it, but make sure to plate it whole and show your guests this beautiful creation that you created. The other option is to serve it whole at the table and slice it as you serve it. This is a very impressive way to do it.
Smoked Pork Crown roast made on the grill is easier than you think to make, and it quite an impressive dish to make for special guests or special occasions. Have your butcher do all the work for you and you’ll regrest not making this dish sooner!
For the Brine:
- ½ cup coarse kosher salt
- ½ cup dark brown sugar
- 1 apple, sliced
- 1 medium onion, sliced
- 2 tbsp. peppercorns
- 6 garlic cloves smashed
- Water to cover
For the Pork:
- 1 pork crown roast, 10 bones minimum, frenched and prepped by your butcher
- 1 tbsp. kosher salt
- ½ tbsp. rough ground black pepper
- 1 tbsp. garlic powder
- 1 tbsp. paprika
For the Gravy:
- 2 12 oz. beers
- 2 stalks celery, cut into 1-inch sections
- 1 onion, thick sliced
- 8 baby bella mushrooms, sliced thick
- 3 tbsp. flour
- 3 tbsp. butter
- Place the pork inside of a pot large enough to completely cover it in water. Fill with enough water to cover and remove the pork.
- Add the salt and brown sugar to the pot. Bring to a boil and remove from the heat. Allow it to cool completely and add the rest of the brine ingredients to the solution.
- Place the pork back in the brine and refrigerate for the brining duration (12-48 hours).
- Combine all of the rub ingredients together. Cover the roast with the rub, making sure to get into all of the cuts and inside of the cavity as well. Allow to sit out on the counter for at least one hour like this.
- Prepare your grill for indirect cooking at 350°. Just before placing the pork on the grill, add 3 to 4 chunks of smoking wood. I like to use a light smoking wood when cooking pork. For this, I used Barrel Proof Bourbon Barrel Bark smoking chunks.
- Place the pork on a rack in a pan and pour one can of beer in the bottom. Place your thermometer probe(s) into the meat in the thickest part of the roast, near but not touching the bones. Place the pan in the center of the grill and close the dome.
- After 45 minutes, place the chopped vegetables into the pan with the beer. Pour the second beer over the top of the roast to run down into the pan. Close the lid and finish cooking.
- When the pork reaches an internal temperature of 142°, remove it from the grill. Place the roast on a platter and loosely tent with foil. The internal temp will continue to rise to the required 145° minimum recommended temperature for pork.
- Strain the liquids and set the veggies aside. Return the pan to the grill or to a stove top.
- Add the butter and flour and whisk to make a roux. Once the mixture has turned light brown, pour the reserved liquid back in the pan and whisk until it begins to thicken. Add the veggies back in and pour it all into a gravy boat or serving container.
- Slice the pork roast in between the bones and serve.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 2.5 hours
- Category: Smoke/Grill, BBQ, Pork
- Method: Smoke, Grill, Roast
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: Pork Crown Roast, Pork Crown Roast Recipe, Smoked Pork Crown Roast, Pork Crown Roast on the Grill