If you are looking for the perfect thing to cook in the smoker for this Labor Day, look no further than smoked pork steaks. Dry brined, seasoned with my original rub (purchase recipes here) and then smoked for about 2.5 hours. Glazing with my barbecue sauce (purchase recipes here) is optional but highly recommended.

Have a great Labor Day!

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You and your guests deserve the very best this Labor Day so be sure to season these pork steaks real good with my original rub and glaze them over with my barbecue sauce when they are almost done. You'll be glad you did!

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Helpful Information
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Dry Brining Time: 3 hours
  • Cook Time: 2.5 hours
  • Smoker Temp: 225-240°F
  • Meat Finish Temp: 180°F
  • Recommended Wood: Pecan
What You’ll Need

*If your butcher is not familiar with these, ask them to slice a pork butt (Boston butt) into ½-¾ inch slices and you'll have pork steaks.

Dry Brine

Place the pork streaks on a sheet pan or something similar.

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Sprinkle with kosher salt on the top side only. See picture below for coverage recommendation:

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Place the meat in the fridge uncovered for about 3 hours.

The salt will draw some of the meat juices to the surface. The juices will mix with the salt and create a slurry which will then be drawn back deep into the meat.

This process tenderizes the meat and adds great flavor to the inside of the meat.

Rinse and Season with Rub

Some say you do not need to rinse the meat after dry brining but I prefer to do so just to make sure there is no residual salt left on the surface.

Lay the steaks back onto the sheet pan.

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Sprinkle generously with Jeff's original rub (purchase recipes here). I do not recommend using store-bought rubs or most other seasonings unless they are low in salt.

Let the pork steaks sit for about 10 minutes until they start getting that familiar “wet” look.

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Flip them over and do the other side the same way.

Now leave them be while you go get the smoker ready.

Smoke the Pork Steaks

Set up your smoker for cooking at about 225°F with indirect heat.

If your smoker uses a water pan, fill it up.

Once the smoker is preheated and ready to go, place the pork steaks directly on the smoker grates or you can use a Bradley rack or Weber grill pan to make it easy.

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Use pecan or your favorite smoking wood for smoke.

If you are using a charcoal, electric or gas smoker, keep the smoke going for at least an hour. Longer is fine as long as the smoke is light.

You can use a digital probe meat thermometer such as the Maverick ET-733 to monitor the pork steaks so you'll know when they reach their perfect done temperature. I recommend taking them to about 180°F.

Another great tool is the recently improved ThermoPop digital pocket thermometer which reads in 3-4 seconds (that's fast), is splash-proof and is being offered now for only $29. One of my favorite toys.. er, tools;-)

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Glaze with Jeff's Barbecue Sauce (optional but recommended)

When the steaks are about 30 minutes from being done you can glaze the top side with Jeff's barbecue sauce (purchase recipes here).

Let the sauce caramelize for 15 minutes then flip them over and sauce the other side as well.

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Finish and Serve

You can expect these to take around 2.5 hours depending on a few variables:

  • Meat thickness
  • How cold they are when you place them on the grate
  • Weather, wind, rain, etc.
  • Accuracy of your smoker thermometer

When the pork steaks reach 180°F they are finished.

Remove them from the heat.

Place a piece of foil loosely over the top of them and let them rest for about 10 minutes before serving.

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Questions

Can I cook these faster and get them done sooner?

If you want to cut the cooking time down on these you can cook them at 275°F. At this temperature, it will take them approximately 1.5 hours.

Why do you cook some pork to 145°F but you recommend 180°F on these? Won't that dry them out?

Great question! Some lean cuts of pork like loin and chops are tender and juicy at 145°F but not so on large fatty cuts like pork butt as these have lots of connective tissues that do best with long, slow heat.

These cuts do not get tender until they are cooked well past their safe temperature. Fortunately, because these have so much fat marbling, they can be cooked to 180°F and still end up juicy.

I've heard that some folks grill these but you don't mention that. Why?

They can definitely be grilled at high temperatures although that is not best for them in my opinion. If you get them done quickly, you are limiting the time with the smoke and ultimately the flavor.

It is also my opinion that the connective tissues break down better at the lower temperatures.

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***Note: you get the Texas style rub recipe free with your order!

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Read these recent testimonies:

Love the sauce and rub
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Love the sauce and rub recipes. So far I have used them on beef ribs, pork ribs, and different chicken parts. Can't wait to do a beef brisket. Texas rub is great as well! ~Peter S.
I tried the rub on a beef
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..I tried the rub on a beef brisket and some beef ribs the other day and our entire family enjoyed it tremendously. I also made a batch of the barbeque sauce that we used on the brisket as well as some chicken. We all agreed it was the best sauce we have had in a while. ~Darwyn B.
Love the original rib rub
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 Love the original rib rub and sauce! We have an annual rib fest competition at the lake every 4th of July. I will say we have won a great percent of the time over the past 15 years so we are not novices by any means. However, we didn't win last year and had to step up our game! We used Jeff's rub and sauce (sauce on the side) and it was a landslide win for us this year! Thanks Jeff for the great recipes. I'm looking forward to trying the Texas style rub in the near future! ~Michelle M.


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Printable Recipe

5.0 from 2 reviews
Pork Steaks for Labor Day
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
If you are looking for the perfect thing to cook in the smoker for this Labor Day, look no further than smoked pork steaks. Dry brined, seasoned with my original rub (purchase recipes here) and then smoked for about 2.5 hours. Glazing with my barbecue sauce (purchase recipes here) is optional but highly recommended.
Author:
Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: Hot Smoking
Serves: 6
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Lay the pork steaks on a cookie sheet or pan.
  2. Sprinkle about 1 tsp of Mortons kosher salt on the top side of the pork steaks.
  3. Place the steaks in the fridge uncovered for 3 hours.
  4. Rinse the steaks under cold water to remove any residual salt.
  5. Season both sides of the meat with Jeff's original rub.
  6. Set up the smoker for cooking at about 225°F with indirect heat.
  7. Use the water pan if you have one.
  8. Cook the steaks on the smoker for about 2.5 hours or until they reach 180°F in the center.
  9. About 30 minutes before they are finished, you can sauce them if you like.
  10. Brush sauce onto top side, wait about 15 minutes then flip over and do the other side.
  11. Rest under loose foil for about 10 minutes before serving.
 

About the Author

Long time Industrial Engineer turned self-proclaimed fire poker, pitmaster and smoke whisperer and loving every minute of it!

5 Comments on this article. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Rich November 28, 2016 at 5:29 pm - Reply

    I made these yesterday and they came out awesome! I used maple syrup to help the rub stick. 2.5hr smoke time for 2. I forgot to add the sauce but they still came out fine!

  2. Grant K September 13, 2016 at 11:43 am - Reply

    I tried this recipe last night and all was good! My kids, 7 & 4 could not get enough of them. They said it was spicy but so good. My steaks were an 1 inch thick so took about 3 hours to smoke. I used the rub and BBQ sauce as the recipe said. This one will go in the rotation of dinners! Thanks Jeff.

  3. FrankV September 7, 2016 at 9:27 am - Reply

    OK I followed your advice and made these on Monday. They turned out great.

    The butt was in my freezer as I had gotten it on sale a while back for $5. (Can’t beat that with a stick.)

    Like Mike, after it thawed, I had to de-bone it but I tied it up with butchers twine before cutting into six 1″ thick steaks. Took just short of two hours at 225 degrees to smoke to 180 degrees using plain old Oak. Hard to find the more exotic wood in this area of Central Florida without spending a fortune online. I did mop with Jeffs BBQ Sauce toward the end just like instructed.

    The meal started with a green salad. Then Sweet Corn on the Cob, which is plentiful and cheep right now was one of the sides. Our Neighbors , who joined us for dinner, brought Baked Beans for the other side and Watermelon for desert. With a little Wine, the meal was absolutely wonderful. Raves by all. Thanks for the newsletter inspiration.

    Jeffs BBQ sauce is great, however I like a little more kick than my lady does, so I found a recipe for a slightly hotter Mango-Habanaro BBQ sauce for me that I really like and that really makes the pork outstanding.

    This was the first, but not the last, time these will be made.

  4. Mike Mantzouris September 6, 2016 at 4:43 pm - Reply

    I made these Sunday of Labor Day weekend and they were the hit of the party! I used Jeff’s original rub and sauce.

    I smoked them with pecan at 225 and took about 3.5 hours to complete them for some reason.

    I brought home 9.5lb pork butt and realized I’d have to de-bone it to cut the steaks which I did. Then I cut steaks and I learned that the pork butt doesn’t really hold it’s shape without the bone so I had to cut the steaks a little thicker than I thought I needed to get 1/2 inch steaks. I took the leftover 4.7lb of pork butt and tied it up and made pulled pork.

    I took the finished boneless pork steaks and cut them into strips for people to add to their fajitas. The pork was crunchy, yet moist with the absolute perfect amount of salt and sweet. Kids and adults alike could not stop eating it. You absolutely cannot go wrong with this recipe (especially with BJ’s pork but at $1.59/lb) and I would have NEVER thought of preparing them this way without the newsletter. I am hooked.

  5. Ryan Na September 5, 2016 at 8:02 pm - Reply

    Just made the tonight, and wow did they come out amazing. Sweet and smokey ( but not to much). Only had to make one change, and that was not dry brining the steaks. Ran out of time before hand so I just dry rubbed and threw them on. Smoked with cherry for an hour, total smoker time 2.5 hours, and finished them on the grill.

    Absolute must try, and so incredibly easy.

    P.s. Make sure you use Jeffs BBQ sauce!

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