Spicy Pulled Pork Sandwiches with Ranch Slaw

Cooking for a Crowd, Recipes, Worknight Dinners
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When you tell people that you work from home, they think you have all kinds of time. There are some definite work-life benefits. I like talking long walks with my dog instead of long commutes. I like the ability to throw in a load of laundry between conference calls.

Nonetheless, when I work from home I am actually working. When I work from home, I’m absolutely not spending three hours cooking dinner.

In fact, there are many days when I haven’t even started dinner by the time Brad gets home. Brad gets home between 8:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m on a typical night. Because I work for a company based on the West coast, my work schedule is pretty compatible with Brad’s, except for the days I work late, work even later blogging or go to the gym when my work is done.

Yeah, the latter happens less frequently. Go with it. 

Since those late nights happen more often than they probably should, the slow cooker is my friend.

I like to prep dinner around the same time I eat lunch, which, like everything else I do in my life, happens on the later side of the day.

If I can throw dinner in the crock pot around 2:00 p.m. while I’m multi-tasking a sandwich, then we might eat before 10:00 p.m.

Even though I have a pulled pork recipe that I like, it’s a little labor intensive. It has a long ingredient list, which is perfect for some occasions, but not for a lunch hour dinner. That recipe also makes a saucier pulled pork, like barbecue.

If you’re like me and you need something quick on busy nights, make the pork ahead of time. You can pull the slaw together right before serving the sandwiches. It’s versatile enough that you could use the leftovers to make enchiladas, nachos, or even a yummy grilled cheese sandwich.

This version has just a few ingredients, all spices that you probably already have in your pantry. The only thing I had to buy for this recipe was the $10 pork shoulder and the rest came together with ingredients I had on hand.

This pulled pork is good, you guys. It was on the spicy side for me, since I am a child when it comes to spice levels. Ultimately, Brad didn’t think it was hot and even added hot sauce to his sandwich.  My advice is to taste and adjust to your preference.

The Recipe

Spicy Pulled Pork with Ranch Slaw
Recipe type: Cooking for a Crowd, Worknight Dinners
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-10 servings
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ¾ cup water
  • 3-4 pound pork shoulder
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 14 ounces (about one bag) of coleslaw salad mix
  • ¾ cup ranch dressing
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (add more if desired)
  1. Place apple cider vinegar and water in the bottom of a slow cooker and add pork shoulder. Mix spices in a small bowl until blended. Rub spice mixture into the pork on all sides. I add the ingredients in this order so the liquid doesn't wash off the spices.
  2. Slow cook on low for eight hours or until the pork reaches an internal temperature of 145 degree F.
  3. Meanwhile, mix the cole slaw mixture with cayenne pepper and ranch dressing.
  4. Remove pork from the slow cooker and shred, discarding any large fatty pieces.
  5. Serve (with juices, if desired) on buns topped with slaw and fresh parsley or cilantro, if desired.

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  • Reply
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    August 2, 2017 at 12:25 pm

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  • Reply
    April 19, 2017 at 11:50 pm

    This is my oldest’s favorite! He always requests it for his birthday and I’m excited to try yours.

  • Reply
    Des @ Life's Ambrosia
    April 19, 2017 at 9:42 pm

    We adore pulled pork sandwiches in our home! These look so good, especially loving the ranch slaw!

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