Pulled Pork with Pineapple BBQ Sauce

Before I get to the favorite recipe I have ever made, I have some exciting news. I crossed into the double digits this morning! I haven’t run over 10 miles in at least two years and breaking through that barrier was a huge accomplishment for me mentally and physically. Overall, the run went really well. I felt good, had a good mixture of hills and flat, and the last 4 miles I was running in a light drizzle, which was actually kind of fun. Good thing I got it in when I did. The skies just turned really dark and I think we’re in for a pretty good storm this afternoon.

I can’t believe that 3 months ago all I could do was run/walk 3 miles. I have gone from sucking some serious wind to getting my stride back and it feels so good. When you first start running again, it can be the most depressing thing ever, especially if you are someone who has a couple of marathons under your belt. After coming off my hiatus, there were many days where I felt like I would never be able to run over 3 miles. With one foot in front of the other day after day, I am finally starting to feel like a real runner again. Success comes to those who work their butts off for it! Don’t ever give up.

Now on to the fun stuff…melt in your mouth pulled pork! I can’t remember exactly how it came up, but last week I was speaking with a coworker about flavor combinations and pork with pineapple came up. They’re a match made in heaven and compliment each other so well. So, when I received a package from US Wellness Meats on Thursday with a delicious pork shoulder, I knew I had to find a way to make something delicious with pineapple. What I didn’t expect was how downright amazing it would turn out. I don’t think there is another way I will ever cook pork again. It is seriously that good.

The pork is braised in a delicious sauce that would be good on its own, but then when you add the pineapple BBQ sauce, it brings the pork to a whole new level. The BBQ sauce has the perfect amount of spicy, tangy, and sweet. This sauce would be good on chicken, too, so you might want to make up a double batch and keep it in the fridge to use all week.

IMG_0007Pulled Pork with Pineapple BBQ Sauce

Cooking time: 1 hour prep/active cooking, 8 hours in the crockpot

For the pork:

  • 3-4 pounds pork shoulder
  • 1 yellow onion, sliced
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 cup beef stock
  • 1/3 cup Annie’s dijon
  • 1/4 cup grade B maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup coconut aminos
  • salt and pepper

For the sauce:

  • 1 large shallot, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 diced pineapple, about 1 cup
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 8 oz can tomato sauce
  • 1 tablespoon coconut aminos
  • 2 tablespoons dijon
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoke paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons raw honey
  • 1/2 cup beef stock
  • 1 tablespoon coconut vinegar or apple cider vinegar

Directions for the pork:

  1. Pull out your crockpot and line the bottom with your sliced onions and garlic. Add the pork on top of the onions and garlic. Sprinkle with salt and pepper
  2. Mix the beef stock, dijon, maple syrup, and coconut aminos in a small bowl. Pour over the pork.
  3. Turn your crockpot on low and cook for 8 hours.
  4. At the end of 8 hours, remove the pork and place on a cutting board.
  5. Allow the pork to sit for about 10 minutes and then shred with a fork or finely slice with a knife.

Directions for the sauce:

  1. About an hour before the pork is done cooking in the crockpot, get started on the sauce.
  2. Add the extra virgin olive oil and shallot to a medium sauce pan. Cook on medium-high for about five minutes until it starts to soften.
  3. Reduce heat to medium. Add the pineapple and salt to the pan and cook for about 10 minutes.
  4. Add the tomato paste and cook for about 2-3 minutes while stirring regularly.
  5. Add the remaining ingredients, except for the vinegar, and stir to incorporate.
  6. Let the sauce simmer on medium-low for 20-30 minutes.
  7. Transfer the sauce to a blender and blend on high till smooth (about 2 minutes).
  8. Add the sauce back to the sauce pan, stir in the vinegar, and taste for seasoning. At this point the sauce can stay warm on the stove until the pork is ready to be smothered in its love.
  9. Toss about 3/4 of the sauce with the shredded pork and serve the extra sauce on the side.

Baked sweet potato fries and coleslaw really round out this meal. The pork would also be good in egg foo young, salad, tacos…just about anything. Give it a try and let me know what you think.

Saute the shallots and pineapple until soft and just starting to brown.

Saute the shallots and pineapple until soft and just starting to brown.

Blend the BBQ sauce until silky smooth.

Blend the BBQ sauce until silky smooth.

Toss the sauce with your pulled pork and then drown it in even more sauce.

Toss the sauce with your pulled pork and then drown it in even more sauce.

Serve with baked sweet potatoes and coleslaw for a perfect post-run meal.

Serve with baked sweet potatoes and coleslaw for a perfect post-run meal.

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