Whenever we have people come visit from out of state, I like to serve a classic Southern BBQ dinner to welcome them to Tennessee. My boys think the best part of the menu (the star of the show) is the pulled pork. I do not own a smoker, like our favorite local Southern BBQ restaurant uses for their pulled pork, but this slow cooker method is arguably just as good (or at least darn close). Especially with some yummy BBQ sauce on the side. We really like the Trader Joes Kansas City Style BBQ sauce the best. Do you have a favorite BBQ sauce? If so, please share in the comments!
As you know from my last post, we hosted a wedding reception this summer here in Tennessee where we live. The night before the reception we had a backyard dinner and pool party for both sides of the family that came in town for the event. Of course, I had to serve a ‘southern feast’! Our menu included:
Southern Pimento Cheese and Crackers (appetizer)
Pulled Pork (recipe below)
Macaroni and Cheese (home cooked and super cheesy)
Garlic Bread (try this seasoning mix–yum!)
Banana Pudding (I used NYC Magnolia Bakery recipe)
Coconut Cake (for a little birthday celebration for my sister in laws 40th a couple days before )
This pulled pork recipe could not be easier and turns out great every time! It also freezes beautifully, making it a great main dish to serve at a party, since you can make it ahead of time and freeze it. I pulled it out of the freezer the night before to defrost in my fridge and then put it in the crock pot to warm the day of the party! YUM!!
- 2 medium yellow onions, thinly sliced
- 4 medium garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 1 cup chicken stock or low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 tablespoon packed dark brown sugar ( regular brown sugar works too)
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus more as needed
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 (4-1/2- to 5-pound) boneless or bone-in pork shoulder (also known as pork butt), twine or netting removed
- 2 cups barbecue sauce (optional)
- Place the onions and garlic in an even layer in the slow cooker and pour in the stock or broth. Combine the sugar, chili powder, measured salt, cumin, and cinnamon in a small bowl. Pat the pork dry with paper towels. Rub the spice mixture all over the pork and place the meat on top of the onions and garlic. Cover and cook until the pork is fork tender, about 6 to 8 hours on high or 8 to 10 hours on low.
- Turn off the slow cooker and remove the pork to a cutting board. Set a fine-mesh strainer over a medium heatproof bowl. Pour the onion mixture from the slow cooker through the strainer and return the solids to the slow cooker. Set the strained liquid aside.
- If the pork has a bone, remove and discard it. Using 2 forks, shred the meat into bite-sized pieces, discarding any large pieces of fat. Return the shredded meat to the slow cooker, add the barbecue sauce, if using, and mix to combine. If you’re not using barbecue sauce, use a spoon to skim and discard the fat from the surface of the strained cooking liquid, and then add ¼ cup of the liquid at a time to the slow cooker until the pork is just moistened. Taste and season with salt if needed.