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Perfect Pulled Pork: 2 Ingredient Easy

Perfect Pulled Pork is easy to achieve with your slow cooker. In 5 minutes or less, you can get this tasty dish started and get on with your day.

Perfect Pulled Pork Sandwich with barbecue sauce and pickles
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It’s one of my favorite meals for hectic days because it requires so little time and effort. Pulled pork also yields a flavorful, scrumptious supper with leftovers to make so many other tasty lunches and dinners.

The Ingredients

Two simple ingredients will make this delicious pork tenderloin dinner for your family. All you need is a 4- or 5-pound pork loin roast and a box of onion soup mix (one with 2 packets of soup mix).

  • Pork Loin
  • Onion Soup Mix
box of onion soup mix and a pork loin roast

As you can see, this is an affordable meal. As a matter of fact, for $10, you will have prepped the meat for multiple delicious lunches and/or dinners!

I almost never cooked pork for my family until about 4 years ago. I ate a lot of it growing up, but really, we were more of a beef and chicken kind of family.

Pork wasn’t my favorite. It seemed to have lots of fat and not much flavor. So, I have pretty much ignored it for most of my adult life.

A few years back, I realized how much more affordable pork is and I started experimenting with different cuts and flavors. And, I learned how to cook it well. It really takes on whatever flavors you cook into it.

two pork loin roasts

So, pork loin roasts have been one of my favorites to cook with ever since.

I can cut them into thick, boneless pork chops, and use them to make rice bowls and noodle bowls. I use pork loins for barbecue and so many other flavor-rich dishes.

It’s a protein that I hope you’ll give more consideration after you taste this yummy perfect pulled pork!

And if you want to get really creative with pork try this yummy, tender and delicious Smoked Pork Butt from my friend Kita, at Girl Carnivore.

perfect pulled pork sandwich on a white plate

Pork Loin vs Pork Tenderloin

Maple Mustard Slow Cooker Pork Loin is made with a pork loin, NOT pork tenderloin.

What is a Pork Loin?

Pork loin is a larger, roast-style cut. It does better with roasting and slow cooking methods. The loin is cut from the back of the hog. It is a lean piece of meat, however, it usually has a thick fat cap on the top.

Image that shows the difference betwee pork loin and pork tenderloin

You may see pork loin called center cut pork loin roast, center cut pork roast or pork center loin roast. In our part of the world, it’s simply called pork loin. I can buy a whole loin or a half. The half is what you’re looking for for this recipe. They usually range between 3 and 5 lbs.

What is a Pork Tenderloin?

A pork tenderloin, on the other hand, is not a good choice for Perfect Slow Cooker Pulled Pork. It is a smaller, much thinner cut of meat. It’s from a muscle that runs along the backbone and usually only weighs about one pound. They often come two-to-a-package, in our area. Because of their small size and leanness, they are best cooked quickly, at high heat.

It’s definitely important not to confuse pork loin and pork tenderloin when making a recipe. They are very different cuts of meat. The success of your recipe depends on choosing the correct one. So, just a reminder that this recipe uses a pork loin.

How to Make Perfect Pulled Pork

One whole side of your pork loin will be covered in a thick layer of fat. That’s the fat cap. Don’t remove it until after cooking. That’s moisture and flavor that will make your pork irresistibly delicious!

Remove the loin from it’s package and place it in your *slow cooker with the fat cap UP. As it cooks that fat will melt and drip down, flavoring your meat and keeping it tender and moist.

pork loin roast in slow cooker with onion soup mix to make perfect pulled pork

Empty both envelopes of onion soup mix over the top of the pork loin, allowing it to run over the sides of the roast, into the bottom of the *slow cooker.

That’s it! You don’t need anything else. No water, no stock, no salt. Just cover the slow cooker with its lid and set it to LOW.

Allow the pork to cook slowly for 4-8 hours through your day. The exact time will depend on the size of your pork loin. The USDA recommends an internal temperature of 145° with a 3 minute rest time for testing doneness of pork loin.

However, to get the meat to an easy shreddable point, though, you will want the pork to cook longer than just to reach 145°. It will make beautiful slices at that stage, but to actually be able to shred it the internal temperature needs to be closer to 200°.

When the temperature is close to 200°, or even slightly above, the connective tissues will have broken down and you will be able to easily shred the meat just by pulling it with a fork. That will be the best test of when your pork loin is ready.

When the Pork Loin is Finished

Finished Pork Loin Roast in Slow Cooker

Oh my heavens! This pork loin roast is calling my name. Look at all the drippings that the meat and onion soup mix created on their own!

You could have roasted the meat with potatoes and carrots in there, too. Then, you’d be ready to slice it up, make some gravy with the drippings and enjoy a roast dinner. But, tonight, we’re prepping it for pulled pork sandwiches and meals through the week with the leftovers.

removing fat cap from cooked pork loin roast for perfect pulled pork

Start by removing the fat cap, now that the roast is done cooking. I just use the edge of a fork to scrape and remove it. And I remove ALL of it. I don’t want any left in my finished dishes. Some will argue with me, but that is my personal preference. Discard the fat and the pork is ready to be pulled.

Perfect pulled pork in a slow cooker, ready to serve

Use the same fork to shred or “pull” your pork loin roast. Toss it with all the delicious brothy drippings in the bottom of the slow cooker, so every mouthful is moist and wonderful. So simple! It’s ready to make sandwiches for dinner.

Pile it high on buns with your favorite barbecue sauce and toppings. It’s absolutely delectable with vinegar-based coleslaw, cheese, pickled onions and jalapenos or any other toppings your family enjoys. I tried to keep my photos minimal so you could really see the fabulous pork, but go ahead, pile on what you love.

perfect pulled pork sandwich on a white plate

How to Use Leftover Pulled Pork

Pork Carnitas Tacos

I made the tacos in this picture by cooking the pork in a slow cooker, too, with different seasonings, specifically for carnitas. But, you can take your pulled pork leftovers and do the same thing.

crock-pot pork carnitas

Just toss the pork in a cast iron skillet with about 2 Tablespoons of oil and some citrus juice and zest. I like mixing orange and lime. Sprinkle in a little cumin and chili powder and heat everything together for a few minutes until the pork starts to get crispy around the edges.

Serve it in warm corn tortillas with your favorite taco toppings! SO GOOD!

Stuffed Pasta Shells


This is a picture of my Mexican Stuffed Pasta Shells, made with chicken. Substitute the pulled pork for the chicken for a delicious result. Or use your favorite sauce and cheese mixed with the pork and some minced onion, garlic and veggies to create your own version of a stuffed shell.

Or simply add the pulled pork to Hearty Marinara Sauce and toss with your favorite pasta and1/2 cup of the pasta water. Grate some fresh Parmesan over the top and serve it with a crisp and cool House Salad for a fabulous Italian dinner!

The possibilities are pretty much endless. If you can make it with chicken, you can make it with pork. Use it in stir fries, noodle casseroles, soup, rice bowls, noodle bowls or so much more.

You can also make a delicious barbecue pizza, a quick Chinese stir fry or delicious burritos and quesadillas with leftover pulled pork. The possibilities are as limitless as your creativity!

Pulled Pork Sandwich with bbq sauce on a white plate.

Freezing Leftover Pulled Pork

You can put the leftovers into a zip-top bag with the air pushed out and freeze them, too. They’ll keep in the freezer for about 3 months and you can pull them out when you need pre-cooked meat for a meal in a hurry.

Seriously, you guys have to try this! It’s so flavorful and so versatile and it’s the beginning of so many affordable dishes your family will love.

Enjoy this recipe, my friend!

Great Side Dishes With Pulled Pork

Pineapple Salsa

Pineapple Salsa in a Clear Glass Bowl
Pineapple Salsa. Photo Credit: Glenda Embree Blog.

Bell Pepper Salad

Bell Pepper Salad in a white oval serving bowl on a marble countertop. Salad has julienned bell peppers, red onions and cucumbers, tossed with chopped fresh herbs and a red wine vinaigrette

Shirazi Salad

Shirazi Salad in a square, white ceramic bowl on a marble countertop with cucumbers, onions and tomatoes scattered about and a turquoise pitcher in the background

Coleslaw with Homemade Coleslaw Dressing

Closeup of Best Easy Coleslaw Recipe

Asian Cucumber Salad

Asian Cucumber Salad served in a square, white bowl sitting on a marble countertop. A watercolor print napkin is to the right of the bowl and a turquoise planter is in the background.

Best Baked Bean Casserole

Baked Bean casserole in a white, low side ceramic bowl

Perfect Potato Salad

homemade potato salad in large serving bowl

Broccoli Cauliflower Salad

Easy Broccoli Cauliflower Salad Recipe

Loaded Baked Potato Salad

loaded baked potato salad in a gray rectangular pottery bowl

The Recipe

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pulled pork sandwich

Perfect Pulled Pork

  • Author: Glenda Embree
  • Total Time: 8 hours 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1620 servings 1x


This delectably easy pulled pork will be one of your most favorite “go-to” recipes.  It’s so versatile and affordable.  Loaded with flavor and adaptable to so many dishes.


Units Scale
  1. 45 lb pork loin roast
  2. 1 box (2 envelopes) onion soup mix


  1. Place the pork loin roast, fat cap up, into your slow cooker.
  2. Pour both envelopes of onion soup mix over the top, allowing some to run over the sides of the roast into the bottom of the slow cooker, too.
  3. Put the lid on the slow cooker and set it on LOW.
  4. Cook the roast for 4-6 hours or an internal temperature of at least 145° with a 3 minute rest time.
  5. Remove the fat cap.
  6. Shred the pork loin roast with a fork and toss with the drippings at the bottom of the slow cooker.
  7. Serve in pulled pork sandwiches or add to any recipe you would use pre-cooked chicken in.


Leftovers can be frozen up to 3 months.  Seal them in a zip-top bag with the air pressed out and freeze until needed for a quick and easy dinner.

  • Prep Time: 5 min
  • Cook Time: 8 hours
  • Category: Main Dish, Meat
  • Method: Slow Cooker
  • Cuisine: American

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glenda embree

About Glenda

I believe cooking from scratch doesn’t have to be complicated and that YOU can do it. My simple recipes, tutorials, and cooking tips will help you get weeknight dinners on the table with less stress. Forget takeout or the drive-thru. Let me show you how to make homemade easy. Read more...

4 thoughts on “Perfect Pulled Pork: 2 Ingredient Easy”

  1. I love this! We had a guests for dinner and served this on sandwich rolls with barbecue sauce—everyone loved it, and most people skipped the bbq sauce because they said the meat was that good! We used the leftovers on nachos. Yum! Highly recommend.


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