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Smoked Pork Shoulder

Rubbed, injected, smoked? Prepare to make the most delicious smoked pork you’ve ever had.

Yield: 10+ 1x
Prep: 45 minCook: 9 hoursTotal: 9 hours 45 minutes


Rub Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried mustard
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Meat Injection Recipe (Optional):

  • 1 1/2 cups apple juice

  • 1/2 cup pineapple juice

  • 1/2 cup sugar

  • 6 Tablespoons salt

  • Smoked tabasco sauce to taste (roughly 1 tablespoon)

Other Ingredients:

  • 710 pound pork shoulder (bone-in preferred)
  • Roughly 12 tablespoons agave (Optional)
  • BBQ Sauce for serving

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  1. Preheat the grill to 225-250°F. (This will take 30-45 minutes.) If you have heat deflectors, make sure they are in. Add aluminum pan to the bottom to catch the juices.
  2. Combine all the seasonings to make the rub. Rub all over the pork.
  3. (Optional) Whisk together the meat injection juice in a bowl. Put the pork in an aluminum pan. Inject the meat with a little juice every few inches.
  4. Transfer the pork to the preheated smoker.
  5. Cook for 6 hours and then check the internal temperate to determine how much longer you will need to smoke it. Drizzle agave syrup across the top and tent with aluminum foil to project the outside of the meat from getting too burned. Continue to cook until internal temperature reaches 190-195°F+ or the bone just falls right out and meat shreds easily. The total cook time will likely be 8-10 hours, depending on the size of your pork shoulder. 
  6. Remove from heat. Wrap pork in foil and then again in a towel. Let rest for 45-60 minutes. (My husband like to put his in a cooler so curious dogs and kids don’t bother it.)
  7. Shred the meat using two forks or meat shredders. Serve.


  • If you need to speed up your cook, you can bump the temperature up.
  • This smoked pulled pork stores well in the fridge as leftovers for up to 5 days, and it freezes well (if packaged the right way) for up to 6 months or so.
  • Read through the entire recipe and make sure to allow for time for the grill to preheat (about 30-45 minutes), meat to cook (roughly 8-10 hours), and meat to rest (45-60 minutes). Work backward to estimate your start time.
  • If you know you’ll be making the recipe again, just double the rub and save it with your seasonings. No need to make it twice!
© Author: Polly Conner
Cuisine: American Method: Smoker