Pulled Pork Sandwiches


Get your butt picnic perfect.

Recipes Published in
Bonnie Published by
  • 1 Pork bone-in shoulder roast/Boston butt, 5-8 lb
  • 3 T dry ground mustard
  • 3 T kosher salt
  • 3 T brown sugar
  • 1 T ground black pepper
  • 1 T paprika
  • 1 T garlic powder
  • 2 cups apple juice/cider/water
  • &
  • 2 cups cider vinegar
  • 2 cups ketchup
  • 1 cup whole grain mustard
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 t. kosher salt
  • 2 t. cayenne pepper
  • 1 t. ground black pepper
  • 1/2 t. allspice
  • &
  • 10 large buns or rolls
  • 1-2 qts cole slaw

I don’t make my own Texas BBQ. It’s just plain silly with Cooper’s, Peete Mesquite and all of Lockhart, TX, within an hour’s drive. Why on God’s green earth would I try to do what takes years for some to perfect, when I can buy some damn good smoked brisket on the cheap right up the road? I ask you. Carolina, on the other hand, is quite a bit farther from my house, and not many beef-centered Texas ‘cue joints carry the hog. Thus, my excursion into the world of pulled pork. This is beyond easy, feeds a baseball team, and you don’t need a pit, spit or smoker–just an oven and some time. My favorite prep plan is to rub it down Friday night and throw it in the oven Saturday morning for dinner Saturday night.

The How-To

Line a roasting pan with foil, and mix the dry mustard, salt, sugar, pepper, paprika and garlic powder together in a bowl to form your dry rub. Thoroughly coat your pork butt with ALL of the dry rub, massaging it into all of the creases, etc., and let it sit (covered) in the fridge for at least one hour, at most over night.

Preheat oven to 300*. Place your butt fat-side up on a rack over your foil-lined roasting pan, and pour the juice or water into the bottom of the pan. We don’t want the pork butt sitting in liquid. Cover with foil (may take two overlapping sheets) and place in the center of the oven for about 1 HOUR PER POUND. 6.5 lb roast = 6.5 hours in the oven. I always check on things about an hour or so before I expect it to be done. When done, the meat should EASILY pull away from the roast. If you try to pick it up, the bone should slide out. If you’re not sure, err on the side of caution and give it more time. When it’s done, let it cool at least 30 minutes while you make your sauce.

In a saucepan or pot over medium heat, whisk the cider vinegar, ketchup, mustard, and spices. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, taste and adjust seasonings. This is a Carolina-ish BBQ and should be vinegar-heavy to counter the richness of the pork. If it’s too acidic for your taste, just add in some apple juice/cider or some of the juices from the bottom of the roasting pan. This isn’t the molassesy sugar-and-tomato-fest to which most of us are accustomed.

Ladel out a few cups of sauce into a large mixing bowl or baking dish. Remove foil from roast, and take off the top layer of fat from the butt and discard. With two forks, just pull the meat apart and shred it into the bowl or dish of sauce, discarding any visible fat pockets or membranes. Toss with sauce to keep the pork just moist, and let people add more sauce if they desire. Serve on wheat buns with cole slaw ON the sandwich. A 6.5 lb. roast feeds 10 hungry men.

Variations on a Theme

I accidentally grabbed pear juice instead of apple once, and it turned out quite nicely.

3 Responses to “Pulled Pork Sandwiches”

  • Ray-Gun:

    Jill likes to say that I’d eat my own shoe if it was covered in BBQ sauce. I haven’t denied it.

  • Bonnie:

    I swear this tastes a lot better than your shoe.

  • Pulled Pork Sandwiches « Trent Walton:

    [...] recently published the recipe for her pulled pork sandwiches. This is easily one of my favorite meals. [...]