Barbecue BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwiches

Jan 18, 2007 by Eric Seven | 2 Comments| Share it:   

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Intro

There isn’t anything else I love better than a good pulled pork BBQ sandwich made by someone who knows what they’re doing. Ever since Big City BBQ opened up by my work I have been obsessed with doing it myself.

The problem is, I live in a bad part of town. Any sort of specialty smoker or gas grill would get stolen in no time, so all of my BBQ endeavors are handicapped by the fact that all I can have on my porch is a $49 cheap walkabout grill that nobody would want to steal. This is a problem because if you know real BBQ, it’s all about doing it slowly. Charcoal grills burn out in about three hours, and this is not enough time to fully cook BBQ properly. It is, however, enough time to smoke meat well, and so, through many trials, tribulations and misfires (seriously, I’ve been working on this technique for like a year) I have finally discovered the way to heavenly (reproduceable) results. I will document them for you here, in case you are interested in doing it yourself. I know I wish someone would have done this for me.

Authentic Pulled Pork Barbecue

Let me talk about the ingredients a bit.  Tough, otherwise bottom choice meat is perfect for BBQ. The slow cooking process breaks it down and makes it nice and tender. The cut in this thread is a butt. It cost about $6. Crazy, ain’t it?

In regards to the rest: I like match-light charcoal. It’s just easier to start and it ensures an even burn. I like apple wood. It has the best smoke flavor I’ve tried and doesn’t taste gimmicky like mesquite does to me. BBQ buns must be big, and have sesame seeds. Just because, OK?

Sauces, marinades and rubs can be made at home with your own ingredients with a little research and time. Otherwise, pick to suit your preference, but I can highly recommend Stubbs. I’m so in love with Stubbs I don’t even bother making my own stuff right now - although I am planning on doing so in the future. This recipe uses Stubbs pork marinade, Stubbs BBQ Spice Rub and Stubbs Spicy BBQ sauce to finish things off.

Info

  • Prep: 30 mins. - 1 hr.
  • Cook: 3+ hrs.
  • Serves: 8

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Ingredients

  • About 5lb of cheap bone-in pork roast butt or shoulder (whichever is cheaper)
  • Charcoal
  • Wood chips
  • BBQ buns
  • BBQ marinade
  • BBQ spice rub
  • BBQ sauce (optional)

Step 1

Now then. Let's BBQ! Put your roast in a big plastic container and pour the marinade in.

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Step 2

Put this in the fridge overnight. Turn it a few times as you think about it to marinade evenly.

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Step 3

The next day, setup your grill. Line the sides with charcoal. We want indirect heat on our roast. Light it up!

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Step 4

Remove your now marinated roast into a pan. Pour the reserve marinade into a container. Keep it for later.

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Step 5

When your coals are nice and hot and grey and no more chemical starter smell remains, sprinkle some wood chips over the coals. I don't soak the wood chips in water because I tried that and it just doesn't work on charcoal. It's best to just keep them dry. You have to use a lot more wood (like a whole bag) but at least you get results.

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Step 6

This will ignite the wood pretty fast. So quickly put your roast pan in the center of the grill.

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Step 7

And close the lid. This will stifle the fire and the chips will begin to smoke heavily. NOTE: Don't shut any of the vents, top or bottom, of your grill. Just enough air needs to get in to aid combustion. Too little and your fire will die.

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Step 8

Every half hour or so, the wood chips will smolder out and stop smoking.

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Step 9

I just sprinkle more chips in through the grill and some land on the grill itself. This starts up the smoking again. After the first couple of applications, you can also poke a stick around in the charcoal to reactivate the smoke rather than adding more chips, but you're basically going to have to be out there every half hour or so stoking up the smoke.

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Step 10

And so it goes. For three hours.

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Step 11

And now we come to the real secret to making good BBQ when all you have is your cheap charcoal grill. The CROCK POT!

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Step 12

Take your roast off after three hours of smoking. Try and tear it apart with a fork. You won't be able to, it's still too tough.

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Step 13

No, we're going to have to do this right. To do it right, we gotta slow cook it until this meat submits to our will. We accomplish that with between 6-8 hours in the Crock Pot on LOW. Do what you have to do to get the meat in the pot, I had to cut mine in half or so.

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Step 14

This is the part in the process where you add your spice rub. Coat the meat with it:

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Step 15

Then pour in the marinade you reserved.

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Step 16

And now, cook this bad boy for 6-8 hours. You can't really overcook it, or at least I haven't yet. This roast took 8 hours before it was falling apart. You can tell because when you stick a fork in it it truly just melts. I also turned the meat over around 4 hours in so no part of the meat wasn't submerged in the marinade at one point or another.

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Step 17

When your roast has truly had the precious time it needs to become REAL DEAL BBQ, take it out. It should look something like this:

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Step 18

And now the pulled pork part, wherein you "pull" the pork apart into shredded, sandwich-ready yumminess.

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Step 19

When you're all finished, you're left with a big pile of delicious BBQ pork (note the bone at top of picture that this meat simply "fell" off of). Can you believe all this was $6? Well, OK, maybe more like $15 once you factor in the wood and the fixins, but heck - this is a lot of food. I have successfully fed eight people with this.

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Step 20

Plate your pulled barbecue pork or make sandwiches out of it. Top the bbq pulled pork with some sauce - if you like. This is utterly optional. This meat tastes fantastic just like it is. Top with coleslaw, you can find my coleslaw recipe in the appetizer category or use the search feature.

Now that you have learned how to make barbecue bbq pulled pork sandwiches, please be sure to view these other pork recipes. Also, you will love these American recipes.

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2 Comments

user does not have an avatar jcmcdonald28

Jan 04, 2009

making a pulled pork bbq myself has always been kinda intimidating, so I never do it. This recipe was very thoughtfully written out and the pictures were a great help too.  THANK YOU!

user does not have an avatar Pete G

Sep 26, 2010

The slow cooker was key! Thank you! normally I would use my smoker but I didn’t have enough time so I did the grill with wood chips over the flames in aluminum foil. They smoked up nice and the Iowa pork roast cooked great. I also made my own marinade (brown sugar, crushed red pepper, black pepper, garlic, horseradish, liquid smoke ‘only a few drops’, chipotle sauce, Worcestershire and premium Florida OJ). In the slowcooker I used Stubbs BBQ sauce. Awesome end result! smile

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