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Crock Pot Pulled Pork recipe

Prep Time 10 mins
Total Time 8 hrs 10 mins
Servings 16 servings

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This Crock Pot Pulled Pork recipe is so easy and so flavorful! It starts with a garlic herb rub and hangs out in the slow cooker until it’s fall apart tender. 

crock pot pulled pork in slow cooker with metal tongs stuck in and buns in the background

Crock Pot Pulled Pork

Pulled pork is one of my all time favorite dinner recipes.

I mean, easy crockpot meals of any kind are usually a win, but this one is definitely a crowd pleaser.

Here, we’re all about flavor, and this crock pot pulled pork gets a ton of it from a savory rub, a cup of apple juice that hangs out with the pork loin in the slow cooker (you can take this a variety of different ways for different flavors!), and whatever sweet and smoky delicious BBQ sauce you smother it in afterwards (totally optional! It’s got great flavor as is).

This is one recipe we make over and over again, and it was time to share.

It’s an easy crockpot meal that the whole family adores!

Looking for more crockpot recipes? Try my Slow Cooker Pork Tenderloin!

crock pot pulled pork with bbq sauce overhead on grey plate with chips pickles and coleslaw

If you’re looking for a crock pot pulled pork recipe that’s got a little more tang, try this Slow Cooker Honey Balsamic Pulled Pork — another one of our favorites!

Reasons to love this Crock Pot Pulled Pork recipe:

  • dump and go — no babysitting or adding things half way through! Perfect for long work days.
  • It’s melt-in-your-mouth tender and shreds so easily!
  • It’s got great flavor, thanks to a garlic herb rub that I use on my slow cooker pork loin recipe as well.
  • It makes a ton, so you can include it in your weekend meal prep and use it in different ways all week long, or save some in the freezer.
  • It’s just as good for a summer barbecue as it is for a cozy winter meal

What is the best cut of meat for pulled pork?

I always, always use a boneless pork loin for pulled pork, and there are a few different reasons.

It’s an easy-to-cook, fairly lean cut of meat so I don’t have to deal with any bones. This way, I get the most bang for my buck, I don’t have to do a lot of trimming, and it’s just plain delicious.

Pork loin also tends to go on sale often for a great price, and I will pick up a few to store in the freezer until a craving for this slow cooker pulled pork hits.

I know that many prefer to use pork shoulder. The pork shoulder is high in fat which will make a very juicy pulled pork and it is another great option.

The best meat for pulled pork really depends on your preferences: I tend to prefer leaner, boneless cuts of meat (I don’t want my pulled pork too fatty), and some others prefer more fat for more juiciness.

Either way this pulled pork recipe is going to be tender, juicy and delicious after a long, slow cooker!

crock pot pulled pork sandwich on grey plate with pickles chips and coleslaw

Variations on this Crock Pot Pulled Pork recipe:

  • Mix up the liquid and try a can of soda — try Cranberry Ginger Ale, Sprite, Coca-Cola, Dr. Pepper or go totally in your own direction and try something new!
  • Once it’s shredded, mix it up with your favorite barbecue sauce and serve it on sandwich buns.
  • Try tossing it in buffalo sauce for a pork-y twist on buffalo chicken — great for game day sandwiches!
  • Stir in some honey garlic sauce and serve with rice or noodles.

What to do with leftover pulled pork:

  • Freeze it! It freezer perfectly for up to 3-4 months in a heavy duty freezer bag or freezer container.
  • Make pizza
  • Make tacos
  • Serve it up in a grilled cheese sandwich
  • Stir it into pasta or soup
  • The options are endless!

What to serve with slow cooker pulled pork:

Honestly, we usually eat this alone with some buns and maybe some pickles and chips, but here are a few great side options that go well with pulled pork:

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Crock Pot Pulled Pork

5 from 21 votes
This Crock Pot Pulled Pork recipe is so easy and so flavorful! It starts with a garlic herb rub and hangs out in the slow cooker until it’s fall apart tender. 
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 8 hrs
Total Time 8 hrs 10 mins
Cuisine American
Course Main Course
Servings 16 servings
Calories 222kcal

Ingredients

  • 4 lb boneless pork loin trimmed if desired
  • 1 cup apple juice (or soda)
  • 1 tablespoon seasoning salt
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon dried mustard
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 cups barbecue sauce as desired

Instructions

  • Place pork loin in a 4-6 quart crock pot and pour in apple juice.
  • Combine seasoning salt, garlic powder, Italian seasoning, mustard, onion powder and black pepper and sprinkle half over pork loin. Turn and sprinkle on the remaining half.
  • Cover and cook on low until fall apart tender — 8 to 10 hours. 
  • Shred with two forks, discarding excess fat. Toss in remaining juices and coat with barbecue sauce as desired. Serve on hamburger buns.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 222kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 71mg | Sodium: 859mg | Potassium: 532mg | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 85IU | Vitamin C: 0.3mg | Calcium: 24mg | Iron: 1mg
Keywords crockpot pulled pork, slow cooker pulled pork

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Meet Ashley

My name is Ashley Fehr and I love creating easy meals my family loves. I also like to do things my way, which means improvising and breaking the rules when necessary. Here you will find creative twists on old favorites and some of my favorite family recipes, passed down from generations!

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Comments

  1. Jen says

    This dinner is always a hit! Love making it in the summer so I don’t have to heat up the whole house by turning on the oven. It’s so easy to change up the sauces and make it new too.

  2. Heather Smith says

    This has to be the most tender and juicy a tenderloin has ever turned out for me! I tweaked it a bit. I only had cranberry/pomegranate juice so I used that. I shredded part of it for bbq sandwiches and the rest was sliced for simple Sunday lunch. Plenty of food for the week ahead. I also cooked it on low for 2 hrs and then turned it to high for another 2hrs and it was perfect ! Thank you!

  3. Brenda says

    USE THE LIQUID! I used Sprite and 4 thick pork chops (approx 3 lbs). There was a lot of liquid left and the chops were dry. I shredded them and put it back in the liquid and as Ashley said in some comments, that’s where all the flavor is. PERFECT! Full of flavor and no longer dry. It also soaked up all the liquid. Thanks Ashley!

  4. Patricia says

    I love this recipe! I made it twice, first time with apple juice and second with Root Beer. I think it actually got better with the root beer. One thing I was wondering is if anyone has tried this recipe with chicken instead of beef? I might try it and cut down the cooking time.

    • emily b says

      You can make shredded chicken super easy in the crockpot. Place 1 pkg chicken with chicken broth approx 32oz (enough to submerge), season as you like, cook on low for 6-8hrs or on high for 4, shred, serve on buns with mayo or bbq. You can reuse chicken for enchiladas, tacos, salads, buffalo chicken dips. So yummy!

  5. Arlene Northway says

    This was absolutely delicious! So easy to prepare! I had a 7.5 pound pork butt and was afraid it might not cook all the way through. After 10 hours it was incredibly tender! What a relief!! I will definitely make this recipe my go-to for pork butt. I did double the apple juice and all the spices since the meat was almost double what was listed. Yum!!

  6. Robin Dinsmore says

    Question – Do I have ti put in the BBQ sauce to cook this dish? Is the Apple juice enough liquid to cook it?

    Thank you.

    Robin

    • Margarita says

      I have loved all the recipes from Ashley … and this one failed me. It’s obviously a user problem, I tried doing it in the instapot on the slow cooker option on low for 8 hrs. Turns out that doesn’t work … it was super hard I could hardly out the fork in. Well that was a wasted piece of meat 😔 will try the actual slow cooker next time. just a note for anyone that may want to try this …

  7. Jen says

    My new favorite pulled pork recipe! It is perfect to throw in the crock pot before work and I was worried about the tenderness and it was FABULOUS. I couldnt even take it out of the crock pot because it just fell apart.

  8. Daniel says

    I’m going to make this later and halve the time on high heat. Should i use no stick cooking spray before i put anything in?

  9. Shaileen says

    I had all the ingredients except for apple juice or any soda, so I just used water, i guess I’ll find out if it tastes good or not ?

  10. LonnieAnn says

    This sounds seriously delicious and so easy. Question….if I make this on Saturday, can I drain the juices, pour a little back in the crock put, refrigerate it and then take it to a party Sunday? I was thinking I could pour the BBQ sauce over the pork in the morning and take the crock pot with me to the party and plug it in long enough to heat through.
    Thanks

    • Carly says

      I wouldn’t drain the juices! That’s a big part of flavour.

      With other pulled pork I have done, I’ve put it in the fridge over night And then back in the crockpot the next day on high just until it warmed up. Then I would add the bbq sauce!

  11. Karen Wilkes says

    Made this yesterday. Used pineapple juice instead of apple juice. My husband said it was the best pulled pork sandwich he’d ever had. Delicious!

  12. Michelle says

    This has become my favorite pulled pork recipe. It’s easy to throw together and just falls apart. The pork and great flavor and is very versatile! Thanks for posting!

  13. Anne says

    Just made this for Independence Day celebration (July 4, 2019) Everyone loved it! Definitely a keeper!

  14. Amy A says

    Pork loin isn’t a great choice for pulled pork. You need something with a lot of fat and collagen. It all breaks down over the several hours of cooking to make the pork really tender and juicy. Using a lean piece of meat (or trimming a fatty one) will most often leave you with rubber that doesn’t shred like a fatty piece would.

  15. Max says

    There is a lot of juice leftover in my crockpot. Is this normal? After shredding the meat, do I return it back to the juices then add the bbq sauce?

    • Ashley Fehr says

      I usually add some of the juices back in, just as much as the meat will soak up, and then drain the rest and add barbecue sauce. It’s normal to have quite a bit of liquid!

  16. Laurie J Davis says

    I want to try this recipe…But I bought the boneless Boston Butts before I found it. Any tweaks I need to know about? I plan to trim it anyway.

  17. Beth Pierce says

    Made this for dinner last night and everyone loved all the flavor! We made sandwiches and had smiling faces all around the dinner table!

  18. Julie says

    It says “toss in remaining juices” Which juices? More of the apple juice? Am I missing something?

  19. Lindsey says

    When you say seasoning salt do you mean a seasoned salt like Lawry’s? Or big granular salt like Kosher Salt. Looking forward to trying this!

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