Pork Cut Information for Foodservice
Pork is extremely versatile, especially if you know how to bring out the best in each cut for foodservice.
On this page, you’ll learn the attributes of different pork cuts, cooking techniques that bring out their best qualities, and which cuts can substitute for others in a pinch.
With lots of fat and marbling, Boston butt is better suited for barbecue smoking and other low, slow cooking methods. Use Boston butt when you want a rich, porky flavor in dishes such as pulled pork, carnitas or stew.
Cut from a heavily used muscle, picnic shoulder can be dense and tough. It should be cooked low and slow to help prevent the meat from drying out, or brined to lock in as much moisture as possible. The skin can be crisped.
Like picnic shoulder, the cushion is cut from a heavily worked muscle, which results in more dense and tough meat with less marbling. Similar to the Boston butt in terms of cooking and use, the cushion may need to be cooked longer due to the amount of connective...
Very tender and well-marbled, the collar is great when marinaded and then roasted or grilled. It is also perfect for braising, slow smoking or cutting into steaks. When cooking, the fat cap should be left intact for flavor.
Country style ribs aren't ribs at all, but blade steaks or chops that are cuts of pork shoulder. They contain a mix of lean light meat from the loin, rich dark meat from the shoulder, and, if bone-in, part of the shoulder blade or rib bone. Low and slow cooking...
Cut from the top portion of the rib cage, baby back ribs are shorter than spareribs (hence, the name "baby"). Baby back ribs require low, slow cooking time to become nice and tender. They take spice rubs and sauces well.
Loin roast is best when brined, rubbed with a spice mixture and barbecued over indirect heat. Loin roast has a tendency to fall apart and may become a bit tough when cooked with moist heat.
With its additional fat, pork loin may render a bit meatier than pork tenderloin. It does not have as much tough muscle as shoulder or butt cuts, and does not require long, slow roasting to achieve perfection.