Easy Pulled Pork Recipe

Pulled pork is a classic recipe that has a place at any dinner table. Whether you're planning family dinner options for the week, or you're prepping a menu for a party, pulled pork is sure to please. Typically made with pork butt, pulled pork can also be made using pork shoulder. "The key is to cook the meat low and slow, allowing it to become incredibly tender," says food photographer and recipe developer Petar Marshall. "With the meat as the base, it's the ideal canvas to dress up with a sweet and tangy sauce, along with sliced onions."

This pulled pork recipe is as simple as can be. It requires fewer than 10 ingredients, and you'll only need to plan ahead for 5 minutes of prep time to get things started. Then, all that's left to do is let your crock pot or slow cooker take care of the rest of the work. Once the meat is ready, dish it up as a classic and saucy pulled pork sandwich, or pair it with other sides such as mashed potatoes or rice. 

Gather the ingredients for pulled pork

To get started on making this easy pulled pork recipe, grab all of the ingredients first. For this recipe, you'll need, one pork butt, one bottle of your favorite barbecue sauce, brown sugar, apple cider vinegar, yellow mustard, garlic salt, paprika, and half of a white onion.

"The secret to adding a hint of tang is in the apple cider vinegar and the mustard," notes Marshall. "Both add great flavor to enhance the barbecue sauce." 

Season the meat

Set up a crock pot big enough to hold the pork butt. Put the meat in the pot, and then add in the brown sugar, garlic salt, and paprika. 

Add the sauces and onion, then cook the pork

Once the seasoning has been added, pour in ⅔ of the barbecue sauce, along with the apple cider vinegar and mustard. According to Marshall, it's best to reserve ⅓ of the barbecue sauce to mix with the pork after it's cooked for better flavor. 

Add in the sliced onion and then pour the water over top. With the crock pot on high, allow the meat to cook for 4 hours. "I like to do my pulled pork on high, but you can use the low setting as well," says Marshall. "Just plan ahead for it to take six to eight hours on the lower temperature." 

Shred the cooked pork

Once the pork is cooked, transfer it to a cutting board or large, flat dish. Use two forks to shred it into smaller pieces. 

Mix in additional sauce before serving

Transfer the pulled pork to a bowl and mix in the remaining barbecue sauce. Once you've added the additional sauce, it's time to dig in. Dish up the pulled pork on potato or brioche buns, or serve it with rice or mashed potatoes. 

Easy Pulled Pork Recipe
5 from 70 ratings
Whether you're planning family dinner options for the week, or you're prepping a menu for a party, this pulled pork recipe is sure to please
Prep Time
Cook Time
pulled pork on buns
Total time: 4 hours, 5 minutes
  • 1 (4 pound) pork butt
  • 1 (21-ounce) bottle barbecue sauce, divided
  • ⅔ cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
  • 2 tablespoons garlic salt
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • ½ of a white onion, thinly sliced
  • ¼ cup water
  1. Place the pork butt in the crock pot.
  2. Add in the brown sugar, garlic salt, and paprika.
  3. Pour ⅔ of the barbecue sauce, the apple cider vinegar, and the mustard over top.
  4. Add in the onion.
  5. Pour the water over top.
  6. Turn the crock pot on high and cook for 4 hours (or cook on low for 8 hours).
  7. Once cooked, shred the pork with a fork. Mix in remaining barbecue sauce before serving.
  8. Serve on a bun or with mashed potatoes or rice.
Calories per Serving 679
Total Fat 29.3 g
Saturated Fat 10.1 g
Trans Fat 0.3 g
Cholesterol 142.5 mg
Total Carbohydrates 60.2 g
Dietary Fiber 1.7 g
Total Sugars 49.3 g
Sodium 1,195.9 mg
Protein 41.7 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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