Last weekend we went to our local community festival with our son and our grandkids. When our kids were kids we used to go to this event every year, but we have missed the last couple of years. New (to us) this year was a pulled pork food truck sitting off to the side. While the usual booth vendors had long lines waiting for food, no one was in line for this lone truck. Score! The pulled pork was amazing. I needed to try to duplicate this pork.
The slow cooker is perfect for duplicating the low and slow smoker barbecued pork butt.
Side note... the butt is not actually the butt. It's the shoulder. Go figure. When you are shopping for the right cut, pork butt, Boston butt, or pork shoulder are all fine. Just don't go for a tenderloin or other lean cut of pork.
This pulled pork pretty much duplicated the food truck pulled pork from the festival. My son LOVED it, and "volunteered" to take most of it home with him.
The first dish I duplicated was the pulled pork fries. This is what my son ordered from the food truck. While the food truck's fries were seriously amazing (and probably fried in lard), I actually used Trader Joe's French fries to make this dish. It was pretty addicting.
Next I tried the pulled pork slider. This is what I ordered from the truck. I loved it and my grandsons told me that it reminded them of pork ribs, one of their very favorite foods.
While the truck did not offer them, I thought this pork would be great for soft tacos. I piled some into flour tortillas, added some shredded cabbage along with some barbecue sauce... seriously good.
What suggestions do you have for pulled pork? I'm thinking quesadillas.... what else?
Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Recipe
Adapted from Slow Cooker Revolution.
1/4 C packed brown sugar
1/4 C sweet paprika
1 T garlic powder
1 T onion powder
1 T ground cumin
1 tsp cayenne pepper
Salt and pepper to taste
1 5 pound boneless pork butt, cut into fourths and trimmed of extra fat
1 C barbecue sauce (I used Bull's-Eye Original) plus more for serving
Apple cider vinegar
Extra brown sugar
Barbecue sauce for serving
Barbecue sauce for serving
- Combine the sugar, paprika, garlic, onion, cumin, cayenne, salt, and pepper.
- Rub the spices on the meat and wrap it tightly with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 8 to 24 hours.
- Place the unwrapped meat into a 5 to 7 quart slow cooker and cover with the barbecue sauce.
- Cover and cook on low for about 10 to 12 hours.
- Remove the meat to a bowl, cover with foil, and keep warm.
- Let the sauce in the slow cooker sit for a bit to let the fat rise to the top. Pour the sauce into a fat separator and separate the non-fat liquid, or skim fat off the top. Add some brown sugar and apple cider vinegar to taste.
- Shred the pork into bite sized pieces with two forks. Add one cup of the sauce and toss. Add more if needed to moisten.
- Serve the pork with barbecue sauce as suggested, or however you like.