Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

Succulent slow cooker pulled pork seasoned to perfection and simmered all day in the slow cooker. Perfect all by itself or for use in many different recipes.

There are few things that are as delicious as perfectly tender, fall off the bone, melt in your mouth slow cooker pulled pork. If the smell of it cooking in your slow cooker isn’t enough to make your mouth water, the moment you pull it out and it see it fall apart certainly will.  Ryan is such a fan of this that I have to guard the slow cooker with my life to make sure he doesn’t get into it too early. He reminds me of the dad in A Christmas Story trying to eat the turkey before it’s done. But I can’t blame him, the smell is hard to resist.

Succulent slow cooker pulled pork seasoned to perfection and simmered all day in the slow cooker. Perfect all by itself or for use in many different recipes.

I adore my slow cooker. I mean you can put something in it, cover, turn it on and leave. You can take a nap, you can go shopping, you can go to a movie and when you come home your dinner is ready. How great is that? It does require a little planning, however, but not much. For this recipe you need to make the spice blend and marinate the meat over night and then cook it in a slow cooker for 8 hours. I prepared it before I went to bed, popped it in the slow cooker before I started my day of errands and came home to perfectly cooked pork. Loved it.

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork in the crockpot.

What is the best cut of meat for pulled pork?

When purchasing the meat that you will want to make sure that you buy pork shoulder, sometimes called boston butt. You will find them either bone-in or boneless. When it comes to roasting meat, I typically go for bone in because it tends to be more tender. That being said, cooking in the slow cooker, I find that it doesn’t really matter if you buy boneless or bone-in pork shoulder.

Most pork shoulders will be rather large. My grocery store carries pork shoulders that range between 4 – 6 pounds. For this recipe for slow cooker pulled pork, I used a 5 pound bone-in pork shoulder. If you are using boneless anywhere between 4 and 5 pounds will do just fine. If your grocery store carries larger shoulders you can always ask the butcher to cut one for you.

Can you make pulled pork in the Instant Pot?

I know this is a recipe for slow cooker pulled pork, but I have recently discovered that you can also make pulled pork in the instant pot. To make this recipe in the Instant Pot you just need to make a few small changes. First, use the saute feature to sear the pork on all sides. Then instead of using 5 cups of liquid like you would in the slow cooker, only use 1 cup of beef broth (or water). And then set it for 120 minutes and do a natural release for 20. It is just as succulent as slow cooker pulled pork.

What can you make with slow cooker pulled pork?

Anything. Seriously. I make pulled pork on Sunday and use it to make several different meals throughout the week. I love to use it in Tacos, Pulled Pork Grilled Cheese and Pulled Pork Egg Rolls. Or you can put it on a bun and slather it with Carolina BBQ Sauce.

Endless possibilities!

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork is great for pulled pork sandwiches!

What is your favorite thing to do with pulled pork?

Note: This post was originally written in 2009. Photos updated and Instant Pot (Pressure Cooker) instructions added in 2018) 

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork in the crockpot. Make it on sunday for meals all week! Can also be made in in the Instant Pot #pulledpork #slowcookerpulledpork #slowcooker

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Recipe

Serves 10 Prep Time: Cook Time:


  • 1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 (5 pound) bone-in pork shoulder
  • 1 medium onion
  • 3 cups beef broth
  • 2 cups water



Combine salt, chili powder, cumin, granulated garlic, pepper and oregano in a bowl.


Rub spice mixture all over the pork. Cover and refrigerate over night.


Slice the onion and lay it on the bottom of a 5 quart slow cooker. Place the pork on top of the onions. Pour beef broth and water over the top. Cover and cook for 8 hours.


Remove from slow cooker. Allow to cool slightly. Discard bone and pan juices. Using a fork and spoon shred meat.


Use in a variety of recipes.


To make pulled pork in the instant pot: Turn on the saute feature. Sear roast on all sides. Scatter onions around the pork. Pour in 1 cup beef broth. Cook on high pressure for 120 minutes. Let the pressure release naturally for 20 minutes. Remove from pot, shred and serve.


Note: Nutrition facts are not guaranteed.

Nutrition information

Calories: 418 , Total Fat: 37.55g , Saturated Fat: 27.77g , Cholesterol: 132mg , Sodium: 2872mg , Carbohydrates: 4.57g , Fiber: 0.4g , Sugar: 2.49g , Protein: 37.55g

Leave a Comment

  • Reply
    Toni | Boulder Locavore
    November 1, 2018 at 7:12 pm

    We love pulled pork! No doubt this will be an instant hit in my house!

  • Reply
    Lindsay Cotter
    November 1, 2018 at 3:41 pm

    This is perfect for meal prep for the week!

  • Reply
    October 30, 2018 at 10:01 am

    YUM!! Looks so tender and delicious. Love an easy recipe like this!

  • Reply
    Mahy Elamin
    October 30, 2018 at 6:19 am

    Oh how delicious this recipe looks! I really like. It’s just incredible. I would like to try your recipe for lunch. Thank you!

  • Reply
    Toni | Boulder Locavore
    October 30, 2018 at 6:06 am

    This looks like a great dinner! I can’t wait to give it a try!

  • Reply
    Katerina @ diethood .com
    October 30, 2018 at 6:01 am

    mmmm..this sounds fantastic!! A must try!!

  • Reply
    Melanie Bauer
    October 29, 2018 at 11:56 pm

    Looks insanely delicious! Love everything about this recipe, need to try this immediately!

  • Reply
    October 29, 2018 at 8:42 pm

    I love using my slow cooker! Can’t wait to try this out in my slow cooker!

  • Reply
    October 29, 2018 at 5:04 pm

    We are huge pulled pork fans. Your recipe looks fantastic!

  • Reply
    October 29, 2018 at 4:53 pm

    I love this recipe. The meat looks so tender !

  • Reply
    August 22, 2018 at 8:00 am

    Thanks a lot for the article post.Much thanks again. Fantastic.

  • Reply
    August 12, 2018 at 9:55 pm

    Pulled pork is always a big hit at my house! I have to give this a try!

  • Reply
    Erin | Dinners,Dishes and Dessert
    August 10, 2018 at 7:20 am

    What a great pulled pork recipe! I have to put this on my menu!

  • Reply
    August 9, 2018 at 11:59 am

    mmm YES! We love slow cooked pulled pork around here! Perfect for sandwiches or just on a plate with some mashed potatoes and slaw!!

  • Reply
    August 9, 2018 at 10:55 am

    Pulled pork is a favorite of mine! This looks incredible!

  • Reply
    August 8, 2018 at 8:56 pm

    Such a yummy classic and few things beat a good pulled pork sandwich!

  • Reply
    Delaney | Melanie Makes
    August 8, 2018 at 7:30 pm

    I love good pulled pork!

  • Reply
    August 8, 2018 at 5:49 pm

    I absolutely love this recipe !!!

  • Reply
    Reid Neville
    November 4, 2016 at 11:16 pm

    It was good, but a bit timid on the spices. I added red pepper seeds, cayenne pepper, substituted 1 can of beef broth for French onion, and added an 8th of a cup of balsamic vinegar. Definitely more buffalo in flavor though. Thanks for the inspiration!

  • Reply
    September 25, 2014 at 7:21 pm

    You have amazing recipes! Not one has failed. Thank you for posting these. You are my go to site for new recipes!!

    • Reply
      September 25, 2014 at 9:10 pm

      Thank you so much LIz! That is so nice to hear :)

  • Reply
    July 16, 2013 at 9:35 am

    I look forward to trying this recipe but if “Sharkcam” would be willing to share the Kalua Pig recipe I would appreciate it very much as I love kalua pig but don’t like digging holes! Mahalo

  • Reply
    January 26, 2012 at 10:45 am

    Why the kosher salt? Makes little sense to me when eating pork! Will try it out soon. Thanks.

    • Reply
      January 26, 2012 at 9:24 pm

      Hope you like it Adrienne! I use Kosher salt not because it’s Kosher but because I prefer coarse salt to iodized salt.

  • Reply
    November 15, 2011 at 9:08 am

    Mmmmmm…. Started this recipe last night… Edited the broth with vegetable broth cause I don’t dig on beef!! Plopped it all in the crock pot this morning!!! Mmmm.. it smelled so good just after 10 min… Can’t wait to get home!!!! Pulled Pork Taco Tuesdays Rock!!! Thanks for the easy recipe!!

  • Reply
    February 15, 2011 at 9:19 pm

    I’m on this recipe for “family day” at our place. I’m thinking about replacing the 2C water with a 22oz of Newcastle Ale :)
    Thanks Deseree for the recipe!

  • Reply
    Miss D.
    September 23, 2010 at 9:19 am

    I’m excited, and ready to plop it into the slow cooker, but do I cook it on High, or Low?

    • Reply
      September 23, 2010 at 1:28 pm

      Hi Miss D- I use low on my slow cooker which is 8 hours. Hope this helps :)

  • Reply
    July 2, 2010 at 6:12 pm

    I made this today and it was fantastic! I peruse a lot of food websites but this is the first time I’ve actually commented. I’m *really* impressed by all of your recipes! Thank you for sharing!

    • Reply
      July 3, 2010 at 10:10 am

      You’re welcome Melissa! Thank you for your nice comments and if you try any of the other recipes I hope you like them just as much :)

  • Reply
    December 11, 2009 at 2:48 pm

    This was wonderful!

    I did the suggestion of keeping the pan juices. What I did was put the crockpot back outside (its cold here) to let it cool over night. Then this morning I skimmed off the fat and let the juices simmer. Then for lunch we had asian noodle bowls with a little bit of the pork.

    I am out of veggies or I would of added some julienned carrots or steamed spinach to the bowls.

    It was very tastey!

    • Reply
      December 12, 2009 at 10:11 am

      Thank you Anne! I love the Asian noodle bowl idea especially with the steamed spinach. I think I will definitely have to try that next time I make this. Thanks for the tip :)

  • Reply
    October 29, 2009 at 9:54 am

    The Crock pot rules! I agree about the smell permeating through the house, what torture. I only use mine for one thing, to make Hawaiian Style Kalua Pork. It is a “cheater” version of the roasted pig you get at the Luaus. It is very simple and tastes pretty close to the real thing and you don’t have to dig a pit in the ground and get hot river rocks to cook it!

  • Reply
    Julie Kellogg
    August 30, 2009 at 1:20 pm

    I made this recipe today and it is absolutely delicious. Can’t wait to have it in a sandwich tonight and pulled pork enchiladas tomorrow. Such an economical cut of meat, yet so delish!

    • Reply
      August 31, 2009 at 8:38 am

      Thank you Julie! I am happy to hear that you enjoyed this! Isn’t it hard to resist just eating it as you are shredding it? I found I had that problem. I hope you enjoyed the sandwiches and the enchiladas :)

  • Reply
    August 14, 2009 at 11:09 am

    Thank you everyone for your comments! I think that after reading them all, I am going to save the broth next time. Thank you for the tip. :)

  • Reply
    August 14, 2009 at 10:22 am

    I LOVE making pulled pork in the slow cooker! You really can’t go wrong and it always comes out so tender and juicy. I don’t usually add much liquid to the pot though and I’d hate to waste all that good broth!

  • Reply
    Jen @ MaplenCornbread
    August 14, 2009 at 8:08 am

    I love my slow cooker and have found pulled pork the easiest in it! Im so glad you have now too! this looks GREAT!

  • Reply
    August 14, 2009 at 5:32 am

    Oh the crock pot is a must have cooking essential to have in the kitchen! That pork looks so tender and juicy. You’re right about one thing you can simply kick back and do whatever you like while the crock pot does all of the work for you :)

  • Reply
    August 13, 2009 at 8:35 pm

    Why would you discard the wonderful pan juices??? You could use them in soup or chili. Just cool in fridge, remove fat on the top, then freeze and use as a base for something else. mmmmm mmmmmmmm good.
    I love using my slow cooker and can’t wait to try your simple yet delicious looking recipe. Thanks!

  • Reply
    Denise in Texas
    August 13, 2009 at 1:09 pm

    I too am a crock pot convert — Here’s a VERY easy recipe for a flavorful chicken dish that we enjoy.

    I can’t wait to try the pulled pork!