I love this sweet pulled pork recipe for several reasons. It’s perfect on homemade hamburger buns, corn tortillas, and even flour tortillas. Plus, if you want to skip the bread carb route, it’s delicious even if you just serve it as a main course with side dishes.
One of my favorite foods is Mexican food, just about any kind. So today, I picked up some freshly made gluten-free corn tortillas from a local Mexican restaurant. They cost about $5.00 for 2 dozen and I had a coupon for $4.00 off, so I served those along with some flour tortillas I had in the freezer. Great bargain and great dinner, everyone in the family liked them.
The thing about making homemade tacos is the fact that our pantry or the refrigerator has just about everything we need to serve with them. Where I live, pork is one of the cheapest meats to purchase, so I’m stocking up when I can find a good price on pork tenderloins. No bones, no waste, and super tender. They can be barbecued, baked in the oven, and of course, cooked in our slow cookers or pressure cookers. Life is good! I love easy-to-make meals for dinner that also taste delicious!
Kitchen Tools You Will Need:
- Slow Cooker I used a 3-1/2 Quart One
- Measuring Cups
- Measuring Spoons
- Can Opener
- Large Forks to Shred Meat
- Taco Holder
- Slotted Spoon
Sweet Pulled Pork Recipe
- Pork (I used a Pork Tenderloin): lean and a high-quality source of protein; minimally processed; rich source of vitamins and minerals – iron and zinc.
- Regular (not sugar-free) Coca-Cola®: the sugars help to caramelize the pork while cooking.
- Brown Sugar: Adds sweetness; helps pull all the flavors to create a sweet and savory dish.
- Garlic Salt: A seasoning salt of both garlic powder and table salt.
- Green Chiles: A mild green pepper with a sweet, slightly spicy, smoky flavor.
- Red Enchilada Sauce: Also known as salsa Roja; a mixture of chilis, onion, garlic, tomatoes, broth, and other spices; adds a spicy kick to the recipe.
Sweet Pulled Pork Recipe
Step One: Gather Ingredients
I love recipes that use minimal ingredients, and of course, the recipe has to be easy. This recipe has pork, I used pork tenderloin, Coca-Cola®, brown sugar, garlic salt, green chilies, and red enchilada sauce.
Step Two: Put Pork In The Slowcooker
Grab a slow cooker, I used a 3-1/2 quart-size unit. Place the cut-up pork pieces in the slow cooker. The size of the pieces is a personal preference.
Step Three: Add the Coca-Cola® and Brown Sugar
Add the Coca-Cola® and Brown Sugar on top of the pork pieces.
Step Four: Add Garlic Salt and Then Cook for 4 Hours
Sprinkle the garlic salt on top of the mixture in the slow cooker. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours.
Step Five: Shred The Pork
After 4 hours, turn the slow cooker to low. Shred the pork with two large forks. The smaller the pieces, the easier to shred.
Step Six: Make The Sauce
In a small bowl, combine the 1/2 can of Coca-Cola®, the green chilies, enchilada sauce, and brown sugar to make the sauce. Stir until well mixed.
Step Seven: Cook For 2 More Hours
Pour the mixture into the slow cooker. Turn the slow cooker to low and cook for another two hours.
Step Eight: Prepare The Condiments
Don’t you just love looking at all these yummy condiments? Each family member can add the ones they want to their sweet pulled pork taco! There are so many options that you can choose from to serve this delicious sweet pulled pork recipe. We served our tacos with shredded cheese, diced tomatoes, sour cream, sliced olives, guacamole, shredded lettuce, cilantro, and diced onions. What will your family choose?
Step Nine: Ready To Serve
Use a slotted spoon to remove the shredded pork from the liquid to place in your corn or flour tortillas. It is important to remove as much of the juices as possible before serving. I placed six taco shells here so you can see the difference between the corn variety on the left and the flour tortillas on the right. I left two with just pulled pork so you can see them before the condiments were added.
- 2-1/2 pounds pork tenderloin (boneless)
- 2 cans Coca-Cola® (sugar-free does not work)
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
- 4 -ounce can of green chilies
- 10 -ounce can of Red Enchilada Sauce
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 can of Coca-Cola® (drink the other half)
- fresh limes as needed
1. Gather the ingredients.
2. Grab a slow cooker, I used a 3-1/2 quart-size unit. Place the pork pieces in the slow cooker.
3. Add the Coca-Cola® and Brown Sugar on top of the pork pieces.
4. Sprinkle the garlic salt on top of the mixture in the slow cooker. Cover and start the slow cooker on high for 4 hours.
5. After four hours, turn the slow cooker to low. Shred the pork with two large forks.
6. Make the sauce. In a small bowl combine the 1/2 can of Coca-Cola®, the green chilies, enchilada sauce, and brown sugar.
7. Pour the mixture into the slow cooker. The sweet pork mixture will now cook for another two hours on low in the slow cooker.
8. Prepare desired condiments to serve – such as shredded cheese, sour cream, sliced olives, cilantro, lettuce, tomatoes etc. What you need will depend on how the sweet pulled pork will be served.
9. Use a slotted spoon to remove the shredded pork from the liquid to place in your corn or flour tortillas. Add condiments of choice, and enjoy. I love a little squeeze of fresh lime on mine!
What type of pork is best to use in this sweet pork recipe?
I really love using pork tenderloin! It is a leaner meat, so it will have less fat than other cuts of pork. It is a smaller muscle, very tender, and darker meat. Pork butt (Boston butt) and pork shoulder roast or pork roast are other cuts that may be a good choice. They have a higher fat content which would add additional flavor. I highly recommend using a cut of pork that is boneless. This will make shredding the meat very easy! I don’t recommend bone-in. The trick is to make things as simple as possible.
Can I use barbecue sauce in this sweet pork recipe?
The combination of the Coca-Cola, green chiles, enchilada sauce, and brown sugar make a delicious sauce! You don’t need to buy a bbq sauce for this recipe. It is very easy to make the sauce and the flavor that it adds is out of this world!
Why do you use regular Coca-Cola® to make sweet pulled pork?
The sugars in the regular Coca-Cola® allow the pork to caramelize during the slow cooking process. Please don’t use a sugar-free version of Coca-Cola®! You won’t get the same effect. The sugars are essential to creating the sweetness in this sweet pulled pork recipe! Combining the flavor of the caramelized pork and then adding the sauce for the last 2 hours in the crock pot is the secret to making the best sweet pulled pork!
Can I add additional spices to this sweet pulled pork recipe?
I really love this sweet pulled pork recipe the way it is! The flavors of the Coca-Cola, green chilies, brown sugar, garlic salt, and red enchilada sauce is really all you need! I don’t feel that you need to add any additional blend of spices. This recipe really is delicious and simple with very few ingredients!
How can I serve sweet pulled pork?
- Sweet Pulled Pork Sandwiches
- Potato salad as a side
- Sweet Pulled Pork Tacos, Burritos, and/or Enchiladas
- Garden Salad topped with Sweet Pulled Pork
- Black beans as a side
- Cilantro Lime Rice as a side
- Coleslaw as a side
- Mac’n Cheese as a side
Interested in other delicious pork recipes? Check these out:
- Pulled Pork In A Slow Cooker
- Pork Breakfast Sausage
- 20 Instant Pot® Pork Recipes
- How To Make Moist Pork Chops In Cast Iron
I hope that you and your family enjoy this easy and delicious sweet pulled pork recipe! It is one of my family’s favorites! It tastes very similar to the Cafe Rio sweet pork recipe, but I like mine better! 🙂 I love to serve this sweet pulled pork in burritos, tacos, enchiladas, and also as a sweet pork salad with lettuce and pico de gallo. What is your favorite way to serve this sweet pulled pork? I would love to hear! May God bless this world! Linda