North Carolina-Style Pulled Pork
This North Carolina pulled pork recipe is delicious, especially when smoked with hickory chips on a charcoal grill. A spicy rub and a zesty vinegar sauce turn this pork into a favorite dish.
This North Carolina pulled pork recipe is delicious, especially when smoked with hickory chips on a charcoal grill. A spicy rub and a zesty vinegar sauce turn this pork into a favorite dish.
Okay, I'm a born and raised NC girl. I've been away for 4 years and crave BBQ daily. I decided to make this to see what I got. I used 4 pounds of pork shoulder, boneless, so I halved the recipe. I did the rub exactly as is and marinated it overnight. The next morning, I made up the sauce exactly as written, halved for the amount of pork. After tasting it, I decided it needed more brown sugar so I added 2 more tablespoons. I put half of the sauce and the pork in my slow cooker and cooked it for 8 hours. I then took the pork out, let it cool and then shredded it. (It was already falling apart.) I used a large spoon to take all of the fatty oil off of the good bits in the bottom of the slow cooker, and then I added the rest of the sauce, in addition with about 1/4 cup more brown sugar. I then put the pork back in. That is EXACTLY what I grew up eating, and my husband, a NC boy, completely agrees! I am so happy, I can't begin to tell you!!! Thank you SO much for this recipe!Read More
Unfortunately, I didn't read the reviews before I made this and used the full 2 cups of vinegar, which pretty much ruined a good thing. I love vinegar, but this was way too much in my opinion. But the meat was very tender and very tasty right after it was done cooking in the spices. I will make this again, but will try cutting the vinegar in half (at least) and adding more ketchup and brown sugar.Read More
Okay, I'm a born and raised NC girl. I've been away for 4 years and crave BBQ daily. I decided to make this to see what I got. I used 4 pounds of pork shoulder, boneless, so I halved the recipe. I did the rub exactly as is and marinated it overnight. The next morning, I made up the sauce exactly as written, halved for the amount of pork. After tasting it, I decided it needed more brown sugar so I added 2 more tablespoons. I put half of the sauce and the pork in my slow cooker and cooked it for 8 hours. I then took the pork out, let it cool and then shredded it. (It was already falling apart.) I used a large spoon to take all of the fatty oil off of the good bits in the bottom of the slow cooker, and then I added the rest of the sauce, in addition with about 1/4 cup more brown sugar. I then put the pork back in. That is EXACTLY what I grew up eating, and my husband, a NC boy, completely agrees! I am so happy, I can't begin to tell you!!! Thank you SO much for this recipe!
This is the 3rd time I've made this and my family loves it. I decided to cook the pork in a crockpot. I added 2 T. of salt and 2 T. of Liquid Smoke and cooked it on High for 8 hours. I then made the existing sauce recipe. With a 5-1/2 lb. pork butt using a single recipe, the meat soaked up all the sauce. Next time I will double the sauce. I omitted the salt since I put it on the meat before cooking. I also reduced the red pepper to 2 tsp.
I cooked this in the crockpot on low, overnight, with the addition of some liquid smoke. It was so easy to make a just wonderful. I'll never use another recipe.
PLEASE READ THIS AND CHECK OUT ADLEVINE's 2003 REVIEW...I've been making this for almost two years and thanks to ADLEVINE (a reviewer in 1/2003), it was a hit from the beginning! I omit the liquid smoke, hot paprika and white pepper, and cook all day (6-7 hours)in the oven at 325 COVERED WITH TIN FOIL. Simmer for about an hour in the sauce. Also, I'm too lazy to "rub the butt" the night before, so I just do it right before I put it in the oven. Believe me, even with these lazy changes, I can call my friends at work while the ham is in the oven (I'm a homemaker) and they'll come running to my house when they get out! They even pick up the rolls themselves! Reheats awesome; even brought a baggie full on a river trip and ate it cold - a great snack!
This recipe is identical to the one found in 'The Barbecue Bible' by Steven Raichlen (Workman Press). I smoke a 5.5lb Boston butt in a offset horizontal smoker (Chargriller with side fire box) an hour per pound at 300 degrees with a mix of hickory and cherry chips until internal temp of 195. Contrary to other comments it does NOT turn into jerky at this temp if done correctly using a smoker. In an oven it may dry out at this temp. Some tips- instead of 2 cups of vinegar, start with one and adjust to taste; also Raichlen includes a recipe for Carolina Cole Slaw to use as a side. Finely shred a head of cabbage with a mandolin and coat with ~1 cup of vinegar sauce. Mound the pork on a grilled hamburger bun, top with slaw, and enjoy. Simply delicious- but no amount of liquid smoke will replicate the results of a bona fide charcoal smoker.
We lived in Suffolk, VA when my husband was in the Navy and pulled pork sandwiches with cole slaw were everywhere. Back here in Pa - they have no clue what BBQ pork is. Found this recipie and made it for our VFW (using 4 six pound rump roasts) and everyone raved. This is the only recipe you will ever need for pulled pork. Don't forget to top your sandwich with good coleslaw - you'll never want it any other way. UPDATE: just finished making this again using leftover pork roast and the sauce is amazing! Upset that some reviewers cut vinegar/pepper flakes and others added bottled sauce. This is true Southern pulled pork and it is perfect. If you want BBQ pork with a thick sauce (like BBQ ham sandwiches) like they serve up north this is not the recipe for you. Please don't rate it badly simply because you are not familiar with Southern pulled pork.
This was good. I was really looking for an Eastern NC style barbeque and it is almost there. I did as others suggested by decreasing the vinegar and adding more brown sugar, but I wish I had not. I found the meat more sweet than what I wanted and without the zing of the vingear.I also added liquid smoke to the roast before cooking since I was not smoking it. I cooked mine for 8hrs on low in the crock pot with 1/2 the sauce + and then pulled the meat out to cool. I drained the sauce which has a good amount of oil from the fat. After, shredding the meat- it most fell right off the bone, I put the meat back in the crock pot and pour the remaining sauce over. I will definitely make again, but will add more than 1 cup of vinegar as so many reviewers mentioned. I think it really depends on how sweet you like barbeque. I am giving the recipe 5 stars because I think if I had followed the recipe, it would have been closer to what I wanted :) Thanks! It was so moist and flavorful!
Unfortunately, I didn't read the reviews before I made this and used the full 2 cups of vinegar, which pretty much ruined a good thing. I love vinegar, but this was way too much in my opinion. But the meat was very tender and very tasty right after it was done cooking in the spices. I will make this again, but will try cutting the vinegar in half (at least) and adding more ketchup and brown sugar.
This was great. I used a 3 pound roast. Cooked it in the oven covered on 290 for 6 hours. It was very tender and juicy. We didn't even make the sauce. We just dipped our bread in the meat juice.
Second time making this. I too rubbed hickory smoke all over the roast, then put the rub on the roast (I added seasoning salt and some poultry seasoning to the other ingredients) and cooked it at 325 in my oven all day. Served it on big smooshy buns with sides of baked beans, cole slaw and corn, and it felt like a 4th of July picnic! PS As for the sauce you really do have to cut the vinegar down by half, and I added more brown sugar as well. I tossed the pork in this, and then served at the table Bulls Eye BBQ sauce that I doctored up with garlic, honey and mustard.
I have made variations of this recipe many times and have found that the best way to obtain the real smoked/BBQ flavor using a Weber type grill is to BBQ indirectly as stated for about 2 hours, then cover with foil and transfer to a 300deg oven for 2 more hours or into the crockpot for 4-6 hours. This way the meat retains all it's external smokey goodness, doesn't dry out at the surface and still "falls off the bone" as advertized when you're ready to "pull". As for the sauce, NC BBQ is famous for it's thin, vinegary sauce which absorbes directly and totally into the pulled meat, but adding more sugar or any other favorite ingredient is always up to the cook.
This was absolutely great! My hubby and I both love pulled pork, but hate the kind drowning in thick, sugary sauce. I used a pork loin roast, used the rub and chilled it overnight. I also made the sauce a day ahead of time, and it was much better the next day. I cook the roast wrapped in foil in the crock pot for 6 hours on high, then shredded it and put it back in on warm. I stirred about a quarter of the sauce into the pork, then served the rest on the side. This sauce is GREAT: tart, tangy, spicy with a faint hint of sweetness. I wouldn't increase the sugar, but I guess that's my preference. This recipe is definitely a keeper, and probably the best pulled pork I've ever had (restaurants included). NOTE: wait until after you cook the pork to take off the fat. You have to let it cool for a bit before you, but the fat adds a lot of flavor and keeps the pork from drying out. Plus it's a lot easier to take it off after it's cooked.
I am from North Carolina, and never have I tasted this sauce in north Carolina. It surely has nothing to do with the eastern half of the state. If you want search for something like "Eastern North Carolina Pulled Pork Barbecue" yes it is tangy.
Absolutely top shelf! I made some slight adjustments in the rub spices to suite our taste, added liquid smoke and reduced the vinegar as per suggestions below and cooked it in the oven. Served topped with creamy coleslaw on home-made potato rolls with a pickle spear on the side, I could have sworn we'd picked them up at a roadside barbecue place just outside of Salisbury, NC! Thanks so much, Doug!
This has to be some of the best pulled pork I have ever had!! The rub recipe is unique and adds lots of flavor. I made this recipe in a roaster on my gas grill. I used a smoker box with hickory chips inside as well. I cooked a 9.1 lbs shoulder roast @ 375 degrees and I hit my desired internal temp at 168 f. It only took me 4.5 Hours to cook. The only thing that I changed in this recipe was the sauce at the end. I used only half the vinegar which was still plenty, doubled the brown sugar and put in about a 1/4 cup of honey as well. LOVED IT!!!!! Great recipe
This was very easy....I had to make it in the crockpot. I also placed the meat with rub in the fridge overnight. Also cooked on top of two quartered onions. Huge party hit. Served with potato rolls and swiss cheese as suggested by another reviewer. We made the sauce that came with this recipe, plus offered Famous Dave's Rich and Sassy for options. We ALSO had some of my famous home-made cole slaw and mashed yukon garlic potatoes for those who weren't in the mood for a sandwich. Great meal!
I am from North Carolina. I love pulled pork and I grew up eating it. When I saw this recipe I could not believe this is the same recipe that I grew up on. I did not cook mine on the grill. I do love the flavor of hickory wood in the pulled pork. I cooked half of pork loin in my crock pot using this sauce. I also added 2 tablespoons liquid smoke. I cut back on the salt (just a preference) and it turned out very good. Thank you Doug for sharing this recipe. Reminds me of home (my parents)
I made this the 1st time in July 2010...love, love, loved it! Just the NC style I was introduced to years ago and wanted to re-visit it. When I made it in July, I had to take some serious short-cuts, because I just stumbled upon this recipe, the same day I decided to prepare a 'que'. I only had the dry rub on for maybe a an hour or two, slow-cooked in oven (used liquid smoke), did the sauce and it was still amazing! I'm now preparing it for the 2nd time...already knew what I wanted to do with pork butt shoulder when I saw it on sale! So this time, I've got the dry rub on it....the night before I'm going to make it, again in a 'slow oven' and can't wait for the results! Btw, I use Bragg's raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar, it's the one with the "Mother" (it's cloudy) - makes a world of difference, and has great health benefits, as well. The taste isn't as stringent or as "vinegary" as regular cider vinegar. I love it in the sauce.
This recipe is fantastic. I've made it on the grill, in the slow cooker, and in the oven. Always great, although on the grill is definitely the best. I have noticed many people have changed the recipe and that most negative reviews mention that they aren't fans of the strong vinegar flavor. That's what North Carolina BBQ is! If you don't like vinegar, don't try this recipe.
My husband and I have been making this recipe in a charcoal smoker for three years. We always get rave reviews. We cook it for about an hour per pound of meat or until the meat reaches 165 degrees. I make the full amount of vinegar sauce but only add about half to the meat. Then put the extra on the table so company can add more if they like.
Awesome! I cut the vinegar to 3/4 cup and increased brown sugar to 1/2 cup, as suggested. I baked in the over all day and it smelled incredible (also baked a cake!). Served on fresh rolls over deli cheddar cheese. Yummy...the neighbors loved it as well. Kids thought was a bit spicy (even though I halved the red pepper) but my kids are hard to please lately.
This really does make incredibly moist and flavorful pork - HOWEVER, the sauce is a Memphis-style sauce - sweet and ketchup-based. As a native Carolinian, I can say that true Carolina BBQ is dressed with a thin, vinegar-based chili sauce. It's not for everyone, but it is a defining characteristic of Carolina Que. Still a yummy recipe, though.
I made this for my son's 1st birthday party this weekend. The pork chilled overnight with the rub, cooked it in my Nesco roaster for 24 hrs on low. Simply delicious! EVERYONE complemented me on the BBQ. Minor changes I made: cut back to 1 1/2 cup cider vinegar, bump up to 1/2 cup brown sugar, cut back to 2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes, omitted the white pepper because I don't have it. This delicious meal cost me way under $5.00 to make.
made this for the superbowl (go giants!) and it was perfect. cooked it in a slowcooker so we added the hickory liquid smoke. upped the brown sugar a little bit. used the full 2 cups of vinegar. if you're craving the Carolina experience of a vinegar sauce, use the full two cups!
My family loved this. I cooked it in the slow cooker with liquid smoke as suggested by others. After 8 hours it was pull apart tender. I used less vinegar in the sauce and more tomato ketchup as my kids prefer food on the sweeter side.
WOW, this is great. I took the advice of others and only used 1 cup of vinegar and added more brown sugar. The meat was so tender it fell apart. My whole family loved it and it was even better the next day. I will be making this again :-)
excellent. i followed the advice and added more sugar because i don't like things too vinegary. couldn't find hot paprika so left it out. it was sooooo good the next day after sitting in the fridge. i cooked it in the oven for 6 hours at 325 since i don't have a smoker. very tender and wonderful flavor.
This is the bomb!!! Mine doesn't look as tomato-y as the picture, I used all the same ingredients except that I used liquid smoke 1-1.5 T since I don't have a smoker. I trimmed the large parts of the fat before doing the rub. As recipe says, refrigerated overnight. I also mixed ingredients for sauce and refrigerated overnight. Roasted in oven to appropriate T. (Check meat T after 1 hr, so as not to overcook) Allowed pork to cool before pulling the pork, yes tedious, but not as difficult as anticipated (pulled easily using 2 forks). Placed in large roasting pan, poured on the sauce. Covered loosely with foil and placed on oven briefly at 400 to heat thoroughly before lowering heat to 300. Slow cooked in oven for 2 hrs, stirring twice. Delicious, and easy. Living in Virginia Beach andChesapeake area (on the NC line) this was easily found, even in our workplace cafeteria. Moving back North, not at all, after almost 7 years, I think this is a definite keeper.
Excellent recipe. I used the dry rub and marinated the pork overnite. Then next day I cooked it in a slow cooker all day with some chopped onions, bbq sauce and a bottle of honey beer. This is definately a keeper!! It's good served with swiss cheese on potato buns.
This recipe was a hit with my family. It was my first time making pulled pork and I highly recommend this recipe. I made it in the crockpot. The rub gave the meat so much flavor. I cut down the vinegar for the sauce after reading the reviews and added more brown sugar and some molasses instead. It was really the best pulled pork I have had!
North Carolinaaaaaa love this recipe!
This is a wonderful recipe! We really enjoyed it, although we all felt there was too much of a vinegar taste. Next time I'll cut back on it, and there WILL be a next time!! We added plain BBQ sauce to the sandwiches just before we ate and it really let the flavor of the meat shine through. Incredibly tender, too. The smoking hickory chips really added a nice taste, not to mention the smell, which filled my whole block with an aroma that had my neighbors walking around sniffing at the air. Thanks for another "keeper"!!
I made this for Labor Day and what a hit! I used pork shoulder and, gathering bits and pieces from other reviewers, I put it in a roasting pan, rubbed the seasonings all over it and cooked it on 290 degrees overnight. The meat was falling off the bone by morning and the house smelled awesome! Wish I could try the smoking method but couldn't this year. I forgot to add the liquid smoke and didn't change the amounts on the liquid ingredients. My entire extended family loved it. We all agree that this is so much tastier than the sweet bbq pulled pork I usually make, in fact, that version seems sickly by comparison. I also made Mom's Coleslaw from this site and put it right on the pork sandwich as I read from other reviewers. AMAZING! If you haven't tried it like that, please do, it's beyond yummy! Thank you for this recipe, I will be a staple in my own collection now!
This is FANTASTIC!!!I've spent years perfecting a sweet bbq sauce and grew up on vinegar based.I skoke my pork butts for 12-14 hrs at 230 degrees until internal temp. reaches 185 degrees.take pork off and let cool enough to pull.I boil sauce with only 2 teas. red pepper and add a 1 tbl butter and a squirt of lemon juice.,(I think it's too spicy for the kids otherwise and boiling really blends the flavors).After sauce boils and pork is pulled I coat the pork with the sauce.This is now a must have when we have a family get together.Thank You for the recipe.
Wow this is the real stuff. Lexington style BBQ. My husbands grandparents live in Lexington, NC and we eat the BBQ quite often. This is really close to the real stuff, only it is a bit too spicy for us, I think next time I will leave out some of the red pepper flakes. And if you want the real NC style BBQ, use the full amount of vinegar, I did and it is great. Made this with some of the BBQ "red" slaw and my husband loved it. Also, I did mine in the slow cooker and added 1 and 1/2 Tbsp. of liquid smoke, turned out great. Thanks for a great recipe, now we can enjoy real NC BBQ without the 2 hour drive!!!
AWESOME, AWESOME, AWESOME! I could not believe how moist and tender this pork was. I couldn't believe how fast it went! This is probably the best pulled pork recipe I have tried thus far. Definite keeper!
This is by far the best recipe for North Carolina pulled pork barbeque. Follow the recipe and you will be in for a real treat. The only thing you need is a recipe for hot cole slaw to top it off.
Holy smoke!! This recipe was incredible!!! Out of 7 lbs of pork, I had no leftovers, and people begging for more. I actually purchased a side fired Chargriller to do this dish, as well as many dishes yet to come. While I had trouble getting the cooking chamber temp over 225 degrees using the side burner, it may have worked to my advantage. The fire was hot at 6:30 am and the pork was pulled at 3:30 pm, about 2-3 hours longer than planned. It took multiple reloads of coal and hickory to achieve this, but "WOW" was it worth the wait. The pork was incredibly moist and simply falling apart, and once the sauce from the recipe was added, Mmmmm. Note, I took advise from others and cut the cider vinegar to one cup, and scaled back the amount of red pepper flakes to 2 tsp. Add the slaw from "IHallidays's" post, and you'll be in heaven. I can't wait untill I can one this one again!! Bill
I made in the crock pot with some leftover pork flaps from ribs we had in the freezer. I really loved the sauce, so tangy. The hubs said he will try this on the smoker very soon...I can't wait.
I lived in North Carolina for a few years and this is very similar to authentic Carolina barbeque. If your don't like the vinegary taste of Carolina barbeque only use half and substitue store bought barbeque sauce for the ketchup.
I'm from NC and this as close to Lexington BBQ as I have ever had. I followed the recipe exactly, except I did trim some of the fat from the meat before cooking. Be careful on the salt though, it was a tad salty. Next time I think I will omit anything that has salt in it from the rub and just substitute celery seed and garlic powder. This was a huge hit with my guests and even more so with me!. Thought I was back in NC...if you like Lexington BBQ you will love this!
It's a winner. Love the heat.
this is a fantastic recipe. The vinegar sauce is not what I expected but it was phenomenal. I used cayenne pepper instead of red pepper flakes. I actually just picked up a 20lb pork loin and will be using that to make this recipe this weekend for a party.
Excellent! I did the rub, scoring the meat a bit to really get the seasoning in, then let it set. I wanted to have this done when we got home and since I didn't want to leave the grill unattended I made some adjustments. I grilled it for an hour, searing the meat and putting a nice char on it, then I put it in my crockpot. It was perfectly done when I wanted it and had that wonderful smoky flavor- the natural way! I adjusted the sauce to my taste, using less vinegar, salt and peppers adding some cajun seasoning and molasses. The whole result was INCREDIBLE!
I read a lot of reviews saying the meat was dry. Here is my suggestion: Follow the directions of the recipe but cook the meat in a roasting pan, covered, with a little liquid at the bottom at 300 degrees for 5-6 hours, basting with pan juices every hour or so. I guarantee the meat will be falling apart. After the meat is cooked, pull apart and pour bbq sauce over it, don't bother simmering, it is already tender enough. Hope this helps!
Oh. my. gosh. This is EXACTLY what I was looking for! So great and so easy! I only had a 1 1/2 lb roast but I just halved the sauce ingredients because we like a lot of sauce. I only used 3/4 cup of the vinegar (not 1 cup) because of previous reviewers. Added a little more brown sugar, a good glug of Liquid Smoke and subbed some chili powder for the red pepper flakes. All I did was mix up the sauce ingredients (with my changes) and poured it over the defrosted roast in the slow cooker. Cooked on low for about 8 hours. Vinegar-y, sweet, with just the right amount of heat for us. Served on potato rolls - DELISH! Thank you!
Thank you, Thank you....I have been trying various recipes for 6 years to try and get this taste down. You have made it possible for me to finally get it right. I tweaked a bit, not quite so hot and a little more sugar a wee bit less ketchup, but, stiring and tasting, I finally got it perfect with your recipe. Tons of thanks to you. My husband who does not like BBQ, loved this. The rub is perfect too. Hugs from an old lady to you Doug.
Love this sauce! I add liquid smoke (2 T), 1/2 the red pepper, and double the brown sugar.
I made this when my mom was in the hospital and took it to my dad. He doesn't like pork, but enjoyed this so much that he called friends and invited them over to have some! Six months later he's still talking about it! Now, I did make some changes that others suggested, like cutting the vinegar down significantly, but didn't change much else.
Takes a while to prepare, butt(pardon the pun), when the labor of love is over this is to die for. There is a problem though, the recipe says to cook (a)pork butt, not enough this order needs to be doubled or tripled just to last to the next morning.
160 degrees is way too low for pork shoulder, as is the 6 hour cooking time. The meat is barely in the plateau at 160, and it needs to remain there for at least 2 to 4 hours to break down the connective tissues in this cut of meat. I cook my shoulders at about 225 degrees on my wood smoker and it always takes about 20 hours or so to get to 195 degrees internal, which is the temp the meat should reach before you pull it. Even if you want sliced shoulder (KC style), it needs to get to at least 175 to 180 before pulling it from your cooker.
I made this for my wedding, 80lbs of pork. It took me three day to cook, but well worth the time and aggervation my soon to be wife gave me. Everyone loved it! Even my wife said she was glad I took the time to make it.
The pork was awesome! Loved it... glad we did since it took a lot of work! The sauce... could have ruined it. I was able to doctor it to our liking. WAY too much vinegar. Plus it was VERY thin. (Even after I doctored it) After my adjustments.. I'd give the pork itself a 5, the sauce a 4. Before my adjustment.. I would give the sauce a 1 or 2. Hence the 3 rating. We will use the smoked pork idea again though!
The rub sounds good, however, the temperature you should reach is not nearly hot enough for the pork to have all the connective tissues broken down. I've removed a shoulder from the grill @ this temp and it tasted good, but was not "ready." 190 is pretty much the minimum temp to reach internally. This could take upwards of 12 hours. I've smoked several shoulders recently, on a Weber 22.5" Kettle, indirect heat. Took 13 hours. The result was pork that didn't need a fork to pull it, the pressure of my hands caused it to simply flatten. Soaking chips and putting on your coals, you risk putting out the coals. Better to use some fist size chunks of wood (4-5) and call it good. Once the meat reaches 140F internal, it will not take any additional smoke flavor. From that point on, you just need to keep cooking. I do my brisket in the same manor. Once you reach 190F, pull it from the grill, double wrap in heavy duty foil, put into an empty cooler, and let it rest for 2-4 hours. It will continue to cook and tenderize. The results are nothing less than awesome! On the cider vinegar, if you want real zing, make sure you use an unfiltered cider vinegar. I couldn't believe the difference in taste.
Very easy to make and very flavorsome. Entire family gave a thumbs up and so did the ladies in the office.
i just made this today & It was excellent !! My fussy dh said it was incredible! I used cajun seasoning in place of the hot paprika & added garlic powder to the sauce part. I put the dry rub on & left it overnight in fridge....this am cooked it for 1 hr at 350deg in an open roasting pan then transfered it to a covered pot & cooked it for 3 hrs at 270 deg in that juice. Really really good! thanks!
This recipe is great! I was not able to smoke the meat on the grill so I made it in the crock pot. I added all the ingredients and cook it on low for 8-9 hours. It turned out moist, tender, and juicy! Oh and I used a pork butt. I made it twice already! Great recipe!
The meat itself was excellent. I cooked it on my BBQ with wood chips for a little over three hours to reach 165 degrees. I was afraid it would be tough because it cooked rather quickly, but it wasn't at all. As for the sauce - that's a different story. I cut the vinegar to just over 3/4 cup and I still thought it was pure stank. If you like pouring gasoline over good meat, go for it, but I would definitely recommend using a different sauce. I'd stick with a Memphis style sauce.
honestly should even have used the sauce and just used sweet baby rays. the sauce destroyed the pulled pork. i had some of the pork before i sauced it and it was EXCELLENT!!! after i added the sauce it was to much vinegar like everyone else said, and i even took out 1 cup.
Awesome! Just served this for a Carolina Panthers party and it was a HUGE hit! Thank You Doug! A few comments/suggestions for others: (1) increase the salt to 2 tsp (2) after the meat has cooked, place it in a closed paper bag for 1 hr to further tenderize the meat (3) an 8 lb roast yielded about 15 sandwiches. thanks again!!!
This is by far the best pulled pork that we have ever tried. I cooked mine in the crock pot on low for 6 hours (didn't have any charcoal). Then shredded the meat and put back in the pot on low for a couple hours with the sauce. I would like to try it on the grill next time. Very moist and delicious. Wonderful flavor.
This recipe was ok. Fall apart tender, which is why I gave it five stars. The sauce was a little too vinegary for our taste though. I made mine in a slow cooker like another reviewer suggested and poured some of the sauce in while the roast cooked. Maybe that was the problem. It turned out really tender, but next time I'll try a different recipe for the sauce. Guess were just used to midwestern style BBQ sauces.
The "vinegar hot sauce" was too spicy for my guests, even though they enjoy spicy foods - and I even used less red pepper than the recipe called for.
This was an awesome rub. I cooked 2 sholders in my smoker and then used the Bourbon Whiskey bbq on this site. The 2 meshed...
Taste great , and you can adjust the salt intake by changing "celery salt" to "celery seed" and "garlic salt" to "garlic powder". It does not change the taste.
Now this is some good pulled pork... I made it in the crockpot and was not disappointed. My husband claimed it was a little hot, but he can be a wimp... haha. I thought it was great. Thanks!
This is a really delicious recipe. I am from the North, so I'm used to BBQ sauce in my BBQ. When i first moved to NC I totally didn't expect the vinegar based BBQ that I was served. It really grew on me though. Now that I am pregnant I have been craving it and decided to give it a shot using this recipe. I did cook in my slow cooker, but other than that i followed the ingredient list. I cooked it in the slow cooker on high for 2 hours and then reduced it to low for another 6 hours. The result was delicious and I have never used another recipe for home made pulled pork since.
Spice was good, but cooking/smoking a butt to 160 is ridiculous. Yes, that is what you need to cook pork to for it to be done, but to fully tenderize and dissolve all the tendons and tissues, your looking at closer to 210-220 dgrees.
We all love pulled pork and this recipe is definately the best I've tried. You won't be disapponted.
I put my 8 lbs. of pork butt into the oven the night before, temp. at 300 degrees and in the early morning found it to be cooked through and pull apart tender. I took the suggestion of other reviewers and used only 1 cup of vinegar, and I'm really glad, another cup would have been way too much vinegar for us. After pouring on the sauce, it seemed too dry so I made another full batch of the sauce and that was just enough liquid for an 8 pound pork butt. Also, for a double batch of sauce, I did not double the amount of pepper flakes, I kept it at 4 teaspoons and I'm glad because otherwise it would have way too spicey for us. Thanks for a great recipe, we just loved it.
Awesome pulled pork sandwiches! Thank you for this recipe.
We moved to TX from NC and have been craving NC pulled pork. I cooked my boneless whole pork loin in the crock pot all day, skimmed the fat and shredded it and poured this sauce on and it hit the spot. Almost as good as being back in NC!
So good! Cooked it in my pressure cooker for about an hour and a half with the sauce. Turned out way better than expected. I didn't have onion power or celery seeds, so I just finely minced an onion and a stick of celery and threw it in the pot with the meat. When the meat was done, I took it out, strained the sauce, shredded the meat, and put it back in the pot with the strained sauce. Wow! Even my kids loved it!!
This is wonderful! After reading the reviews I only used 1 cup of vinegar and thought it was enough. I also added 1 teaspoon of Cavender's Greek Seasoning to the rub. We ate it as a 'meat and potato' dinner the first night then made sandwiches the next night, only three of us.
I grilled my pork butt for 9 hours.It was tender and juicey. Ive, never had pull pork before,the reviews was off the chart. so I had to try it.The flavor was so gooooood.I follow everyone advice about the vinger and use one cup.I will make this again.
I am reviewing this as of now for the sauce only. It's delicious! I used a little less vinegar (b/c I ran out) and less red pepper for the kids. All in all very good and next time, I will try prepping the pork with all the seasonings (although I will still cook it in the slow cooker). Edited: Did the spice rub on the pork and let sit overnight...made sauce as written and it's really spicy! Next time will cut the crushed red pepper in half at least and maybe use just a touch less vinegar, 1 and 3/4 cup perhaps. Edited again: Will use about 1/2 the white pepper next time too.
Simply delicious. This is my go-to recipe for larger group parties during the summer months. I followed some previous recommendations for making it in the slow cooker and adding liquid smoke. Comes out perfect every time.
Among the top 5 meals I've ever made. I'm also a barbecue hound, & this tasted better than anything I've ever had in NC. I went to college in NC, & we ate all kinds of Q, including smoking whole pigs ourselves (I wasn't the cook!). Marinated overnight as directed. I used a Smokey Joe Weber charcoal grill, and two kinds of Kingsford charcoal. Kingsford sells hickory charcoal that gets added to normal coals. I custom-made a charcoal box using a toaster oven pan, and drilling holes in the bottom for airflow. This allowed for the proper indirect heating set up. I placed a smoker box next to the charcoal box, so the two were touching, and filled it with hickory chips. Chunks are better but I couldn't find any. I did not soak them because that makes steam, not smoke. Once it was hot, meat on. I flipped and rotated the two 5 pound pork shoulders every hour, and stoked the fire three times with more charcoal (hickory charcoal each time). I also added a few hickory chips directly into the hot coals. Every thirty minutes, I blew on the coals to keep them going and kept the vents open most of the time. I monitored the temp using an iGrill. After 5 hours the internal temp had stopped at 158. Ideal Q temp is 195-203. Yes 203. I moved the meat directly over the coals for the last 90 minutes. The meat was unbelievably tender and shredded easily. I used half the vinegar but all of everything else in the sauce. Perfect. 14 adults finished all of it and raved.
After reading so many negative reviews of the vinegar sauce, the first time I tried this recipe, I followed the rub part exactly and then just added 1/2 cup cider vinegar and some Sweet Baby Ray's. The Baby Ray's killed all that great, spicy flavor. I ended up having to go back and add more vinegar, flakes, pepper, basically, I should have just gone with the original recipe! The second time, I went with the original recipe (using only 1 cup of vinegar) and it was excellent, just not quite saucy enough. I added half a bottle of BBQ sauce (Diana's Southern Smokehouse BBQ) and it was delicious. I'm doing this pulled pork again (already rubbed and waiting in the fridge for tomorrow.) The rub is perfect! I put liquid smoke all over the pork and double the amount of rub because I really like to get it into every nook and cranny. I make it in a crock pot and it takes about 7 hours on low setting. Maybe 2 cups of vinegar is a little much, but try 1 cup, it does not disappoint and blends seamlessly with the rub! I also do about 2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes but I have kids who wouldn't tolerate the maximum spice. Excellent, excellent recipe! Thanks for sharing, Doug!
Delicious! We have an electric smoker and smoked a 9 lb picnic pork shoulder at 225 degrees for 6 hours (until internal temp reached 160 degrees). After 5 hours of smoking, we took it out, put it in foil and put it back in the smoker for an hour. Don't forget to take off the fatty skin before putting the rub on!
This was awesome! Kids loved it. Everyone did. Even better as leftovers the next day. I used half the recipe with a 4 lb roast. I did as others suggested and used liquid smoke in the sauce and all over the roast before I rubbed it down. I cooked it in the oven in a cast iron dutch oven with lid for 3 hours at 300-325. It was moist and juicy. Since I made half the size roast I made half the sauce, but it does soak it up so, if you want more sauce, make the whole recipe or double according to size roast. I made it a little too spicy this time, will use less heat next time. Didn't have spicy paprika so I used a little cayenne pepper. I found a vinegary coleslaw recipe to top the sandwiches with, and it was perfect. Very authentic. This will be a regular in our home
I'm Canadian (Vancouver, B.C. area) and we don't have pulled pork but read the recipe and thought it sounded interesting. I did as another wrote and cooked my pork overnight in a slow oven wrapped in foil. By morning the pork was incredibly tender. The only down fall of this method - cooking at night - is you wake up smelling it and get hungry! Made this as a "trial" recipe at my husband's 35 birthday party - we had 15 for dinner and it was a huge success. Will definitely make it again! Thanks!
My favorite pulled pork recipe! Love it and so does the family.
Easy and fantastic flavor. But I used beer instead of water.
We smoke massive amounts of pork and then freeze it in portioned bags. I made just the sauce last night. It was great. Cut the serving size to 6 but it did need a little more sugar. My honey loved it. He thinks we should add some chopped jalapeno next time. I followed some suggestions and made a coleslaw with some of the sauce. Perfect together. So much better than sweet sticky stuff. Thanks for the great suggestions. ( I agree you can't make bbq without a smoker. )
This was fabulous. One thing I did do based on other suggestions was cut the vinegar to one cup and use 1/2 cup brown sugar in the sauce. I also added regular barbeque sauce to the sauce. Probable about 1/4 to 1/2 cup. Once it was completed I added more salt, cayenne pepper and more hot pepper flakes to the pan as I was cooking it with the sauce. I think this works better because you can control the taste you want instead of putting more in the vinegar sauce and trying to make it right. Let it sit over night for the flavors to mingle and you will have a hit. Mine was scored 9 out of 10. I think that is pretty good.
I made this using exact ingredients only I didn't have hot paprika so I just added some cayenne pepper, not much though to cut down on the spice. I doubled the sauce portion, as I know that NC style is more dry. It turned out to be the perfect amount, and it still wasn't as saucy as the picture. I didn't smoke it, cooked it stove top in a dutch oven covered, simmering about 4 hours. The first hour in water, saved some water for the sauce and sliced the meat. Then simmered the remaining time in the sauce until easily shredded with a fork, very good!
This is fantastic! I baked it in the oven, wrapped in foil and resting on a small rack in a covered roasting pan. I poured off all of the fat before pulling the pork and returning to the pan. For the sauce I included 2 tsp. of liquid smoke, reduced the red pepper flakes by half, doubled the brown sugar and including the amount of vinegar called by the recipe. I heated the sauce in a saucepan before adding to the pork. We noticed that the red pepper and vinegar flavors were more subtle after cooking through the meat than when tasted from the saucepan. This is going to be one of our favorites for a long time.
This is our go-to pulled pork recipe! We use it just as directed and we love the results. There are times when we are unable to smoke it but have found it is still wonderful if I put it in the crock pot on low for 8 hours then shread it into a skillet and add the sauce. We also sometimes double the sauce and use on other meats. Have some sauce in the fridge now! Works great!!!
I took the advice of those before me and decreased the vinegar and red pepper, increased the water and brown sugar, and added liquid smoke to the marinade and the simmering sauce. I also cooked it in the oven overnight on 225 and the bone fell right out of the meat! Next time I will replace even more vinegar with water and up the brown sugar again as well. If you like tangy, sweet, and hot this recipe is for you!! PS Make it along with Restaurant Cole Slaw (from this site) the two harmonize beautifully!!
I must be hitting a bad streak, this did not woo me nearly like I thought it would. Second day in a row this has happened. thanks for sharing!
doug, used this 3 times already. excellent! here in so. ohio, bbq has to be red and sloppy. after a couple of charlotte trips i new that a better pulled pork was out there and you have it! although i can never do the same thing twice (chef's secret weapon) my folks love it. my friend makes his own (red) sauce (very good) and was puzzled when 90% of my guests didn't use his sauce to top this pale pork!! i haven't converted him yet but he's out to top me with something else. thanks again.
After all the work of cook'n and watch'n fireworks, finally home for the pork! Bummed,the sauce -WAAAYYY-to much vinegar...I added almost cup of Karo let it sit overnight and choked it down with bun,melted cheese and coleslaw to get kids to eat, hubby refused. Tasted great before the sauce though. Signed by the Northwest folk....
This recipe is absolutely INCREDIBLE. Since it's the middle of winter, I made it in the crockpot instead of the grill... so I added a little liquid smoke. I also used some extra brown sugar, but I think it would have been fine with the original recipe amount. This is an awesome recipe if you like NC-style pulled pork... we served it with cole slaw on potato rolls, and made total pigs of ourselves two days in a row =) It's just like the BBQ we love on the Outer Banks!
This is worth the planning it takes. I've made it for 70 and I've made it for 20, and everyone raves about it. Take the suggestion others made and serve it with creamy coleslaw (At the party for 70 we put out a little sign suggesting to put the slaw on their sandwich- we don't live in North Carolina!).
WOWWZA!!! This is a great recipe. I paired it with Mom's cloleslaw from this site and OMG this was one tasty treat. The kids and hubby raved about it! Get a nice soft bun and layer pork, coleslaw then some homeade french fries and you have one woppin sandwich that everybody cant get enough of!
Everyone raved at our 4th july party. I brined it overnight
This was the best pulled pork I have ever tasted. I did not have the means to cook it properly so I used a slow cooker and Big Al's BBQ sauce. Earth became heaven the moment I bit into my sandwhich. Make this for your family and they will be calling you god!
To be fair, I cooked my pork shoulder the night before to make burritos, but I used the sauce, and it was fantastic. I threw the rest of the shredded pork shoulder into a skillet with the sauce and let everything simmer for a while. Delicious on a bun with coleslaw. Reminded me of my childhood. I highly recommend the sauce, but I will admit that I didn't try the rest of the recipe. The sauce is so flavorful that it will probably overwhelm anything you do to the meat before you add it to the sauce. This sauce is pretty vinegar-y, so beware if your idea of pulled pork involves anything approaching BBQ sauce. This is definitely NC-style and goes best with a healthy heap of coleslaw on the sandwich. Delicious!