Monday, May 13, 2013

Pulled Pork with No Sugar Added BBQ Sauce [Paleo and Gluten-Free]

We had a 30th birthday party for Adam a few weeks ago and I made some bomb pulled pork in the crock pot. Like seriously good. It's going to be my go to party recipe and is probably my favorite crock pot recipe. I really wanted to make it again because I obviously wanted to eat it again, but also to share that recipe with you lovelies. But unfortunately because I'm doing my whole 30 I can't. Why? Because the FIRST ingredient in most barbecue sauces is sugar or corn syrup. Yep, you're just pouring delicious sugar all over your meat. And don't get me wrong, I'm all about the BBQ yo (I really don't know why I inserted the "yo"), but if I'm gonna eat a bunch of sugar I prefer it to be in my desserts.


BUT! I was not about to let this little ol' whole 30 thing and eating less sugar deprive me of my pulled pork. And I was not about to let you guys be deprived of this fabulous recipe for making pulled pork in the crock pot with a nice healthy no sugar added paleo bbq sauce recipe. This sauce will turn you into a hero amongst your pulled pork eating peers. How? Read on my friends, read on.


So, picture this, you bring pulled pork to a BBQ, pic-nic, party, whatever. Everyone scarfs it down, licks their fingers, and begs to know what you put in that pork. Crack?  You respond - Nope, just my homemade no sugar added BBQ sauce, NBD. Oh by the way I saved you from maxing out your sugar intake for the day with that sauce, so you can eat that cake without the guilt, also that jello salad if you're in to that kind of thing. Yeah, you're welcome. Now you pretty much become a hero, maybe even a legend.


But if you are stilling feeling iffy, I understand. I was skeptical about this sauce as well. I did my research, read the back of BBQ sauce labels, wondered how I was going to do this without sugar, molasses, honey, maple syrup, brown sugar or any other form of sugar. Then I found, Civilized Caveman's Beasty BBQ Sauce, I liked it. Pineapple as the sweetening agent. Genius. Sugar from fruit does not count as added sugar in my book. But of course, I could not just MAKE the recipe, I had to tweak it. My main hang up with the recipe was the hour long simmer time for the sauce. I figured, since this stuff is going in the slowcooker, it could do it's simmering thing in there with the meat, effectively saving myself an hour of cooking time. Good decision. The only downfall is, if you have extra sauce, it will need to be used with a slowcooker recipe or you will need to cook it down before using it to baste or grill meat. The sauce does need to be cooked for an extended amount of time to get the flavors to develop, so I highly recommend using it for a slowcooker recipe.

Some other adjustments I made included tweaking the amounts of some ingredients, lost others, and I  added liquid smoke. I highly recommend you do so as well. I'm not entirely sure where liquid smoke falls in the wide variety of paleo beliefs, but it's only ingredient is smoke, so I'm going for it. It adds unbeatable depth and flavor to this BBQ sauce recipe.


I honestly can't gush enough about this recipe, there is something addictive about it. The flavors really hit your palate hard at the end and make you want to keep eating bite after bite. This is without a doubt my favorite pulled pork recipe, better than bottled sauce, and way healthier. Plus, how cool is it say you made your own homemade BBQ sauce?! Remember the scenario above. Yeah, it's pretty cool.

I also recommend eating this with sliced tomatoes and avocado with salt and pepper if you are doing the whole paleo thing and skipping the bun. So freaking good. Serve up some roasted sweet potato rounds and you've got yourself a mighty fine dinner of champions.


Now, let's do this thing! You know you want to become a legend!
(Also scroll down, for my non-paleo easy party pulled pork version.)


Pulled Pork with No Sugar Added BBQ Sauce

Makes 4 1/2 cups uncooked BBQ sauce and a whole lotta pulled pork. 

(PRINTABLE)

Pork:

4 - 5 pound pork roast, shoulder or Boston butt
32 oz (one carton) of veggie broth, chicken broth, or beef broth
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
3-4 garlic cloves minced
1/2 white or brown onion sliced

No Sugar Added Paleo BBQ Sauce:

14.5 oz can no salt diced tomatoes in juice
1 white or brown onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons dijon mustard
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons sweet paprika
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon to 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (depending on how much of a kick you want it to have)
2 teaspoons KOSHER salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon to 1 teaspoon liquid smoke (optional, but highly recommended)
1 cup drained pineapple chunks from a can (save the juice!!)
3/4 cup pineapple juice from the can

To make the pork. I often buy pork when it is on sale and toss it in the freezer. When I'm ready to make pulled pork, I'll take the pork out and put it in the fridge to defrost for a half a day or so. The night before I want to eat the pulled pork, I'll put the partially defrosted pork in the slow cooker. No need to worry about it being fully defrosted. In fact, it could be basically frozen. Add the broth to the  slow cooker. Season top of pork with salt, pepper, and garlic. Set slow cooker on low and cook for 10 - 12 hours (overnight works best). If your pork is not frozen reduce cooking time to about 8 hours.

In the morning, or after the pork is done cooking, carefully remove the pork from the slow cooker and set it in a dish. Remove the fat, it should be pretty easy to find. Discard fat. Shred remaining pork. Drain the slow cooker of liquid and discard liquid. Add the shredded pork back to the slow cooker.

Homemade No Sugar Added BBQ Sauce:

Sauce can be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge.

In a food processor or blender combine all ingredients for BBQ sauce. Blend until smooth. Taste. (It won't taste quite right because it hasn't been cooked yet, but you should be able to tell if you need more seasonings.) Adjust seasonings. The flavor will develop once it cooks with the pork, but I do recommend you taste it before cooking.

Cook pork as described above -  overnight with broth and seasonings, shred and discard fat and cooking juices. Return shredded pork to the slow cooker. Add sliced onions and desired amount of homemade BBQ sauce. I used 4 cups for 4 lbs of pork. It was saucy (the way I like it) but not too saucy. The BBQ sauce will cook down some during cooking time. Stir well. Cook on low for 4 1/2 - 6 hours.

Enjoy!!

Reminder: Any leftover homemade BBQ sauce will need to be used in a slow cooker recipe so that it has time to cook or will need to be simmered on the stove to cook for 30 minutes to an hour depending on how much sauce you have left. Add beef or chicken broth as needed while simmering to keep the desired consistency.


To Cook the Sauce on the Stove for Homemade BBQ you can add to meat that you grill or to use as a dipping sauce:

Make sauce as described, simmer on medium low heat for 45 minutes to an hour, checking and stirring often and adding either chicken or beef broth as it cooks to get the desired consistency you want. You will need the broth as the sauce will continue to thicken up as it cooks and it is already thick to begin with. I would have a cup of broth on hand and add as needed throughout the cooking time. 



OPTIONAL RECIPE:

Easy Party Pulled Pork (not paleo) 
(PRINTABLE)

This is the recipe I used for Adam's 30th birthday and it was a big hit! It would be a disservice not to share it, so if you are in a rush, not paleo, or just really don't want to make your own sauce (no problem there!) use this recipe!

Whether you are using the homemade paleo BBQ sauce, or using a bottle of BBQ (no judgements here!) I recommend following the double cooking method below. I really think that is the key to successful pulled pork in the slow cooker.


4 - 5 pound pork roast, shoulder or Boston butt
32 oz (one carton) of veggie broth, chicken broth, or beef broth
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
3-4 garlic cloves minced
1/2 white or brown onion sliced

1 bottle of favorite BBQ sauce
1 - 14.5 oz can of crushed tomatoes
your choice size and flavor Bush's baked beans

To make the pork. I often buy pork when it is on sale and toss it in the freezer. When I'm ready to make pulled pork, I'll take the pork out and put it in the fridge to defrost for a half a day or so. The night before I want to eat the pulled pork, I'll put the partially defrosted pork in the slow cooker. No need to worry about it being fully defrosted. In fact, it could be basically frozen. Add the broth to the  slow cooker. Season top of pork with salt, pepper, and garlic. Set slow cooker on low and cook for 10 - 12 hours (overnight works best). If your pork is not frozen reduce cooking time to about 8 hours.

In the morning, or after the pork is done cooking, carefully remove the pork from the slow cooker and set it in a dish. Remove the fat, it should be pretty easy to find. Discard fat. Shred remaining pork. Drain the slow cooker of liquid and discard liquid. Add the shredded pork back to the slow cooker.

Add 1/2 a brown or white onion sliced. Add your sauce, crushed tomatoes, and Bush's baked beans. Cook on low for at least 2 hours, but you could cook  it for longer if you wish.


Love, Luck, and Happiness!

7 comments:

  1. I made this tonight, turned out perfect, thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I am SO on this... like - right now! Thank you. Was happy beyond words to scan the recipe looking for wheat flour - and NOT FIND IT! Can't wait. Will report back.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Oh my ... do this with a brisket, I can taste it already

    ReplyDelete
  4. This sounds really tasty, but hardly sugar free with pineapple juice from a can... Is there a substitute because the rest of it sounds amazing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. blackbeltharleygalJune 13, 2014 at 11:22 AM

      I think the juice is from the can of chunks. so if you're using no sugar added canned, it should be fine. Not like the more concentrated juice that is meant for drinking. That's my guess.

      Delete
    2. The recipe is a "no sugar added" recipe - meaning no honey, molasses or refined sugar was added. Yes the pineapple has natural sugar. Use pineapple from the can in natural juices not syrup.

      Delete
  5. Yummy sounds delicious this, thanks for posting this up.

    Simon

    ReplyDelete

Comments make me happy! Thanks!

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