Holiday Dinner Ideas (and more) with Pork - National Pork Board

Holiday Dinner Ideas

Whether you’re feeding a crew or you’re hosting a more intimate holiday dinner, there’s a pork cut for every occasion.

Overhead shot of an elegant holiday dinner of pork loin roast paired with cranberries, green beans, and mashed potatoes

Twist on Holiday Dinner

An elegant pork loin roast, wrapped in twine, ready to cook, sitting next to the fire.

For a new spin on a traditional holiday dinner, dress up your table with cost-effective flavor and elegance by trying a new cut.

  • Pork loin is a great choice for feeding a crew. If you’re hosting a large gathering with 8-10 guests, pork loin is the answer you’re looking for.
  • Pork shoulder roast is fall-apart-tender and bursting with flavor. It pairs well with your slow cooker. This cut will feed the family and then some!
  • Pork tenderloin is the perfect cut for a more intimate family gathering. It’s flavorful, lean and easy to cook.
  • Pork rib roast is the cut you need if you want to impress your friends and family with a holiday dinner they’ve never experienced before. Pork rib roast will get the job done!

How Long to Bake a Ham?

Ham is a holiday dinner classic. Place your ham in a shallow pan and bake at 325° F and follow the recommended guidelines. Cook all raw fresh ham and ready-to-eat ham to a minimum internal temperature of 145° F followed by a 3-minute rest. Reheat cooked hams packaged in USDA-inspected plants to 140° F and all others to 165° F.

Cut & Weight Minutes/lb

SMOKED HAM, cook-before-eating

  1. Whole, bone-in (10-14 lbs)
  2. Half, bone-in (5-7 lbs)
  3. Shank or Butt Portion, bone-in (2-4 lbs)
  4. Arm Picnic Shoulder, boneless (5-7 lbs)



  1. 18-20 mins
  2. 22-25 mins
  3. 35-40 mins
  4. 35-40 mins

SMOKED HAM, cooked

  1. Whole, bone-in (10-14 lbs)
  2. Half, bone-in (5-7 lbs)
  3. Arm Picnic Shoulder, boneless (5- 8 lbs)
  4. Spiral cut, whole or half (7-9 lbs)


  1. 15-18 mins
  2. 18-24 mins
  3. 25-30 mins
  4. 10-18 mins


FRESH HAM, uncooked

  1. Whole leg, bone-in (12-16 lbs)
  2. Whole leg, boneless (10-14 lbs)
  3. Half, bone-in (5-8 lbs)


  1. 22-26 mins
  2. 24-28 mins
  3. 35-40 mins

When it comes to holiday meal planning, ground pork is the answer. From crowd pleasing apps like meatballs, pot stickers, and stuffing to simply adding more flavor and protein to a side of green beans.

Find Ground Pork Recipes

Memories are Made at Mealtime

As you gather with family and friends, be present. Give your full attention and let curiosity drive your conversations. Your presence together is the best present of all.

Family and friends gathered around the table enjoying a delicious holiday dinner of pork tenderloin.
Sweet and southern slow cooked ham platted with a side of gravy and apples

Easy, Yet Elegant Holiday Ham

  1. Place fully cooked, bone-in ham in a large slow cooker.
  2. Whisk 1 cup cider 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/3 cup bourbon, 1/4 cup honey, and 1/4 cup Dijon mustard. Scatter 4 thyme sprigs into slow cooker.
  3. Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours.

Hams Who Do Both

An elegant (and delicious) centerpiece can transform into some of your favorite meals.

Spiced ham with citrus glaze
double stacked ham quesadilla

Apple Cinnamon Pork Chops

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How to Make Apple Cinnamon Pork Chops

Join us in the kitchen as Erin, a registered dietitian with Hy-Vee, walks us through one of her favorite holiday recipes.

Warm up your home and spend quality time cooking with your kids. These apple cinnamon pork chops will bring your family together and fill their bellies!