My affinity towards barbecue food was highly influenced by pulled pork. This classic meal simply amazed me as a kid. The way the pulled pork would continue to melt in my mouth combined with the delicious flavor of the bbq sauce complimented by the coleslaw flavor, I was in love. I knew from that day that if I wanted to be a master at making any dish it would surely be that one. So we did it, we perfected the recipe, and I have to say, its absolutely delicious. I do have to give most of the credit to the Loubier Gourmet BBQ Sauce because it is so delicious, but there are some other secrets that add on to the flavor!
Pork Shoulder vs. Pork Butt
When it comes to pulled pork, most BBQ restaurants use whole pork shoulders, but this isn't always available at grocery stores. Most often, store will usually carry a Boston Butt or Picnic Roast, which, contrary to their names are actually part of the whole pork shoulder. Given that the whole pork shoulder is usually 12-16 lbs, the Boston Butt and Picnic Roast is usually 6-8 lbs. Ideally, the Boston Butt is the preferred cut for competition cooks, but the picnic roast works just as well, especially with the bone because it will provide more flavor.
Pulled Pork Dry Rub
Using a rub is not necessary but we do highly recommend it. Regardless if you're slow cooking or smoking the pork, a rub will provide more flavor, especially if you sear the pork before the slow cooking process. Of course, we recommend our Loubier Gourmet Seasonings, but at a minimum make sure to utilize salt and pepper. For the best flavor, wrap the seasoned meat in plastic wrap and place it in your refrigerator over night (at minimum a couple hours); this process is called dry brining and will ensure the pork becomes deeply seasoned and will account for more flavor. However, since pork shoulders usually contains a good amount of fat, it does not have to be dry brined as much, and adding too much salt or leaving it for too long can actually lead to your pulled pork being too salty. Also, if you do decide to dry brine it, remember to allow your pork to return to room temperature before starting the cooking process.
Slow Cooker Pulled Pork
Even if you don't own a slow cooker, you don't have to worry. Ideally, you would want to use a cast iron pot (or something that will distribute the heat evenly), but any oven safe large pot will work; you just have to be comfortable with leaving your oven on at a low temp for a long period of time.
To be able to leave a meal slow cooking to perfect all day with no worries is the most convenient way to achieve the best flavors now a days. A crockpot is perfect for those of you that find yourselves out and about, but if you do tend to be at home a lot and you don't mind using your oven, I would recommend a cast iron. The flavors you can get from any cast iron as it takes a little form every dish is priceless.
BBQ Pulled Pork Recipe
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 6 to 8 hours
Total Time: 6 hours 20 minutes or 8 hours 20 minutes
- 6-8 lb Bone-in Boston Butt
- ¼ Cup of Loubier Gourmet Hot or Mild Chipotle Seasoning
- Loubier Gourmet Hot or Mild BBQ Sauce
- 1 Large Onion (Sliced)
- 2 tbsps Olive Oil
- 3 Cups Broth (Chicken or Veggie)
- Salt & Pepper
- Brioche Buns
- Crispy Onions
Start by cutting off the excess fat on your Boston Butt. Pulled Pork is meant to be fatty but since we’re going to sear it before slow cooking it we want to develop the best crust we can.
You then want to slather your Boston Butt in olive oil. Followed by salt, pepper, and Loubier Gourmet’s Hot or Mild Chipotle Seasoning. Be generous with your seasoning.
Warm up a large skillet to medium-high heat (I used a cast-iron skillet) and throw in your pork until all sides are charred well.
While your Boston Butt is charring, you can begin to prep your slow cooker. Slice up an entire large white onion, and throw it into the slow cooker. Feel free to begin to warm up the slow cooker too.
Once the pork has been charred, throw it into the slow cooker, add in your chicken or veggie broth, some more Loubier Gourmet Hot or Mild Chipotle Seasoning, and let it cook for 8 hours on medium heat or 6 hours on high heat.
After those long 6-8 hours of waiting and staring at your slow cooker, your pork is now ready to eat, well almost. You are now able to easily shred the pork with a fork or two. Separate the pork and onions from the juices, save some of the juices for later, you'll thank me later! Also, add as much Loubier Gourmet Hot or Mild BBQ Sauce as you want to the pork! We always go with a mix of both.
Now it is time for the assembly! Toast your brioche buns, cover them in some mayo and a bit of the original juices you saved. Proceed to adding your pork, more Loubier Gourmet Hot or Mild BBQ Sauce, Coleslaw (Delicious Coleslaw Recipe), and some crispy onions! Boom!