Slow Cooker Pulled Pork


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Slow cooker pulled pork is incredibly juicy, tender and flavorful with the perfect blend of spices. It’s an easy “set it and forget it” slow cooker recipe that’ll you’ll love.

Pulled pork is great for serving a crowd or for weekly meal prep – especially as there’s so much you can do with it! And let’s be honest, pulled pork tacos are the best.

Slow cooker pulled pork is juicy, flavorful and delicious. The best slow cooker recipe!

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

My slow cooker is one of the most used appliances in my kitchen, right after my Vitamix. And it’s perfect for making the best slow cooker pulled pork you’ve ever tasted.

With how busy we all are it’s great to have a recipe that only takes 5 minutes to prep and cooks all on its own. There’s definitely no slaving away in the kitchen with this recipe. In fact, it’s quite possibly the easiest pulled pork recipe that exists.

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Recipe Video

Want to know how to make the best pulled pork? Let me show you. Watch the quick tutorial video below!

The Best Cut of Pork for Pulled Pork

When it comes to making pulled pork, look for a boneless pork shoulder. Sometimes it’s also called a pork butt or Boston butt. You can find bone-in pork shoulders, though I prefer a boneless pork shoulder for more meat in my slow cooker.

Choose a pork shoulder that’s well marbled (for extra flavor), but not too much fat on the edges. You can trim any excess fat off as well.

Slow cooker pulled pork is juicy, flavorful and delicious. The best slow cooker recipe!
Slow cooker pulled pork is juicy, flavorful and delicious. The best slow cooker recipe!

The Most Delicious Pulled Pork Rub

The spice rub I use on this pulled pork is a combination of paprika, oregano, cumin, salt and pepper. It’s flavorful spicy, but not hot spicy. And it tastes just as delicious as my brisket dry rub (though that one is more sweet and smoky).

How to Make Slow Cooker Pulled Pork – 4 Easy Steps

For the most perfectly spiced, cooked, tender, juicy, oozing with flavor pulled pork, follow these four easy steps:

  1. Place the diced onion, garlic and orange juice in the slow cooker
  2. Rub the dried spices on all sides of your pork
  3. Place the pork in the slow cooker and set the timer for 8 hours on low (don’t use high – it’s much more tender cooked low and slow)
  4. Remove the pork to a plate or cutting board and use two forks to shred

You barely have to lift a finger with this recipe and the outcome is the most delicious pulled pork you’ve ever tasted!

Slow cooker pulled pork is juicy, flavorful and delicious. The best slow cooker recipe!

What to Serve with Pulled Pork

Well, first, let’s not forget that you can eat it all on it’s on. But I also love to serve it with:

It’s also great mixed with your favorite barbecue sauce, made into a pulled pork salad or topped on some fried eggs for a savory, protein-packed breakfast. The options are endless. And that’s what makes this slow cooker pulled pork recipe so darn good.

Slow cooker pulled pork is juicy, flavorful and delicious. The best slow cooker recipe!

How to Store Any Leftover Pulled Pork

If you don’t happen to eat it all the pulled pork one sitting, not to worry – it’s delicious meal prep for later in the week. Just place it in a meal prep container. It will last for 4-5 days in the fridge or for 2-3 months in the freezer.

Slow cooker pulled pork is juicy, flavorful and delicious. The best slow cooker recipe!

BEST Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Recipe

4.95 from 134 votes
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 8 hours
Total: 8 hours 5 minutes
Servings: 8 servings
Author: Lisa Bryan


Slow cooker pulled pork is the tastiest recipe for your slow cooker! Pork shoulder that's slow roasted is so tender and juicy it literally falls apart on its own.



  • 4 1/2 pounds pork shoulder
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 orange, juiced


  • Place the diced onion, garlic and orange juice in your slow cooker.
    A slow cooker with onions for pulled pork
  • In a small bowl, mix all of the spices together.
    Spices in a bowl for slow cooker pulled pork
  • Trim all excess fat from the pork shoulder, then rub the spice mixture generously around the entire pork shoulder and place in the slow cooker.
    A slow cooker with pork in it.
  • Turn your slow cooker to low and cook for 8 hours.
  • Once your pork is fully cooked, remove it from the slow cooker to a plate or cutting board and use two forks to shred the pork.
    A plate of pulled pork

Lisa’s Tips

  • You can add some of the remaining liquid from the slow cooker to the pulled pork for extra moisture. 
  • This is a delicious BBQ sauce that’s also paleo and Whole30 friendly. It’s great on this pork!
  • I’ve also heard great things about this slow cooker, if you’re looking to buy a new one.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 251kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 31g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 104mg | Sodium: 411mg | Potassium: 625mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 885IU | Vitamin C: 11.5mg | Calcium: 40mg | Iron: 2.5mg
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: pulled pork, slow cooker pulled pork
Did you make this recipe?Mention @downshiftology or tag #downshiftology!

This recipe was originally posted May 2015, but updated to include new photos and information. 

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About the author

Lisa Bryan

Lisa is a bestselling cookbook author, recipe developer, and YouTuber (with over 2.5 million subscribers) living in sunny Southern California. She started Downshiftology in 2014, and is passionate about making healthy food with fresh, simple and seasonal ingredients.

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Recipe Rating


  1. Love my Pork Shoulder as was prepared by your instructions and It was delicious, plus made easy to do. I received high praises, afterwards and I remembered to share the recipes information with other. For now I am looking forward to try more recipes to enhance my culinary skills and share them. Thank you.5 stars

  2. there does not seem like much liquid added to the slow cooker – for sure this is right? the juice of one orange?

  3. Soooo good! It literally fell off the bone as I was pulling it out of the crockpot. I was so skeptical at first but the pork just released so much juice for it to cook in and it was very very good. Made pulled pork sandwiches with it and I might just make this often from now on cause it was so good5 stars

  4. Absolutely fantastic!! I ended up using chimichurri sauce (1/3 of the bottle), a pineapple salsa(half the container), mixed with one cup of chicken broth to simmer my pork in. The seasonings go so well with the added flavors and the pork does fall right apart. Delisshhh!!5 stars

  5. This is the BEST pulled pork recipe! I hunted for a recipe without bbq sauce and by far this is the best and is a keeper at our house. After separating meat freezes well, and it is very versatile. My kids use a Japanese bbq sauce for an Asian twist, I’ve added it as a topping for pulled pork pizza, we’ve had pulled pork sandwiches and of course tacos. Thank you for sharing your recipes!

    Have also used your coleslaw recipe as a side to this…YUMMY!5 stars

    1. Thanks so much, Ann! I’m happy to hear you love this recipe and my coleslaw as well! And yes, it does freeze well and is perfect for meal prep. Enjoy!

  6. I have been looking for for a good pulled pork recipe made in a slow cooker. I have found it!! This turned out perfectly for me. We had carnitas using Lisa’s cassava flour tortillas and later in the week used it in her stuffed poblano recipe! So good!!5 stars

  7. Wow, Wow and Wow!!!

    So easy to prepare and the flavours are so amazing. I made 10 lbs of pulled pork and this is the BEST recipe! The family loved it- even my 2 year old granddaughter. It’s a keeper-thank you so much 🙏
    Do you have any ribs in the oven recipes?5 stars

    1. Yay, I’m thrilled you (and your family) loved this pulled pork! I do have an awesome ribs recipe (you can use the top search bar). Though I’m sure I’ll be adding more in the future. :)

      1. Thank you Lisa- I did find it after I left the post. I will try it out this week. Thanks again, Sal

  8. This recipe is phenomenal. I’ve made it several times and love to sue a pineapple/papaya salsa in a corn taco. The salsa has cilantro, so once made, it takes two seconds to put them together.5 stars

  9. Hello! I’ve never left a review but it’s worth saying I made this in the InstaPot with half of the meat and obviously half of ingredients, I’m still putting to much orange juice, just because I don’t want to dry. But what I did was I cut the meat in 4ths, and then set it for 45 min in my instapot on high, release the pressure check the mean make sure it was ready, also did this because last time it was dry, the truck was to cut it in 4ths, and it was ready to be shred. My plan was to cut it longer if needed but 45 min did it for me! Thanks for the recipe ♥️

    1. Thanks for leaving a review Claudia! Glad this worked out in the InstaPot and sharing how you did it with us.

  10. This recipe is ABSOLUTELY DELICIOUS!!! I bought a large piece of pork roast on sale for $5.69. (We had just returned from a trip to NY City. (I live in Virginia.) I needed something good and cheap!!!! For the price of one hamburger I had a major source of meat. I baked sweet potatoes and added a quick salad. Everyone was impressed. Thanks very much It wasn’t quick but it was DELICIOUS AND CHEAP!!!5 stars

    1. Yay, I’m happy you loved the recipe! And yes, it really is easy to make. It’s a go-to recipe in my kitchen. :)

  11. I’m 3 for 3 on your recipes today! I made your BBQ sauce to go with this pulled pork for my husband’s birthday and it was so tender and juicy. Absolute winner!5 stars

  12. Hi there, do you use ground cumin or cumin seeds?

    Thanks, going to try this recipe out tomorrow 😊😄

  13. Hello,
    Are the spices measurements correct? 2 tablespoons of paprika? My spice mixture did not look like your picture, it just looked mostly like a small bowl of paprika…
    Thank you

  14. Can’t wait to try this. I noticed no liquid. Is this correct ?  It doesn’t get too dry?

  15. I would like to mention that the recipe time on this page does not change no matter how many servings (lbs of meat) you enter. I ended up starting mine too late and put on high for a couple hours. Hope it is done in time

  16. It was easy to prep for sure once I found the paprika. LoL giving it a shot tonight for dinner let’s see how it goes5 stars

  17. Hi, I’d like to make this ahead of time for 12:30 Easter Lunch as pulled pork on bum with coleslaw. How can I make Saturday and reheat for Sunday? Thanks

    1. Hi Carolynn – you can store it in the fridge and then reheat when you’d like to enjoy it. See my tips in the post above!

  18. I recently tried the Slow Cooker Pulled Pork recipe and it quickly became a new favorite in my household. The recipe was incredibly easy to follow, and the end result was nothing short of delicious. The combination of spices used in the recipe provided the perfect balance of flavor, making it a great addition to salads, bowls, and plates with sides.

    What I loved most about this recipe was how versatile it was. Not only was it great as a main course, but it also made for amazing leftovers. I was able to use it in a variety of dishes throughout the week, making meal prep a breeze.

    Overall, I highly recommend giving this recipe a try. It’s a great option for those who are short on time but still want to enjoy a delicious and satisfying meal. Thank you for sharing such a wonderful recipe!5 stars

  19. I made this pulled pork this evening and it was perfect! I made it plain instead of BBQ which I normally do because I wanted to have options for after I freeze it instead of sandwiches or basic BBQ. We used put it on top of the macaroni I made tonight with BBQ sauce but will probably use it as taco meat next. My roast was a 3lb roast and it was done cooking in about 5 hours on low and was falling apart tender. 5 stars

      1. I’m considering making your slow-cooker maple mustard pulled pork for Easter, since there were no hams left to be had and I’d like to have an Easter holiday where I don’t have to be in the kitchen all day! LOL I have a 4 lb shoulder roast (bone-in) that looks like would work great for your cookbook recipe! My question: What sides with this for Easter would you recommend that I could make the day before?
        I’m horrible when it comes to trying to plan menus and what goes with what, which is why I love when you give suggested sides to serve with your recipes! :)

      2. You can make some veggies such as asparagus or string beans! Then, of course, salads always work well with pulled pork such as coleslaw, broccoli salad, or potato salad :)

  20. I’m thinking of searing the meat first in a cast iron skillet on all sides to get the bark. What are your thoughts on that?

    1. Yes, that’s a great way to get added flavor. Just note that you won’t get crispy edges if you do that before the slow cooker. You’ll only get the crispy edges if you bake or saute after it’s been slow cooked.

  21. Trying this recipe for the first time, so no rating yet, but it’s cooking now and this was easy enough to do, hope it turns out great!  I did have a laugh at the “heard great things about this slow cooker”.  I detest mine, as it was bought spur of the moment when a more upscale one that I had died.  So clicked on your link and there it was my hated slow cooker. There is no way you could cook this pork on low in this slow cooker for 8 hours as there would be nothing left of it.  The low setting is not truly a low setting.  I am guessing you are getting paid for plugging it, but I just wanted to let you know that I have had a bad experience with it and am shopping for a new one.4 stars

  22. So simple!
    That was not my first pulled pork. But the best one so far.
    All our gang liked it very much! It was a main meat dish for NY eve.
    Will do it again!

    One tip: pull the pork while it’s in slowcooker (with wooden tools, not to scrub the surface), so that small pieces are soaked within the juice/sauce.5 stars

  23. Hi there,

    I am going to make this recipe but I only have an instant pot on slow cooker mode. Can you let me know how long it should cook for and the temperature? Also is one orange enough liquid for the instant pot? 

    1. I’m not sure what the instructions would be for an instant pot. You can use the same ingredients but look up a separate recipe for an instant pot pulled pork!

  24. Loved it! Really a 4.5 star..
    This turns out Very Flavorful and Tender.
    We used a pork butt roast.
    I needed to guess how much orange juice and onion size so used 4oz. juice (needed 6-8oz.)
    and used a large onion which was perfect.
    You may want to clarify that in the ingredients :)4 stars

  25. Hi Lisa, I am planning to make this at a vacation home where there is not a slow cooker. Can you do this recipe in the oven? Or a stove top?

    1. I’m sure you can, but I don’t have specific instructions for it. I would look up a different recipe for that!

  26. I spotted some pork loin last night on sale and bought it with the thought of making this. OMG! I made it today and its’ astonishingly juicy & delicious! This is my first time ever cooking this type of meat! Pull it apart? It completely shredded apart on it’s own! I made some tacos with served it with canned beans on the side (not so good) because I didn’t plan in advance; didn’t make my own beans. This was an impulse meal based on your video! I didn’t have the paprika and used cayenne; vegetable broth in stead. I am hoping to make the cassava tortillas in the next few days & other meals with the pulled pork! Just juicy & mouth watering! I couldn’t stop eating it. Another Lisa hit! Thank you! Will be buying your book!5 stars

  27. There’s only 2 of us so I use about 1 1/2-2 pounds of pork carnita cut pork ( basically large chunks of pork roast)  and I do on high for 2 hours and then low about 3 hours and it’s perfect…. So easy and delicious!

  28. Today I made your pulled pork recipe and it’s absolutely delicious. Thank you very much for publishing it.😋😋5 stars