Many people who enjoy meat love to have pork in their rotation of dinners and food. Those who eat pork oftentimes like to cook with new recipes and types of pork in the kitchen. If you are a pork lover, you may be curious what the difference between specific cuts of pork is. For example, pork steaks and pork chops may look similar in the store meat section, but the two are vastly different in a plethora of ways. Pork steaks and pork chops, while both coming from a pig, have differences that are worth noting.

Grilled or pan fried pork chops on the bone with garlic and rosemary
Pork chops usually are grilled or made in a cast iron pan.

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What Are Pork Steaks

Pork steaks are a style of pork that is cut from a pig's shoulder region. Despite coming from the shoulder area, it is also sometimes known as a pork butt. This cut of pork has a ton of muscle and marbling due to the location of the pig from where it is cut. Pork steaks are usually very thick and are cut into half-size pieces. They are oftentimes very tough, making it a longer cooking process.

What Are Pork Chops

Pork chops are a type of pork that is taken from the loin area of a pig. This type of pork is sold both bone-in and boneless and is people's go-to when purchasing pork to cook at home. Pork chops are incredibly tender due to the section of the pig, the loin. Chops are typically very thin, therefore require less cooking time.

Pork chops cooked with garlic in a cast iron pan
Pork chops can be garnished with garlic and spices.

©Elena Veselova/

Differences Between Chops and Steaks


The cut of a pork steak and a pork chop is very different. Pork steaks are cut from the shoulder region of a pig. This shoulder region is not used often by the pig. Pork chops are cut from the loin of the pig.


Pork steaks tend to come thick. When they are served or sold, they are cut into thicker slices and pieces in comparison to pork chops. They are marbled and sold bone-in. Pork chops are usually thinner. They have the tendency to dry out quickly due to the thinness of the meat.


In comparison, pork steaks have a lot of marbling and fat content due to the area of the shoulder that they are cut from. Pork chops typically do not have any fat, or marbling, at all. Both can be sold bone-in. Pork chops can come boneless, as well.

pork chop serve with vegetable on wooden board
Pork chops can be both bone-in or boneless.



While both cuts are pork and stem from a pig, the flavor between a pork steak and a pork chop can be vastly different. Due to the high amount of fat in pork steaks, they are much juicier when they are cooked. Pork chops are thinner and have usually little to no fat. They can dry out very easily if overcooked. Many people spice and marinade pork chops to ensure that they have a major flavor when cooking.


Pork steaks need to be cooked for longer than pork chops, typically due to their thickness and fat content. Pork chops dry out easily, meaning a cook should be careful when making them. Cooking them for too long can cause a dry, flavorless cut of pork. Both pork steaks and pork chops can be grilled, but pork chops are the choice if you are looking to grill. Pork steaks are usually slow-cooked or pan-fried.


Pork steaks are actually cheaper than pork chops, even though they are thicker and sometimes bigger than pork chops. This is due to the area from which the pork steak is cut. With pork steaks being taken from the shoulder of the pig, there is much more meat to take from. The loin of the pig has less meat, making it more expensive to get a pork chop.


Fat content plays a big role in the differences between pork steaks and pork chops. If you are looking for a lower-calorie dinner, pork chops are your go-to. The fat content is far less on pork chops, making it a lower-calorie choice. Pork steaks have more calories and more fat per serving.

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