instant pot pulled pork

Pulled pork is a staple round our place. It’s one of the few ways I will eat pork (yes I know, I’m a strange person) and Grant loves any and all types of meat – bonus points if barbecue sauce is involved. Naturally, pulled pork WITH barbecue sauce is a hit.

Fun fact: Barbecue sauce + me were not friends until Grant got me hooked on it when we started dating. Now, we both love it.

Pulled pork is one of those miracle recipes.

Don’t know what to make for dinner? Make this.

Don’t have a lot of time to spend on dinner? Make this.

Feeding a small crowd? Make this. It can easily be turned into a sah-weett taco bar with minimal effort (think chips, salsa, cheese, veggies, tortillas, sour cream). Are you pickin’ up what I’m puttin’ down? Yes. Taco bar is always YES.

I would honestly just be happy snacking on this with some yellow corn chips – so simple, yet so amazing. See evidence below 👇🏻

But, when you have the opportunity to taco bar, always taco bar. It’s soooo easy to throw that together – thanks to the help of the Instant Pot. 40 minute set-it-and-forget it dinner? I’m in. Instant dinner (pun intended). This is one of those recipes you should always have up your sleeve.

If you don’t have an Instant Pot (affiliate link), never fear – you can make this in a crock pot too. (Directions below).


  • 2 lb pork butt, thawed
  • 2 TBS molasses*
  • 2 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 3/4 tsp thyme
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • pinch of pepper
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 – 2 cups of your favorite barbecue sauce

Place the pork on a plate or in a shallow dish. Mix all ingredients together except the barbecue sauce and rub evenly over the pork. Place the pork in the Instant Pot (I used the trivet that comes with it but I don’t think you need to do that – it ended up half sitting in the liquid anyways). Pour the water into the bottom of the pot – don’t pour directly over the pork or you’ll wash off the seasonings. Cook for 40 minutes on manual and let the steam naturally release. Once the pin has dropped, take off the lid and remove the pork. Set it on a cutting board and shred using two forks. Transfer shredded pork to a serving bowl and mix the barbecue sauce in. Serve plain, with chips, in salad, or my personal favorite – taco style.

To make this in a crock pot – everything is the same except that you’ll cook it on low for 7-8 hours. If you’re crunched for time you can try cooking it on high for 4-5 hours, but I’ve had the pork come out a bit tough when I’ve cooked it on high in the crockpot.

Yield: 4-5 servings

*Note: You can substitute brown sugar if you don’t have molasses. Your cook time will need to be longer if you have a larger piece of pork.

21 thoughts on “instant pot pulled pork

  1. The pulled pork strategy is a favorite in my house. Do you use bone-in pork butt? That’s my preference: I think that the pork comes out with more flavor. And a taco bar with the leftovers is another favorite! I usually use the slow-cooker, but this Instant Pot thing is more and more tempting…

  2. Mmmmmm we love pulled pork!!! I seriously need to get an Instant Pot too, I still do mine old school in the crockpot and sometimes I just don’t want to wait that long! Love how saucy it is too, nothing worse than dry pulled pork!

  3. This looks great! I like to make pulled chicken or beef in my slow cooker. I need to add an instant-pot to my Christmas wish list because I would love to be able to cook certain foods faster!

  4. Definitely making this in the slow cooker, and then make pulled pork tacos! I’ve been meaning to make something similar, but waiting for a nice recipe to give it a go! The photos are super appetizing!

    1. We used Jack Daniels Hickory barbecue sauce – amazing! 🙂 You should be able to find it at any major grocery store or Walmart!

  5. I’m going to give my Intant Pot one more shot at this and if it turns out not so great again I need to stick with my slow cooker on this one. It was more tender in the SC. This recipe sounds great!

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