A 2 pound pork loin can feed anywhere from 4-6 people depending on the size of the portions and what sides you serve with it. Here are some quick estimates:
- 4 people – 6 oz portions of pork with 2 side dishes
- 5 people – 5 oz portions of pork with 2 side dishes
- 6 people – 4 oz portions of pork with 2 side dishes
The general recommendation is to plan for 4 oz of uncooked pork per person. Since pork loin loses about 25% of its weight when cooking, a 2 lb (32 oz) raw loin will yield approximately 24 oz of cooked meat. At 4 oz per person, this would feed about 6 people.
Factors that Affect Servings
There are a few factors that can affect how many servings you get from a 2 lb pork loin:
- Side dishes – More generous portions of side dishes like vegetables, salad, bread, etc will reduce the amount of pork needed per person.
- Appetizers/dessert – Serving appetizers before dinner or dessert after will help fill people up faster, requiring less pork.
- Demographics – Serving sizes often vary based on the gender, age, and appetite of your diners. Men and teenagers often eat larger portions than women and children.
- Leftovers – It’s often smart to cook extra so you have leftovers for another meal. This may allow your 2 lb roast to feed more than 6 people when split between two meals.
Serving Size Recommendations
Here are some typical serving size recommendations for a pork loin roast:
|Teen boys||6-8 oz|
As you can see, an average serving size can range fairly widely from 2-8 oz depending on your diners. With a 2 lb roast, you could serve 8 people if they all eat 2 oz portions, or you could serve only 3 people if they eat 8 oz portions. This is why the recommended servings for a 2 lb pork loin range from 4-6 people – it really depends on your specific situation.
The cooking method you use can also impact the final number of servings:
- Roasting – Results in about a 25% loss in weight. Gives you the truest sense of portions.
- Grilling – Can result in a slightly lower weight loss around 20%. Slightly higher final yield.
- Slicing for stir fries/fajitas – Negligible moisture loss. What you start with is close to what you end up with.
- Cutting into chunks or cubes for kebabs or stews – No moisture loss. Maximum yield.
Cooking methods that expose more surface area like grilling, slicing, and cubing will all yield more usable cooked pork than roasting. So you may be able to stretch a 2 lb roast a bit further is using one of those methods.
Recommended Side Dishes
To make your pork loin into a full meal, you’ll need some delicious side dishes. Here are some ideas that pair well with pork:
- Roasted vegetables like potatoes, carrots, parsnips
- Sautéed greens like spinach, kale, brussels sprouts
- Grains like rice, quinoa, or pasta
- Salad or slaw with vinaigrette
- Breads like rolls, biscuits or cornbread
- Applesauce or cranberry compote
Aim for 1-2 hearty side dishes that add up to around 1 cup per person. Fill up on sides and you can serve smaller portions of the pricey pork.
Leftover and Storage Tips
Since 2 lbs of pork is quite large for 4-6 people, chances are you will have leftovers. Here are some tips for storing and using up leftover pork loin:
- Let pork cool completely, then refrigerate in an airtight container for 3-4 days.
- Slice and add to salads, sandwiches, flatbreads or pizza.
- Cube pork and add to fried rice, pasta, or stir fry.
- Shred and use in tacos, enchiladas, empanadas, etc.
- Portion into ziplock freezer bags and freeze for up to 4 months.
A 2 pound pork loin will generally feed 4-6 people depending on the serving sizes and side dishes. To maximize your servings, plan for smaller portions sizes, serve with 1-2 hearty side dishes, and utilize cooking methods that retain moisture. And be sure to take advantage of leftovers! With some creative repurposing, you can stretch 2 pounds of pork loin into 2 meals for 6+ people. Enjoy!