what is the best pork for pulled pork

Wondering What is the best pork for pulled pork?

If you are planning for a food party or to treat yourself to a pulled pork meal, then you must go looking for the best pork.

The choice of what is the best pork for pulled pork is a tough one to make. 

Most people have chosen pork parts that have failed to meet their pulled pork demands.

This article will help you make decisions that will shape your pulled pork-eating sprees.

There are several pork parts that befit being used for pulled pork. However, of them all, pork shoulder is indisputably the best part there is.

Parts of Pork That Can Be Used For Pulled Pork

parts of pork

Knowing what type of pork for pulled pork is very important, you should know this if you are hoping to make an ideal pulled pork.

Pork is rated as one of the best animal meat there is. 

However, it is fatty. The large amounts of fats can both be useful and useless.

Most people drain the fats to be used for other purposes, as well as deep fry pork in its own fats.

This is essential because plenty intake of plenty of them might turn out to be harmful to the body.

These fats accumulate and lead to obesity and other nutritional problems. The following parts of pork are the close contenders for use for pulled pork.

The Boston Butt

Boston earned its name because it sits widely at the tip of the front shoulder.

The word butt in English is used to refer to the widest end of anything, such as that of a gun.

boston butt on chopping board

The Boston butt is easy to identify, It is a wedged portion just above the picnic, with some shape.

The Pork Loin

If you walk to the butchery today specifically for the pork loin, you need to be sure that it is the pork loin you take home.

The pork loin runs from the nape of the back fat and extends to the back rib. 

Like the Boston butt, the pork loin is quite a common part of the hog. It is too used for pulled pork.

Some people call it the center loin, and others refer to it as the pork center rib. 

The pork loin is lean and tender, however, it has traces of a fat cap in its steak. The pork loin is sold without bones to make the chopping process easier and faster.

Note: This part can also be seen in other parts such as pork chops.

How Do You Identify Pork Loin?

identifying pork loin

Pork loin meat is a light-colored one. Upon cooking, the light color quickly transforms into a pale pink color.

At times, it might instead become whitish depending on the intensity of cooking heat and time. 

The tenderloin is also known to have the mildest flavor, while cooking, it has a fat cap that helps it to stay moist throughout the cooking period.

Pork loin is a juicy and tender piece of meat used widely in making barbecues. 

However, it is only that if cooked with a lot of skill and style. Rust your culinary instincts while handling pork loin and prepare the best.

Tip: Pork loin is also used for pulled pork widely.

Pork Tenderloin

pork tenderloin with spices

The pork tenderloin and the pork loin can be very confusing to anyone who hear them for the first time.

Some people even think that they are the same. The pork loin and tenderloin are very different parts of the pork.

In other areas, Pork tenderloin is branded as the pork filet, others also call it pork tender.

The tenderloin is long, skinny and in most butcheries, it is sold as a boneless cut. 

Each and every tenderloin weighs up to a pound in weight. It can never be more than that. Because of that, the tenderloin is sold in two portions.

To be sure that indeed what the butcher is packaging for you is indeed tenderloin, cross-examine it.

Note: Tenderloin must have very little fat content or none at all.

How Do You Identify Pork Tenderloin?

To identify the pork tenderloin, look out for the cut with no fat cap or intramuscular marbling. 

sliced pork tenderloin

In terms of color, tenderloin is reddish dark. 

The color quickly fades away while being cooked. It then puts on a light brown color once it is done cooking. 

The tenderloin is full of flavor, it is tasty by every definition, thrilling, exciting, and one of the very commonly known parts of pork meat.

And since it has no fats like all other parts, it is hardly juicy.

The tenderloin runs along the spine of the hog. It remains tender because it is never involved in any activities.

Tip: pork tenderloin should not be left to overcook, otherwise it would up too dry.

Are There Other Alternatives?

alternatives to use

There are several parts of pork, but the ones listed above are those that specifically suit to be used for pulled pork.

Pulled pork is a delectable fast food that can be eaten alone or with other side dishes. 

It is a barbecue that has seen most chefs, even the most renowned petrified of cooking it.

However, to get the best-pulled pork, it all begins with what pork parts you use for it.

So, What Is The Best Pork To Use For Pulled Pork?

There has been a very heated debate on which of these parts is best for pulled pork.

The Boston butt, also known as the pork shoulder, the pork loin, and pork tenderloin are the only contenders.

pulled pork sandwich

Which of them could be the best for pulled pork?

To arrive at an honest, informed answer, should take a lot of reasoning, spearheaded by concepts and reasons why it takes the tag out of the three.

And because we already did our research, we contend that the Boston Butt, famously known as the pork shoulder, is the best pork for pulled pork.

It should be noted that this name might be confusing. 

Some people have lived to believe that since it is also known as the Boston butt, it could be the rearmost part of the hog.

Tip: Not the Boston part as stated earlier runs from the front leg up to the front left shoulder of the pig or hog.

How Do You Identify Boston Butt?

identifying boston butt

A complete Boston butt weighs anywhere between 12 and 16 pounds. It is comprised of two other parts, famously known as the bone and joint.

Furthermore, it has fatty collagen.

Pork shoulder is also considered as very ideal for pulled pork since it is made up of a very optimal fat content.

When the fat content drops, it ends up into a lucrative tender, tasty, melty, and scrumptious meat.

Tip: Pulled pork should be cooked slowly under controlled heating to enable all proteins to break down completely.

Can Pork Loin Replace Boston Butt?

pork loin replace boston butt

In the event, you could not find the pork shoulder from your butcher and another, or you are hoping to have pork shoulder substituted, then pork loin can make a very good substitute.

It too can be used to make pulled pork and the results are yummy.


In conclusion, what is the Best Pork for pulled pork?

From reading this article, you realize that there are only three close contenders for the best pork for pulled pork.

Interestingly, pork tenderloin gets ruled out. 

So, then we get two. Either the pork loin or the pork tenderloin.

After several insights, and based on prominence, it is clear that the Boston butt, also known as the pork shoulder, carries the day. 

It is the best pork for pulled pork. In as much as pork loin is also a close contender, it is not the best, but instead good for pulled pork.

We hope that this article helps you choose the best pork, whenever you elect to prepare pulled pork.