This incredibly delicious Instant Pot pulled pork literally falls apart. It doesn’t get any easier or tastier than this!
From pulled pork bbq sandwiches to pork tacos to pork nachos, the possibilities are awesome! I had never made pulled pork before, so I was worried about being successful. I was pleasantly surprised at how easy it was to make pulled pork in the Instant Pot.
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It’s so much faster than making it in a slow cooker, and it was so easy to shred once the pork was cooked.
It was a HUGE amount of pork, 8 lbs. to be exact. I thought we would have to freeze some of it, but it turns out in a few days it was all gone! That’s what 5 kids will do to any dreams of saving food in the freezer.
The first thing I made was pulled pork sandwiches, this was the family favorite!
With the leftovers, I also made shredded pork tacos and a couple of days later, I made shredded pork nachos!
All 3 meals were delicious and they were enjoyed by all 5 kiddos alike.
Kitchen Prep Tools, Utensils & Appliances
Here is a list of the kitchen prep tools, utensils, and appliances I used to make this recipe.
Prep Tools & Utensils
These are the items I used to prep and make this recipe:
- One thing I can’t stand is handling raw meat with my bare hands. So, I use these metal tongs anytime I’m handling raw meat. I’ve tried both plastic and silicone tongs but these metal tongs have always been the best.
- For measuring the Dr. Pepper, I used my one cup measuring cup. It’s very convenient for measuring small volumes of liquid. Since I was measuring two cups of barbecue sauce, I used my four cup measuring cup for that.
- I shredded the pork on my favorite cutting board. It’s not only beautiful but well constructed and just the right size.
- This prep bowl is one of my favorites because it’s heavy and doesn’t move around a lot when mixing things in it. I used it to mix the barbecue sauce into the shredded pork.
Appliances & Cookware
This recipe calls for 8 lbs. of meat. That’s a lot of meat! My 8-quart Instant Pot handled it without a problem though.
Instant Pot Accessories
Make sure to check out my post on Must-Have Accessories for the Instant Pot. You’ll find a complete list of all the top accessories that can be used with your Instant Pot.
How To Make Instant Pot Dr. Pepper Pulled Pork
As I said I had never made pulled pork before so I was a little intimidated. I looked through so many recipes. Some called for brine while many called for a rub. It all sounded like too much effort and complication. I mean, I have 5 kids and don’t have time for concocting some super duper rub that requires a laundry list of spices. I needed something simple that everyone would love. So, I came up with this recipe.
Gather The Ingredients
4 ingredients. That’s it!
No brine. No rub. Just pork, Dr. Pepper, barbecue sauce and one onion.
Delicious fall apart pork in about 2 hours!
Brown the Pork Shoulder
First, you’ll want to use the Sauté feature on the Instant Pot to brown the pork.
I cut the 8 lbs pork shoulder into 4 pieces to make it easier to handle and made sure to get each piece nice and brown on all sides.
You can set the pork aside after browning it.
Sauté the Onion and Then Mix in the Dr. Pepper & Barbecue Sauce
Place the chopped onion in the Instant Pot and sauté for about 3 minutes.
Then mix in the Dr. Pepper and the barbecue sauce. This is our favorite barbecue sauce.
Cook The Pork Shoulder
Arrange the pork in the Instant Pot. The 8 lbs. of pork fit perfectly into my 8-quart pot.
Close your Instant Pot and set to sealing. Cook on High Pressure for 100 minutes. Do an NPR (natural pressure release) for 25 min, and then release any remaining pressure before opening the pot.
Shred The Cooked Pork
Remove the pork from the Instant Pot, place on a cutting board and shred with a pair of forks. Note: when you remove the pork from the Instant Pot, be careful because it will try to fall apart on you.
What I Made With My Instant Pot Pulled Pork
Pulled Pork Sandwiches
For pulled pork sandwiches, I added more barbecue sauce to the shredded pork and mixed it in well. Since my family loves Sweet Baby Ray’s barbecue sauce, that’s what I used. I then served it with pickles on a potato bun! Yum!
Pulled Pork Tacos
For the pork tacos, I heated up some leftover pork on the stove and served it on warm tortillas. I didn’t season the pork with anything additional. I topped with pico and sour cream.
Pulled Pork Nachos
For the nachos, I heated the remaining leftover pork on the stove and then seasoned it with Longhorn Steakhouse Grill Seasoning. Next, I placed tortilla chips on a cookie sheet and sprinkled the pork on top of the chips. I then topped the chips with shredded cheese, jalapeños, black beans, corn, pico de gallo and put them in the oven at 375 degrees until the cheese melted. After removing the nachos from the oven, I added sour cream.
Pulled pork 3 different ways!
I hope you will give this pulled pork a try and let me know how it turns out. Or, maybe you can come up with another way to eat it!
Instant Pot Dr. Pepper Pulled Pork
Pork shoulder cooked in Dr. Pepper and barbecue sauce.
- 8 pounds boneless pork shoulder cut into 2-pound pieces
- 2 cups sweet onion chopped
- 1 cup Dr. Pepper
- 2 cups barbecue sauce I prefer Sweet Baby Ray's Original Barbecue Sauce
- Set the Instant Pot to Sauté and let warm.
- Brown the pork shoulder in the Instant Pot. Remove once it has browned on all sides.
- Add the chopped onion and Sauté in the pork fat for 3 minutes. Now is a good time to deglaze the bottom of the pot if there are any pieces of meat stuck to the bottom.
- Add the Dr. Pepper to the onion and stir. Then add your favorite barbecue sauce to the pot and stir.
- Place the pork shoulder into the Instant Pot, turn the Sauté mode off and then close the lid.
- Ensure that the pressure release handle is set to sealing.
- Cook on 'Manual' or 'Pressure Cook', High Pressure for 100 minutes.
- Once the Instant Pot has completed cooking, use the natural pressure release NPR method. I usually let it NPR for 25 minutes and then release any remaining pressure.
- Ensure that all the pressure has been released before opening the pot.
- Carefully remove the whole pork from the Instant Pot. It's going to want to fall apart on you as you are taking it out 🙂 You can discard the liquid in the Instant Pot (it's mostly fat from the pork).
- Place the pork on a cutting board and shred. You now have a delicious pulled pork that can be used to make so many different meals.
While every effort is made to correctly calculate these nutritional facts, they should be used as general guidance as they may not be 100% accurate.
Some things you should know about this Instant Pot Dr. Pepper Pulled Pork recipe.
Reheat on the stove. If you’re making any of my serving suggestions with the leftover pork and are pulling it out of the refrigerator, make sure you heat the pork on the stove beforehand.
Yes, it does say 100 minutes. I know 100 minutes seems like a lot of time but this is how you’ll get a pork shoulder that will be fall-apart good! I’ve tried cooking the pork for a shorter time but it didn’t turn out nearly as tender and juicy.
Here are a few ideas for serving your Instant Pot Dr. Pepper Pulled Pork.
Pulled Pork Sandwiches. Mix the desired amount of your favorite barbecue sauce into the shredded pork and serve on a bun! This makes for some amazing pulled pork sandwiches.
Tacos. Feel free to try mixing your favorite taco or meat seasoning into the shredded pork. Serve on a warm corn or flour tortilla and add your favorite taco toppings. Some topping suggestions: pico de gallo, shredded lettuce, shredded cheese, avocado, cilantro and sour cream.
Nachos. Mix your favorite taco or meat seasoning into the shredded pork. Place tortilla chips on a cookie sheet and sprinkle the pork on top of the chips. Top with all your favorite nacho toppings. Some suggestions: shredded cheese, jalapeños, black beans, corn, pico de gallo, black olives and sour cream. Place the nachos in the oven at 375 degrees until the cheese is melted.