Instant Pot® Barbecue Pulled Pork Sandwiches

Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
1h 40 min
8 servings

You can thank your Instant Pot® for pulled pork in just under two hours. This gadget juggles different cook settings (slow cooking, pressure cooking and stove-top browning) to make favorite dishes that your crowd won’t have to wait long to devour.



tbsp light brown sugar
tsp hot paprika
tsp mustard powder
tsp ground cumin
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
(4-lb) boneless pork shoulder, trimmed of excess fat and cut into 6 pieces
tsp vegetable oil
cup apple cider vinegar, plus more to taste
tbsp tomato paste
hamburger potato buns
cup barbecue sauce, for serving
cups coleslaw, for serving



Special equipment: an Instant Pot® multi-cookerSettings may vary on your Instant Pot® depending on the model. Please refer to the manufacturer's guide.

Step 1

Combine paprika, mustard powder, cumin, 1 tablespoon brown sugar, 2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in a small bowl. Rub the spice mixture all over the pork.

Step 2

Turn the Instant Pot® (see Cook’s Note) to the high saute setting. Add the oil and once hot, add the pork and cook in two batches, turning, until browned on all sides, about 5 minutes. Switch the Instant Pot® to the warm setting, remove the pork and transfer to a plate. 

Step 3

Whisk 3/4 cup water into the drippings in the Instant Pot®. Add the vinegar, tomato paste, the remaining 2 tablespoons brown sugar and 2 cups water and whisk to combine. Add the pork back. Follow the manufacturer’s guide for locking the lid and preparing to cook. Set to pressure cook on high for 1 hour. 

Step 4

After the pressure cook cycle is complete, follow the manufacturer’s guide for quick release and wait until the quick release cycle is complete. Careful of any remaining steam, unlock and remove the lid and transfer the pork to a large bowl. 

Step 5

Switch the Instant Pot® to the normal saute setting and simmer the juices until reduced by half, about 15 minutes. While the juices are reducing use a ladle to remove any fat that rises to the top. Season to taste with salt. 

Step 6

Meanwhile, use 2 forks to shred the pork in to small chunks. 

Step 7

Add 3 cups of the reduced cooking liquid to the chunked pork and season with salt and vinegar to taste. Serve in hamburger buns with barbecue sauce and coleslaw.

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