Slow Cooker Southwestern Pulled Pork

Slow Cooker Southwestern Pulled Pork, featuring the flavors of chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, cilantro and jalapeño, makes dinner easy on a busy day. 

Slow Cooker Southwestern Pulled Pork

Southwestern Pulled Pork is so easy to cook in your slow cooker.

There is very little prep time and it is one of the best kind of fix it and forget about it recipes.

Perfect for crazy busy days. I love basic recipes like this to keep on hand in the freezer.

My Crock Pot Mexican Chicken, which has become a staple for any quick, easy Mexican night, inspired me to make a similar, but slightly different version featuring pork rather than chicken.

What to Make with Slow Cooker Southwestern Pulled Pork

Slow Cooker Southwestern Pulled Pork is incredibly versatile.

I recently used it as an addition to these Ultimate Easy Nachos to turn the recipe into more of a meal rather than a party appetizer.

It was really good!

However, you could easily use this Slow Cooker Southwestern Pulled Pork as the base for other recipes, such as Spanish Rice Taco Salad Bowls or Shredded Pork Tacos.

If you’re having a Cinco de Mayo celebration, this recipe will help make your planning really simple while still keeping it tasty.

Slow Cooker Southwestern Pulled Pork

How to Make Slow Cooker Southwestern Pulled Pork

Slow Cooker Southwestern Pulled Pork uses the Homemade Southwestern Pork Rub that I posted the other day.

I definitely recommend making a batch of the rub and keeping it on hand, rather than having to prepare it when you start this recipe.

It’ll just make it easier in the long run if you have one less step to do at the time.

After rubbing the meat with the spice blend, you’ll sear it on all sides in hot oil to get a nice browned crust on the outside of the meat.

Then, transfer the pork shoulder to your slow cooker and let it cook all day until it is super tender and falls apart on its on.

Once that happens, you’ll shred it the rest of the way, making sure to discard any hunks of fat that are left behind, return it to the slow cooker with all the delicious juices that are left behind.

For a boost of color and a little extra flavor, I like to add fresh jalapeño and cilantro to the meat at this point.

You can add a little more of the rub at this point too, depending on your flavor preferences, and then you are good to go.

Super easy and flavorful for a quick, no-fuss dinner.

If you want to take this Slow Cooker Southwestern Pulled Pork to the next level, for say a taco night, check out these 7 Ways to Up Your Taco Tuesday Game.

One of those 7 ways is to vary your meat.

I definitely recommend giving taco night a go with some Slow Cooker Southwestern Pulled Pork rather than your traditional ground beef recipe.

Love this recipe for Slow Cooker Southwestern Pulled Pork?
Sign up for Good Life Eats email updates and never miss another recipe!

Slow Cooker Southwestern Pulled Pork

Slow Cooker Southwestern Pulled Pork

Yield: serves 10
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 8 hours 10 minutes

Slow Cooker Southwestern Pulled Pork,featuring the flavors of chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, cilantro and jalapeño, makes dinner easy on a busy day.


  • 1 tablespoon Oil
  • 4 lb. boneless Pork Shoulder Roast, excess fat trimmed and discarded
  • 6 tablespoons Southwestern Pork Rub
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh Cilantro
  • 1 diced jalapeño, deseeded (if desired)


  1. In a cast iron skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat.
  2. Rub 5 tablespoons of the Southwestern Pork Rub on the outsides of the pork shoulder.
  3. Place the rubbed pork shoulder in the heated oil, searing for 1 - 2 minutes on each side, or until a golden brown crust has formed on all sides.
  4. Remove from heat.
  5. Transfer the pork should to a slow cooker.
  6. Cook on low for 6 - 8 hours  (or high for 3 - 4 hours), or until pork is tender and falling apart and cooked through.
  7. Once the pork is cooked through and falling apart, remove it from the slow cooker (keep the juices in the slow cooker) and transfer to a cutting board.
  8. Discard any excess fat chunks.
  9. Shred and return to the slow cooker pot with the reserved juices.
  10. Add the cilantro and jalapeño to the slow cooker. Stir to combine.
  11. Taste, and add the remaining 2 tablespoons of rub according to your taste preferences.
  12. Serve.


Use Slow Cooker Southwestern Pulled Pork in any Tex-Mex style recipe, such as tacos. It also works well on slider buns for a pulled pork sandwich. Freezes well in 1 - 2 cup portions once cooled.

Recommended Products

As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition Information
Yield 10 Serving Size 1
Amount Per ServingCalories 563 Total Fat 41g Saturated Fat 15g Trans Fat 0g Unsaturated Fat 23g Cholesterol 171mg Sodium 128mg Carbohydrates 0g Net Carbohydrates 0g Fiber 0g Sugar 0g Sugar Alcohols 0g Protein 44g offers recipe nutritional information as a courtesy and is an estimate only. This information comes from online calculators. Although makes every effort to provide accurate information, these figures are only estimates.