Meats Slow Cooker

Crock-Pot Cider Pulled Pork

You can make some absolutely decadent, tender, and delicious pulled pork right in your Crock-pot. This stuff is packed with flavor and never dry, and our version brings in the subtle and delicious tang of apple cider and apple cider vinegar!

My husband and his friends were sending around a meme not too long ago that says that without a doubt, when men get to a certain age, they become devoted acolytes of one of three things: cigars, whiskey, or smoking meat. There was a chorus of “guilty” all around, and in Scott’s case, it’s smoking meat {although truth be told, we both like collecting and sampling spirits}. He makes some truly delicious and decadent stuff in his smoker.

But our heat this past summer and fall in Florida has just been oppressive. The last thing anyone wants to do is check on the smoker for six or eight hours when it’s a hundred degrees and a thousand percent humidity.

Luckily, we have this recipe in back-up, and that’s my Crock-pot Cider Pulled Pork!

It’s one of our favorites. It’s great for sandwiches and makes plenty of leftovers that you can use in more sandwiches, tacos, breakfast hash, and… there’s not a lot that doesn’t benefit from a delicious bit of pulled pork.

Here’s what we use in ours:

  • 2 pork tenderloins
  • 1 cup apple juice
  • 2/3 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 oz maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • Santa Maria seasoning
  • Your favorite barbecue sauce (we use Stubb’s!)

If you don’t have Santa Maria seasoning of some kind (my favorite is Susie-Q, of course), it’s a combination of fairly equal parts salt, parsley, garlic powder, onion powder, and black pepper. We add a dash of paprika and cayenne when we make our own, and I’ll share the recipe for that soon.

Most recipes call for pork shoulder or pork butt. We’ll use that in the smoker, but this recipe has a marinade, so you can use a leaner cut of meat. I usually throw in a couple of pork tenderloins. Those can get dry really quickly in the smoker, but slow-cooked in a Crock-pot with the marinade we make, and they’re delicious. Less fat for me to pull off and shred out.

I’ve seen this recipe made a lot with soda as well. Most of the breakdown this recipe gets is from the cider vinegar, but one of the other reasons people use Coke in their pulled pork is because you get that sugar and caramelization. We use the maple syrup for that! And depending on your barbecue sauce, you’ll get that, too.

We use Stubb’s or Duke’s primarily when it comes to barbecue sauces. We like the flavor and the tang, that they don’t use high fructose corn syrup, and that when you read through their ingredients, everything is spelled out with a focus on solid staple ingredients, not unpronounceable additives.

Okay, so how do we make this?

Start by placing the pork in your Crock-pot and lightly seasoning them with your Santa Maria seasoning, or your seasoning of choice.

In a bowl or large measuring cup, combine the apple juice, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, and Worcestershire sauce. Pour over the pork in the Crock-pot. The pork doesn’t have to be submerged when you’re done. Drizzle a little barbecue sauce over the top.

Cover the Crock-pot and let it go! The best way to cook this is at low for eight hours, but you can also cook on high for four if you’re in a rush, and then go back to low once you’ve shredded it.

When the pork has finished cooking, remove the pork, shred it with a pair of forks or with meat claws if you’re fancy, and return it to the marinade. Let it cook through for another 30-45 minutes on low before you shred it again and then remove the meat from the Crock-Pot.

Put the meat in a bowl and shred with two forks. Add a little of the marinade if it’s dry. Then mix in some more barbecue sauce.

Serve and enjoy however you like! Our favorite right now is pulled pork sandwiches with some tangy slaw on top, but Scott also mixes this pulled pork, yellow rice {get my recipe here}, shredded cheese, and a little more sauce into a killer pulled pork burrito!

Here’s the recipe card:

Crock-Pot Cider Pulled Pork

You can make some absolutely decadent, tender, and delicious pulled pork right in your Crock-pot. This stuff is packed with flavor and never dry, and our version brings in the subtle and delicious tang of apple cider and apple cider vinegar!
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Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 8 hrs
Total Time 8 hrs 10 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 8

Equipment

  • 1 Slow-Cooker

Ingredients
  

  • 2 ea pork tenderloins
  • 1 cup apple juice or cider
  • 2/3 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 oz maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • Santa Maria seasoning
  • your favorite BBQ sauce

Instructions
 

  • Place the pork loins in your slow cooker and lightly season them with your Santa Maria seasoning (or your seasoning of choice).
  • In a bowl or large measuring cup, combine the apple juice, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, and Worcestershire sauce. Pour over the tenderloins. They don't have to be submerged when you're done. Drizzle the pork loins with your BBQ sauce of choice.
  • Cover the slow cooker and let cook on low for 8 hours. You can cook high on 4-6 if you're in a rush, but the best way to cook this is low and slow!
  • About 30 minutes before finished, remove the pork from the slow cooker and shred with a pair of forks or meat claws. Return to the slow cooker and let cook for another 30-45 minutes.
  • Remove the meat from the slow cooker to a bowl and shred with two forks. Add in a little of the marinade if the meat is dry, and then mix in some more barbecue sauce (measurements here aren't exact - it really depends on the cut of meat).
  • Serve and enjoy!
Keyword crockpot, pork, slow cooker
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

About the ChefKristin

Career Army officer with a tendency toward workaholism. On the side, self taught cook, carpenter, and gardener, working to build a beautiful life for my family. Trying to tilt my balance in the right direction.

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