Instant Pot BBQ Pulled Pork

By Polly Conner

It’s hard to mess up a pork shoulder recipe in the Instant Pot. In fact, it’s one of my favorite cuts of meat to cook in electric pressure cookers! Coming from someone who has tested hundreds (yes, hundreds) of Instant Pot recipes, that means a lot.

Pulled pork in the instant pot

Not only does the Instant Pot cook it to perfection but it can be prepped in minutes, it makes a great freezer meal, and feeds a large number of people. Check out this quick video to see how easily it comes together!

Video Tutorial: How to Make Instant Pot Pulled Pork

WHAT INGREDIENTS DO I NEED TO MAKE Instant Pot PULLED PORK?

The ingredients are SO simple! Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Onion powder
  • Garlic powder
  • Salt & pepper
  • 1, 3-4 lb. pork shoulder (also known as Boston butt)
  • 1.5 cups BBQ sauce (Here is our homemade recipe)
Ingredients for Instant Pot Pulled Pork

Can I Make this Pulled Pork Recipe in the Slow Cooker?

You know we love flexibility! If you want to make this recipe in the slow cooker, just hop over to our Slow Cooker BBQ Pulled Pork.

How Long Do I Cook Pulled Pork in the Instant Pot?

After a quick google search, you’ll quickly learn that there is a lot of conflicting information on how long to cook pork in the Instant Pot. Here’s the good news: you’ve come to the right place. We’ve tested hundreds and hundreds of Instant Pot recipes and narrowed down how long to cook the most common cuts of meat.

If making a pork shoulder in the Instant Pot, you’ll want to cook it at high pressure for 45 minutes with a 10 minute natural release.

If you want to know how long to cook other cuts of meat, I’d strongly encourage you to download and print off our Instant Pot Cooking Times Chart. Tape it up in your pantry for future reference. You can thank us later. 🙂

Shredded pork shoulder on wooden cutting board

HOW TO SERVE PULLED PORK

My favorite way to eat pulled pork is as a sandwich. If you want to go gluten-free, eat it without a bun. I serve it with more Killer Homemade BBQ Sauce on the side. Some side dishes that go well with Pulled Pork are:

Instant Pot Pulled Pork Sandwich with slaw

Can I Freeze Pulled Pork?

YES! Like so many of our freezer meal recipes, Pulled Pork works great as a make-ahead freezer meal. It’s important to package it correctly so be sure to use our recommended containers.

Here are freezer meal instructions for Instant Pot pulled pork.

FREEZE FOR LATER: Follow steps 1 and 2. Place the seasoned pork and 1 cup of the BBQ sauce in a gallon-size freezer bag or round container. Seal and freeze (if using a freezer bag, set it in a bowl or round container with a diameter similar to the Instant Pot so it will fit in the pot when frozen). Place the remaining 1 ⁄2 cup BBQ sauce in a small freezer bag or container and the buns in a separate freezer bag. Seal and freeze them alongside the pork.

PREPARE FROM FROZEN: Thaw the sauce and buns. Set the Instant Pot to “Saute” Transfer the frozen meal to the pot and cook for 5 minutes to release some liquid. Press “Cancel.” Follow step 4, but cook at high pressure for 45 to 50 minutes. (The frozen meat will cook in about the same amount of time as fresh.)

Open freezer stocked with food and freezer meals

This is a great recipe to stock up on when pork goes on sale! Such an easy freezer meal and a great meal to take to others.

Print

Instant Pot Pulled Pork

  • Author: Polly Conner
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Cook Time: 45
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 810 1x
  • Category: Pork
  • Method: Instant Pot
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Instant Pot Pulled Pork has it all. It’s super easy, budget friendly, makes a large batch, and freezes beautifully. The Instant Pot cooks pork shoulders beautifully. I have no doubt this recipe will be in your regular rotation. 


Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 (3- to 4-pound) pork shoulder (also known as Boston butt), trimmed
  • 1.5 cups BBQ sauce, here’s our homemade recipe

Instructions

  1. In a small bowl, combine the onion powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
  2. On a cutting board, cut the pork shoulder into four equal pieces. Pat the pork dry with paper towels and rub the pieces with the seasoning mix to coat all sides. (Freezing instructions begin here.)
  3. Place the seasoned pork in the 6-quart Instant Pot. Pour 1 cup of the BBQ sauce over the meat and stir.
  4. Lock and seal the lid. Cook at high pressure for 45 minutes. Allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes (or longer, if you prefer), then quick release the remaining pressure. Transfer the pork to a cutting board and shred the meat. Return the meat to the pot and stir it into the sauce.
  5. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the meat to the toasted buns and top with the remaining BBQ sauce as desired. Serve.

FREEZE FOR LATER: Follow steps 1 and 2. Place the seasoned pork and 1 cup of the BBQ sauce in a gallon-size freezer bag or round container. Seal and freeze (if using a freezer bag, set it in a bowl or round container with a diameter similar to the Instant Pot so it will fit in the pot when frozen; see page 22). Place the remaining 1 2 cup BBQ sauce in a small freezer bag or container and the buns in a separate freezer bag. Seal and freeze them alongside the pork.

PREPARE FROM FROZEN: Thaw the sauce and buns. Set the Instant Pot to “Saute” Transfer the frozen meal to the pot and cook for 5 minutes to release some liquid. Press “Cancel.” Follow step 4, but cook at high pressure for 45 to 50 minutes. (The frozen meat will cook in about the same amount of time as fresh.)

Making this for a group of people? Here are more recipe ideas for large groups if you need some! You can also check out our 25+ Slow Cooker Recipes for a Crowd if you want more ideas.


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