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October 17, 2013
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October 17, 2013
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Sweet Pulled Pork

A plate of three tortillas filled with delicious moist and tender sweet pork, beans, rice, shredded cheese and a side of the tangy, unique and delicious tomatillo sauce to serve with the sweet pork burritos or tacos.

CopyCat Costa Vida and Cafe Rio Sweet Pork slow cooker, crock pot recipe

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A plate of three tortillas filled with delicious moist and tender sweet pork, beans, rice, shredded cheese and a side of the tangy, unique and delicious tomatillo sauce to serve with the sweet pork burritos or tacos.

Sweet Pulled Pork

Sweet Pulled Pork

Do you like pulled pork? What about Sweet Pulled Pork?

There are so many recipes for Sweet Pork, and even more that claim to be copycat ones for Costa Vida and Cafe Rio. So why should you make mine?

Well, I guess, because I’ve tried a lot of them, tweaked and perfected, until T.H.I.S.  It’s the ONE!  Now you don’t have to spend all the time and money I did finding the best, because it’s here.

As you look over the Sweet Pulled Pork recipe don’t be put off by the time involved, since it’s really EASY and it’s mostly slow cooking without you there! 

Just set the timer and use the crock pot.  Using the slow cooker and the Bear Claws, I’ll show you how to produce the most tender, flavorful and moist sweet pulled pork meat EVER.

When the simple to make Sweet Pulled Pork is ready, serve it as a burrito in large tortillas or in smaller ones taco-style.  It’s all terrific, then adding in the condiments and the A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. Tomatillo Sauce….ooohh this sauce is a little tangy, creamy and uniquely tasty- is a MUST.

A great make-ahead for family gatherings, parties or get-together’s. You can even double the recipe.  If you have extra meat left over, freeze it in its juices. The juices will absorb into the meat cells which prevents dry meat when thawed and warmed again later.

*As an option, this Sweet Pulled Pork is great on a green salad with the Tomatillo sauce served as a scrumptious dressing! Simply use your Sweet Pulled Pork, mixed greens, chopped tomato, beans, olives, shredded Monterey Jack Cheese, sliced green onion and anything else your heart desires to create a fabulous alternative.

I have a unique and fabulous recipe for Cuban Street Tacos that you might also want to try.  It has a hint of citrus, along with the perfect blend of seasonings,  The seasoned meat for the tacos is superb.

If you want BBQ Pulled Pork then you’ll definitely want to check out out my Pulled Pork with tips on serving a crowd, and making it ahead.

Before I go, I would love to tell you about my Pork Roast Cookbook.  I show you in my usual step-by-step picture tutorial how to cook the perfect roast and 17 recipes to make from that roast!  Included as bonus recipe are this one and the Sweet Pork all in one EBook for instant download.  Enjoy the many tastes of pork!



Sweet Pulled Pork

Prep Time: 60 minutes, spread out

Cooking Time: 22 hours, this is all in the crock pot/slow cooker, so easy peasy

Total Time: approximately 23, just plan a day in advance to make it for your dinner or event. SO simple, SO yummy and the compliments will be plentiful!!!

Serves: 6-8 easily

 

Sweet Pork

Ingredients:

4-5 lb. Pork –   Use either: boneless Pork Picnic Roast (shreds nice, stays moist, less expensive) or Boston Butt (shreds great, stays moist, added flavor of the bone)

2-5 Tbl. vegetable oil  

 

Dry Rub:

2 Tbl. brown sugar

1/2 tsp. dry red pepper flakes

2 tsp. cumin

1 ½ tsp. roasted garlic seasoning

1 tsp. salt  

 

Mid Cooking:

2 cans coca cola/coke (12 oz. each) not diet, you need the sugar in this recipe

2 tsp. chicken bouillon granules ( I prefer Knorr brand) 

2  Tbl. garlic, minced or chopped

2 medium  to large onions, chopped

 

Final Phase:

2/3 cup brown sugar (used in last 2 hours of cooking)  

 

Serving Condiments:

1 box of Rice a Roni Chicken and Garlic flavor, prepared as directed on the box, with the exception of reducing the water by 1/8-1/4 cup water

Beans:  your choice of how many to use – rinse and drained – black, small red, pinto; I like to have one of each out as a choice

Shredded lettuce

Shredded Monterey Jack Cheese

Tomatillo Sauce, directions below

 

 

Tomatillo Sauce

Ingredients:

1/2 pint (1 cup) buttermilk

1 cup real mayonnaise (can use light)

1   8oz cream cheese (can use light)

1 pkg. (or 3 Tablespoons) Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing

1 tsp. roasted garlic & herb seasoning (I use Grill Mates brand, but any will do)

1/2 tsp. Montreal steak seasoning

6 -8 fresh tomatillos, husk & rinse

2 cups cilantro (approximately 1 medium to large bunch – rinse and use leaves and use care not to use too many stems)

1/4 – 1/2 tsp. hot sauce   (better to start with less and add to your desired taste in heat)

 

 

Directions:

Sweet Pulled Pork

Sweet Pulled Pork

In a fry pan pour in a bit of oil, bring to heat; 

Pork in frying pan browning on one side

Sweet Pulled Pork

Brown the pork roast on all sides.

CopyCat Costa Vida and Cafe Rio Sweet Pork slow cooker, crock pot recipe

Sweet Pulled Pork

Pork in frying pan browned gold brown on all sides

This step is optional, but brings out the best flavor.

CopyCat Costa Vida and Cafe Rio Sweet Pork slow cooker, crock pot recipe

Mix the dry rub ingredients together in a small bowl. 

Place the browned pork roast in the crock pot and mix the dry rub ingredients together and rub over the roast.

Add in 1/4 cup water and cook on low from 8pm till 9am. (The juices from the pork will release, but it will appear dry when you first start to cook it.)

Sweet Pulled Pork

Pork roast with dry rub on it

opyCat Costa Vida and Cafe Rio Sweet Pork slow cooker, crock pot recipe

In the morning DRAIN off MOST of the liquid and then add:

2 cans coke (12 oz. each), not diet, you need the sugar in this recipe

2 tsp. chicken bouillon granules ( I like Knorr)

1 Tbl. garlic, minced or chopped

2 med. to large onions, chopped Sweet Pulled Pork

Now put the cover on the crock put and let it cook on low from 9am until 4pm. 

Put the cover on the crock pot and let it cook on low from 9am until 4 pm.

Sweet Pulled Pork

Cooked pork roast ready for next step

When it is done it will appear like this:

CopyCat Costa Vida and Cafe Rio Sweet Pork slow cooker, crock pot recipe 

Sweet Pulled Pork

Cooked pork roast ready for next step

OR I have even had it look more like this depending on the meat, and it works just as well either way

CopyCat Costa Vida and Cafe Rio Sweet Pork slow cooker, crock pot recipe

At 4pm carefully so not to burn yourself, put the meat into a large bowl to shred it more easily. 

Sweet Pulled Pork

Juices and sauce from pork roast in pan simmering to thicken sauce and intensify flavor

Before shredding the meat, pour the liquid from the crock pot into a large fry pan.

CopyCat Costa Vida and Cafe Rio Sweet Pork crock pot or slow cooker recipe

Bring the liquid from the pork roast to a medium boil; continue to cook for 5 minutes.

Sweet Pulled Pork

Thickened and ready sauce

This step thickens the sauce and intensifies the flavor.

CopyCat Costa Vida and Cafe Rio Sweet Pork slow cooker, crock pot recipe

Meanwhile, shred the cooked meat; taking out any bones if you used the cut of pork with bone-in.  Of course any fat; discarding it and anything unsightly.

Sweet Pulled Pork

Pulled pork using Bear Paws

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE these BEAR PAWS that Stan bought for me a few years back.  The beauty of these ‘claws’ is that you can grab them and in must minutes have shreds of beautiful meat with little effort at all!

CopyCat Costa Vida and Cafe Rio Sweet Pork slow cooker, crock pot recipe

The BEAR PAWS do not tear the meat, it shreds it instead keeping the tenderness and allowing the moist juices to remain. The meat is beautiful and doesn’t tear at the meat making it tough by destroying the fibers or ripping it to pieces.  You can get to the link HERE if you are interested in finding out more about one of my very favorite kitchen gadgets.

 

Pour the reduced liquid  and the 2/3 cup of brown sugar into the shredded meat.

Sweet Pulled Pork

Pulled pork with sauce and brown sugar mixed in now in crock pot

Mix well.  Remember this is SWEET Pork, but it’s not overly sweet, just extraordinary!CopyCat Costa Vida and Cafe Rio Sweet Pork slow cooker, crock pot recipe

Sweet Pulled Pork

Pulled pork with thickened sauce and brown sugar

Return to the crock pot and cook on LOW for another 1-2 hours to allow the flavors to marry and the meat to heat through completely.

CopyCat Costa Vida and Cafe Rio Sweet Pork slow cooker, crock pot recipe

During this last cooking time, check on the meat periodically and if you do not have as much liquid as you would like, add in some very strong chicken broth (or water and bouillon mixed) 

Now to put it together!

Sweet Pulled Pork

Two Sweet {Pork taco syle on a plate, one with Tomatillo Sauce.

Serve shredded pork in tortillas:

 1 box prepared Rice a Roni “Chicken and Garlic” flavor, except use 1/8 – ¼ cup less water than directions call for on the box.

Drained and rinsed beans of your choice: pink, red, black or pinto beans

Shredded Lettuce

Shredded Monterrey Jack cheese

Sweet Pulled Pork

Food processor with Tomatillo sauce ingredients in a bowl with the sweet pork burritos and tacos

Tomatillo Sauce – recipe below (don’t skip this one!)

CopyCat Costa Vida and Cafe Rio Sweet Pork slow cooker, crock pot recipe

TOMATILLO SAUCE

Directions:

Sweet Pulled Pork

Food processor with Tomatillo sauce ingredients in it

Combine the buttermilk, mayonnaise, cream cheese, ranch dressing (dry mix), roasted garlic seasoning, Montreal Steak Seasoning, tomatillos, cilantro and hot sauce in a food processor.CopyCat Costa Vida and Cafe Rio Sweet Pork slow cooker, crock pot recipe

Sweet Pulled Pork

Food processor with Tomatillo sauce ingredients in it now combined

Mix until very well blended.CopyCat Costa Vida and Cafe Rio Sweet Pork slow cooker, crock pot recipe

Sweet Pulled Pork

Food processor with Tomatillo sauce ingredients in a bowl to be chilled

Remove to a covered bowl and chill for at least 1 hour before serving.  This makes quite a bit.

CopyCat Costa Vida and Cafe Rio Sweet Pork slow cooker, crock pot recipe

Let’s talk about Tomatillo PeppersSweet Pulled Pork

Tomatillos are found in the produce section and come in a husk, as shown at the top of the bowl.

Peel back the husk and check the tomatillos for bruises, dark spots, shriveled or wrinkled areas or any bad spots.

After husk is removed, rinse with water, but they will still have a bit of a waxy feel to them. 

Use whole, or cut into halves or quarters.  Do not remove seeds or outer layer; just pop the whole Tomatillo into the food processor or blender with all the other ingredients. 

 

ENJOY!

Sweet Pulled Pork

CopyCat Costa Vida and Cafe Rio Sweet Pork slow cooker, crock pot recipe

Carrie’s recipe, Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2013, 2018

Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today.

 




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4 Comments

  1. rachel says:

    You had me at tomatillo!! I absolutely ADORE tomatillos! This sounds wonderful! Thank you so much for linking up with Mouthwatering Mondays!

  2. Oh wow, this roast must be so tender! Thanks for sharing at Simple Supper Tuesday.

  3. Diane Roark says:

    Carrie,

    I have never seen a recipe like this. It sounds really delicious! Great job! I pinned it! Thanks so much for stopping by and linking up with Saturday Dishes.
    Blessings,
    Diane Roark

  4. Denise G. says:

    Wow. This looks amazing! I’ve pinned it! 🙂

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