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Slow-Cooked Pulled Pork

Entree, Recipes

Cooking low-and-slow for your backyard barbecue isn't always possible. Chef Kevin Black, formerly of Marietta's Blacksmith Barbecue, shares impressive pulled-pork recipe that will take about half the time but taste just as good. “It’s going to be more of a braised pork shoulder,” he says. “[This is] when you are looking for that really rich, gooey, pulled pork sandwich with the sauce already on it.” The shoulder makes for the ideal sandwich meat,  as long as you prep the meat to Black's specifications and let the slow cooker work its magic.

Slow-Cooked Pulled Pork
 | Serves 10

1 5-pound boneless pork shoulder
Spice rub (recipe follows)
2 cups chicken stock
1 1/2 to 2 cups barbecue sauce
Spice Rub

3/4 cup light brown sugar
2 tablespoons garlic salt
2 tablespoons onion salt
1/4 cup paprika
2 tablespoons chili powder
1/4 cup salt
2 tablespoons black pepper

Combine ingredients for rub mixture in a small bowl. Sprinkle the rub mixture liberally over the pork shoulder, then gently massage into the meat. Let rest for one hour at room temperature.

Transfer shoulder to slow cooker and add chicken stock. Set to high heat and bring stock to a boil. Reduce heat to low and let the stock cook for 6 to 8 hours, until meat is fork tender.

Turn off slow cooker and remove the pork to a cutting board. Reserve one inch of cooking liquid in slow cooker and discard the rest.

Using two forks, shred the meat into bite-sized pieces. Discard large bits of fat. Return the shredded meat to the slow cooker and stir in barbecue sauce until meat is moist, but not overly coated. Turn slow cooker back on to low heat and let flavors simmer for 1 hour. Serve with additional barbecue sauce on bun and with your choice of toppings.

For adding a spicy kick to your favorite barbecue sauce, try Kevin Black’s three-ingredient addition. Ancho chili powder brings smokiness while green chilies add heat. The apple jelly balances them both with a sweet tartness.

Spicy Barbecue Sauce | makes 2 cups

1 10 ounce jar apple jelly                            
1 small can diced green chilies                
1 cup barbecue sauce
1 tablespoon ancho chili powder        

Combine ingredients in a small bowl.