Pork is an amazing type of meat for so many different dishes. Yet, it’s surprisingly easy to get wrong. It many cases, you may end up overcooking it, resulting in a dish that is dry and hard to eat. But, like other types of meat, when pork is cooked effectively, it can create an amazing experience. Since the slow cooker is so great at cooking all types of pork, it was hard to narrow down my 10 favorite slow cooker pork recipes from my blog.
The slow cooker can be absolutely perfect making delicious chops, roasts, shoulders, pulled pork and more. After all, it provides a slower and more consistent style of cooking. This makes it easier to ensure that the meat is cooked exactly right, while reducing the risk of overcooking. Of course, you can still mess things up with a slow cooker but that’s where these recipes come in.
In this post, I’m highlighting ten key recipes, all of which come from the Food for Net site. They encompass a range of different flavors, cuisine styles and cuts of meat but they are all worth trying. For that matter, these are some of my favorite ways to prepare pork and tend to be popular with both my family and any dinner guests. Be sure and browse the rest of our pork recipes too!
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10. Pulled Pork Tacos
Tacos are always a crowd pleaser and these Pulled Pork Tacos are even more so. What I love the most about this recipe is just that it is different. With tacos, you often end up making the same dish time and time again, which can get dull fast. At the same time, the recipe is carefully designed to ensure that you end up with moist pork that is bursting with flavor.
As is often the case, there is no shortage of variations that you can make to the ingredients and flavor profile. I often do this myself, trying a slightly different combination of spices each time I make the dish. The recipe provides some suggestions and directions for doing so while still creating fall-apart pork every time.
9. Smoky Slow Cooker Pork & Beans
I’ve always loved pork and beans, partly because it is such a simple and comforting dish. This Smoky Slow Cooker Pork and Beans recipe relies heavily on that idea and is still an easy dish to prepare and to eat. But, the smoky taste that comes with it helps to elevate the pork and beans, making them that much more appealing and satisfying.
For that matter, the overall flavor of the dish is a little more complex than you might expect, especially as it uses a range of spices. Don’t worry though, the dish is still easy to prepare and that extra flavoring does make it so much better than basic pork and beans.
8. Slow Cooker Indonesian Pork Spare Ribs
Any conversation about pork dinners has to have at least some recipes for spare ribs and these Indonesian Pork Spare Ribs are one example. As the name suggests, this dish is strongly influenced by Indonesian flavors and presentation. The whole thing simply works together so well and it ends up being a meal that people crave time and time again.
There is some prep work involved in the recipe, as you need to sear the meat to get the right flavor and texture. But, the prep work isn’t difficult. Plus, as with many other dishes, taking the time to set everything up correctly does result in a much better meal at the other end.
7. Portuguese Red Pepper Pork Ribs
Speaking of ribs, these Portuguese Red Pepper Pork Ribs are another great option for your slow cooker. In this case, the dish gets its inspiration from a classic Portuguese roast, although I’ve adapted it to work with the slow cooker.
The meal is incredibly simple to create and uses few ingredients, which is one of the reasons that it remains so popular. In fact, it mostly relies on red pepper paste. That paste creates the depth of color that you see in the image, along with the overall flavor. The recipe is designed to cook potatoes along with the ribs and it is worth doing so. But, you can also skip them if you just wanted the pork.
6. Slow Cooker Dong Po Rou
If you’ve never seen or tried it before Dong Po Rou can look a little strange and this slow cooker version is no exception to that idea. Basically, the dish is a type of caramelized pork and, as you can imagine, this recipe allows you to make it in the slow cooker.
The recipe itself does rely on pork belly and you really can’t make it with any other type of meat. For that matter, one of the most critical steps is choosing a good cut, as this will strongly influence the finished meal. But, don’t worry, all of the information you need is available in the recipe. And, this dish is easier to make than it first seems.
5. Black Pepper Pork
Most of the time, we think of black pepper as being spicy and as a way of adding some kick to a meal. But, in dishes like this Black Pepper Pork, that pattern isn’t the case at all. Instead, the black pepper helps to create an aromatic dish overall and the flavors work together extremely well.
Unlike many of the other items on this list, the recipe here also works for other cuts of meat. I made it using pork belly but you go with a different type of pork entirely if you wanted to. For that matter, the dish doesn’t have to be made with pork at all. Instead, any type of protein will work just as well, including seafood or tofu.
4. Slow Cooker Braised Pork Hocks
This type of dish is common at many Chinese restaurants and the basic preparation is the same regardless of where you go. For that matter, the main difference with this Braised Pork Hocks recipe is simply that it is designed to be made in the slow cooker.
Making pork hocks in the slow cooker is a logical approach anyway – as the idea is to make the meat tender while keeping the skin intact. Doing so is much easier if you are cooking the meat slowly without moving it around much. As a side effect, this also results in a recipe that involves almost no prep work, aside from marinating the meat (which is optional).
3. Mushroom-Stuffed Pork Roulade
The previous recipe may have been simple but not all slow cooker recipes are. Instead, options like this Mushroom-Stuffed Pork Roulade tend to require more prep work overall. But, you just have to look at it to see that the dish is worth the time and energy that goes into it.
Personally, I absolutely love the way that this meal turns out. The visual style also makes it an attractive option if you have guests that you are trying to impress. On a side note, the meal isn’t all that difficult to make anyway. There are some more preparation steps but the process is still fairly straightforward.
2. Slow Cooker Taosi Spare Ribs
These Taosi Spare Ribs offer another distinctive variation on spare ribs. While the style may not appeal to everyone, it is a perfect choice for people who love Chinese meals or who are looking for something a little bit different. With this recipe, I focused on creating a flavor profile that is fairly intense, while still having significant overtones of Chinese cuisine.
The style of cooking here is a little unusual because you’re using the slow cooker as a steamer. If you haven’t tried this before, don’t worry, it is easy to do. At the same time, the end result is perfect and you can cook this way with any type of slow cooker.
1. Spiced Ale Cinnamon Apple Pork Tenderloin
With pork tenderloin, there is a strong temptation to simply roast it and create a classic pork and veggies meal. And, in some situations, doing so can be fine. But, why have basic roast pork when you can make something like this Spiced Ale Cinnamon Apple Pork Tenderloin instead?
With this dish, there are many more flavors at play and the meat ends up being both sweet and savory. The style may be particularly attractive in the fall, although you could easily eat this meal in the summer as well. Personally, I love the pork slightly warm in sandwiches but there is no shortage of ways to serve it.