Measurements are approximate because that’s how I cook, almost all of the time…haha!
You will need a “pork butt” cut of meat, it may also be called pork shoulder or Boston Butt. It can be bone-in or boneless and they come in a great range of sizes which will affect your cooking time in the end so just make note of that.
Make a rub or use a BBQ pork rub seasoning that is pre-bottled. Here is what goes into mine:
- Kosher Salt (1.5 tbsp)
- Brown Sugar (1.5 tbsp)
- Black Pepper (1 tsp)
- Garlic Granules (.5 tsp)
- Paprika (1 tsp)
- Chili Powder (1 tsp)
The proportions can vary and it should be enough in volume to generously season the outside of the meat, so increase total volume if necessary.
Rub the spice mix all over the meat and put it into a covered roasting pan (if you don’t have a lid you can use foil) and roast in the oven at 300 degrees. Check on it periodically and turn the roast over each time. Initially the meat will release juices and it will almost braise, but then it will slowly evaporate and the fat will render out of the meat. Allowing the meat to roast in the residual fat will give it nice caramelization on the outside. The meat is done when it is fork tender and will shred easily. If the meat feels tight, it is not ready yet. This can take anywhere from 3-6 hours depending on the size of the roast. The other thing you will need to watch is that the sugar doesn’t burn, it will turn dark for sure, but if it burns it will give a bitter taste. You can add ½ cup of liquid (like water, beer or chicken broth) if it looks like it is darkening before the meat has started to get tender.
When the meat is easily shred-able, remove it to a plate and let it cool a bit before shredding it up into small pieces. I also take care to remove any fat blobs or anything else I don’t want on my fork.
Then toss it with your favorite BBQ sauce and enjoy! (Side note: I tend to doctor up bottled sauces because they often feel too sweet and out of balance to me, so I add a little yellow mustard, vinegar, hot sauce and olive oil.)
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More info: This method of cooking pork roasts is something I do a lot. If you change up the seasoning mix to be a little more generic (i.e. salt, pepper, garlic, paprika), you can treat it like carnitas and have tacos or burritos, or just eat awesome tender pork roast meat. The other cool thing is that it usually makes a lot of meat. I shred the whole roast then split of extra portions and freezer bag them for later meals. Enchiladas anyone? 🙂