Oh, my. Oh, my my. This was good. Pulled pork barbecue is a favorite around here and I've tried making it several ways in the slow cooker (Yes, slow cooker---I admit that I'm not competing with the serious BBQ guys.) They are all good. I haven't made any that we didn't eat. But last night's recipe ranks right up at the top.
The root beer gives the meat a subtle flavor. And by sheer luck, the brands of root beer and barbecue sauce I bought were a perfect combination. The many choices of barbecue sauces lined up on the store shelf were overwhelming. I just picked one that sounded like it would taste good. And it did. The only extra thing I did was to poke holes in the pork loin with a big fork before pouring on the root beer. I read that others had done it because the meat gets more flavor into it, so I stabbed mine a few times, too. Have no clue if it makes much difference.
Here is what I did:
Slow Cooker Pulled Pork
1 pork loin half (3 to 4 lb)
House Seasoning* (or salt & pepper)
1 12-oz bottle root beer (I used IBC root beer)
1 18-oz. bottle barbecue sauce (I used Sweet Baby Ray's Honey Barbecue Sauce)
Trim the white fat/tissue off the bottom of the pork loin if there is any. Place it in a large slow cooker and rub with House Seasoning (or sprinkle with salt & pepper.) Pour root beer over pork. Cover and cook on LOW for about 7-8 hours.
Remove from slow cooker and, using two forks, shred meat. Pour root beer and juices from cooker and discard. Return meat to slow cook and stir in the whole bottle of BBQ sauce. Cover and cook on LOW for about 30-60 minutes. Serve on toasted buns.
*House Seasoning: Mix 1/4 cup salt, 1 tbsp. black pepper & 1 tbsp. garlic powder. Store in an air-tight container, such as an empty spice bottle.
Still working on re-stocking our freezer with quick meals, so after supper I packed the remainder of the pork into 2 pint containers, labeled them, and popped them into the freezer for later.
I posted a ginger ale version of slow cooker pulled pork a few months ago and it's really good, too. I will likely decide which one to make based on which soft drink is in the pantry. We liked them both.