If you love a flavorful pulled pork sandwich, then these succulent pulled pork sliders are for you! Prepared with slow-roasted pork, seasoned with lots of spices, piled it into soft Hawaiian rolls slathered in homemade chipotle mayo, then topped with salsa verde, this mouthwatering pulled pork recipe is not only scrumptious, but easy to prepare in your own kitchen!
Pork Sliders That Slide Down Oh-So Easy
Becoming inspired by a beloved dish, then taking that inspiration and turning it into a slightly different dish (or presentation of the dish) is something that I truly adore doing.
Take these pulled pork sliders, for instance...
Many years ago, my hubby introduced me to pork carnitas at our favorite local Mexican restaurant, with their succulent melt-in-your-mouth texture, plus sides of salsa verde, cilantro and onions for topping.
Now, I've always found a good pulled pork sandwich utterly irresistible, so after tasting the carnitas, I took my inspiration and sort of “mashed” that up with the idea of a pulled pork sandwich.
The result was these pulled pork sliders on fluffy Hawaiian rolls with chipotle mayo and salsa verde, and with cilantro and onion as toppers.
Not only are these little pulled pork sliders utterly mouthwatering, but as that succulent pork gently and slowly roasts away in the oven, it makes the kitchen smell amazing!
My Recipe for Pulled Pork Sliders with Chipotle Mayo
When it comes to preparing pulled pork, the cut of meat that’s best to use is pork butt.
Pork butt is actually a cut from the upper shoulder of the pig, which has lots of marbling and flavor, and needs a nice low and slow cooking process to make it exceptionally fall-off-the-bone tender and easy to shred.
Pork shoulder can also be used, but this is lower on the foreleg than pork butt and does not contain quite as much fat marbling, which is helpful during the cooking if you're looking to pull the pork after roasting.
Using lots of spices and seasoning to rub into the meat is the other trick, as this offers lots of savory flavor, which is what we're looking for in a preparation like this.
I like to use lots of salt and black pepper, granulated onion and garlic, cumin and paprika, plus dried oregano, lime and garlic. That combination of spices creates an unbelievably delicious aroma as the pork roasts away in the kitchen!
As for toppings, the flavor of a my simple and homemade chipotle mayo adds just a little “kick” to these sandwiches. I also love tangy salsa verde spooned over top along with fresh onion and cilantro as a nod to those carnitas.
Here's a sneak peek at my pulled pork sliders recipe: (or just jump to the full recipe...)
- To get started, I season my pork butt and allow it to marinate for at least an hour, even over night if making ahead.
- Then, I get the pork into my 300° oven to roast for roughly 4 to 5 hours, or until tender and easy to shred and pull with a fork.
- While the pork butt roasts, I prep my chipotle mayo to have ready and on hand, along with my salsa verde, cilantro and sliced onions.
- Once the pork has roasted, I allow it cool just enough so that I can handle it, then shred with two forks, chopping any larger shreds so that the meat is bite-size and easy to manage.
- I assemble my pulled pork sliders by slathering on some of my chipotle mayo on both the top and bottom Hawaiian bun slices, adding a heaping amount of pulled pork, then topping that with salsa verde, sliced onion and fresh cilantro.
Pulled Pork Sliders
by Ingrid Beer
These succulent pulled pork sliders are served on tender Hawaiian buns slathered in homemade chipotle mayo, salsa verde, onions and cilantro!
Yield: 12 sliders (about 3 sliders per person)
Nutrition Info: 525 calories (per pulled pork slider)
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 5 hours (for slow-roasting pork)
Total time: 5 hours 20 minutes
Pulled Pork Sliders Ingredients:
- 3 to 4 pound pork butt
- 2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 3 cloves garlic, pressed through garlic press
- 1 teaspoon lime zest
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
- 12 Hawaiian rolls
- 1 ¼ cups good quality, fresh salsa verde
- ½ medium white onion, thinly sliced
- ½ cup cilantro leaves
Chipotle Mayo Ingredients:
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1 to 2 chipotle peppers (depending on how spicy you like it)
- 1 teaspoon adobo sauce (from the chipotle peppers tin)
- Pinch salt/black pepper
- Begin by gathering and prepping all of your pulled pork ingredients according to the ingredient list above to have ready and organized for use.
- Place the pork butt on a large platter or in a large bowl. In a ramekin, combine the salt with the rest of the ingredients up to and including the olive oil, and mix to form a paste/marinade. Rub this paste/marinade all over the pork very well, cover the pork with plastic wrap, place into fridge and allow the meat to marinate for at least an hour, or ideally, over night.
- Once ready to roast the meat, take it out of the fridge and allow it to rest at room temperature for about 30 minutes to 1 hour before roasting to bring to room temp.
- Preheat your oven to 300°, line a baking sheet with foil, and place a wire rack on top of the baking sheet.
- Once the oven is heated, place the pork with the fat-side up onto the wire rack, and drizzle lightly with oil. If you have an oven-safe thermometer, insert it into the thickest part of the meat, and place the meat into the oven to roast for approximately 4 to 5 hours, or until the thermometer registers 170° and the meat is pretty much “falling off the bone”.
- While the pork butt roasts, gather and prep all of your chipotle mayo ingredients according to the ingredient list above to have ready and organized for use.
- To make the chipotle mayo, place all ingredients into the bowl of the food processor and puree until smooth and creamy (or use a whisk to thoroughly combine). Store in a covered container in fridge until ready to use.
- Remove the pork butt from oven and allow it to rest for about 20 minutes, or until it's cool enough to handle.
- Once slightly cooled, pull the meat apart and shred it into bite-sized pieces (chop larger pieces), and add it into the drippings from the roasting process, and toss the pork to coat.
- Place the pork into a bowl or onto a platter to hold, covering with foil to keep warm.
- To prepare the sliders, spread some of the chipotle mayo onto the buns, add roughly 2 ounces of the pulled pork to the bottom bun, then top with salsa verde, sliced onion and fresh cilantro leaves. Serve 3 sliders per person, or your desired amount.
Tips & Tidbits for my Pulled Pork Sliders recipe:
- Pork butt is best for making pulled pork: Pork butt is the upper part of the foreleg, and contains good marbling of fat which makes the meat tender, juicy and easy to pull or shred once cooked. You could also use pork shoulder in a pinch (this is located a little lower on the foreleg), but it contains less fat which makes it slightly tougher and not quite as rich for this type of preparation.
- Low and slow roasting for pulled pork: Pork butt requires a low and slow cooking process, and setting the oven to 300° is ideal for this. It does need about 4 to 5 hours of roasting for a 3 to 4 pound size pork butt, but it is gentle cooking and you do not need to babysit it or do anything special. Just forget about it for that time, leave it in the oven to cook slowly, and the results will be delicious, tender and succulent.
- Hawaiian rolls, or your favorite slider buns: I like Hawaiian slider rolls for this recipe because they're super soft and have a fluffy, tender texture. Feel free to use any slider roll you choose!
- Delicious toppings for pulled pork sliders: My favorites are the chipotle mayo, some salsa verde, sliced onions and cilantro, though you can use salsa fresca or pico de gayo, avocado, or even BBQ sauce for a smoky flavor.
Craving more tasty sandwich recipes? Check out my recipe for a Short Rib Sandwich, a Pulled Chicken Sandwich, a BBQ Meatloaf Burger, a Steak Sandwich, Po' Boy Sandwiches, or my recipe for a Grilled Chicken Sandwich with Pesto!
Cook's Note: This recipe was originally published in 2013, and has been updated with even more love!