Pulled pork is a funny thing – it’s one of the first things I look to eat as the weather begins to warm up in the spring, but it’s also perfect for a chilly Fall evening spent at home watching football. Although I usually go for a more traditional barbecue sauce,or a fruiter smokey mango sauce, the mustard glazed ribs I made earlier this summer inspired me to mix things up this time and go with a Carolina-style pulled pork. Cooked all day in the crockpot, it made the house smell wonderful and only required a few minutes on hands-on time. The recipe also made a TON of pork, so that combined with the ease of preparation makes it a great dish for entertaining.
I started with a simple spice rub – it never ceases to amaze me how these relatively boring spices combine to form the unmistakeable flavor of barbecue. As soon as they’re mixed together to form a rub, there’s no question as to what your making. This blend goes equally as well with a mustard based sauce as with a tomato based sauce, which is nice because it gives you options. If you want to have a sandwich the next day but you don’t want to feel like you’re eating leftovers, just change out the sauce! Since the recipes yields so much, you can also freeze some of the pork and pull it out to use with whatever sauce you want later on.
Since pulled pork isn’t the healthiest thing on the planet, I balanced out my plate by eating mine open-faced on just half a roll and serving kale chips on the side. Together, it made a perfect meal!
Also, I also used Reynolds slow cooker liners for the first time when I made this – where have these been all my life?! I bought them forever ago but kept forgetting to use them. They really dead make clean up super easy.
Bourbon-Mustard Pulled Pork
- 1 Tbs smoked paprika
- 1 tsp dry mustard
- 1 tsp sage
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 4.5 pound boneless pork shoulder (sometimes sold as pork butt)
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 1/2 cup bourbon
- 1 Tbs Dijon mustard
- 2 tsp molasses
- 1 onion, thinly sliced
- 1 tsp liquid smoke
- 1 habenero, seeded and chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, peeled
Combine paprika, sage, mustard, salt and pepper in a small dish. Rub over all sides of pork. Set a large, heavy pan over medium heat. Sear pork on all sides until browned. Transfer to crock pot.
Whisk together stock, bourbon, mustard, an molasses. Pour over the pork. Add remaining ingredients to the crock pot. Cover and cook on high for 6 hours. By this time the pork should be extremely tender and should shred easily with a fork. Use a slotted spoon to transfer shredded pork to a serving dish, discarding the cooking liquid.
Serve with mustard sauce (below)
Yields approx. 17 3-ounce servings
Approx. 295 calories, 16 grams fat, 0 grams fiber, 30.5 grams protein
- 1/2 cup dry mustard
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 3 Ts brown sugar
- 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- dash cayenne
Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan. Whisk until smooth. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and let simmer for 20 minutes.
Yields approx. 1 cup sauce