This BBQ Pulled Pork Loin is a simple, quick dinner to prep and cooks all day without any fuss.
With just a handful of ingredients and a slow cooker, you can make tender, flavorful pulled pork using a pork loin. Plus, since it’s mostly hands-off cooking, it’s perfect to let cook all day and come back to delicious barbecue pork.
This pulled pork is wonderful piled onto buns as pulled pork sandwiches, or served alongside pork and beans. The only ingredients you’ll need are the pork loin roast, BBQ sauce, an onion, some garlic powder, chicken stock (or water), and salt. There are more details about using a pork loin to make pulled pork below, or you can click here to jump down to the recipe.
- Can I Make Pulled Pork With A Pork Loin?
- Tips For Tender Slow Cooked Pork Loin
- How Long Does Pork Loin Cook In The Slow Cooker?
- Other Ways To Make Pulled Pork Loin
- What To Serve With BBQ Pulled Pork Loin
- More Great Shredded Meat Recipes
- Podcast Episode: Making BBQ Pulled Pork Loin
- BBQ Pulled Pork Loin Recipe
Can I Make Pulled Pork With A Pork Loin?
Yes! You can absolutely make pulled pork with a pork loin. (Keep in mind we aren’t talking about pork tenderloin. These cuts of pork need different cooking times and are not interchangeable, read about the differences here.)
Of course, it’s also very popular to use a pork shoulder roast or pork butt for pulled pork. You can find instructions for those pulled pork recipes, both for the crock pot and oven, if that’s your preferred cut of meat. And if you’d instead like to do an oven-roasted pork loin, here’s a juicy and delicious recipe.
Tips For Tender Slow Cooked Pork Loin
Start by cutting the pork loin into quarters. This helps it to cook more evenly, ensuring that it’s tender at the end of the long cook time.
Unlike a pork butt, the pork loin muscle does not contain a lot of fat or connective tissue, so it needs a thick sauce to stay moist and tender. While a pork butt can be served with or without a sauce and still remain tender, a slow cooked pork loin cannot, and can sometimes feel chewy or dry. The sauce solves that.
The onion adds a lot of flavor and sweetness to the sauce, but also adds moisture. One large onion is all that should be added to keep the BBQ sauce from becoming too thin. If adding more than one onion, you should omit the chicken stock. You can use your favorite store-bought BBQ sauce or try one of mine – Basic Barbecue Sauce or Sweet and Smoky BBQ Sauce.
For any pieces of pork not touching the liquid, the Maillard reaction will take place, browning the top of the pork and lending some caramelized flavor to the dish. Yum! So no need to worry about the pork not being completely covered.
How Long Does Pork Loin Cook In The Slow Cooker?
For tender pulled pork loin in your CrockPot or slow cooker, cook on high for 6 hours. If you prefer a longer cook time, you can cook on low for 8 to 10 hours.
Want to slice your pork loin instead of shredding it? Take a look at my Slow Cooker Pork Loin recipe.
Other Ways To Make Pulled Pork Loin
The recipe below is done in the slow cooker. If you’d like to instead do it in the oven, you absolutely can. This recipe for Pork Loin Carnitas is actually exactly what you need. You’ll simply omit the orange, lime, and peppers (or leave them in) and then add 1/2 cup of BBQ sauce to the stock before cooking.
If you’d instead like to make your pulled pork loin in the Instant Pot, go ahead and follow the instructions for this Instant Pot Pork Loin. You’ll add 1/2 cup of BBQ sauce to the chicken broth/water but don’t change anything else. Except…
For both the oven version and the Instant Pot version, after the meat is cooked to at least 145F but ideally 160F for this one, remove it from the pot and let it rest, then shred it with two forks. Meanwhile, while it rests, simmer the liquid to thicken it a little bit. Taste it. If it’s good, you can mix some into your pulled pork. If the liquid is bland, add salt, pepper, garlic powder, and/or more BBQ sauce.
What To Serve With BBQ Pulled Pork Loin
Serve with Jiffy Corn Casserole or corn pudding, and of course with this Cole Slaw Recipe that was developed specifically to pair with pulled pork. You can also pile it onto Texas toast, or on hamburger buns for pulled pork sandwiches. Some of that slaw will go great on those sandwiches too!
More Great Shredded Meat Recipes
Podcast Episode: Making BBQ Pulled Pork Loin
Listen to me explain briefly about how to make this pulled pork, along with some other great tips, by clicking the play button below:Print
The slow cooker creates tender, juicy pulled pork loin with little effort.
Serve on buns or over cornbread.
- 1 (2 and 1/2 lb.) pork loin, cut into quarters
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 cup barbeque sauce
- 1/2 cup chicken stock
- 1 large onion, sliced
- In the base of the slow cooker add pork. Sprinkle salt and garlic powder on top of pork.
- Add barbeque sauce, chicken stock, and onion. Stir to combine.
- Cover slow cooker, set temperature to high. Cook 6 hours.*
- Remove cover. Using the tines of two forks, shred pork.
- Stir to combine with sauce. Serve warm.
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*To cook on a “low” setting, increase cook time to 8 to 10 hours.