There is a lot of personal preference with which herbs you use in cooking, and even with how to cook your pork. Whether you choose a herb rub, marinade made with lemon juice, vinegar or even a pour over sauce, then herbs have a lot to offer your cooking.
Pork can be a fatty meat and herbs that help to cut through this work well. Sage, Thyme, Rosemary, Savory, Caraway Seeds, Mustard Seeds, Fennel, Cloves, Garlic and Parsley all work well in this role. Whether used in marinades, rubs, butters or pour over sauces.
Let’s look at a few recipes to inspire a ideas in any home cook or budding chef!
Pork & Herb Recipe Ideas
You are looking to match herbs with the different cuts of meat as each one will have a different cooking requirement. So a shoulder of pork will be treated differently than a gammon for example.
What Herbs Go With Roast Pork
As ever this is down to personal taste but from research and trial and error these are our recommendations for real family pleasers!
Roast pork goes well with sage, parsley, mustard, garlic, thyme, oregano, rosemary, lemon thyme, and dried basil. Mostly used as a rub prior to roasting or as a herb crust.
- Herb Roast Pork With Apple Gravy. This is a very lean recipe as you are removing all fat from the pork joint first. As such it then takes a lighter note with regards to fresh herbs used. Ideal for those who love the healthier roast pork version. Not suitable for those who love crackling though! This dish requires all of the herbs to be cooked and roasted on the pork, not everyone appreciates the crunch this causes, but I think it is essential to have some crack.
- Just because we are roasting does not mean we have to stick to one cut of meat and a Roasted Pork Tenderloin works very well with subtle herbs mixed together. It is not overpowering to the light flavor of the pork. Tenderloin is a lighter cut with less fat as well.
- Pork shoulder is a great cut for a weeknight roast and this recipe for Herb-Roasted Pork Shoulder uses the classic combination of garlic, rosemary and sage to great effect.
- This recipe feels like a weeknight cheat as it is so quick! However the flavors really do infuse into the meat and create a very cozy, earthy aroma. A proper Winter warmer dish. If you fancy a 30 minute Garlic & Herb Pork Tenderloin do have a look as the use of chili and oregano work very well together.
What Herbs Go With Pork Chops
Pork chops can be a quick and easy weeknight meal or a slow marinated weekend special event. Herbs will help to lift these dishes!
Pork chops work very well with fresh flavors from fennel, dill, chives, chervil, rosemary, garlic, marjoram and sage. Used as rubs or butters melted as you serve. Fresh herbs can then be used in the side dishes to pull the flavors through.
- Herb Rubbed Pork Chops is a lovely quick recipe using marjoram, parsley, sage, garlic powder and salt and pepper in a rub. This basic rub recipe is great with pork or chicken and often you will find that those herbs will go well together with either.
- Garlic & Herb Pork Chops With Tabbouleh This recipe works well as the tabbouleh absorbs that tasty cooking juices and allows for the fattiness of the pork chops to be cut through with fresh flavors. However they stipulate parsley for the tabbouleh, but just say fresh herbs in the marinade. I would use lemon balm, rosemary and basil here as you need only a light note of citrus and a bit of zing mixed with earthy note from rosemary.
- Pork Chop With Herb Butter We make a lot of herb butters and picking the right one for your pork chops is key. Garlic and rosemary work very well together but you can also go for a lighter anise flavor by using fennel or dill with chives and chervil.
- Mustard And Brown Sugar Rosemary Pork Chops This is my dad’s recipe so I can’t take all the credit for this one. You need; 1 tablespoon olive oil, 2 teaspoons wholegrain mustard, 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves and 1 teaspoon brown sugar. Combine the ingredients and cover your chops. Leave to marinade for as long as possible. Ideally make this up before work and come home to a pretty much instant meal (it takes around 3 minutes each side to griddle a pork chop).
What Herbs Go With Pork Casserole
A casserole is slightly different, your usual herb combinations for pork will be great, but you can also add a few extras as a garnish, or a bouquet garni. Choose sage, parsley, rosemary, thyme, oregano, garlic, Bay leaves, sorrel, lovage and mustard plus many more you may want to try.
- Pork Stew With Summer Herbs For a hearty casserole this has a surprisingly light feel to it. The fresh herbs like mint help with this gentle flavor and it really does feel like a Summer alternative to a heavier beef stew.
- Italian Herby Pork Stew is another great herb combination to bring a tremendous lightness of flavor and aroma. I love the inclusion of bay as it gives it an authentic Italian feel.
- A Classic Pork Stew for Winter with basil, oregano, bay leaves, rosemary and garlic has all the right ingredients for a hearty and healthy dish. This one really will put meat on your bones and is the ultimate in comfort food, a large steaming bowl by the fire.
With these pork stews and casseroles do not forget to remove the bay leaves before serving as it is a bit yuck to bit into a sharp leaf. Count them in and count them out again! Add some chopped sorrel before serving for a citrus y spinach type of taste and texture. Overcooked sorrel can be a bit unpleasantly slimy so just add before serving.
Herbs & Spices That Go Well With Gammon
Gammon goes well with cloves, peppercorns and mustard coating. A few fresh herbs like rosemary, thyme and oregano pushed into slits made on the fat can add a real earthy, pine like herbaceous flavor too. You want something to lift it the flavor and not overpower it.
- Honey Glazed Gammon with cloves and peppercorns is a real classic and great on a Christmas or Thanksgiving dinner table.
- Bouquet Garni Roast Ham by Jamie Oliver is a great way to infuse the flavors from the herbs into the gammon.
- Nigel Slater is a favorite cook in our home and his recipe for Gammon with Cinnamon is no exception. It has the bay leaves and peppercorns that we all love but the added joy of the cinnamon with peaches really brings it to a sweet level.
What Next & Further Reading
With all of these recipes they are only as good as the ingredients you buy. If you live in the UK we recommend you buy British as you know the quality of the care will be there to ensure the meat is spot on.
- Herbs That Go Well With Beef
- What Herbs & Spices Do Not Go Well Together In Cooking
- What herb goes with what food?
- Herbs That Go Well With Chicken & How To Use Them
- Herbs That Go Well With Lamb & Recipes