I love spending time by the smoker most of the year and often fire it up during winter. However, this Rosemary Pork Roast, cooked in the oven, is so damn good I find myself waiting for bad weather to come around to push me indoors to make this. If you have a small crowd coming over for dinner this holiday season, I would lean on this recipe for a home run. I get awesome feedback from friends whenever this is on the menu.
Before we get started with this delicious feast, we need to pick out a good pork roast. For me, that means a Bone-In pork shoulder. The size is totally dependent on the how many people you want to feed and how fast you want to cook it. I usually shoot for an 8 lb pork shoulder to feed 8-10 people for dinner. The cooking process will take about 7 hours for an 8 lb pork shoulder.
To get started, we are going to trim any excess fat off the pork and brine in overnight in a sweet & salty water bath. We are using a combination of kosher salt, brown sugar, white pepper, and seasoned salt to punch some extra flavor and moisture into the pork roast. I use an 8 quart spaghetti pot to hold the brine and pork shoulder overnight in the fridge. When you are ready to assemble the roast and veggies to go in the oven, pull the pork shoulder out and rinse it thoroughly. Then pat it dry with paper towels.
While your pork roast hangs out, chop the veggies and place them in a large roasting pan, creating a comfy nest for your pork shoulder to rest on. Then season the pork with a nice even coating of the rub. You do not want it caked on there, but definitely a good coating. Place the pork on the veggies, add 2-3 cups hot water to the roasting pan, and throw that sucker in the oven at 450 F for 15 minutes. Then temp down to 300 F for 3 hrs. Then temp down to 275 F for the rest of the cook, covering the pan for the last 90 minutes with foil. Measure the internal temperature before pulling from the oven and it should be around 195-200 F. If your pork shoulder is over 8 lbs, I would add 30-45 min per pound.
After you pull the pork roast out, let it rest covered in the pan for 30 minutes-45 minutes. Pull apart in large chunks and divide to serve if needed. Drain and reserve the juices in the pan to serve as an Au Jus to spoon over the pork. The crust is full of awesome salty sweetness and the pork is so tender and juicy and you can eat it all day by itself. For this post, I made the Rosemary Pork Roast with potatoes to serve alongside the pork. If you want to dress up the dinner a little, omit the potatoes from the roast and make mashed potatoes to serve with the pork. You’ll love it. Not even joking. So good!
Rosemary Pork Roast
- 8 lbs Bone-In Pork Shoulder Pork Butt depending where you are from
- 11 Cups of Hot Water
- 2 Cups of Ice
- 1/2 Cup Kosher Salt
- 3 Tablespoons Seasoned Salt
- 2 Teaspoons Ground White Pepper
- 3/4 Cup Brown Sugar
Pork Rub Mixture
- 5 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
- 2 Tablespoons Granulated Garlic
- 2 Tablespoons Kosher Salt
- 1.5 Tablespoons Dried Thyme
- 1.5 Tablespoons Dried Rosemary
- 1 Tablespoon Freshly Ground Black Pepper
Bed of Vegetable
- 4 Whole Carrots - Peeled Cut in 3-4" sections
- 4 Celery Stalks Cut in 3-4" sections
- 1 Large Onion Quartered and pulled apart
- 5 Cloves Garlic
- 8 Baby Potatoes omit if making another side of potatoes
The day before cooking the pork... Add hot water to a large pot - I use an 8 quart pasta pot.
Mix in the dry brine ingredients and stir together.
Add ice to cool the mixture and let stand until room temperature
Rinse the pork shoulder and trim any excess fat off all areas.
Add pork shoulder to the pot and cover. Refrigerate overnight.
The morning of the dinner, pull the pork shoulder from the brine. Rinse thoroughly and pat dry with a paper towels.
Heat your oven to 450 F
Mix up the rub and apply an even coating of the rub all around the pork shoulder. You will have excess rub.
Roughly chop the vegetables and add to a roasting pan.
Place the pork on top of the vegetables
Add 2-3 cups of hot water to the pan. Enough to have 0.5 to 1 inch of water, but not so much the vegetables are floating around.
Place in the oven at 450 F for 15 minutes - this helps develop the crust.
Reduce heat to 300 F for 3 hours
Reduce heat to 275 F for the rest of the cook. Let go uncovered for 3 more hours.
At 6 hours into the cook, cover the pan with a large piece of foil.
Cook for another 90 minutes.
Pull and let rest covered for 30-45 minutes.
Pull apart the pork for serving
Drain pan juices and reserve for a nice Au Jus at the table, to spoon over the pork & vegetables.
Add or reduce time depending on the size of the Pork Shoulder. I would plan on 30-45 min for each pound. When fall off the bone tender, the internal temperature should reach around 200 F. Check with a fork for tenderness.