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Dr Pepper Pulled Pork

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close up overhead shot of dr pepper pulled pork in a crockpot
Slow-cooked Dr Pepper Pulled Pork is tender and juicy, thanks to the special ingredient: Dr Pepper. Serve this barbecue classic with coleslaw and deli rolls for a quick and easy meal.
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Slow cooking this Dr Pepper Pulled Pork recipe in soda tenderizes the meat while honey, brown sugar and smoked paprika infuse it with classic barbecue flavor. Serve it as the star of the show at a weekend barbecue, top it with coleslaw in a yummy sandwich, and even use it to fill tacos or top a baked potato. 

Round out your barbecue with this fun twist on corn, Fried Corn on the Cob. If you’re looking for more new recipes for time-saving slow cooker meals, you have to try our Crockpot Crack Chicken.

dr pepper pulled pork sandwich on a plate with sides

MORE PORK RECIPES:
Pork Tenderloin | Fried Pork Chops


DR PEPPER PULLED PORK INGREDIENTS

dr pepper pulled pork raw ingredients that are labeled

You will need:

  • 4 to 5 pounds pork butt or pork shoulder
  • 1 medium-size sweet yellow onion (1 ½ cups), sliced thin
  • 1 ½ cups or 12-ounce bottle/can of Dr. Pepper
  • 2 tablespoons liquid smoke 
  • 1 tablespoon fresh minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • ¼ cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder 
  • 2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • 1 cup of your favorite barbecue sauce
  • Hamburger buns or deli rolls
  • 15-ounce container of coleslaw, optional

SUBSTITUTIONS AND ADDITIONS

DR PEPPER: Any dark soda including coca cola or root beer will work in this recipe. The soda works to tenderize the meat and keep it moist and juicy. Avoid diet Dr. Pepper or other diet sodas, as the sugar substitutes don’t stand up to the heat well, and tend to leave an unpleasant aftertaste.

PORK BUTT OR SHOULDER: Although butt and shoulder are the best cut of meat for pulled pork, a pork loin roast is also a good choice. Tenderloin is leaner and won’t shred as well.

SPICY: If you are a fan of spicy pulled pork, you can add your favorite hot sauce, a dash of cayenne pepper or even smokey chipotle peppers to the slow cooker as well.

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HOW TO MAKE THIS DR PEPPER PULLED PORK RECIPE

PRO TIP: To make cleanup easier, line the bottom of the slow cooker with aluminum foil or a crockpot liner, which can be found in most grocery stores.

STEP ONE: Lay the sliced onion evenly in the bottom of a 6 to 7 quart slow cooker.

dr pepper pulled pork process shot of onion slices in a crockpot

STEP TWO: Place the pork on top of the onions then pour the Dr Pepper over the meat. 

dr pepper pulled pork process shot of pork in a crockpot

STEP THREE: Mix the liquid smoke, honey, and garlic in a small bowl. Evenly cover the pork with the sauce with a basting brush or pastry brush.

PRO TIP: If you don’t have a brush, you can spread the sauce evenly using the back of a spoon.

STEP FOUR: In another small bowl stir together the brown sugar, onion powder, kosher salt, smoked paprika, black pepper, and cumin.

PRO TIP: Smoked paprika has a distinctive, smoky flavor that adds an authentic barbecue taste to any dish. Along with the liquid smoke, it will make your slow cooker pork taste like it came from a smoker.

STEP FIVE: Evenly sprinkle the dry seasoning mixture over the smoke sauce.

dr pepper pulled pork process shot of pork seasoned in a crockpot

STEP SIX: Cook on high heat for 4 hours or low heat for 6 hours. When pork is done, it will be tender and easy to shred.

STEP SEVEN: Shred the pork in the slow cooker or in a large serving dish or on a cutting board using two forks or tongs.

PRO TIP: To save time (and your hands!), you can also shred pork using either a stand mixer or sturdy hand mixer.

STEP EIGHT: Add the BBQ sauce and toss with the tongs to coat the shredded meat evenly.

dr pepper pulled pork process shot of pork shredded with bbq sauce in a crockpot

HOW TO SERVE

Give yourself a night off from cooking by tossing the ingredients for this pulled pork recipe in the slow cooker earlier in the day and serving the finished pork on hamburger buns with store-bought coleslaw and chips for a new family favorite. Or if you’d prefer a homemade meal, try it with our Classic Coleslaw and Potato Salad, with Banana Pudding Cake for dessert.

There are plenty of great ideas to use this versatile recipe. Skip the BBQ sauce and use it to top nachos or fill tacos for another delicious dinner option. With or without the BBQ sauce, it makes a tasty baked potato topping. Depending on how many people you are serving, you can use this pork for 2 to 3 meals. This great recipe is designed with lazy cooks in mind.

STORAGE

IN THE FRIDGE: Store leftover pulled pork in an airtight container for up to five days

IN THE FREEZER: Freeze leftover pork in a container or freezer bag for up to four months. Thaw in the refrigerator the day before you plan to reheat and serve it.

close up overhead shot of dr pepper pulled pork in a crockpot

This juicy, flavorful slow cooker Dr Pepper pulled pork is an easy and delicious meal that is so simple to make with only a few minutes of prep! You’ll love the tender juicy meat, perfect smoky taste, and all the ways you can serve it! 

FAQ

What can I use pulled pork for?

Pulled pork can be used for so many different meals. Try pork sandwiches, pork tacos or even pork sliders.

How do I shred pork?

To shred pork, use two forks. Holding one in each hand, use them to pull the pork apart.

Can I freeze the shredded pork?

You can store the leftover slow cooker Dr. Pepper pulled pork in the freezer for up to four months.

MORE RECIPES YOU’LL LOVE

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close up overhead shot of dr pepper pulled pork in a crockpot

Dr Pepper Pulled Pork

5 from 4 votes
Slow-cooked Dr Pepper Pulled Pork is tender and juicy, thanks to the special ingredient: Dr Pepper. Serve this barbecue classic with coleslaw and deli rolls for a quick and easy meal.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 6 hours
Total Time 6 hours 10 minutes
Servings 9

Ingredients
  

  • 1 medium-size sweet yellow onion sliced thin (1 ½ cups)
  • 4 to 5 pounds pork butt or pork shoulder
  • 12 ounces Dr Pepper 1 ½ cups
  • 2 tablespoons liquid smoke
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon garlic fresh minced
  • ¼ cup light brown sugar packed
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • 1 cup your favorite BBQ sauce
  • hamburger buns or deli rolls
  • 15 ounces coleslaw optional

Instructions
 

  • Line a 6 to 7 quart slow cooker with aluminum foil or a crock pot liner.
  • Evenly layer the thinly sliced onion in the bottom of the slow cooker.
  • Place the pork on top of the onions then pour the Dr Pepper over the pork.
  • In a small mixing bowl add the liquid smoke, honey, and minced garlic. Stir to combine the ingredients. Use a basting brush to evenly brush the smoke sauce onto the pork.
  • In a small mixing bowl combine the brown sugar, onion powder, kosher salt, smoked paprika, black pepper, and cumin.
  • Evenly sprinkle the dry seasoning on top of the pork.
  • Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6 hours.
  • When the pork has finished cooking, either leave the pork in the crockpot or transfer the meat to a large baking dish. Carefully use 2 forks or a set of tongs to shred the pork.
  • Pour the BBQ sauce over the top of the shredded pork. Then use tongs to toss the pork and sauce.
  • Serve on either hamburger buns or deli rolls, and coleslaw.

Nutrition

Calories: 397kcal | Carbohydrates: 32g | Protein: 39g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 121mg | Sodium: 1003mg | Potassium: 917mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 26g | Vitamin A: 339IU | Vitamin C: 20mg | Calcium: 78mg | Iron: 3mg
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Proudly Prepared by the Spaceships Kitchen

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