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EASY BBQ Pulled Pork – I Heart Naptime


This simple BBQ pulled pork takes just 5 minutes to prep with 5 simple ingredients. It’s perfectly juicy and tender, with delicious BBQ flavor. Make it in the crockpot OR instant pot! 

This is one of the easiest slow cooker recipes out there. Slow cooking the pork really helps to make the meat super tender and flavorful. It’s so delicious! If you’d rather use a leaner cut of meat, check out my crockpot BBQ chicken.

bbq pork sandwich on white plate

BBQ pulled pork sandwiches are one of my go to recipes to make in the summer time. They are great for family obtain-togethers and backyard BBQ’s. This recipe only takes 5 ingredients to make and 5 minutes to prep. It cooks ALL day, so make sure to put it on the slow cooker first thing in the morning. This is my favorite recipe because it is SO simple and the meat is so juicy and tender.

We love serving this BBQ pulled pork as sandwiches on a bun or homemade dinner rolls, on top of nachos, cobb salads and more! It’s even good wrapped in a homemade tortilla or lettuce wrap. This is one of those meals the whole family will love!

prepping bbq pulled pork in slow cooker

How to make pulled pork in the slow cooker

  1. Wash and dry. Make sure to wash the pork first, then pat dry with a paper towel.
  2. Season. Place the pork in the slow cooker, then pierce a few times with a fork. Pour in 1/2 cup water, BBQ sauce and liquid smoke, then season with salt and pepper.
  3. Cook in crockpot. Cook on low until the pork easily shreds, about 10 hours.
  4. Shred and enjoy. Remove from slow cooker and shred the meat using 2 forks. Discard any excess fat. Then transfer the pork back to the pot with the juices and let rest for about 15 minutes. Serve on a hamburger bun or on top of a salad.

bbq pulled pork on cutting board

Cooking tips

  • Don’t disturb the pork. Make sure to abandon the lid sealed the entire cooking time, so that it steams and gets super tender.
  • You do not need to sear the meat first, however if you’d like to you can sear it in a pan over medium heat with a small oil. Cook each side about 2 minutes, then move to the slow cooker.
  • You can use store bought sauce (I prefer Sweet Baby Ray’s) or homemade BBQ sauce. You could even mix two sauces together to obtain a sweet and smoky flavor.

Can I use an Instant Pot?

Absolutely! Simply follow these instructions below.

  1. Cut the meat into 4 pieces.
  2. Add all the ingredients to the Instant Pot with and extra 1/2 cup water and seal the lid.
  3. Set to cook at high pressure for 60 minutes. Then do a natural release for 15 minutes. If pork is frozen, increase time to 1 hour and 20 minutes.

bbq pulled pork in slow cooker

Favorite sides to serve alongside:

Freezing leftovers

Another great thing about this recipe is that it makes a great freezer meal. If you have leftovers, simply let the meat cool and then place in a freezer bag. Make sure to seal the air out of the bag, so it doesn’t obtain freezer burn. Then store in the freezer for up to 3 months. When alert to enjoy, simply let thaw in the fridge overnight.

BBQ pulled pork sandwich on white plate

Ways to use leftover BBQ pulled pork

Pulled Pork Recipe

Course: Main Course

Cuisine: American

Keyword: bbq pulled pork

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Resting Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes

Servings: 10

Calories: 254

This simple BBQ pulled pork takes just 5 minutes to prep with 5 simple ingredients. It’s perfectly juicy and tender, with delicious BBQ flavor. Make it in the crockpot OR instant pot! 

  • 3-4 pounds boneless pork loin or shoulder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups BBQ sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon liquid smoke , optional but recommended
  • Wash pork and then pat dry. 

  • Slow cooker pulled pork: Place in the slow cooker. Pierce pork several times. Add 1/2 cup water. Pour BBQ sauce and liquid smoke over the top. Then sprinkle salt and pepper on top. Cook on low for 10 hours, or until it easily shreds.

  • Instant pot pulled pork: Cut into 4 chunks, pierce with a fork, then place in the instant pot. Add 1 cup water. Pour BBQ sauce and liquid smoke over the top. Then sprinkle salt on top. Place lid on top and set to high pressure. Cook for 60 minutes and then do a natural slow release for 10 minutes. 

  • Remove pork and shred with 2 forks. Remove any excess fat. Place back in the pot and let sit in the juices for 15 minutes, or until alert to serve. Serve on a bun or on a salad. 

When cooking pork in the slow cooker, don’t take the lid off before 10 hours. You need the steam to make it tender. Freezer instructions: Add pork to a zip top freezer bag (make sure all air is removed) and store in freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw in fridge overnight when alert to enjoy. 

Calories: 254kcal | Carbohydrates: 18g | Protein: 31g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 86mg | Sodium: 743mg | Potassium: 608mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 14g | Vitamin A: 96IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 21mg | Iron: 1mg

 

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