Roast pork is an excellent idea for the meaty main dish, paired with lighter sides. Rich in flavor with high fat and calorie, roast pork is highly satiating but enticed by the taste and juiciness; you can easily get carried away. Getting the right amount of roast pork is crucial because having too much will probably leave you feeling sick all day. So, how much pork is enough per person, and how much for a crowd?
As a main dish, the recommended amount is half a pound (8 ounces) of roast pork per person. When the pork is a part of another dish, ¼ to 1/3 of a pound (4 to 6 ounces). When serving a crowd, you need to make a few calculations, but you should also consider the sides you pair your roast pork with.
Because of its high fat and high-calorie content, roast pork isn’t a very frequent visitor in my kitchen; however, I am always glad when it’s there. Serving the right amount of roast pork is vital for the entire experience because serving too little could decrease enjoyment. The opposite scenario could cause some discomfort or stomach pain afterward.
In the following paragraphs, I will explain the standard quantities per person, or for a crowd, what is the best food to serve the roast pork with, how to keep it warm, and what to do with the leftovers.
How Much Roast Pork Should You Buy per Person?
The typical serving is half a pound of roast pork per person; if the roast pork is the main dish, and if it is an addition to another dish, then 1/3 of a pound.
However, these quantities apply to cooked pork and differ from the amount of raw pork you’d have to buy to get the desired cooked pork portions. The standard rule says to add one-third of a pound when calculating the quantity of raw pork.
So, if you need half a pound of roast pork per person, that would mean that you need to buy 2/3 of a pound of raw pork as the main dish. If the roast pork is an addition to another dish, then 1/3 of a pound of roast pork would be half a pound of raw pork.
Also, please remember that these quantities refer to boneless meat, so don’t forget to account for the bone weight if you buy a cut with a bone.
How Much Roast Pork to Bake for a Crowd?
It is always easier to plan a meal for fewer people. The math is pretty straightforward, you multiply the amount per person by the number of people, and you have a number. The more people you have coming over, the more complicated things become.
Not only that you have to calculate the roast pork quantity, but you also need to calculate by adding one-third of a pound to know how much raw pork to buy. To top it all off, you also need to account for the bone and adjust the roast pork quantity depending on whether you will be serving it as a main dish or part of another dish.
Still, things aren’t so glum when it comes to roast pork, as having leftovers isn’t the worst thing that could happen. Roast pork does very well in the freezer, and you can also repurpose the leftover meat. It will taste as if it were freshly baked.
On the other hand, running out early wouldn’t be great, so it is best to play it safe and have a bit more than the bare minimum. However, not all of your guests will have the same appetite, some may have more than the standard amount, and some may have less, so a balanced quantity, not much over the minimum, would do nicely.
These calculations can make cooking a very dull assignment because of all the math involved. Luckily, the tables below will provide you with good information and make things easier. So in the name of simplicity, I’m going to give one piece of advice, always see that you buy a boneless cut, so you don’t have to subtract the weight of the bone.
|Number of people||4||5||20||25||30||50||70||100||150|
|Roast pork amount (main dish)||2.25 pounds||2.5 pounds||12 pounds||14 pounds||17 pounds||27 pounds||40 pounds||60 pounds||85 pounds|
|Raw pork amount||3 pounds||3.5 pounds||15.5 pounds||18 pounds||22 pounds||34 pounds||50 pounds||75 pounds||106 pounds|
|Number of people||4||5||20||25||30||50||70||100||150|
|Roast pork amount (as an addition)||1.3 pounds||1.6 pounds||7|
|8.3 pounds||10 |
|23.5 pounds||33.5 pounds||50 |
|Raw pork amount||1.6 pounds||2 |
|8.5 pounds||10 pounds||12.5 pounds||21.5 pounds||29.5 pounds||42 pounds||62.5 pounds|
The tables above indicate the approximate amounts of roast and raw pork per the designated number of people. Still, feel free to modify these numbers as you see fit, according to the particular situation.
However, note that you shouldn’t make any significant changes, which would largely throw off balance. A few pounds, more or less, is the variation you can make.
What to Serve With Roast Pork?
Although it has a particular flavor, roast pork offers many pairing opportunities. Its texture and juiciness are welcomed to many dishes, but it also works perfectly as a main dish, with some salad or steamed vegetables.
Because it is rich in fats and calories, I recommend pairing the roast pork with something lighter to even things out.
The most common combination for roast pork is potatoes. Whether baked, fried, or mashed, potatoes would complement the roast pork perfectly. The expressive saltiness of the roast pork would mix with the potatoes’ natural soft structure giving you the perfect balance.
Another excellent idea is steamed vegetables, such as carrots, peas, cauliflower, and broccoli. These are all neutral-tasting vegetables with a very soft texture when baked or steamed so that they will be a perfect addition to your roast pork dish.
Since roast pork is full of flavor on its own, you don’t even have to combine it with anything else than a green salad. The sourness of the salad will add some zest to the pork, perfectly balancing the pork’s saltiness and the freshness of the salad.
You can also play it smooth and simple, add some cheese and nuts, and you have an elegant and playful meal. The bitter-sweet taste of the nuts, as well as their crumbly texture, along with the zest and tang of the cheese, might be just what your roast pork needs.
Rice and mushrooms. Either oven-baked or pan-cooked, this side dish could quickly become your favorite go-to solution for pairing your roast pork.
Mushroom sauce is also a fabulous idea for roast pork. Simple and elegant, it would add a distinct mushroom flavor to the pork without overwhelming it. It is also a very nutritious low-fat and low-calorie side dish.
Pairing your roast pork with spinach, lentil, carrot, or pea pottage, is a true slam dunk—all highly nutritious side dishes with exceptional flavor-balancing abilities. The creaminess of the pottage will pair perfectly with the roast pork’s texture, giving you a mouthful of culinary delight.
If, on the other hand, you decide to have roast pork as an addition to another dish, I’d recommend roasting your pork with some tomatoes, bell peppers, and parmesan on top. The freshness of the tomatoes and peppers will melt into the pork, with the parmesan adding some of its recognizable zest.
Believe it or not, roast pork could be a great salad addition. Dried fruits, such as dried cranberries, dried grapes, or dried figs, combined with lettuce, rocket, and parmesan, topped with vinaigrette, go very well together. So feel free to make a roast pork salad; you won’t regret it.
Depending on your taste and preference, whatever you decide goes. Generally speaking, roast pork can take you wherever your fantasy and creativity may go. It is highly adaptable, exceptionally delicious, and ridiculously easy to pair.
How to Keep Roast Pork Warm?
First, roast pork is great when cold, so you don’t have to serve it warm or fresh out of the oven. Whether cold-served or warm, it has its advantages. When served cold, you can feel every bit of flavor it has, but a bit milder, its structure remains the same and whether you serve warm or cold depends only on your and your guests’ preference.
If you, however, decide to serve your roast pork warm, the best way to keep it that way is to wrap it in aluminum foil. Leaving it in the oven isn’t the best idea, as it will dehydrate and become dry, which means that it will lose flavor and be hard to chew.
When you take it out of the oven, leave your roast pork on the counter for a few minutes, and then wrap it in aluminum foil. The roast pork will, of course, get colder, but the cooling process will be very slow, and it will maintain a nice moderately warm temperature, making it ideal for consumption.
You need to pay close attention to wrapping the roast pork loosely because the meat will sweat if you cover it tightly. Keep the foil on for 20-30 minutes and take it off right before serving, not much earlier.
What to Do With Roast Pork Leftovers?
You can use your leftover pork for whatever you want. You can put it in a sandwich or make a burrito. In short, the sky is the limit.
A noodle casserole is always a tasty idea, as well as mixing your leftover pork with some sautéed mushrooms and onions. You can also cook some simple side dishes from the ones we mentioned, or throw them in a salad. Pair them with fried eggs, or make pork-fried rice.
If you are into fast food, pork pizza will be an excellent place for your pork leftovers, and a burger bun will welcome your pork leftovers as well.
Pork roast leftovers also do very well in the freezer too, so if you don’t have inspiration on how to use them right away, freezing them will give you up to six months to decide.