How to Make Pulled Pork for A Big Group

There are many ways to make great pulled pork, and it depends on just how many guests you will have.

Here are the most common ways to cook pulled pork for a crowd.

  • Dutch oven pot for easy cooking outside over an open fire or fire pit.  Using a Dutch oven pot, pour Coke around the pork to help keep it moist during the long cooking time.
  • Instant Pot – makes tender, juicy pulled pork quite quickly.
  • Slow Cooker – this is probably the easiest way to make pulled pork at home, plus it can also keep the dish warm for hours and be used to serve to a big group. Slow cookers are relatively cheap and if you wanted an extra one to cook for a bigger crowd that is possible. Most guests will also have a slow cooker and be willing to lend you one for a large family event.

Other methods can also be

  • Stovetop
  • Grill
  • Smoker 

To feed a lot of folks – like how much pulled pork for 30 people – then you may need to use more than one method.

Top Tip  on How to Make Pulled Pork with Flavor

Searing the pork first will intensify the overall flavor of the pork – We do that even when we make pulled pork in an instant pot.

What Can I Add to A Pulled Pork Recipe to Give Great Flavors

Pineapple adds an amazing flavor profile, which complements the pork beautifully. Other ingredients you can add are Apple Juice, Beer, Ginger Garlic, and Honey.

You can use any combination of these ingredients to create your own unique flavor profile.

Furthermore, when you have leftovers you can freeze the pork.

How Long to Cook Pulled Pork:

How long to cook pulled pork varies depending on the method and temperature. Low and slow is typically the best method except for the instant pot which uses high pressure to accelerate the cooking process.  Below are the cooking times for each method.

Temperatures and times

  • Slow Cooker – Cook on Low for 6-9 hours
  • Instant Pot – Cook On High pressure for 75-90 minutes
  • Oven – Cook for approximately 3 hours at 300F
  • Smoker – A rule of thumb is to smoke for 90mins per pound of pork at 230.

What Kind of Pork for Pulled Pork?

  • Pork shoulder is the best cut for pulled pork.
  • Both bone-in or boneless work well.
  • Shoulder Butt Roast
  • Shoulder Roast Blade

The best way to cook a pork butt roast is to start off slow and finish up at a high temperature.

Once the pork butt has reached the desired temperature, remove it from the oven and allow it to rest for at least 10 minutes before shredding it.

If you want to make sure you get the most tender pork butt possible, use a knife to carefully separate the meat from the bone. You can also use a fork to pull the meat apart from the bone.

What Goes Well With Pulled Pork?

There are many side dishes you can serve with pulled pork.

Pulled pork is often served over coleslaw.

  • Pulled Pork Nachos
  • Green Beans
  • Potato Salad
  • Macaroni Salad
  • Baked Potatoes


Fatty parts are where most of the flavor resides. Most experts and pitmasters agree the fat cap needs to face the direction that heat is originating from.

Like on a BBQ or Grill where the heat comes from the bottom so cook with the fat side down.

How Do I Cook More Than One Pork Butt?

How do you cook 2 shoulders or combinations of pork cuts at once? Some large ovens can handle cooking up to 2 pork butts at once but after that, you need to be a little more creative.

The best way is to cook the pork ahead of time, even freezing it (see how to freeze pulled pork). You can then thaw the pork and use the oven to reheat the pork. The oven can reheat quite a large amount of pork.  Placing it into bain marie for serving or using multiple slow cookers are the two most common ways to keep large quantities of pulled pork warm.

For big groups or parties cook 2 or 3 pork butts then pull them apart placing them in a big pan so you do not lose shredded pork over the side.

Keep pulled pork warm using a baking tray or bain-marie trays covering them with tin foil and keeping them warm in the oven.

How Much Pulled Pork Should I Make Per Person With This Easy BBQ Pulled Pork Recipe? – See our exact table for how much pulled pork per person.

What liquid do you use for pulled pork

The best liquids to use for pulled pork are beer, bourbon, coke, and apple juice. All pair well when cooking.

Can I use pork loin instead of pork shoulder for pulled pork

Pork loin meat can be used for making pulled pork as well as a wide range of other popular dishes.

How to Fix Undercooked Pulled Pork

If you think your pork is undercooked then put it back in the oven (BBQ or Smoker) for about 1 hour and then check with a probe thermometer if the internal temperate had got to 195F.

Do not forget to let it rest again.

How to Let Pulled Pork Rest

First, take it out of the cooker and cover or tent it with aluminum foil and set it aside on a plate for 15 minutes. 

The plate will catch the juices that will run out before you shred or cut it.

Resting pulled pork “relaxes” the cut of meat, making it more tender plus it remains nice and juicy with lots of flavors.

How to Add Moisture to Pulled Pork

 To add moisture to pulled pork apple juice or beer pair well in the cooking process and will add moisture to the shredded pork.