Quick lesson if you're unfamiliar with variations of barbecue - Carolina pulled pork BBQ (my personal favorite southern comfort food) is the vinegar or mustard-based kind. If you're in eastern Carolina, you'll likely find a strictly vinegar-based 'cue. The farther south you go, the more mustardy the BBQ becomes. I love the mustard-vinegar flavors of say, South Carolina BBQ, so that's what I went with. Now, western BBQ is the red 'cue...that ketchup-y jolly rancher tasting junk you'd find in Texas...no offense, Texans! Just ain't my bag.
If you have a slow cooker or basic crock pot...it's now mandatory that you make this. Yes, mandatory. Because obviously an amateur blogger's command is something you should take very seriously. But no joke guys, this Carolina style pulled pork is ruh-dick-you-lus.
First of all, preparing in a slow cooker makes the pork totally melt. And the mustard/vinegar BBQ sauce (which is only comprised of 6 ingredients by the way) is a breeze to whisk together right before tossing it in. It's made with totally clean, real ingredients and packs the same amazeballs flavor. The pork soaks up the BBQ sauce for 8 hours and your house smells like frickin' Paula Dean's kitchen. BONUS!
I served this to my man friend (who hails from North Carolina and is no stranger to the finger-licking flavors of traditional Carolina BBQ) and he flipped his shiz. I mean, with every bite he was like "oh my god" "this is amazing" "this is the best meal you've ever made" "nkgjhsiudhlibjnsfdlkhg." Literally...half of his praises I couldn't understand because it was some strange combination of words and grunting. I think he broke a sweat trying to shovel it in his pie hole so quickly. Needless to say, seconds were had. And thirds.
Let me just brag about my new slow cooker for a hot second. I recently got the Ninja Cooking System, and oh em gee. If I could marry that thing I would. It's of course got the basic slow cooker function, but it also has a stove top/searing function, a steaming function and an oven/roasting function. Like...wtf?? This seems like witch craft to me. It makes me feel powerful...like I can do anything. Amazing how a crock pot has instilled a whole new sense of recklessness in me. What? I can bake shit in my crock pot? Holy hell! I feel like I might as well be able to go out and rob a bank or do 20,000 push ups or take on Arnold Schwarzenegger in a fight.
Sidebar: I served this pulled pork with butternut squash puree, parmesan asparagus and paleo cornbread (which I will post the recipe for very soon). It was amazing. OH and I also topped my portion of pulled pork off with a few pomegranate seeds...which was the bomb. Provided for a few sweet bites here and there and I loved every one!!
- 3 lbs pork shoulder
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 cup spicy brown mustard (Dijon would also be good)
- 2 tbsp raw honey
- 2 tbsp grass-fed butter, melted
- 2 tbsp coconut aminos
- 1 tbsp cayenne
- Place pork shoulder in your slow cooker.
- Whisk all remaining ingredients together and pour over the pork.
- Close the lid to your slow cooker, and set to LOW for 8 hours.
- When done, take out the pork and shred with two forks. Place shredded pork back in the slow cooker and mix it up with the delicious saucy juices. At this point, your slow cooker should be on its "warm" or "buffet" setting.