Easy and Delicious Pulled Pork Recipe

I couldn’t believe my ears at dinner yesterday…..rave reviews.  And not just a simple, ‘This is good, Mom!’.  No, this was full on yummy noises and asking for seconds and going on and on about how good the pork tasted.  Want to make it for your family?  I’ll show you how to do it easily, and in JAM style….cook once, cook easy, eat several times…..so you can jam other more important things into your life!

Step one, plan it.  You will need at least 8 hours start to finish, 6 hours of cooking time.  Start out with two pork shoulder roasts, totaling about 6 pounds.  These are often sold as ‘Butt’ roasts, which amused the kids to no end.  Look for ones with the least fat possible. 

I wait for sales, and was able to purchase these for $1.19 a pound.  I bought 4, but only 2 fit in my crock pot, so I went with the two, the others wait in the freezer for another day.  I could do this in the oven in my big turkey pan, and do as many as would fit for even more efficiency.  Anyway, unwrap the roasts, and cut off the silly elastic thing.  We’re shredding it, so we want it to fall apart.  You can slice these at least in half, more if you are inclined.  This will give more surface area for the rub.

Now mix up the rub.

  • 1 Tablespoon Black Pepper (fresh ground is amazingly better)
  • 4 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons Salt  (I like sea)
  • 3 Tablespoons Paprika

If you like spicy, you can up the black pepper, and/or add a teaspoon of cayenne pepper.  My kids enjoyed this tamer version….it still has a flavorful kick to it.

Rub a dub dub this all over the meat, and let it sit for at least 2 hours in the fridge.  You can do the rub the day before if you like.

Now mix the mop.

  • 1 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon Salt

Put the mop in the bottom of your crockpot, and put in the meat or, if you put the meat in there when you did the rub like I did, pour the mop down the side.  You don’t want to rinse off the lovely rub.  Add a little water if needed to bring the liquid up to about halfway up the meat.  I set mine on Auto, which puts it on high for the first two hours, then on low.  After about 4 hours, check it.  It should be nearly to falling apart, and if you didn’t cut the roasts to begin with, this would be a good time to do so and stir things up a bit.

When everything is fork tender, it is ready.  Pull the chunks out and place them in a large bowl or pot for shredding, using two forks to pull apart the meat.  Eat as is, or drizzle with barbeque sauce. This made enough to generously feed our family of four, plus I froze enough for 4 more quick meals in weeks to come, and saved the mop/broth for a soup starter.  So 6 delicious meals out of cooking once, all for about $10.  The side dish is 50/50 mashed potatoes and cauliflower, plus we had fresh bananas and oranges.

We use regular sliced bread instead of buns, and this is my frugal tip of the day.  Buns come in packs of 6-8, and are generally HEYUGE.  Not only is that too much bread, but the bread is generally not very good for you, gets soggy (then wasted, since the kids won’t eat soggy bun), and is so large that you feel like you must pile on a lot of meat to fill it.  Portions stay more controlled with the sliced bread, there are more servings in a package, I can purchase more nutritious bread, and I’m not keeping around a specialty bread, or having to remember to purchase buns.  The smaller real estate makes our meat stretch further, since we don’t take as much and are usually satisfied with one serving, no matter the size of the serving.  Ah, the psychology of eating!  Hope you enjoy making and eating this dish, we sure have.

About Dawn

Dawn is a 40 something stay at home momprenuer with two homeschooled children.
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27 Responses to Easy and Delicious Pulled Pork Recipe

  1. Jolene says:

    This is SO yummy! What kind of soup do you make with the mop/broth?

    • Dawn says:

      Thanks, Jolene, the pulled pork is a favorite around here. I usually just make it up. Throw in rice or homemade noodles and some vege’s. With the long winter we’ve had, anything soup sounds good!

  2. Jen says:

    I’m starting this at lunch today. (Already rubbed and in the fridge). Would I cook on low for 6 hours or high? I will head back to work after lunch and can’t ck on it. Thanks!

    • Dawn says:

      Jen, I’m afraid it is going to depend on your crockpot. Mine gets very hot, so usually low is plenty. I’m making this today, too…..enjoy your dinner!

  3. Courtney says:

    Making this for the second time, using boneless pork ribs. How long should I cook if I’m not going to be home? 6 hrs low? Your directions were spot on last time, slightly salty so I reduced the salt on the rub.

    • Dawn says:

      Hi Courtney, so glad you are enjoying the recipe. Yes, I would go for low for all day. It should turn out similarly. Of course, you know your particular crock pot best. My current one runs quite hot, I’ve had others that were much cooler and thus took longer. If you were happy with your pork roast for that long, I’m sure it will be fine with the ribs. (I tend to reduce the salt, too…..I don’t actually measure, so the recipe was my best guess at the amounts.)

  4. Jenn says:

    I am excited to try this tomorrow for a family party.

  5. Jennie says:

    This sounds sooo good but I don’t have time for it to sit in its rub for 2 hours today. What would you do….wait until tomorrow when you can start it earlier (but you wont get any because you’ll be at work) or just go ahead and let it rub out for 20 minutes or so and cook as is? 🙂

    • Dawn says:

      Hi Jennie, It’s ok just to start it. I haven’t directly compared batches where I had the rub on for the required time, and batches where I just put it on and started it. The quick way is quite tasty, too. 🙂

  6. Jeannine says:

    I lI’ve pulled pork in the crock pot but butt roast IS NOT shoulder roast, there is a difference. I usually like shoulder but both work well :). Great recipe!

    • Dawn says:

      I don’t disagree with you. Boston Butt is from high on the shoulder, and has plenty of delicious juicy fat in it. The shoulder cut is just below that, and is less fatty and a little tougher (not a problem when slow cooking, just might take longer than a butt roast). They are both shoulder cuts, and the store labels them interchangeably. I do prefer the shoulder, as while we are not adverse to fat….there comes a point where you are paying for more fat than meat.

  7. khristina says:

    Hello! I’m new to using a crockpot and I’ve been searching FOREVER for a plain old pulled pork recipe. My boyfriend is rather picky and doesn’t like a lot of spices/sauces, etc…. so this looks really perfect! I have two questions and I really hope you can answer them before I attempt to make this pork in my pot. With the seasonings… is it too spicey at all? could I substitute the vinegar for just more water? or something else? Also… my pork is about 4, close to 5 pounds… by how much should I increase the seasoning? I really don’t want to mess this up and your recipe seems to be my last hope for a simple yet delish pulled pork.

    • Dawn says:

      Hi Khristina, Congrats on your new crockpot, I’m sure you’ll become good friends. If he doesn’t care for spicy, I’d cut the pepper down by at least a half, maybe even leave it out. You can always pepper at the table. We don’t find it too spicy, but my children like a little pepper….it isn’t any more than in, say, sausage. You could cut the vinegar in half, too (just sub water), but you need some, the acid is what makes the meat tender, and it makes a wonderful aroma. The recipe given is for about 6 pounds, so you can just use a bit less. It’s not necessary to be exact. Good luck, and tell us how it goes!

  8. MegH says:

    I am making this right now. Did you use liquid measure for the cider vinegar or the dry measuring cups? I used the liquid and it is overtaken by the scent of the vinegar. Will that eventually go away and blend with the pork?

    • Dawn says:

      Hi Meg, it honestly doesn’t matter, both measure a cup, it is just easier to be accurate with measures less that a cup with a clear liquid measuring cup. Yes, the smell will mellow as it reacts with the meat to tenderize it. There will still be some tang in the final product, but not unpleasantly so (to us anyway). If you find it too much, just reduce the vinegar next time. I hope you enjoyed your easy dinner!

  9. Yousi Chartier says:

    Sound delicious!!! Can I substitute apple cider with champagne?

    • Dawn says:

      Huh. I suppose you could. It’s the acidity of the vinegar that makes the meat tender, so you’d want to substitute something acidic. If you try it, report back!!

  10. Angela says:

    what is the mop

    • Dawn says:

      Hi Angela! The mop is the vinegar solution. In the original recipe, this was ‘mopped’ or basted on the meat as it was in the smoker all day. We’re doing it in the crockpot, and easy dictates just putting it in with the meat. It works!

  11. Stacey says:

    I’m thinking of preparing a number of slow-cooked pulled pork roasts using your recipe and wondered how you would freeze the meat in order to avoid it drying out? Would I just make additional mop for the pork when reheating it in the roasters for our gathering?

    • Dawn says:

      Well, the biggest enemy in freezing is air movement. So fill air-tight containers, or put it in freezer zip locks and suck out all the air before sealing (I suggest putting these inside another container or zip, too….they just tend to be leaky over time….you’ll get those little tell-tale ice crystals in there.) For reheating, I’d suggest adding water….you’ll evaporate it back out during the heating. You probably don’t want any extra vinegar in it, it will be too much.

  12. Rachael says:

    Found this link on pinterest for a potluck. It was a huge hit! My boyfriend demanded I bring the leftovers home.

    I used a 6lb tenderloin, cut into thirds. Didn’t have to make many changes to the recipe. For the rub I used 1 tbsp less salt, 1 tsp of cayenne pepper, and smoked paprika to give it a smokey taste! I never let it marinate, just put in right in the crock pot. Meat was super juicy for a loin and fell right apart, I was never able to get it this juicy in the past. Cooked on high for 5 hours the night before, tore up the meat and took out most of the liquid, and left it on low until lunch. I had everyone add their own sauce to their sndwiches, Sweet Baby Ray’s “Sweet and Spicy” Barbecue Sauce paired great!

    Thanks for the recipe!

    • Dawn says:

      So glad you tried it, and that it worked well for you! Thanks for the feedback on what you tweaked, I always like to know what people tried.

  13. jett2whit says:

    Yummy! I bought a pork roast today that was on sale at Kroger. Can’t wait to try your recipe!! Thank you =)

  14. Dawn, I made this for supper tonight. I was hoping for left overs for tomorrow….hello bolonie. (Who calls it bologna?) lol This is a recipe I’ll be using a lot. Thanks for sharing it. My family thanks you.

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