Instant Pot Pulled Pork and Apples (With a Crock Pot Option)

Instant Pot Pulled Pork and Apples is easy to prepare and results in the most mouth-watering shredded pork. This simple recipe is versatile and amazing for sharing with friends and family. Recipe includes instructions for pressure cooker and Crock Pot.

Instant Pot Pulled Pork and Apples - a super easy pulled pork recipe made in the Instant Pot with just a few ingredients. A healthy lower carb dinner recipe that is paleo and whole30

Did I ever tell you the story about my obsession with shredded meat? It’s a short one. I’m obsessed. 

Chicken, beef, pork…if it’s tender, saucy and pulled, I am in.

I’ve posted many recipes for pulled pork in the past…some with BBQ sauce, some in the crock pot, some in the Instant Pot, a couple carnitas-style recipes…no matter how you shred it, pulled pork is always an epic crowd-pleaser.

For this rendition, we’re making pulled pork in the Instant Pot with apples and apple cider. If you’ve never tried the combination of pork and apples, I assure it, it is magnificent…there’s a reason why it’s a thing. 

Instant Pot Pulled Pork and Apples - the quickest, easiest recipe for pulled pork

This recipe couldn’t be any easier to make. The end result is a perfectly tender, sweet and savory dish that has FALL written all over it. 

Use it for sandwiches, tacos, bowls, or serve it straight-up with roasted or sauteed vegetables for a low-carb dinner.

Let’s get to it!

Ingredients for Instant Pot Pulled Pork & Apples:

Onion & Garlic: Creating that savory flavor, onion and garlic go a long way in adding spunk and deliciousness to pork.

Pork Shoulder Roast: The star of the show! Pick up a pork roast from the store – shoulder or butt will work. I generally buy a shoulder roast in netting, then chop it into chunks before using it in the pressure cooker. 

Seasonings: Paprika, oregano, cumin, and sea salt. This combination of seasonings yields a warmly-spiced meal with a balance of sweet and savory.

Apple Cider: Used as the liquid for this shredded pork recipe, unfiltered apple cider brings a sweet element to the dish and helps keep the meat nice and tender throughout the pressure cooking process.

Cider Vinegar: A tangy counterbalance to the sweet apple cider, cider vinegar brings its own robust flavor to the dish. The concept here is to generate that perfectly sweet and sour flavor, much like you get with barbecue pulled pork.

Molasses: Adding both sweetness and depth of flavor, molasses brings its own special warmth to the dish. You can replace it with pure maple syrup or leave it out entirely for a lower-carb / whole30 approach to the recipe.

Apples: Providing a nice texture to the shredded meat, apples and pork go together like chocolate and sea salt. If you aren’t into apples, you can skip them and still end up with a mega flavorful, appealing dish.

Pressure Cooker Shredded Pork and Apples - an easy pulled pork recipe made in the Instant Pot or crock pot

How to Make Instant Pot Pulled Pork and Apples:

Remove the netting from the pork shoulder roast (if applicable), and set the roast on a cutting board.

How to Make Instant Pot Carnitas

Cut it into 4 to 6 large chunks. Season the pork with paprika, oregano, cumin and sea salt.

How to make pulled pork in the instant pot

Plug in your Instant Pot and press the ‘Sauté’ button. Add the avocado oil and allow it to heat up for a minute or two. Add the chopped onion and sauté, stirring occasionally, until it begins turning translucent, about 3 to 5 minutes.

Saute the onion in the instant pot

Place the chunks of pork inside the Instant Pot and brown for 3 to 4 minutes on two sides (Note: you may need to do this step in 2 batches depending on the size of your Instant Pot and the size of your pork roast. I have a 10-quart pressure cooker and use a 4-lb roast, so there’s room to sear the meat all in one batch).

How to make shredded pork in a pressure cooker

Sear the pork on two sides

In a measuring cup, stir together the apple cider, cider vinegar and molasses until combined.

Apple cider, cider vinegar and molasses in a measuring cup

Pour the apple cider mixture into the instant pot and if needed, move the pork around so that all pieces are well-saturated in juice.

Pouring cider into an instant pot to make shredded pork

Secure the lid on the Instant Pot, select the ‘Manual’ button, and make sure it’s set to high pressure. Leave the steam release valve closed. Adjust the time for 1 hour and allow the Instant Pot to do its thing!

Once the Instant Pot has run its full course, allow it to naturally release for 1 hour (note: if you’re multi-tasking, it’s fine if you stretch this longer). By this time, there shouldn’t be any pressure remaining so you won’t need to use the quick release valve.

Remove the lid and use tongs to transfer the pork to a cutting board.

Transfer pork to a cutting board for shredding

Press ‘Saute’ on your pressure cooker and add the chopped apples. Allow the apples to cook and the juices to thicken while you’re shredding the pork. Be sure to give it a stir every couple minutes.

Cook apples in the cider cause and thicken the sauce

Use two forks to shred the pork. It should fall apart very easily! 

Shredded Pulled Pork made in the Instant Pot

Transfer the pulled pork back to the Instant Pot with the liquid and apples and allow it to continue boiling for a few minutes, until the pork is well-saturated in liquid and it has thickened slightly.

Shredded pulled pork and apples finished in the Instant Pot

Serve pulled pork according to your preference!

I keep it simple by serving the pulled pork and apples with Roasted Green Beans.

How to Make Crock Pot Pulled Pork:

Want to make slow cooker pulled pork? No problem! Here’s what you do.

Remove the pork roast from its netting (if applicable) and set it on a large plate. Sprinkle all sides with paprika, oregano, cumin and sea salt and pat the seasonings into the meat.

Chop the onion and garlic and place it in your slow cooker, followed by the pork roast and chopped apples. 

Crock Pot Pulled Pork & Apple Bowls with Sauteed Kale and Avocado | TheRoastedRoot.net #healthy #dinner #recipe #almostpaleo

Combine the apple cider, cider vinegar and molasses in a measuring cup and stir well. Pour this mixture into your slow cooker.

Cook on low for 8 to 10 hours, until meat is very tender.

Transfer pork to a cutting board and shred it using two forks. Transfer the shredded pork back to the crock pot and stir well. Allow it to sit for at least 10 minutes to absorb some of the juices, then serve!

Crock Pot Pulled Pork & Apple Bowls with Sauteed Kale and Avocado | TheRoastedRoot.net #healthy #dinner #recipe #almostpaleo

More Healthy Pork Recipes:

May all thy pork be shredded 😉

My cookbook, Paleo Power Bowls, is now available! CLICK HERE to check it out. Thank you for your support!

If you make this recipe, please feel free to share a photo and tag @TheRoastedRoot on Instagram!

Instant Pot Pulled Pork and Apples - a super easy pulled pork recipe made in the Instant Pot with just a few ingredients. A healthy lower carb dinner recipe that is paleo and whole30

Instant Pot Pulled Pork and Apples

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: apple cider, apples, cider vinegar, dinner recipe, molasses, paleo, pork, pulled pork
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Servings: 8 servings
Author: Julia

Shredded pulled pork and apples made easily in the Instant Pot! The quickest and easiest recipe for delicious pulled pork

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Ingredients

  • 3 to 4 lbs pork shoulder roast
  • 2 tsp ground paprika
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 tsp sea salt to taste
  • 1 Tbsp avocado oil
  • 1/2 medium-sized yellow onion diced
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 1/2 cups unfiltered apple cider
  • 3 Tbsp cider vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp molasses or pure maple syrup
  • 2 medium-sized gala apples or favorite apple, peeled, cored and chopped

Instructions

  1. Remove the netting from the pork shoulder roast (if applicable), and set the roast on a cutting board. Cut it into 4 to 6 large chunks. Season the pork with paprika, oregano, cumin and sea salt.

  2. Plug in your Instant Pot and press the ‘Sauté’ button. Add the avocado oil and allow it to heat up for a minute or two. Add the chopped onion and sauté, stirring occasionally, until it begins turning translucent, about 3 to 5 minutes.

  3. Place the chunks of pork inside the Instant Pot and brown for 3 to 4 minutes on two sides (Note: you may need to do this step in 2 batches depending on the size of your Instant Pot).

  4. In a measuring cup, stir together the apple cider, cider vinegar and molasses until combined. Pour this mixture into the Instant Pot and maneuver the pork pieces around so that each piece is engulfed in as much liquid as possible.

  5. Secure the lid on the Instant Pot, select the ‘Manual’ button, and make sure it’s set to high pressure. Leave the steam release valve closed. Adjust the time for 1 hour and allow the Instant Pot to run its course.

  6. After it has finished pressure cooking, allow the Instant Pot naturally release for 1 hour (note: if you’re multi-tasking, it’s fine if you stretch this longer). By this time, there shouldn’t be any pressure remaining so you won’t need to use the quick release valve.

  7. Remove the lid and use tongs to transfer the pork to a cutting board. Use two forks to shred the pork.

  8. Press ‘Sauté’ on your pressure cooker and add the chopped apples. Allow the apples to cook and the juices to thicken while you’re shredding the pork. Be sure to give it a stir every couple minutes.

  9. Transfer the pulled pork back to the Instant Pot with the liquid and apples and allow it to continue boiling for a few minutes, until the pork is well-saturated in liquid and it has thickened slightly.

  10. Serve pulled pork with your side dishes of choice! Also use the shredded pork for burritos, tacos, enchiladas, burrito bowls, sandwiches, etc.

Paleo Instant Pot Pulled Pork and Apples - naturally sweetened amazing tender shredded pork made easily in the pressure cooker!

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Comments

  1. Jen

    Hi! Thank you so much for these tasty recipes! As someone with a (pretty new) gluten/milk allergy, I’ve been finding your paleo recipes a godsend for dinner ideas. How many apples would you suggest chopping for this recipe? I’m not seeing them in the ingredient list.

    Reply
    1. Julia Post author

      Hi Jen! So sorry about that! I use two Gala apples, but you can adjust according to your preference, and you can use any type of apple you’d like 😀 xoxo

      Reply

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