Pre-Plan For Smoking A Whole Hog…

Barbecue PorkBBQ EquipmentBBQ RecipesBBQ Blog
smoked whole hog
August 30, 2012

Had a question from Jim a few days ago about the planning that goes into smoking a whole hog… and it actually is the reason I decided to do my newsletter on whole hog this week.

It’s all about getting ready to serve your hog before you ever start cooking it.

Just a little pre-planning goes a long way when your talking whole pig because when your done, your going to want to show this baby off… and the best way to do that is to move it from the smoker to a table (and then garnish it up).

To get the hog to the table:

If you’re grate is removable it’s fairly simple, just get a couple extra sets of hands and pull it off the cooker and onto the table.

If the grate can’t be removed, you can cook the hog on wire mesh or some type of metal tray. Just be sure that whatever you cook it on allows the drippings to drain through. A few sticks of rebar with a piece of expanded metal welded to them makes a great hog rack. (also makes it easier to spin the hog during the cooking process)

We lay the sled on a table, place the hog on it, and then it goes into the cooker.

When it’s time to wrap, we spin the hog 180 degrees (keeps it cooking even on all sides), after it’s done just put on a pair of fireplace gloves and move it back to the table.

You can garnish or decorate around the sides of the hog to make the presentation look better once it’s on the table. There will be a lot of moisture that comes out of the cooked hog, so keep in mind that it can make a mess.

Good luck and let me know how the hog turns out!

Malcom Reed
Killer Hogs BBQ Cooking Team
Sign-up for my weekly BBQ newsletter at
Join my Facebook BBQ Community
Follow me on Twitter

Check out these other BBQ Recipes

Honey Chipotle Chicken
Honey Chipotle Chicken
September 14, 2017
Jerk Pork Tenderloin Sliders
Jerk Pork Tenderloin Sliders
September 8, 2017
brisket burnt ends
Brisket Burnt Ends
August 31, 2017
Apple Bourbon BBQ Beans
Apple Bourbon BBQ Beans
August 31, 2017
Mississippi Haymaker
Mississippi Haymaker
August 31, 2017
BBQ Chicken & Waffles
BBQ Chicken & Waffles
August 24, 2017
Bacon Wrapped Grilled Shrimp
Bacon Wrapped Grilled Shrimp
August 10, 2017
smoked meatloaf
Smoked Meatloaf Minis
August 3, 2017
Grilled Chicken Fajitas
Grilled Chicken Fajitas
July 27, 2017


  1. Wayne says:

    Hey Malcolm,
    Going to be doing a whole hog (first one) for my daughters wedding. Expecting 40 or so people. Would an 80lb hog be big enough and would ten hours be a safe cooking time at 220? Built my own smoker and a little nervous about this. Love your videos, very informative. Thanks for sharing

    • Yeah, an 80lb hog should be plenty for 40 people. But 10 hours would not be enough time. You need to plan on 14 – 16 total hours of cook time if your going to be cooking it at 220. And since whole hogs hold so easy – you can get a hog to 198 and then hold it there on the smoker for hours with no problem – I like to calculate a few extra hours in at the end just in case you need the extra time. You would be a lot better off getting the hog done 2 hours before the time you need it – rather than trying to push the hog or worrying about getting it done in time.

  2. Hosting says:

    Keep a close eye on the proceedings. You do not want to leave the side of the pig for any longer than it takes to get a beer or make room for it. Dripping fat can cause a grease fire that can easily engulf the whole hog and incinerate it in minutes. Don’t believe me? Watch this video of a pig roast gone wrong.

Leave a Reply

Contact Malcom
Welcome to HowToBBQRight

I'm Malcom Reed and these are my methods and techniques for mouth-watering, slow-smoked BBQ. Recipes, videos, detailed procedures and BBQ tips.

To me, it's all about Barbecue... I love creating, cooking and sharing my recipes.

I have a lot of smoking, grilling and cooking recipes on this website and my HowToBBQRight YouTube Channel. Check 'em out.

I send out an email when I create a new recipes. Enter your name and email address below and I'll add you to my BBQ Newsletter list.
* = required field