Thursday, March 5, 2009

Slow-cooker BBQ pulled pork

Alex and I went on an epic grocery shopping trip a week or two ago. I wanted to fill the freezer with meat and frozen vegetables so I wouldn't have to keep asking Alex to pick up things for supper. I'm really happy about my full freezer, and I haven't needed Alex to pick up much lately. There is one thing I am having trouble coping with, which I guess I should be better at, and that's planning ahead. I have to think about what I want to eat a day or two before the fact and pull that meat out of the freezer. Hmph. The other day I pulled out a pack of boneless country-style pork ribs. This is a cut of meat I eat a lot of because it's super cheap. I didn't have any specific plans for this pork, but when a friend of mine mentioned she was having pulled pork for lunch, I was jealous. So jealous, in fact, that I made pulled pork for dinner. This is super simple, and takes about 5 minutes of prep before throwing everything in the slow cooker for a while. You can, of course, bake this in the oven, but I like to prepare dinner and have it be cooking, unattended, while I putter around the house. 

In the sauce for this dish I blitzed the onion and garlic with the spices to create an eye-watering paste, which I like doing for things that will be cooking for a while, instead of chopping up the onion and garlic as fine as possible and cooking them down. You may disagree with this choice, but it really makes things easier. Plus, you get a BBQ sauce that is completely smooth, without chunks of onion (which I do like sometimes, but not today). 

Slow-cooker BBQ pulled pork

2 slabs (between a pound and a half to two pounds) country style boneless pork ribs
1 t salt
1/2 onion, rough diced
4 cloves garlic, peeled and cut in quarters
1 1/2 t dry mustard
a good grind of black pepper
1 t hot paprika (or 1 t sweet paprika and 1/2 t chili powder)
1 t smoked paprika
1 T olive oil
1/2 c ketchup
2 T Worcestershire sauce
1 t liquid smoke
1/3 c cider vinegar
1/2 c brown sugar
Optional 1 T molasses

Sprinkle the pork with salt on both sides. Combine onion, garlic, dry mustard, black pepper, paprikas, and olive oil in a food processor (or small coffee grinder, that's what I use) and pulse until everything is smooth. Combine onion mix in a small saucepan with ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, liquid smoke, cider vinegar, brown sugar and optional molasses. Cook over medium heat about 5 minutes, until just bubbling, then pour a little in the bottom of your slow-cooker. Place one slab of pork on top, then pour a little more sauce, then place the second slab of pork on top of that, then pour the rest of the sauce over. Cook on high 4 hours or on low for 8-10. Shred meat with two forks when it's done. 


  1. I love you. lol

    I was just talking today about how much I love pulled pork, but it's hard to get gluten-free. You solved my problem!!!!

  2. Anonymous7:51 PM

    This pulled pork looks amazing. I love that it's got a lot of sauce to it. I've had some pulled pork that just had a light coating of bbq sauce and it's never as good as when it's practically sopping in it.

  3. looks delish. you really have a talent. have you thought about going to culinary arts school or working at a restaurant?

  4. Beri- Thanks! I've thought about it, but I don't want the hours of a restaurant, and I think culinary school would be a waste for me. Someday I want to open a bakery or breakfast place up in New England. Or write a cookbook. Who knows!

  5. this is the ultimate comfort food. looks great!

  6. That pulled pork looks tasty!

  7. this looks delicious! i don't have a slow cooker, though... now I'M jealous!

    what would you suggest for cooking in an oven? :)

  8. Katherine - I'd just cook it all day in a really low oven, like 250, covered in foil.

  9. We had pulled pork yesterday and it was good, will try this recipe next time though.

  10. This is on my to try list very soon. Thanks for sharing.

  11. yum, just googled gluten free pulled pork and you popped up! After I get this in the crock I am going to see what else you have! Thanks for sharing!!!