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Nothing says summer like some outstanding Apple Cider Barbecue Pulled Pork. Its so tender from the brine and flavorful from the dry rub & slow cooking.

Apple Cider Barbecue Pulled Pork

Nothing says summer like some outstanding Apple Cider Barbecue Pulled Pork. Its so tender from the brine and flavorful from the dry rub & slow cooking.
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 6 hrs
Marinate time 12 hrs
Total Time 6 hrs 20 mins
Servings 8 servings
Calories 648

Ingredients

brine:

  • 4-7 pound pork roast (pork shoulder or pork butt, bone-in recommended)
  • 4 cups apple cider (I used Trader Joe's unfiltered Honey Crisp Apple Cider)
  • 2 cups water
  • ¼ cup Worcestershire sauce
  • ¼ cup packed brown sugar
  • ¼ cup kosher salt

barbecue:

Instructions

Brine:

  • Rinse pork roast under cold running water. In large oven bag or airtight container, combine apple cider, water, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, and salt. Mix until sugar and salt have dissolved. Add pork, cover, and refrigerate (overnight is best).

Cooking directions:

  • When you're ready to cook your pork, preheat grill to 225 degrees F. If you have a meat injector, take some of the brine and inject it into the roast (this step is optional). Remove the roast from the brine mixture but save it for the cooking process.
  • Mix the dry rub and generously cover your roast using all of it.
  • Put the roast on the grill with the fat side up and cook for 3 hours. After each full hour, use a silicon brush to mop the brine liquid onto the roast to keep it moist. You can discard the brine after the first 3 hours of roasting.
  • Use an aluminium foil pan or make a boat out of heavy duty aluminum foil and place the roast on top. Increase the temperature to 250 degrees F and roast until the internal temperature reaches at least 190 degrees F, about 5-6 hours total.
  • Transfer the roast to a cutting board and allow to rest for at least 20 minutes. This will allow the meat to get to the ideal final temperature of 195 - 200F. Transfer any of the cooking juices in your foil to a measuring cup. When the meat is cool enough to handle, separate the tender meat from the bone and fat. Spoon off any fat that has risen to the top of the cooking liquid or use one of those measuring cups that pours from the bottom. Moisten shredded meat with cooking liquid.
  • Serve with soft buns and your favorite sauce along with your favorite sides for a complete meal!

Notes

I recommend using a large bag when you brine because you can squeeze out all the air to ensure your roast is completely covered.
Cooking tips:
  • A bone-in roast with some fat on the outside is recommended as it will give you the most tender moist shredded pork. You will need pork shoulder or pork butt in order to make pulled pork. A tenderloin or loin roast will not work.
  • Using a large oven bag like the kind you would use to roast a turkey is great for the brine. If you are able to squeeze out all of the air, the entire roast will be covered in the brine.
  • Unfiltered apple cider is fantastic in this recipe and adds a ton of flavor.
  • I did not use apple cider vinegar in this recipe, however you could add a small amount to the brine and it will tenderize the meat even more!
  • Although 145 degrees Fahrenheit is the standard for most pork roasts, when roasting a pork shoulder or pork butt to make pulled pork, it’s also possible to roast/smoke until it reaches an internal temperature of approximately 195 degrees Fahrenheit, which can be more optimal for pulling.

Nutrition

Calories: 648kcal | Carbohydrates: 21g | Protein: 56g | Fat: 35g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 178mg | Sodium: 3772mg | Potassium: 1206mg | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 25IU | Vitamin C: 3.9mg | Calcium: 79mg | Iron: 2.9mg