Southern Food for the Easy Weeknight Win
I know this will be an unpopular sentiment, but I feel it’s my duty as a girl raised in the Deep South to loudly proclaim to all native Texans that the word barbeque is synonymous with slow cooked, smoky, melt-in-your-mouth pulled pork. Sure, brisket is good, but pulled pork is a national treasure.
So much so that apparently it has its own holiday. It turns out that October 12 is National Pulled Pork Day. And since I have a passion for southern food, I want to share with you one of my favorite go-to family meals (or series of meals, really).
Way back in 2014, when my oldest son was just 1 year old, I tore a few pages out of a Parents magazine. The article included a grocery list and “5 Easy Meals” to get you through the week. It began by having you slow cook a large pork shoulder, then serving half of it that first night as carnitas tacos (so. good.). A few days later, you eat the rest in barbeque sandwiches. Amazing and easy. You can cook the other recipes on the in-between days, but I have found myself making that combo of 2 dishes probably at least once every 2 months for the past 6 years. They are so easy and delicious, and all 3 of my kids love them both.
Here you see my much-loved (and a little splattered) original paper recipe, but if you’re interested in trying it out yourself, here’s a nice clean digital version.
I have a couple of tips:
- Don’t bother to cube the pork before putting it in the slow cooker. I never have, and it has always pulled apart just fine.
- Canned pineapple chunks work for the tacos. Get the smaller cut kind.
- It’s best to have way more BBQ sauce than the recipe calls for. We like this one.
- Mix up some quick slaw with a bag of coleslaw mix and some dressing. Then plop a spoonful right on top of the pork before you put that top bun on. It’s a game changer.
And that’s it. The Texas side of me loves the tacos. The South Carolina side of me loves the barbeque sandwiches. It’s a winning recipe every time in my house, and I hope you enjoy it too. Happy National Pulled Pork Day!
About the Author
Carrie Thomas is a mother of 3 (Hailey 2, Caleb 4, and Jackson 7) and has been a CECPTA blue and yellow group member for almost 2 years. She moved to Carrollton from New Jersey in the winter of 2018 when her husband accepted a job at UTD. She is a middle school English teacher in Carrollton and loves spending time with her family, reading dystopian YA novels, and unwinding with a glass of wine and one of the well-written Netflix shows.