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Don't flame me... but I want to make "pulled pork" in my crockpot and need help!

  • w

I currently don't have an oven due to a kitchen renovation. My husband is the smoker in the family but he is going to be hanging drywall all day on Saturday and won't have time to pay attention to smoking meat. So, I'm thinking I want to try to do pulled pork in my crockpot. But I need a little help:

What cut of pork should I use? I usually use butt or shoulder if we're smoking/roasting, but don't know how this will pan out in the crockpot. A loin is more expensive, but I'm willing to try that.

I'm assuming I can still do my dry rub and then just add a little water to the Crock Pot to get things moving along... should I throw any veggies in there for flavor?


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  1. I am sure you will get better advice that this - but - I have seen and tasted boston butt cooked in a crock pot with SC style mustard based sauce as the only wet ingredient and believe it or not, it was not bad. I did not do this as I am like your husband, a smoker!
    I dropped by a friends home once as his wife was pulling the meat from the crockpot and I tasted it and was fairly amazed.
    If I had to guess the time required: 8 hours??
    I smoke my butts 8-10 hours @ 200 degrees.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Tee

      I would still use a butt or shoulder, not a loin. I think you might have to take the lid off at least once to spoon off some of the liquid, though.

      1. re: Tee

        Although we're generally smokers as well, we've done the crockpot thing because it's easy, requires no attention and sometimes we're just too lazy to get the smoker going, but still want pulled pork! We've used a shoulder and cooked it for approx. 9 hours. We dump the meat in the pot with a little rub, dump in our homemade BBQ sauce (or store bought when we're out!), cover and come back in 9 hours. You don't need to add any water, there is plenty of liquid with the sauce, and teh fat from the pork. You don't get the smokey flavor, but it's still great. Let us know how it goes!

        1. re: WendyB

          per previous thread begun yesterday, i have a 4 lb shoulder which I intend to cook in a lovely mixture sauerkraut. My thought was something like 475 for 15 minutes, and then 200 - 250 for 3 hours. Think its long enough? I've never cooked a shoulder before. sorry to hi-jack the thread for a moment.

          1. re: rumdrinks

            That is plenty of time to cook the meat, but if you are looking to pull it apart like pulled pork, no that isn't near enough time. At 200-250 degrees... you are looking at more like 4-6 hours, possibly as much as 8 hours, depending on how stubborn the butt is. Since you are cooking it with kraut (i.e., liquid), that will speed it up quite a bit over dry roasting it (or smoking it). If you were cooking dry, I'd add another 2-3 hours to it at least. When I smoke a 4 lb butt at 230-240 degrees, it takes anywhere from 8 to 12 hours. Just for a point of reference.

            Since you are essentially braising it in liquid, if you want it to finish a little more quickly, I'd recommend cooking it at around 300.

            But... point is, give yourself plenty of time... if it finishes early, don't fret - you can cover it tightly and hold it at high temps without any degredation of quality (in fact, it gets better). Just don't let the temperature get below 140 while sitting, or it gets into the danger zone of bacteria development.

      2. I do this quite frequently. I use whatever is on sale -- a roast without bones is easier (I think I even did it one time with boneless spareribs) -- that way you aren't fishing bones out of the final product. I usually also look for one that doesn't have a lot of fat - that way its not as greasy. I just usually make slits in the meat, insert slivers of garlic, put salt and pepper on the roast, put in crockpot with a bottle or 2 of BBQ sauce, then open the spice cabinet and put more spices in -- usually onion powder, red pepper flakes, some liquid smoke, chipotle tabasco, whatever looks good.

        Leave it all day until the pork falls apart. It is quite tasty! I've even frozen the leftovers if there are any.

        1. Has anyone had good results with a pork loin?

          1 Reply
          1. re: Joanne
            ChowFun (derek)

            Pork loin is too lean for long braising..It needs a faster cooking process..the less expensive cuts with all their connective tissue really benefit from the crockpot/slow cooker experience!

          2. I did this with a pork shoulder in a vintage enamelled Dutch oven on the stove top. It came out great. I would think a crockpot would work the same, but maybe take a little longer.

            1. My parents swear by this recipe for pulled pork in the crock pot. They have had dinner parties where they have served this and always get rave reviews and no left overs

              Budweiser Pork Sandwiches

              2 pounds boneless pork loin

              1 onion, thinly sliced

              1 cup Budweiser

              1 cup chili sauce

              1 tablespoon horseradish

              2 tablespoons dark brown sugar

              sandwich buns

              1: Place pork loin and onion in crock pot.

              2: Combine remaining ingredients (except sandwich buns). Pour over pork and onion.

              3: Cover. Cook on high 5-6 hours.

              4: Drain meat. Shred. Add onion and juice as desired. Mix well. Place on serving plate.

              1. WAIT! Don't do anything until you try the recipe in the April/May issue of Cook's Country. Oddly enough I have it in my crock pot right now. I made it when I first got the issue and I haven't stopped craving it. I don't see how a recipe could top it. Also they talk about how if you put the meat in there with bbq sauce or any vinegar product that long the meat can taste pickled. Here is the paraphrased recipe:
                Spice rub: 4 tbls. paprika, 3 tbls. dark brown sugar, 2 tbls. chili powder, 1 tbls. ground cumin, 1 tbls. pepper, 2 teas. salt.
                Pork: 3 sm. ham hocks, 1 boneless pork butt 5 to 6 lbs., 2 cups low sodium chicken broth.
                Sauce: 1 cup cider vinegar, 3/4 cup ketchup, 3 tbls. dark brown sugar, 1 1/2 teas. liquid smoke, s&p, hot sauce
                Butterfly the butt by cutting down the middle lenghtwise, than another on each side of the first slit. Lay it out flat. Rub with the combined rub mix.
                Put hocks and prepared butt in 6 quart slow cooker insert. REFRIGERATE OVERNIGHT.
                Next morning pour broth over. Cook on low 8-10 hours.
                Transfer meat to plate to cool. Pull meat, discard fat and hock bone.
                Pour cooking liquid through stainer into med. saucepan. Scim fat. Bring to a boil, reduce to 1 cup, 30-40 minutes. Stir in vinegar, ketchup, sugar simmer one minute. Off heat stir in liquid smoke. ( Do not worry it is not at all overpowering.)
                Pour sauce over meat, let stand 10-15 minutes to absorb. Season to taste with s&p and hot sauce.
                Serve with buns, pickles and cole slaw. Incredible!
                BTW, the first time I made this I didn,t let it refrigerate overnight. It was still fantastic!

                1. Well, you prompted me to try it this weekend. I do not have a smoker, but loved pulled pork. I bought a pork butt, seasoned with a dry rub, and threw in the crock pot. I added about 16 oz of barbacue sauce, and let it cook for about 7 hours. It was great!!! Now I see lots of recipes in the this thread that I will surely try.
                  I usually have a lot of drop in company on Sundays, and am always looking for ideas of easy things to have on hand for a quick bite. These types of recipes will be on the list. Can feed lots of people easily, and doesn't tie me up in the kitchen all day.