Listen, we love pulled jackfruit and shredded chicken as much as the next person, but we all know pulled pork is the real deal. It takes so well to flavour and is sticky, sweet and succulent. That’s why we’re sharing this pulled pork tortilla recipe from Ilse van Der Merwe’s cookbook Simply Seasonal.
It works great as a meal for friends (it makes at least 6 servings), or you can meal prep it for the week ahead. “I always double the recipe for the rub, meat and sauce, because pulled pork freezes exceptionally well and is a fabulous quick-fix filler for rolls, sandwiches etc,” says van der Merwe.
And the best part is you don’t need to be a braai master to master this meat. No smoker? This tender and sticky recipe is adapted so that anyone can make it in a regular oven (using a good quality cast-iron pot).
It is intended to be deliciously messy, so embrace this pulled pork tortilla recipe, eat with your hands and lick your fingers.
Oven-Braised BBQ Pulled Pork Tortilla Recipe
- 30ml Soft brown sugar
- 15ml Salt
- 15ml Smoked paprika
- 5ml Ground cumin
- 2.5ml Ground black pepper
Pork & Barbecue Sauce (recipe can easily be doubled)
- 2kg Boneless pork shoulder, cut into 5–6 large chunks
- 45ml Olive oil
- 1 Bottle lager beer (or apple cider)
- 125ml Tomato sauce
- 45ml Apple cider vinegar
- 45ml Dijon mustard
- 10ml Brown sugar
- 15ml Worcestershire sauce
- 15ml soy sauce
- 2 Cloves garlic, finely grated
- 8–12 Toasted flour or corn tortillas
- Sour cream (or mayonnaise)
- Tomato salsa and/or cabbage slaw
- Sliced red onion, fresh coriander
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- For the rub, mix all the ingredients together in a wide mixing bowl. Now add the pork chunks and toss to coat all over, rubbing the mixture into the meat. Cover and leave overnight in the fridge, if you have the time, or continue straight on.
- Preheat the oven to 150°C. In a large cast-iron pot (try use a 31cm oval Le Creuset casserole for the doubled recipe) over medium-high heat, heat the oil. Working in batches, add the rubbed pork and sear on all sides (remember there’s sugar in the spice mix, so it will tend to burn quickly – watch carefully).
- Place all the meat back in the pot, add the beer and cover with a lid. Transfer to the preheated oven and cook for 3 hours, then remove the lid and cook for another hour, or until the pork is very tender and pulls apart easily. Remove from the oven, transfer the meat to a clean bowl and let it rest while you prepare the sauce in the used pot with drippings.
- To make the BBQ sauce, add the tomato sauce or ketchup, vinegar, mustard, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce and garlic to the pot with the remaining drippings and stir well. Bring to a simmer for about 5 minutes over medium heat, scraping the bottom and sides to incorporate all the dark roasted bits, then taste and season with salt and pepper.
- Now shred the rested pork using two forks. Toss the shredded meat with about half the barbecue sauce (or more if you want). Serve warm with freshly toasted tortillas, sour cream or mayonnaise, salsa and/or cabbage slaw, red onion, coriander and some extra BBQ sauce on the side.
Kelleigh is the Managing Editor of Women’s Health. When she’s not convincing her colleagues to try the latest TikTok trends, you can find her planning a holiday that never leaves the group chat, binge-reading or eating her way through Cape Town.