For years, our favorite ham recipe included a special orange marmalade and mustard glaze. The flavor complimented the smoked pork amazingly well. One day, my husband had the idea to adapt the glaze recipe to cover smoked pork chops on our Traeger. The resulting pork chops were the most delicious, juicy smoked pork chops we had ever eaten. Best of all, the incredible glaze only takes three ingredients and is easy to put together. In case you’re wondering, we use our Traeger year-round. The smoked meat tastes so moist and tender when it’s done. Ready for a marvelous culinary experience? Learn how to make these easy smoked pork chops today!
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How Long Does it Take to Smoke Pork Chops on a Pellet Grill?
For our recipe, the total cooking time is about 50 minutes. Our Traeger is an older model, so we don’t use the degree setting. Ours just has three levels, low, medium, and high. It’s not very high tech, but it has served us well. We’ve had it for quite a few years, and haven’t seen the need to upgrade.
We watch the thermometer gauge and adjust the heat setting to reach the desired temperature.
It takes a little time for the smoker to come to the desired temperature. On newer models, you can preset the Traeger to heat to the precise temperature you need. If you count the prep time for the glaze and letting the pork chops sit in the glaze, the process takes about 2 hours.
Important Update: Installing a Digital Thermostat Kit
Have an older Traeger like the ours with a dial temperature gauge and want to go to a digital gauge? Now you can, and you don’t even need to get a different Traeger. Instead, get a digital thermostat kit. The one we bought was very reasonably-priced and only took my husband about half an hour to install. It works like a charm! Just preset the temperature on the digital thermostat and watch the Traeger go to work. No more back-and-forth trips to check on the temperature dial! This is definitely a great addition to our trusty smoker.
What Temperature are you Supposed to Cook Pork Chops at?
The temperature the pork chops are cooked at changes during the course of the smoking process. Preheat the pellet grill on high with the lid closed. After about 15 minutes, reduce the setting to low and start cooking the pork chops. After 30 minutes of cooking on low, raise the heat to medium and cook for about 20 more minutes. Detailed temperatures are given in the recipe instructions below. Here’s a model that is newer than ours and is reasonably priced. The temperature control is much more precise than our Low-Medium-High temperature setting.
4 or 5 pork chops, bone-in or boneless, 3/4 inch thick
1/2 cup orange marmalade
1/3 cup Dijon mustard
1/2 cup brown sugar
Place the pork chops in a baking dish in a single layer. Mix the glaze ingredients together.
Spread the glaze over the pork chops.
Cover the pork chops and refrigerate.
Turn the Traeger grill on high and heat to 180 degrees with the lid closed. After about 15 minutes, reduce the heat to smoke. At this point, I usually use a metal brush to scrape the grill. Bring out the pork chops and place on the grill.
With the temperature still at 180 degrees, smoke for 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes, turn the grill to high and cook for 20 more minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 145 degrees. If you have a grill that has a temperature you can set, set the grill to 500 degrees. Check the meat with an instant-read meat thermometer before removing from the grill.
Let the cooked pork chops or pork loins rest for 3 minutes before serving.
Smoked Pork Chops on a Traeger
- Traeger smoker
- Instant-read meat thermometer
- 4 or 5 pork loin chops, bone in or boneless ¾ inch thick
- ½ cup orange marmalade
- ⅓ cup Dijon mustard
- ½ cup brown sugar firmlh packed
- Place the pork chops in a baking dish.
- Mix the glaze ingredients together.
- Spread the glaze over the pork chops.
- Cover and refrigerate the pork chops.
- Turn the Traeger grill on high and heat to 180 degrees with the lid closed.
- After about 15 minutes, reduce the heat to smoke.
- Use a metal brush to scrape the grill.
- Bring out the pork chops and place on the grill.
- With the temperature still at 180 degrees, smoke for 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes, turn the grill to high and cook for 20 more minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 145 degrees.
- If you have a grill that has a temperature you can set, set the grill to 500 degrees.
- Check the meat with an instant-read meat thermometer before removing from the grill.
- Let the cooked pork chops or pork loins rest for 3 minutes before serving.
Does it Matter if the Pork Chops are Bone-In or Boneless?
This recipe works well with bone-in or boneless pork. The thickness does make a difference, though. Some cuts of pork tenderloin can be 1-inch thick, so you would have to adjust the cooking time accordingly.
Do Pork Chops Get More Tender the Longer You Cook Them?
The smoked pork chops on the Traeger will get tough if overcooked. Some methods, such as slow cooking, produce a tender pork chop when cooked for hours in some type of liquid. Smoking pork chops gives a different result, so be careful not to overcook the meat. Overcooking will cause toughness, and that’s the last thing you want.
How Can You Tell if Pork Chops are Done?
Using a meat thermometer is the best way to ensure doneness. The USDA website has an excellent chart with guidelines for many different cuts of pork. The guidelines do not include specific instructions for smokers like a Traeger, but the information is very useful regarding the handling and safe cooking of pork.
Can Pork be Pink in the Middle?
If pork is pink in the middle, it does not necessarily mean it is not cooked. Yes, pork may be slightly pink in the middle. The important thing is the internal temperature. Additionally, when the meat is cut, the juices should be clear.
How do You Heat up a Fully Cooked Smoked Pork Chop?
When I’m not in a hurry, I like to heat up leftover, cooked pork chops in the oven. I have a weakness for vintage pyrex, especially the baking dishes with lids. If there are any pork chops left over after a meal, I store them in a covered pyrex dish. When it’s time to reheat them for another meal, I keep the lid on the dish and pop the whole thing into the over at 250 degrees to heat slowly. After about 20 minutes, the pork chops are ready to eat. The covered dish keeps them moist, tender and juicy.
What Goes Well with Orange-Glazed Smoked Pork Chops?
My favorite condiment to serve with pork chops is applesauce. Every year I make applesauce from the heirloom apples in our orchard using my favorite applesauce recipe.
I also like to serve easy oven-roasted potatoes using a recipe from our daughter-in-law. Watch for that recipe sometime in the future!
Other Easy Main Dishes You Might Enjoy
If you are a fan of easy meals, here are some other recipes you might want to try. The ingredients are simple, and the preparation takes very little time. Some of these recipes make use of leftovers to make your food budget stretch farther. Check out these delicious options:
- Easy Curried Turkey
- Easy Ham and Potato Hash
- How to Make Easy Lasagna
- Easy Cola Chicken Recipe with 4 Simple Ingredients
- Easy French Onion Soup with Sausage in the Slow Cooker
Are You Now Craving Moist, Glazed, Smoked Pork Chops on a Traeger?
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Have fun experimenting with delicious recipes on a grill!