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Easy Crock Pot Pulled Pork Recipe

When you are looking for tender and juicy pulled pork that falls apart with each bite look no further than this easy crock pot pulled pork recipe. The slow cooking process allows a tough cut of meat to become super tender and infused with incredible flavor.

With just a few simple ingredients you will be able to use the meat to make tasty sandwiches, tacos, burritos, and even pizzas. In addition the leftovers can be easily stored and reheated, ensuring that you’ll have a quick and delicious meal ready to enjoy anytime.

This recipe is also a huge time saver for busy individuals and families. Once you’ve prepared the ingredients and set the slow cooker, you can go about your day while the cooking magic happens.

slow cooker pulled pork sandwich

Whether you’re at work, running errands, or simply relaxing, the slow cooker does all the work for you, allowing you to come home to a ready to eat meal. This comes in handy not only on busy weeknighta but also for parties and potlucks.

Although I also like to make this recipe as part of my weekly meal-prep rotation. With a large batch of pulled pork, you can create multiple meals throughout the week including sandwiches, tacos or to serve with rice with very little effort.

However in order to get the most tender and juicy pulled pork you must first start out with the best cut of meat to get the job done.

Best Cut of Meat To Make Crock Pot Pulled Pork

The best pulled pork is made from a cut of pork called the pork butt, also commonly known as Boston Butt. Despite its confusing name this cut of meat actually comes from the pig’s shoulder area.

It make things even more confusing there is another cut of meat actually called the pork shoulder. Although you could put this type of roast in the crock pot as well to make pulled pork, there are some differences between the two cuts of meat.

Both are relatively inexpensive cuts that lend themselves to low-and-slow cooking applications such as barbecuing, braising, stewing or cooking in a smoker, slow cooker or Instant Pot. However the pork butt has more fat marbling and therefore becomes incredibly tender and juicy when slow-cooked, making it ideal for pulled pork.

raw pork butt
Look for a pork butt that has a good amount of fat marbling throughout the meat.

When purchasing pork butt you will find both bone-in and boneless roast options. Although you can use either, bone-in cuts tend to have slightly more flavor.

However, for the convenience of shredding, a boneless roast is a better option. In fact if you have a boneless pork but you can use two forks to shred it right in the crock pot.

How Much Pulled Pork Per Person

Now that you know what type of roast to purchase to make the best crock pot pulled pork, now it is time to determine how big of a roast that you need. Typically you will find pork butts sold at the grocery in the range between 4-8 pounds.

You will need ⅓ lb of pulled pork per person. However this amount refers to the cooked weight, and not the weight of the raw roast that you purchase.

Once cooked, the pork butt will lose nearly half of its original weight. For example a 6 pound roast will yield approximately 3 pounds of cooked pulled pork, which will easily serve 9 people.

The Best Pulled Pork Dry Spice Rub

Although you could pour a bottle of your favorite barbecue sauce in the slow cooker with your pulled pork, I would highly recommend applying a dry rub to the roast instead.

This will allow you to use the meat in various ways, rather than just making barbecue sandwiches. In addition the dry rub spices will add so much flavor to the meat during the cooking process that you may not even want to use barbecue sauce!

dry rub
Use a homemade dry rub for the best flavor.

So how do you know what type of dry rub is best to use for pulled pork? Although you can purchase various dry rub mixtures from the grocery, it is easy to make your own homemade rub with just a few ingredients that you most likely already have in your kitchen.

And every good dry rub starts with brown sugar. When cooked, the sugars break down and penetrate directly into the meat.

And then there are the other classic dry rub ingredients: garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper. However, what makes this dry rub so delicious is the addition of smoked paprika and cayenne pepper.

I use smoked paprika in a lot of my recipes including Cajun ChickenSmoked Chicken Wings, and even on my favorite Air Fryer Salmon recipe. It adds a layer of flavor that is slightly smoky, yet sweet at the same time.

And don’t be afraid of adding a little cayenne pepper to your dry rub. Although you may think it will be spicy it really only enhances the flavor of the other dry rub ingredients.

Now that you know what type of pork roast to purchase and what spices are needed to make the dry rub, it is time to get the pork butt in the crock pot!

dry rub on pork butt to make pulled pork in the crock pot

Crock Pot Pulled Pork Recipe

*Specific measurements and complete recipe instructions are located in a printable recipe card at the bottom of this article. However, be sure to continue to read the tips and tricks to making this recipe below.

INGREDIENTS

  • 4-8 pound pork butt
  • 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar (4% or 5%)
  • 3/4 cup water

INSTRUCTIONS

In a small bowl mix together the brown sugar, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper. Rub the dry spice mixture onto all sides of the pork and set aside for 5 minutes.

In the liner of the slow cooker add the vinegar and water. Slowly lower the seasoned pork butt down into the water and vinegar mixture.

Cover and cook on high for 4-5 hours or on low for 8 hours. Remove the pork from the liquid and shred with 2 forks. Discard any fatty pieces.

Add the shredded pork back into the liquid and toss to coat the meat in the liquid. Place the crock pot on the keep warm setting until you are ready to serve the pulled pork.

shredding crock pot pulled pork
Using the slow cooking method will make this pork butt shred easily with two forks.

Ways To Serve Crock Pot Pulled Pork

Pulled pork is a versatile dish that can be enjoyed in various ways. Here are several different ways to serve pulled pork:

  1. Sandwiches: Serve the tender pulled pork on a soft bun or roll. You can add coleslaw, pickles, or barbecue sauce to enhance the flavors.
  2. Tacos: Fill warm tortillas with the pulled pork, and top them with salsa, guacamole, sour cream, and fresh cilantro.
  3. Nachos: Layer tortilla chips with pulled pork, melted cheese, jalapeños, diced tomatoes, onions, and any other desired toppings. Bake until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
  4. Pizza: Use pulled pork as a topping for pizza along with your favorite cheese, barbecue sauce, onions, and peppers.
  5. Quesadillas: Stuff flour tortillas with pulled pork, cheese, and any other desired fillings. Cook until the cheese melts and the tortillas are crispy.
  6. Pulled Pork Baked Potato: Load a baked potato with pulled pork, sour cream, cheese, and green onions for a hearty meal.

Enjoy! Mary

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Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

How to make the BEST pulled pork with a 6-ingredients dry rub that makes your meat turn out moist and delicious each and every time.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 10 minutes

Ingredients

  • 3-4 pound pork shoulder/butt
  • 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 3/4 cup water

Instructions

  1. In a small bowl mix together the brown sugar, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper.
  2. Rub the dry spice mixture onto all sides of the pork and set aside for 5 minutes.
  3. In the liner of the slow cooker add the vinegar and water.
  4. Slowly lower the seasoned pork shoulder/butt down into the water/vinegar mixture.
  5. Cover and cook on high for 4-5 hours or on low for 8 hours.
  6. Remove pork from the liquid and shred with 2 forks. Discard any fatty pieces.
  7. Add the shredded pork back into the liquid and keep warm until ready to serve.

Notes

Ways To Serve Pulled Pork:

  1. Sandwiches: Serve the tender pulled pork on a soft bun or roll. You can add coleslaw, pickles, or barbecue sauce to enhance the flavors.
  2. Tacos: Fill warm tortillas with the pulled pork, and top them with salsa, guacamole, sour cream, and fresh cilantro.
  3. Nachos: Layer tortilla chips with pulled pork, melted cheese, jalapeños, diced tomatoes, onions, and any other desired toppings. Bake until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
  4. Pizza: Use pulled pork as a topping for pizza along with your favorite cheese, barbecue sauce, onions, and peppers.
  5. Quesadillas: Stuff flour tortillas with pulled pork, cheese, and any other desired fillings. Cook until the cheese melts and the tortillas are crispy.
  6. Pulled Pork Baked Potato: Load a baked potato with pulled pork, sour cream, cheese, and green onions for a hearty meal.

Recipe provided by Make Your Meals

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

12

Serving Size:

1 grams

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 455Total Fat: 33gSaturated Fat: 12gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 18gCholesterol: 136mgSodium: 210mgCarbohydrates: 3gFiber: 1gSugar: 2gProtein: 35g

Nutritional Information is to be used as a general guideline only . Nutritional calculations will vary from the types and brands of the products used.

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