Pork Loin Marinade for Smoker

5 from 1 vote

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This Pork Loin Marinade for Smoker is an awesome way to add intense flavor to your meat and ensure it is juicy and tender. It combines a handful of pantry staples with tasty spices to create a melt-in-your-mouth marinade that never fails to impress! Better yet, most of the magic takes place in the fridge, making this an easy process to ensure perfect results every time.

Pork loin marinade for smoker in Mason jar.

The oils bring healthy fats and moisture to the mix, while the pineapple juice tenderizes the pork to perfection. Oh, and don’t sleep on the sweetness and umami goodness you get from the soy sauce and maple syrup! So, if you’re looking for a new spin on pork (that’s super budget-friendly), this quick and easy marinade is dreamy. This marinade is perfect in our smoked pork loin recipe or our how to bbq pork loin recipe. Or try it with pork tenderloins!

💪 This Marinated Pork is Awesome!

  • Your pork loins turn out ridiculously juicy and tender!
  • Pineapple juice works as a delicious tenderizer.
  • The flavors are bold, bright, sweet, and tangy.
  • It’s made with pantry staples that are super easy to find.
  • It’s versatile enough to use on any meat.
  • It isn’t spicy, making it a perfect pick for the whole family.

🗒️ Ingredients for Smoked Pork Marinade

These are the basic ingredients you’ll need to get started with your tangy, tenderizing pork loin marinade. You’ll want to scroll down to the printable recipe card for all the details (and quantities!).

  • Olive Oil and Sesame Oil: For carrying fat-soluble flavors into the meat and making things tasty.
  • Pineapple Juice: Tenderizes the meat perfectly while adding a touch of acidity.
  • Maple Syrup: If you don’t have maple syrup, honey is a great alternative here.
  • Soy Sauce: For an umami flavor that gives tons of depth. Switch for tamari if you’re gluten-free.
  • Garlic: Add a punch of savory flavor.
  • Ginger: Adds a warm, spicy kick that cuts through the richness, infusing the marinade with a zesty brightness that pairs perfectly with the smoky flavors.
  • Black Pepper: Brings a subtle heat and a pungent, earthy layer while balancing the marinade’s sweetness.
  • Kosher Salt: Highlights the marinade’s flavors without overpowering.
  • Onion Powder: Contributes a sweet yet sharp flavor while adding a layer of depth that complements the garlic and ginger.
  • Smoked Paprika: Infuses a gentle smokiness and a hint of sweet pepper, pairing beautifully with the smokiness from the Traeger.
Ingredients for pork loin marinade for smoker.

👨‍🍳 How to Make the Pork Marinade

This pork loin marinade genuinely couldn’t be easier to make, as you just whisk everything together. Scroll down to the printable recipe card for more detailed step-by-step instructions.

  1. Prepare all the dry ingredients in a small bowl. Pour in the wet ingredients.
  2. Whisk the marinade together until everything is nicely combined.
  3. Move the marinade into a large dish or glass baking tray. Place the pork in the marinade for an hour or overnight.

😉 Tips for a Marinated Smoked Pork Loin

  • To avoid your meat going mushy, don’t leave your pork in the marinade for over 24 hours. Pineapple juice is amazing for tenderizing meat as it contains a natural enzyme. But there’s always a risk of over-marinating (for that reason!). If you over-marinate, it will still taste fine – you might just be slightly put off by the texture.
  • Make sure your meat is properly coated with marinade. You can always marinate in a bag to help ensure the pork is fully submerged. If you need to add more liquid to the marinade bowl, you can add some more pineapple juice and oil, or broth (I used chicken broth).
  • Don’t rush things. I recommend letting the pork loin marinade for at least an hour.
  • Pork and beyond! Use this marinade for other things like pork tenderloin, chicken, veggies, etc. It is versatile!
  • Use the leftover marinade as a sauce. Remove the meat from the marinade and dump it into a saucepan. Boil for at least 5 minutes before drizzling over your pork.

🤔 Smoking Hot Pork Marinade Variations

  • Although this marinade is perfect for pork loin, it’s equally delicious on chicken, turkey, and any other white meat. You can even use it for veggies or rice if you like!
  • The base recipe for this marinade doesn’t contain many herbs. But you can throw in parsley flakes or rosemary if you want an even fresher flavor.
  • If you don’t want to use olive oil, switch it out for avocado oil, as it is a more neutral oil and has a high smoke point in case you are searing the meat.
  • Add some heat to the mix with cayenne or hot sauce!
  • Try switching out pineapple juice with apple juice or cider.
  • Use leftover marinade in other recipes, not just for your pork loin roast. Try to smoke pork tenderloin or chicken breast.

⏱️ Storing Pork Marinade

If you’re making this pork loin marinade ahead of time, proper storage is key to maintaining its freshness and flavors.

You can store this marinade in the fridge for 5 to 7 days in an airtight container or jar. You can probably get away with longer since the ingredients for the marinade are quite stable, but for the best flavor, use it within one week.

For longer storage, you can freeze the marinade. Pour it into a freezer-safe bag or container, leaving a little space for expansion. It can be frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight when ready to use

Remember, if you’ve marinated meat in it already, do not reuse the marinade without boiling it first to destroy harmful bacteria. Or reserve some marinade for future use before tossing in the meat.

Oh, and you don’t want to waste the leftovers from your pork loin. So, I suggest turning them into tacos, sandwiches, sliders, or even a potato hash!

Glass Mason jar filled with pork loin marinade.

❓ Still Have Some Questions Marinating?

How long should you marinate pork?

For an hour at minimum. However, 6 to 8 hours or overnight is probably the sweet spot!

What is the secret to tender pork loin?

The secret is using enough oil and making sure you marinate the pork for long enough! If you leave it for a few hours, your pork should come out uber-tender.

Can you over-marinate pork loin?

You certainly can. If you leave pork loin in the fridge for more than 24 hours, it’ll just go mushy. If you’re wondering why, the marinade completely breaks down the fibers in the meat if it’s left too long.

Should pork be marinated in the fridge or at room temperature?

To keep everything safe, you’ll want to marinate your meat in the fridge. This will ensure that your meat doesn’t reach dangerous temperatures where bacteria start to breed

🎤 Marinated Pork Loin Mic Drop

Whether you’re prepping for game night or just want a delicious Sunday dinner (with all the trimmings!), this pork loin marinade has your back. Infused with the perfect blend of sweet, savory, and a hint of spice, it promises to elevate your pork loin from just another meal to the star of the show. The harmonious balance of pineapple juice, maple syrup, and soy sauce, kissed by the warmth of garlic, ginger, and spices, ensures every bite is dripping with flavor. Just don’t blame me when you’re whisking it up every week – you’ve been warned.

Pouring pork loin marinade for smoker into glass Mason jar.


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Pork loin soaking in marinade in large Pyrex.
5 from 1 vote

Pork Loin Marinade for Smoker

Don't get stuck with a boring pork loin. Instead, use this Pork Loin Marinade for Smoker recipe to churn up something deliicous on the Traeger. This marinade combines the tangy sweetness of pineapple juice, the rich depth of maple syrup, and the umami kick of soy sauce, with a blend of spices like garlic, ginger, and smoked paprika to ensure every slice of pork loin is irresistibly tender and packed with flavor.
This marinade is very versatile and works well with chicken and veggies as well.
Course: Grilling
Cuisine: American
Prep: 10 minutes
Total: 10 minutes
Servings: 8 Servings


  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 cup pineapple juice
  • ½ cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons ginger, minced
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper, freshly ground
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder


  • In a large bowl, combine all of the ingredients.
  • Whisk everything together, being sure to break up any clumps of spices.
  • Use the marinade immediately or store it in an airtight container in the fridge or freezer for later use.


  • Pineapple juice contains a natural enzyme that works wonders to tenderize meat. We recommend that you don’t marinate the pork for more than 24 hours. Otherwise, the exterior of the pork can become over-tenderized and mushy.
  • If you marinate for more than 24 hours and the outside of the pork is mushy, don’t worry. It will still taste fine, but it may end up being slightly dry. The inside of the pork should still turn out juicy. Next time, don’t over-marinate!


Serving: 1g, Calories: 179kcal, Carbohydrates: 9g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 15g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 11g, Sodium: 812mg, Potassium: 107mg, Fiber: 0.4g, Sugar: 6g, Vitamin A: 126IU, Vitamin C: 4mg, Calcium: 19mg, Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Tried this recipe?Mention @alicensetogrill or tag #alicensetogrill!

About Joshua Boquist

Josh is an outdoor enthusiast and food fanatic. A License To Grill is his passion project where the outdoors intersects food - grilling, smoking, and all things tasty!

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