Smoked Pulled Pork Recipe
This Smoked Pulled Pork is brined in apple cider (or apple juice if preferred) to give it a fruity, and spicy flavor. Brining, before smoking, gives deep flavor and moisture to the pork shoulder, giving you succulent, spicy and flavorful meat. The hickory wood chips also add a strong defined flavor to the pork.
Prep Time: 12 hrs. 10 min
Cook Time: 8 hrs.
Total Time: 20 hrs. 10 min
Makes: 20 servings
1 8-lb. pork shoulder roast
1-quart apple cider, or apple juice, more as needed
1 white onion, chopped
For the Sugar – Spice Rub:
5 tbsp. muscovado sugar
5 tbsp. white sugar
2 tbsp. kosher salt
2 tbsp. smoked paprika
1 tbsp. garlic powder
1 tbsp. onion powder
1 tbsp. freshly ground black pepper
½ tbsp. freshly ground white pepper
3 cups hickory chips, or more as needed
- Place the pork shoulder in a large stock pot and add enough of the apple cider to cover the meat. Ensure the pork is fully submerged in the apple cider.
- Make the sugar-spice rub by combining the chopped onions, onion powder, garlic powder, smoked paprika, muscovado sugar, white sugar, salt, and black pepper, in a small bowl.
- Mix about a ¼ cup of this sugar rub into the cider, and reserve the remaining rub.
- Cover the stock pot with aluminum foil and chill for 12 hours.
- Prepare the smoker to about 210F, and add enough hickory wood chips to the smoker.
- Pour the apple-cider brine into the water pan of the smoker, and add more chopped onion and about a ¼ cup more of the sugar-spice rub to the water pan.
- Spread the remaining rub over the pork shoulder, and then transfer the pork to the center of the smoker.
- Smoke the pork for a total of 8 hours, until very tender.
- Be sure to monitor the hickory wood chips and liquid in the water pan, adding more wood and water, as needed.
- Transfer the pork to a large platter and cool for about half an hour, just prior to shredding.
- Enjoy in a soft bun with your favorite BBQ sauce!
Hickory wood adds a strong flavor to the pork, so be careful not to use it excessively.
Nutrition Facts per Serving:
Total Calories: 442 kcal. Protein 23.7 g, Carbohydrates 15.2 g, Fat 32.1 g, Sodium 2691 mg, Cholesterol 104 mg.