Pulled Pork

Pulled Pork

9 Reviews
From: EatingWell Magazine, June/July 2005

The trick to making pulled pork healthy is to trim the meat well and then skim any extra fat off the sauce after cooking. Serve on a soft whole-grain bun with crisp, cool coleslaw.

Ingredients 12 servings

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  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 medium yellow onions, diced
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 12 ounces beer, preferably lager (1½ cups)
  • ¾ cup ketchup
  • ¾ cup cider vinegar
  • ½ cup whole-grain mustard
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 canned chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, minced, plus 1 tablespoon adobo sauce (see Ingredient Note)
  • 1 5-pound bone-in Boston butt, (see Shopping Tip)


  • Active

  • Ready In

  1. Preheat oven to 300°F. Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-low heat. Add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned and very soft, about 20 minutes.
  2. Increase heat to high; add chili powder, cumin, paprika and cayenne and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 1 minute. Add beer, ketchup, vinegar, mustard, tomato paste, chipotle pepper and adobo sauce; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the sauce is slightly thickened, 10 minutes. Meanwhile, trim all visible fat from the pork.
  3. Remove the pan from the heat and add the pork, spooning sauce over it. Cover the pan, transfer to the oven and bake for 1½ hours. Turn the pork over, cover, and bake for 1½ hours more. Uncover and bake until a fork inserted into the meat turns easily, 1 to 2 hours more.
  4. Transfer the pork to a large bowl and cover with foil. Pour the sauce into a large measuring cup or glass bowl and refrigerate until the fat and sauce begin to separate, 15 minutes. Skim off the fat. Return the sauce to the pan and heat over medium-high until hot, about 4 minutes.
  5. Remove the bone and any remaining pieces of fat from the meat. The bone should easily slip away from the tender meat. Pull the pork apart into long shreds using two forks. Add the hot sauce to the meat; stir to combine. Serve hot.
  • Make Ahead Tip: Cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 2 months.
  • Ingredient Note: Chipotle peppers are dried, smoked jalapeño peppers. Ground chipotle chile pepper can be found in the specialty spice section of most supermarkets. Chipotle chiles in adobo sauce are smoked jalapeños packed in a flavorful sauce. Look for the small cans with the Mexican foods in large supermarkets. Once opened, they'll keep up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator or 6 months in the freezer.
  • Shopping tip: Boston butt (or “Boston-style butt,” “fresh pork butt,” “pork shoulder”) can weigh upwards of 10 pounds, so you may have to ask your butcher to cut one down for this recipe.

Nutrition information

  • Serving size: ¾ cup (about 3 oz.)
  • Per serving: 239 calories; 10 g fat(3 g sat); 2 g fiber; 11 g carbohydrates; 24 g protein; 11 mcg folate; 74 mg cholesterol; 6 g sugars; 791 IU vitamin A; 3 mg vitamin C; 39 mg calcium; 2 mg iron; 498 mg sodium; 501 mg potassium
  • Carbohydrate Servings: ½
  • Exchanges: ½ other carbohydrate, 3½ medium-fat meat

Reviews 9

July 10, 2012
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By: Rebecca Grenier
Great Recipe! I've made this recipe twice now and will make it again! Pulled pork is a family favorite and you know with EatingWell that you aren't getting a calorie bomb. The homemade BBQ sauce is great! I could never find Boston Butt pork, so I went with a shoulder roast or one time a picnic, but that was super fatty so I would stick with the shoulder. Also I could not find whole grain mustard and went with stone ground instead, because the pieces in it looked the biggest.
March 12, 2010
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By: EatingWell User
This is a great recipe if you leave out the vinegar!!!! I read the reviews and tasted the sauce before adding any vinegar and it tasted great. I thought maybe the vinegar would add another element of dimension, so I went ahead and added 1 tblsp. Didn't taste very good after that, so I let the sauce cook down and it turned out ok. The pork was fabulous except there not enough sauce to put over the meat, probably because I cooked it down so much. Still good anyway. Meat was very tender.
March 12, 2010
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By: EatingWell User
Sorry, didn't mention that I only used 1Tblsp of cider vineger. It was just too strong. No way could there be that much vinegar in a recipe. Even when you make dressing with oil and vinegar you don't use that much vinegar!! Anyways, I only used 1 tblsp and it turned out great. Also added 1 tsp salt, hey, there's meat, onions, vegetables, there has to be some salt!
March 12, 2010
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By: EatingWell User
Was very pleased with the results of this recipe. The smell mermeated the house beautifully. The roast fell apart after six hours in the oven (only had a 3 lb) and the sauce absorbed all the liquid. Not only was it great with rice but also will be great with tomorrows dinner with tacos!
March 01, 2010
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By: EatingWell User
This was great! Made sandwiches for dinner. Then used the left overs for Nachos. Wouldn't change anything.. This is a keeper... Celeste
March 01, 2010
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By: EatingWell User
I thought this was a great recipe. After reading the comments on Food Nework. I didn't use the whole can of Chiplote Chiles. But I could have. After making the sandwiches for dinner. I used the leftovers on Nachos. This is a keeper!!!! C. Roehm
January 01, 2010
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By: EatingWell User
This is delicious! Tangy, sweet, smoky and spicy. I've made it for parties and it is now the most requested dish I make.
November 22, 2009
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By: EatingWell User
This recipe is great. It does taste of vinegar, but that is what Carolina barbecue is supposed to taste like. This recipe was just like the sandwiches that I got in North Carolina when there on vacation a couple of years ago. You can use a little less vinegar if you wish. My only difficulty was really getting the fat off of it. A pork should has ribbons of fat throughout the interior. Be prepared to spend a long time with a sharp knife really cutting it apart and getting at all that fat.
October 30, 2009
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By: EatingWell User
I followed the recipe exactly, except I cooked it in a crock pot for about 6 hours. The meat was very tender and falling apart. The sauce was terrible (too much vinegar, etc.). I tossed it and used a homemade barbecue sauce. Would not make again. Sandra
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