Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >
Jul 15, 2011 12:42 AM


Calling all my American friends out there! I need a fantastic, amazeballs recipe for pulled pork!!! I do not have a smoker though, so I take it I would have to use liquid smoke? How much? Best cut of meat? Mop Sauce recipe too? PRETTY PLEEEEEEEASE!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Ingredients:

    1 boston butt pork shoulder roast will weigh about 6 pounds ( about 2.5 kg)
    2 onions sliced
    a rub that has chili powder, oregano, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, salt, pepper You can make your own or buy one.
    BBQ sauce (24 ounces or so) .. make your own or buy some.
    3-4 bulbs of garlic minced or sliced
    1 12 ounce beer optional

    1 slow cooker - the 6.5 -7 quart oval ones

    Put the onions and garlic in the slow cooker. Rub the rub into and all over the pork roast.
    Add the roast to the slow cooker.
    Add the beer and about half of the bbq sauce to the slow cooker. Set the slow cooker on low for 8 - 10 hours.
    Remove the roast from the slow cooker and shred it with 2 forks. Separate the fat and the bone and discard. You should have a big tub of pulled pork now.

    Put the amount of pork you want to serve into a bowl and mix with bbq sauce. You might want to add a teaspoon or so of liquid smoke to this bbq sauce. if you are thrifty, you could take the sauce in the slow cooker and defat it by skimming. Strain the onions out and reduce the sauce and use it for the bbq sauce.

    Serve on toasted hamburger buns with a slice of sweet onion and some pickle relish. Some people add coleslaw.

    You will want to keep some of the pulled pork in a plastic container for the next day. Freeze the rest if you like.

    There are lots of ways to make pulled pork, the crock pot is the easiest. You can vary the recipe in unlimited ways.... it will be difficult to go wrong.

    Liquid smoke is pretty strong so add a little and taste until you get what you want.

    Pulled pork makes a pretty good hash for breakfast. It works well in a tortilla. It is very good as a topper on a baked potato. Enjoy. Oh... you will probably get lots of other suggestions and recipes.

    1. I made this several weeks ago, and it was amazing. I used a crock pot, too. :)


      6 - 8 lb. pork butt (pork shoulder, preferably bone-in)
      Spice Rub (recipe below)
      1 onion, quartered and separated into layers
      1/2 cup water
      1/2 t Liquid Smoke
      BBQ sauce - Use your favorite jarred brand or make your own. My recipe follows


      Make the spice rub and place the pork butt in a large bowl. Coat the meat with all of the spice rub, massaging it into the surface. Wrap in a double-thickness of plastic wrap and place in a large bowl and refrigerate 12 hours.

      Place the onion sections in the bottom of a large crock pot with the water and Liquid Smoke.

      Unwrap the meat and put it in the pot and turn the heat to low, cover it and let cook about 10 hours or until the meat is fork-tender and falling off the bone. For smaller piece of meat, start checking at about 8 hours. This 8 pounder cooked for a full 10 hours. Crock pots vary in how hot their settings are, so be sure to check.

      Take the meat out and place it in a large pan - I used a disposable lasagna pan. Discard the liquid in the crock pot.

      Remove the bone and the fat and discard. Then pull the meat into shreds with two forks, or cut it with a knife and fork.

      Put the shredded meat back in the crock pot along with 1 - 2 cups BBQ sauce. Stir to coat and warm up on the lowest crock pot setting, ten serve on a bun with more BBQ sauce and coleslaw.

      Spice rub:

      Mix together the following:

      4 T paprika
      2 T chili powder
      2 T dark brown sugar
      2 T table salt
      2 T cumin
      1 T granulated sugar
      1 T oregano
      2 t cayenne
      2 t thyme
      2 t granulated garlic
      1/2 t smoked paprika

      BBQ sauce:
      Olive oil
      1 onion, quartered
      4 cloves of garlic, cut into large pieces
      1 28 oz. can whole tomatoes with juice
      1-1/2 cups ketchup
      1 cup orange juice
      6 T fresh lemon juice (2 lemons)
      6 T red wine vinegar
      1/2 cup water
      2 T Liquid Smoke
      1/4 cup honey
      1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
      2 T dark molasses
      1 T Worcestershire sauce
      1/4 t hot pepper sauce -I like Cholula
      2 T chili powder
      1 T ground coriander
      1 T dry yellow mustard powder
      1 t granulated garlic
      1 t salt
      1/4 t smoked paprika
      small knob of dried chipotle chili


      Saute the onion in olive oil over medium-high heat until the edges start to brown up, then add the garlic chunks and saute for another minute.

      Add the remaining ingredients, stir well and bring to a boil.

      Reduce heat and simmer for an hour, uncovered. Stir occasionally to make sure the mixture doesn't stick and burn.

      Fish out the knob of chipotle pepper and puree the sauce with a stick blender or in small batches in the blender.

      Taste to adjust seasoning, adding more hot sauce or a pinch more cayenne if you want it spicier.

      Cool to room temperature and store, refrigerated, for up to 1 week.

      1. This is where you need to talk to your butcher -- explain to him how you're going to cook it, and get his recommendation for cut. UK butchering is different than US butchering is different than French butchering, so I can't give you the exact name - but getting the butcher's advice is your first solution. (and hoping that Harters stops by to offer a suggestion).

        I wouldn't touch a bottle of liquid smoke with a 10-foot pole -- I find it acrid and tastes of a vat of chemicals.

        Depends on what region of the US you're from as to what sauce recipe we'd send you to....guidance? There's tomato-based sauces, mustard sauces, vinegar sauces....and as many recipes out there as there are cooks.

        5 Replies
        1. re: sunshine842

          not Harters, but I've used boneless pork shoulder to make pulled pork here in the UK.

          1. re: sunshine842

            You must have gotten a bad batch of liquid smoke. Liquid smoke is quite literally liquified smoke and should taste exactly like the real thing. They make it by burning wood and sending the smoke into a hyper-humidified room and condensing that into a liquid.

            I don't use it often because I have a smoker but I certainly am not opposed to using it in a situation where a smoker is not available.

            1. re: sunshine842

              Liquid smoke has no chemicals. Certainly no added chemicals. It is simply smoke filtered by water. It tastes like smoke. No, it isn't as good as a smoke ring acquired by hours of exposure to smoke but it is better than if it isn't used.

              The O.P. apparently doesn't have a problem with it.

              1. re: sunshine842

                Every time I've used Liquid Smoke, it has tasted like smoke - no chemical taste, not especially acrid. Maybe you got a tainted batch. :/

                1. re: sunshine842

                  Don't ask me!

                  I've only tried once to make American styled pulled pork and it was not a success. I followed a well recommended Chowhound recipe for cooking it in the oven. Used boneless shoulder, which is not too common a cut here - organic, rare breed Savin Farm pork, FWIW. Cooked it exactly as the recipe but it just didnt "pull" and would have needed considerably longer to get anywhere near "pulling". Tasted OK, as a roast, but then Savin Farm always does. I was, however, well chuffed with my vinegar/mustard Carolina style sauce - just like we'd been eating in the state a few weeks before.

                  As for the liquid smoke, I recently tracked down a supplier in the UK who imports it from America (found through ebay or Amazon, IIRC). You only need very, very small amounts - a single teaspoon is fine in a sauce.

                  Not tried "pulling" since - but do slow roast pork belly joints which is a near approximation worth trying.

                2. I like to add mango puree to mine (on the advice of someone on CH). Delicious.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: chefathome

                    Yeah.. that would be good or some pineapple would make it taste like pastor.

                    Although that is a lot of pastor. Could you add it afterward to a smaller batch?

                  2. Just my 2p...
                    Liquid smoke: as people have mentioned, its strong stuff. Perhaps sunshine tasted it straight, or used too much. It does seem unsettling to open a bottle, give it a whiff and WHOA, how do you get that intense smoke essence out of this teeny bottle?
                    You don't HAVE to use liquid smoke - its a preference thing. If not, I'd suggest using a BBQ sauce (if using a store-bought one) that has hickory or mesquite flavoring. When not using my smoker (braising in a pot on the stove), I'll use liquid smoke in the final braising liquid (after shredding). I also use it in my BBQed baked beans (which aren't actually BBQed thus the liquid smoke...)
                    A couple of people say remove fat and bone and discard. I agree with discarding the bone, but I don't throw away ALL the fat. OK OK, if you want the healthy route, then yeah chuck it, but I chop it into the pulled meat for FLAVOR. If you're using a shoulder like this,
                    I'd discard the intramuscular stuff, but certainly chop and add all that wonderful skin and at least some of the fat from under the skin.
                    Best cut? Most everyone will say shoulder and thats traditional. Me? I like the hind leg like this
                    or at least parts of it. The meat tends to be leaner, so adding the fat/skin content in the final product is more important.
                    I also like to top the sandwich with a vinegar based coleslaw! Really makes the experience!

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: porker

                      I think that is what is called a whole pork picnic. There is a cut just above that high on the shoulder we in America call "boston butt". Boston butt does not have the skin or the leg bone. It does have the shoulder blade bone. I see no reason why your cut wouldn't work, though.

                      Here are some links to photos of the boston butt and last link shows precisely on the hog where it is gotten from.