Grill Outlet > BBQ Pork Recipes > A Pulled Pork Recipe

A Pulled Pork Recipe

This Pulled Pork recipe is intended for a relatively small gathering. Make it in a barbecue smoker, or a lidded grill – the smoke is a vital part of the flavor.

A big gathering might require something as massive as a whole pig, smoke-roasted for 14 hours on a rotisserie over a barbecue pit.

But this version is aimed at people who want to learn how to make pulled pork in a barbecue smoker or lidded grill with indirect heat using wood chips and a smoker box, or small logs on a charcoal fire.

Whatever method, it takes time and patience to make pulled pork via – it’s not something that can be made on the spur of the moment like chicken wings can. But the result more than makes up for the time invested.

Read more about regional Carolinas barbecue here.

I made up the vinegar basting sauce based on others used for pulled pork recipes, but try one of the following


If you are using a BBQ smoker, choose your BBQ wood, either logs or wood chips. I use applewood logs, but try hickory, alder or oak logs – or chips soaked in water.

Amazon stock a wide selection of BBQ wood chips and smoke boxes

a boneless shoulder of pork, 5lbs/2kg (about)

Olive oil

BBQ rub for this pulled pork recipe

  • 2 tbsp salt
  • 2 tbsp paprika
  • 1/2 tbsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp cayenne
  • Mix these together in a small bowl.

Vinegar basting sauce

  • 1/2 cup any bourbon
  • 2 tbsp molasses sugar
  • 1 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 1 cup of water
  • 2 tbsp salt
  • 1/2 tbsp black pepper

Just mix these together in a measuring jug or whatever.


  1. Drizzle the meat with olive oil and evenly distribute the rub over the surface – refrigerate for anything up to 24 hours.
  2. Prepare a medium charcoal fire in the smokers’ firebox, and keep adding charcoal and wood periodically to keep a consistent temperature. The same goes if you are using the indirect grilling method with a lidded gas or charcoal grill. Add the pre-soaked hardwood chips in their foil pouch or a smoker box.
  3. Adjust the vents until the internal temperature is 225F to 250F (110C to 130C) and roast the meat for 120 and 90 minutes per pound respectively 7 to 10 hours is how long it should take before the meat reaches the falling apart stage, depending on the weight of the meat.
  4. The internal temperature of the meat should be around 180F, use a digital meat thermometer if need be.
  5. If anything the test of the barbecue chef’s skill is in keeping the temperature down. On the other hand, when the lid is opened on a smoker or grill most of the heat and smoke will be lost increasing the cooking time. Consistency of temperature is key, so don’t open it too often.
  6. Baste with the vinegar sauce, or some other BBQ sauce 4/5 times over the last couple of hours.
  7. When it’s finished the pulled pork recipe should be so tender that it is practically falling apart – at this point pull the meat apart and shred it. When you cut into it you should see a red ring around the outside half-inch or so of the meat where the smoke has penetrated right in. The taste of the pork will be delicious, tangy and smoky. Serve it in sandwiches made with soft white bread buns, along with coleslaw, red slaw, french fries, potato salad, etc.

There’s more background info and serving suggestions on the Carolinas BBQ page.

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