The best pulled pork just got better! Add a Traeger to your list in order to make that smoked pulled pork on a Traeger that everyone will be drooling over!
Before getting a Traeger we were able to to still create the World’s Best Carolina Pulled Pork, so yes, it’s possible in an oven for sure. Here comes the big but…the Traeger brings those recipes to a whole different level! When you smoke pulled pork on a Traeger you will know exactly what I mean.
Smoked Pulled Pork on a Traeger
Smoked pulled pork on a Traeger takes some time, make sure you plan ahead to make this beauty! A lot of people dread making a pulled pork because they see the amount of time that goes into it. The big surprise is that it only takes 5-10 minutes to prep, the brine and Traeger does the rest! You literally go about your day as normal. Everyone can do that!
Traeger has so many hardwood pellets that you must try with each of your recipes. For this particular recipe we have used hickory, apple and pecan. Each wood brings a unique and different flavor. Make sure you make this recipe multiple times to find what hardwood you like best for those little taste buds.
For our family, we’ve settled in with the above flavors and so we pretty much stick to those for pulled pork, but you can try any flavor you’d like.
Why is Resting Meat Important
Why is resting meat important and can you skip letting meat rest for pulled pork?
The key to smoking meat is to give it plenty of time at a low temperature and then plenty of time to rest on the counter as well. The muscle fibers get all worked up with cooking so you really need to let them relax again on the counter in order for the juices to redistribute again, otherwise when you cut into the meat, or start to pull it apart in this case, all of the juices will run out which is a big mistake.
Smoked Pulled Pork on a Traeger
Smoke Pulled Pork on a Traeger
- 1 5-8 lb Pork Shoulder Roast
For the Brine
- 4 Cups Water
- 4 Cups Apple Cider
- 1/2 Cup Kosher Salt
- 1/2 Cup Dark Brown Sugar
- 3 Heaping Tablespoons of Dry Rub recipe below
- 2 Bay Leaves
- 1 Pinch Red Pepper Flakes
For the Rub
- 1 Tablespoon Onion Powder
- 1 Heaping Tablespoon Smoked Paprika
- 1 Tablespoon Garlic Powder
- 1 Tablespoon Chili Powder
- 1 1/2 Tablespoon Kosher Salt
- 1 Tablespoon Pepper
- 2 Teaspoons Cayenne Powder
- 2 Teaspoons Dry Mustard
- 1 Tablespoon Cumin
- 1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
For the Mustard Base BBQ
- 3/4 Cup Yellow mustard
- 1/2 Cup honey
- 1/4 Cup Apple cider vinegar
- 2 Tablespoons Ketchup
- 1 Tablespoon Brown sugar
- 2 Teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1 Teaspoon Texas Pete’s or Franks if necessary hot sauce or to taste
- 2 Tablespoons Butter melted
- 1 Pinch of Nutmeg
- 1 Dash Liquid Smoke
- **This recipe should be started 2 days ahead of time as you need 24 hours in the fridge, 11-12 hours in the Traeger 30 minutes of resting.**
PREPARE THE DRY RUB
- Mix all of the ingredients together in a jar.
- Set aside.
FOR THE BRINE
- In a large stock pot, add the water, apple cider, salt, sugar, 3 tablespoons of the dry rub, pepper flakes and bay leaves.
- Rinse off the pork and add to the pot making sure it is completely covered in the brine and add the lid.
- Place in the fridge for 12 to 24 hours.
- To CookWhen you are ready to start smoking your pork, turn your Traeger on to the smoke setting for 5 minutes, lid open.
- Once the fire kicks on in the fire box, close your lid and preheat your grill to 225 degrees Farenheit.
- While the grill is preheating, pull your pork out of the brine and pat it dry with a paper towel.
- That rub you just made, get ready to lather it on all sides of the pork.
- Make sure you save some of that rub, roughly 2-3 tablespoons worth, you'll want to add that to the pork after it is cooked.
- With the fat facing up, place the pork on the Traeger.
- Smoke for 2-3 hours, then transfer your pork onto a disposable pan, found here.
- Continue to cook for another 8-10 hours or until 200 degrees Farenheit registers on the thickest part of the pork with a meat thermometer, if you don't have one, you can get it here, invest, it's worth it!
- As soon as the pork reaches 200 degrees Farenheit, go ahead and turn off the grill.
- Leave the pork in there to rest for one-two hours, depending how hungry you are! Don't forget to place aluminum foil over the pork, no need to press the foil down tightly.
- Once the meat has rested, remove the fat from the top and begin shredding by using two forks, or your hands covered with insulated bbq gloves, remove the bone.
- Drain half of the juices out and add the remaining dry rub to taste, toss to coat.
- Feel free to use any of your favorite bbq sauces, if you want it South Carolina style, give our mustard bbq sauce a try!
FOR THE MUSTARD BASE BBQ
- Add all of the ingredients to a bowl and whisk to combine.
- Pour into a jar with a lid and refrigerate 1 day to 1 week prior to serving for best flavor!
The best pulled pork that only needs an oven? This is it!