Apple Cider Braised Pulled Pork Sandwiches with Apple Slaw

A delicious pulled pork sandwich does not have to be cooked in a smoker or grill. My apple cider braised pulled pork sandwiches are perfect year round, made in a crockpot, and is topped with a creamy apple slaw! 

This recipe is a part of a holiday recipe roundup collaboration hosted by me, Natasha of @asiliglamcooks. For this week we are focusing on the best fall slow cooker meals. I hope you’ll enjoy this guest post below!

This is hands down my absolute favorite recipe, so I highly encourage errrrryyyyyybody reading this to partake in this awesomeness of a sammich! This recipe is perfect year round for a couple of reasons: pulled pork is great for the summer, and crockpot meals are perfect for cooler weather. 

The use of the apple cider to cook the pork and sliced apples in the slaw makes this recipe fall AF! And the melody of flavors with this is amaze-ballz, y’all. The apple cider makes the pulled pork a little sweeter, but not overpowering. Also adding the apples to the slaw took it up a notch by giving it a nice little crunch.

The key to making the pulled pork really good is letting the flavors mellow. I seasoned the pork a couple of hours ahead of time with the spices and sugar, then added it to the crockpot to cook low and slow. 

Once fully cooked, the pork gets shredded and mixed with your bbq sauce of choice. I also took a very basic recipe for cabbage slaw and added some thinly sliced apples. Finally, top the pulled pork on toasted brioche rolls with the apple slaw. Whew…… this is the one!

No worries if you’re not a pork eater. It can be swapped out for chicken! I’d suggest using skinless chicken thighs, since you still want some of the fat content that pork shoulder would have. Chicken breasts will work fine too. 

My apple cider braised pulled pork is also magical when it’s not in sandwich form! Serve it as tacos or nachos, on a bed of mac n cheese, or with a side of cornbread. 

I hope you fall (get it…fall, like the season) in love with my pulled pork like I did! Be sure to check out my website for more easy recipes, as well as some cool kitchen hacks, at!

Yield: 4-6 servings

Apple Cider Braised Pulled Pork Sandwiches with Apple Slaw

Apple Cider Braised Pulled Pork Sandwiches with Apple Slaw
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours
Additional Time 2 hours
Total Time 6 hours 15 minutes


  • Braised Pork Ingredients:
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 ½ lbs pork shoulder
  • 1 ½ tbsp kosher salt
  • 2 garlic cloves crushed
  • ½ cup white onion sliced
  • 1 ½ cup apple cider, or 100% apple juice
  • 1 tsp liquid smoke
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 thyme sprigs
  • 1 cup BBQ sauce
  • 4-6 sandwich rolls
  • Apple Slaw Ingredients
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • ¼ tsp ground black pepper
  • ¾ tsp kosher salt
  • 1 ½ tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup shredded green cabbage
  • 2 scallions sliced
  • ½ apple thinly sliced


Braised Pork Instructions:

1. In a small bowl, mix paprika, brown sugar, onion powder, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, and black pepper. Set aside.

2. Pat pork shoulder dry on both sides, and put into a container or on a dish. Season both sides of the pork with the sugar mixture. Put pork into the fridge, uncovered, for 2-3 hours.

3. Remove pork from the fridge, and season both sides of pork with salt.

4. In a crockpot or oven safe dish, add garlic, onion, cider, liquid smoke, water, bay leaf and thyme. Place pork into liquid.

5. Crockpot – Cook on high for 2 hours, or on low for 4 hours. Oven – Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 2 hours.

6. Once cooked, remove pork from the liquid into a large bowl and let cool for about 5 minutes. Reserve 1/4 cup of the braising liquid. Shred the pork, removing any bone, gristle, and tendons. Fat can be removed to your liking.

7. Optional: Remove the sliced onions and the garlic cloves from the braising liquid. Roughly chop and add with the shredded pork.

8. Add bbq sauce to the pork, along with reserved braising liquid. Mix to combine.

Apple Slaw Instructions

1. In a medium bowl, mix mayonnaise, pepper, salt, and vinegar.

2. Toss in cabbage, scallions, and apples. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve.

Sandwich assembly

1. Toast the sandwich rolls (optional)

2. Top bottom half of brioche roll with pulled pork.

3. Top the pulled pork with apple slaw, and the top half of the sandwich roll.

4. Eat that thang!!!!

Link to recipe:

Tune in tomorrow for our next submission for our slow cooker recipe roundup hosted by @asiliglamcooks and friends. 

P.S. Check out my last recipe here.


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