Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

pulled pork 7Thursdays are a busy day for me this time of year. My oldest daughter has softball after school and that means I don’t have much time to make dinner. So the slow cooker it is! That way when we get home from practice, we can still enjoy a home cooked dinner that’s waiting for us. I’d much rather prefer that instead of having hungry, complaining little people walking around, whining and asking repeatedly when dinner will be ready.

I like to start this recipe the night before but if you’re pressed for time, it can always be put together the morning of. Just skip the night before step.

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

  • 3-4 lb. bone in pork shoulder
  • 2 tbsp. brown sugar
  • 3/4 tsp. each of ground cumin and chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp. each of paprika, garlic powder and onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp. each of salt and pepper
  • Dash of cayenne
  • 1/2 small onion, sliced
  • 6 oz. beer

The night before: Mix together all of the spices in a bowl. Sprinkle and rub the spices all over both sides of the pork. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight.

The next morning: Add the sliced onions to your slow cooker insert. Unwrap the pork and place on top of the onions. Pour the beer over the meat. Turn the slow cooker on low and cook for 8-10 hours.

When the meat has finished cooking, remove the bone and the layer of fat on the pork. Using forks or tongs, pull the pork apart into smaller pieces. Serve on buns with BBQ sauce.

pulled porkpulled pork 2pulled pork 3pulled pork 5pulled pork 4pulled pork 6*If you don’t drink or like cooking with alcohol, you can omit the beer. I’ve cooked this both ways and I like them both. But the beer adds just that little extra flavor. And I used a whole beer and only poured half of it over the meat. If you’re into morning drinking, finish the beer. If not, you can put it in the fridge and give it to your husband when he gets home from work. Mine asked me why the beer was so flat and why there was only half of it. But seriously, if your husband likes beer as much as mine, he really won’t mind.

Olé! Olé! Olé! Olé!

The essentials to starting your fiesta off right

The essentials to starting your fiesta off right

Craving Mexican food? Me too. Don’t feel like spending upwards of $50 at a restaurant? ME NEITHER! Well I’m no math wizard, but those ingredients to your left sure look like they cost a lot less than $50. And that right there, turns into shredded chicken that you can use in tacos, burritos, quesadillas, nachos, or whatever your Mexican food craving little heart desires.

Here’s the breakdown as best as I can manage. I only used four of those chicken thighs and the entire package was under $5. That bell pepper was $.50, and I used half of it. The three pound bag of organic onions cost me $2.99 and I used half of one onion. One stick of celery? Cheap! A can of tomato sauce, cheap! You get the idea. I’d venture to say this whole meal cost me under $7 to make, which fed my family of five, and had enough leftovers to make a burrito for Adam to take to work the next day. But wait, we still have shredded chicken left over. Can you really beat that? I didn’t think so. So what are you waiting for?

Time to eat!

Time to eat!

Shredded Chicken

  • 4-6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (I highly recommend thighs, I’m not a big fan of chicken breasts in the slow cooker)
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1/2 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 celery stick, chopped
  • 1/2 c. tomato sauce, or one of those smaller cans
  • 1 tsp. chicken base
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder, or 1-2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin

Place all ingredients in your slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours, or high for 3-4 hours. Shred with a fork when it’s done. Olé!

Taco Tuesday anyone?