These slow cooker pulled pork sandwiches are ideal for lunches, dinners, tailgate parties, or potlucks!

Pork shoulder is cooked in the crockpot with a sweet and zesty homemade BBQ sauce to make meat so tender, you can shred it with a spoon!

cooked Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Sandwiches

Zesty Pulled Pork sandwiches

  • Hot and ready – pulled pork sandwiches are so easy when they’re made in the Crockpot!
  • Cooking in the slow cooker makes this a set-it-and-forget-it kind of meal.
  • Everyone loves pulled pork; there’s nothing better to serve for a summer BBQ, game day, or Sunday supper.
  • Serve it as this as sandwiches, on nachos, spooned over mac and cheese, or with mashed potatoes.
ingredients to make Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Sandwiches with labels

Choosing Pork for Pulled Pork

When choosing pork for pulled pork, look for well-marbled meat with plenty of fat. The best choice of meat for this recipe is pork shoulder which can also be called picnic roast, Boston butt, blade roast, or pork butt. It’s affordable and becomes buttery tender when slow-cooked. Boneless or bone-in can be used.

Avoid leaner cuts like pork loin or center-cut chops. They don’t have enough fat and can result in dry and tough meat when slow-cooked too long.

Other Ingredients for Pulled Pork Sandwiches

Seasonings – I season the pork simply as the sauce adds love of flavor. You can add additional spices to the pork before browning such as garlic powder to taste or for a smoky flavor, a bit of smoked paprika or a dash of liquid smoke.

Homemade Sauce – The secret to this recipe is in this homemade sauce! The pulled pork is cooked in a tangy BBQ sauce with apple cider vinegar, ketchup, molasses, and the secret ingredient is chili sauce. If you don’t have chili sauce, you can use additional ketchup.

Ingredient Info: Chili Sauce

Chili sauce is not spicy, its similar to tangy ketchup. The brand I buy is Heinz chili sauce and it’s sold near the ketchup.

Do not use a spicy chili sauce in this recipe or it will be too hot! You can make your own homemade chili sauce here.

Coleslaw – I love a good zesty coleslaw with pulled pork sandwiches for fresh flavor. Use store-bought shredded cabbage and the quick creamy coleslaw dressing below. Leftover slaw or dill pickle slaw are also great additions.

Rolls – Anything goes, brioche, hamburger buns, or ciabatta rolls. I like to toast the rolls with garlic butter.

How to Make Crockpot Pulled Pork

This pulled pork recipe is zesty with a homemade sauce.

  1. Mix the sauce ingredients together according to the recipe below.
  2. Brown the pork, place in a 6qt slow cooker and pour the sauce overtop. Cover & cook until tender.
  3. Remove the pork and cooking liquid from the Crockpot. Shred the pork, discarding any large pieces of fat.
  4. Return shredded meat to the pot, stir in the sauce & keep on warm.

What to Serve With Pulled Pork

We most often make this recipe into pulled pork sandwiches but great over mac and cheese, or nachos. Some of our favorite side dishes are typical BBQ fare and make ahead salads.

How to Store Leftovers

  • Keep leftover Crock Pot pulled pork separate from coleslaw in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Reheat on the stovetop or in the microwave for additional bbq pork sandwiches. Keep coleslaw refrigerated for up to 4 days
  • Leftovers can be stored in the freezer for up to 4 months.

Did you love these Pulled Pork Sandwiches? Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below! 

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Sandwiches on a platter
5 from 37 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
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Crockpot Pulled Pork

This is the last pulled pork recipe you'll ever need! shredded pork is tender and delicious in this sweet & tangy sauce!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 5 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 5 hours 50 minutes
Servings 6 sandwiches
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Ingredients  

  • 4 to 5 pounds boneless pork shoulder roast*
  • 8 to 12 rolls for serving
  • additional barbecue sauce for serving optional

Homemade Sauce

  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • ¾ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ½ cup tomato ketchup
  • ½ cup chili sauce like Heinz, or additional ketchup
  • ¼ cup brown sugar firmly packed
  • ¼ cup molasses
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard powder
  • 1 teaspoon pepper

Coleslaw

  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 ½ tablespoon white vinegar or apple cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • ½ teaspoon celery seeds
  • teaspoon salt
  • 5 cups coleslaw mix or shredded cabbage finely shredded

Instructions 

To Make the Pork

  • For the sauce, in a medium bowl, combine onion, apple cider vinegar, ketchup, chili sauce, brown sugar, molasses, Worcestershire sauce, dry mustard powder, and pepper in a bowl.
  • Cut the pork shoulder in half and season with 1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon black pepper. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and brown the pork on all sides.
  • Place the seared pork in a 6-quart slow cooker and pour the prepared sauce over it, ensuring it's well coated.
  • Cook the pork on low for 8-10 hours or high for 5-6 hours or until it's fork-tender (to quickly check it, pull a little piece of pork, it should be very tender). If the pork is not tender, it likely needs more time, cover and cook 1 hour more. While the pork is cooking, prepare the coleslaw below.
  • Remove pork from the slow cooker, discard any large pieces of fat. Remove the liquid from the slow cooker and skim any fat off the top, strain the sauce if desired.
  • Shred the pork using two forks and return it to the Crockpot. Add the sauce a bit at a time to reach desired consistency.
  • Drizzle with a little bit of barbecue sauce if desired.

To Make the Coleslaw

  • Stir together the dressing ingredients in a medium bowl. Add cabbage and toss to combine. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes.

To Serve

  • Place slaw on rolls and pile high with pulled pork.

Video

Notes

Opening the slow cooker lets heat out and will increase the cooking time. Bone in pork works well in this recipe, no changes in cooking times are needed.
Check the pork quickly, if the pork is not tender, cover and cook 1 hour more and check it again.
If the pork is ready early, turn the slow cooker to warm. The pork can rest for a few hours at warm either before or after shredding. 
For a lighter dressing, combine the following:
⅓ cup light mayonnaise
¼ cup plain Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon white vinegar
½ teaspoon sugar
½ teaspoon celery seeds
⅛ teaspoon salt
5 from 37 votes

Nutrition Information

Calories: 639 | Carbohydrates: 70g | Protein: 44g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 125mg | Sodium: 1066mg | Potassium: 1208mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 34g | Vitamin A: 640IU | Vitamin C: 37.4mg | Calcium: 125mg | Iron: 14.7mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Dinner, Entree, Pork, Slow Cooker
Cuisine American

How to Use Leftover Pulled Pork

Add pulled pork to any of these recipes by replacing the chicken, beef, or pork for a delicous new meal!

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open faced Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Sandwiches with writing
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cooked pork in the crockpot and Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Sandwiches with writing

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Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!
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Comments

  1. If using bone in roast do we still need to cut it in half before cooking? If so do we pull the bone out prior to browning or when it is time to shred?

    1. I do recommend cutting it in half, you can leave the bone in or remove it before cooking. If leaving the bone in, you may need to increase the cooking time slightly.