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Copycat Tarheel BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwich and Cole Slaw

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There may be no better way to enjoy the flavor of BBQ than with this recipe for Copycat BBQ Pulled Pork. It's perfect to serve at a potluck. This recipe includes how to make cole slaw that is fresh and crisp. The easy step-by-step video will walk you through how to make this delicious potluck dish. The tender pork is perfectly cooked to fall apart easily and is seasoned with homemade BBQ sauce. We're sure you won't have any leftovers after you serve this tasty dish. 

Cooking MethodSlow Cooker


  • 2 1/2 pounds pork shoulder
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt
  • 1 pint cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons onion powder, divided
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 16 ounces package coleslaw mix
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup 2% milk
  • 1/2 cup mayo
  • 1/4 cup distilled vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons ground black pepper, divided
  • 1 tablespoon red pepper flakes


For the Pork

  1. First, place your pork shoulder in your slow cooker insert. Add one tablespoon each of salt, black pepper, and red pepper flakes. Cover with ½ cup water and cook on high for 1 hour.

  2. Reduce heat to low and continue cooking for 5 hours.

For the Cole Slaw

  1. In a medium bowl combine 16 ounces of shredded cole slaw mix, 1 tablespoon black pepper, 1 tablespoon onion powder, and ¼ granulated sugar. Toss by hand until well-coated. Then add ¼ cup distilled vinegar, ¼ cup milk, and ½ cup mayo.

  2. Mix until well saturated and then refrigerate for future use.

To Finish

  1. In another bowl, add 1 pint of cider vinegar, 6 ounces of tomato paste, ¼ cup soy sauce, 1 tablespoon olive oil, 2 tablespoons garlic powder, 2 tablespoons onion powder, and 1 tablespoon black pepper. Whisk well.

  2. Add ½ cup molasses and continue whisking until well-combined. Set aside.

  3. Remove the pork shoulder from your slow cooker. Using two forks, pull it apart into shreds. When you are finished, return the meat to the slow cooker, add sauce, and cook for 1 hour on high.

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