Easy Instant Pot BBQ Pulled Pork is tender, juicy, quick to make and only calls for a simple ingredients. Best part, it's make-ahead and freezer friendly.
My goal for the Fall is to share 1-2 Instant Pot® recipes per month. I have a lot of readers who are new to using a pressure cooker and I want to provide you with some simple recipes that will help make the Instant Pot® worth the loss of storage space.
There are a number of recipes that shorten the overall cooking time when you make them in the Instant Pot® as opposed to the slow-cooker, stove top or oven. Instant Pot BBQ Pulled Pork is a perfect example. 4 lbs. of raw pork shoulder transformed into perfectly tender and juicy BBQ pulled pork sandwiches in about an hour, well.. you've gotta admit, it's impressive.
This Instant Pot BBQ Pulled Pork uses simple ingredients that could very well be hanging out in your kitchen at this exact moment. Pile it high on a bun and top with your favorite BBQ sauce, slaw and pickles ...
You guys, there are no words.
Let's break it down...
What Is An Instant Pot:
An Instant Pot is a programmable pressure cooker that speeds up cooking time by 2x-10x. It is different from a traditional stove-top pressure cooker because you do not have to manually regulate the pressure/time. I like to describe it as a slow-cooker on steroids.
How Do You Make Pulled Pork In An Instant Pot?
First, slice the pork shoulder into 6 equal chunks.
Next, mix up your dry rub. The rub included in the recipe is made up of basic spices that you most likely already have on hand (cumin, coconut or brown sugar, ground mustard, garlic powder, smoked paprika, salt and pepper). Use your hands to cover ALL SIDES of the pork shoulder pieces with spice rub.
Then, sear the meat on each side (using the Instant Pot's sauté function) to ensure that the flavor from the dry rub doesn't go anywhere.
Finally, add your liquid (beef broth, apple cider vinegar and tomato paste) and cook the meat for 50 minutes at high pressure. Perform a quick release and use 2 forks to shred the meat. Serve immediately or store for later!
FAQ's About Easy Instant Pot BBQ Pulled Pork:
Can I use Frozen Pork Shoulder to make this recipe?
Yes, but you will need to plan for an additional 40-45 minutes of cook time. It is also important that the frozen pork has already been chopped into smaller chunks prior to have being put in the freezer. A large frozen chunk of meat will not cook well using this method. If possible, I recommend thawing the pork shoulder overnight and following recipe directions.
Can I Make Instant Pot BBQ Pulled Pork In Advance?
Yes! Instant Pot BBQ Pulled Pork will keep in the refrigerator in an airtight container for 3-4 days with no issues.
I don't have an Instant Pot, can this recipe be made in a slow-cooker?
Yes! It's just going to take a little extra time. Follow the recipe directions (sear the meat in a skillet instead of the Instant Pot), but alter the cooking time to 6-8 hours on low.
Can Instant Pot BBQ Pulled Pork be Frozen?
Absolutely. I often have extra (this recipe makes a lot) and freeze it to use on a night when I don't have time to make dinner from scratch. Carefully placed cooked/cooled BBQ Pulled Pork into a gallon size Ziplock bag. Remove air, seal and label. The pork will keep in the freezer for 3-4 months without any issues.
Can A Pork Loin Be Substituted for a pork shoulder?
You can substitute pork loin, but be aware that a loin contains much less fat than a pork shoulder and the result could potentially be a dryer pulled pork. I recommend cooking the loin for 50 minutes at high pressure as opposed to the recommended 55 minutes.
What Type of BBQ Sauce Do You Recommend be served with Instant Pot BBQ Pulled Pork?
Finding store-bought BBQ sauce that doesn't contain high-fructose corn syrup and other funky additives can be challenging at best. I personally like THIS sauce made by The New Primal. It's sweetened with pineapple juice and is Whole30 approved!
What Do I Serve With Instant Pot BBQ Pulled Pork?
I always serve pulled pork with THIS healthy coleslaw , extra BBQ sauce, pickles and fresh sliced peaches on the side!
- ¼ cup, coconut sugar, divided (you can sub brown sugar)
- 2 tsp smoked paprika
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp mustard powder
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- Kosher salt and black pepper
- (1) 3.5 - 4 lb. boneless pork shoulder, trimmed of excess fat and cut into 6 pieces
- 1 Tbs olive oil
- ¾ cup beef stock (chicken stock or water can be subbed)
- ½ cup apple cider vinegar
- 3 Tbs tomato paste
- 12 whole-wheat hamburger buns
- OPTIONAL: Pickles, BBQ sauce and Slaw for garnish
- In a small bowl combine 2 Tbs coconut sugar, smoked paprika, garlic powder, mustard powder, ground cumin, 1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon black pepper. Rub the spice mixture all over the pork.
- Turn on the Instant Pot® to the sauté setting. Add the olive oil and once hot, add the pork in 2 batches, turning until browned on all sides (about 2 minutes per side). Switch the Instant Pot® to warming mode and transfer the seared pork to a plate.
- To the Instant Pot®, add beef stock, apple cider vinegar, tomato paste, remaining 2 Tbs. coconut sugar, 1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon black pepper. Whisk to combine. Add the pork back to the sauce. Set pressure cook on high for 55 minutes.
- After 55 minutes, perform a quick release. Carefully unlock/open the lid and transfer the pork to a large bowl.
- Switch the Instant Pot ® to the sauce setting and simmer the juices until reduced by half, about 10 minutes. As juices are reducing, use a spoon to remove any fat that floats to the top.
- Use 2 forks to shred the pork.
- Add desired amount of reduced cooking liquid to the shredded pork. Serve in hamburger buns with BBQ sauce.
- BBQ sauce can have lots of crazy ingredients. I recently tried THIS ONE from The New Primal and enjoyed it. It's a bit pricy, but I liked the real-food ingredient list.
- The hamburger bun and garnishes are not included in the nutrition information.
Keywords: Instant Pot, BBQ, Pulled Pork
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Recipes To Serve With Easy Instant Pot BBQ Pulled Pork: