What’s Cookin’ – Kalua Pulled Pork

My son-in-law makes a wonderful and wonderfully easy shredded pork dish called Kalua Pulled Pork.  Now Kalua Pulled Pork does not contain any alcohol (Kahlua, the coffee flavored liqueur, is spelled differently).  Rather, Kalua Pulled Pork prepared in the crock pot emulates a traditional Hawaiian cooking method where a pit is dug into the ground, a whole pig is covered in banana leaves, the entire thing is covered and allowed to roast in the ground for several hours.

Except for there’s not a whole pig.  Or a hole in the ground.  Or banana leaves.  And we’re not in Hawaii.  Just work with me here, okay?

Here is my son-in-law.  Isn’t he cute?  Really, he’s a mean 7th grade comm arts teacher, and he has the photos to prove it.  He loves to cook, and we share recipes.  He makes Kalua pulled pork each year for our Labor Day get together.

When I saw a Facebook posting by Half Assed Kitchen about making Kalua pork, I thought it would be fun to share it!

My son-in-law’s version takes 4 ingredients: a hunk-o-pork (5 to 7 pound pork butt or shoulder – make sure that whatever you buy will fit into your crockpot), 3 tablespoons liquid smoke, 1 TB Worcestershire sauce, and 2 to 3 TB sea salt (preferably Hawaiian sea salt – this can be hard to find, but Kosher salt will work, too).

Combine the liquid smoke and Worcestershire sauce and rub all over the pork.  Rub the salt all over the coated pork.  Put the pork into the crockpot and cover.  Cook for about 15 to 18 hours on low in a crockpot.  Your house will smell heavenly!

After around 12 to 15 hours, you will need to remove the meat from the crock pot, toss any bones and fat, shred the pork, strain the juices, and put the shredded pork back into the crock pot.  Don’t forget to pour back the lovely, strained juices.  (Yes, I know I have an ancient crockpot).

Here is the finished product!  We love to serve this on buttered and toasted hamburger buns.  The kids like to add a slice of Provolone cheese, but they are funny that way.

Here is a Kalua pulled pork sandwich dinner with side dishes – Rosemary Roasted Potatoes and haricot vert with almonds toasted in brown butter.  Yummy!

Note:  I reduced the salt for this recipe from 4 to 6 TB to 2 to 3 TB.  Salt, depending on how coarse it is, will make this dish too salty.  It is much easier to add salt at the end than it is to try and recover from too much salt.  I have had a few comments from fans preparing this ending up with pork that was too salty!

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7 Responses to What’s Cookin’ – Kalua Pulled Pork

  1. Pingback: The Thing About Salt | Mama's Empty Nest

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