4 Best Pulled Pork Alternatives You Can Make At Home

pulled pork substitute

A juicy pulled pork sandwich is perfect for a quick and hearty meal.

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But what if you run out of pork and have no ingredients to make pulled pork?

This article will provide you with some typical substitutes for your pulled pork that you can either try to make at home or easily bought from a grocery store.

What is pulled pork?

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Pulled pork is a staple in many dishes.

It is often made from pork butt or pork shoulder that is slow-cooked over low heat until tender and then shredded, or pulled, into small strips.

Slow-cooking pork will help tenderize the meat and make it easier to fall apart, then there is no need for a lot of effort to shred a big batch of pork.

Pulled pork is often tossed in BBQ sauces before being served on buns with some vegetables and cheese.

To cook pork to make pulled pork, you can either roast, braise, or smoke the meat over low heat for hours to make sure all the connective tissues are broken down.

Due to the long cooking time, it is better to opt for a bit fatty cut of pork instead of a lean cut like loin or tenderloin because it might easily get dry.

Pulled pork is a rich source of protein, but it is often higher in fat and calories compared to pulled meat that is made from poultry like chicken or turkey.

Therefore, it should be eaten occasionally to maintain good health and is not ideal for the daily consumption of those who want to lose weight.

Can you substitute pulled pork in cooking recipes?

Yes, you can substitute pulled pork in any cooking recipe.

Since pork is a versatile kind of meat, there is a high demand for it.

Therefore, it is no surprise that pork is out of stock frequently in your local grocery store or supermarket.

So if you are planning to make the best pulled pork sandwiches for your family and there is no time to wait for the delivery, it would be better to look for a substitute for your classic pulled pork.

There are actually plenty of options, including other kinds of meat or vegan alternatives that can help you have the best dishes without sacrificing the flavor or texture of pulled pork.

What can you substitute for pulled pork?

Here are what you can use to replace pulled pork in any cooking recipe:

1. Other pulled red meat (beef, lamb, or goat)

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Pork is a popular type of red meat, so using other red meats will be the first option that comes into our mind to substitute for pork.

You can also make pulled beef, pulled lamb, or pulled goat with the same method.

Also, keep in mind that a bit fatty cut will work better for a pulled meat recipe to prevent it from drying out while cooking for a long time.

2. Pulled chicken or turkey

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Another substitute for pulled pork that is considered healthier is pulled chicken or turkey.

With these white meat options, you can cut down the fat and cholesterol intake while still having mouth-watering dishes.

However, since chicken or turkey is more tender than pork, it will take less time to cook.

You can use different cuts of chicken like chicken breast or chicken thighs with their own pros and cons.

Chicken/ turkey breasts are healthier but milder in flavor, while the dark meat counterpart like chicken thighs or turkey thighs are more flavorful, and juicier, but contain more fat.

3. Pulled jackfruit

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Believe it or not, you can even use jackfruit as a vegan substitute for pulled pork.

Jackfruit has a meaty texture.

It can be easily pulled apart even when not being cooked.

Moreover, jackfruit doesn’t have a strong fruity flavor so it can be used in savory recipes like making pulled pork.

You only need to simmer jackfruit with BBQ sauce for about 30 minutes instead of hours like cooking pork.

And the result might surprise even a meat lover.

4. Pulled mushrooms

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Last but not least, mushrooms are also a primary choice for a vegan pulled pork substitute.

Mushrooms also have a texture of meat with an earthy and umami flavor, making them perfect to replicate pulled pork.

You can use Oyster mushrooms, Shiitake, or Portobello.

Pulled mushrooms can be made the same way as pulled pork, but the resulting dish is much lower in calories, and fat, while still being packed with protein and many other essential vitamins and minerals.

The bottom line

Hopefully, with our list of the best pulled pork substitutes above, you will never have to worry about running out of pork when it comes to making pulled pork.

There are many other options to use in place of pork that can satisfy both meat lovers or vegetarians, so feel free to give all of them a try and figure out what pulled pork substitute you and your family like the most.