These 16 superb pork butt recipes cover all the basics for this scrumptious cut of meat. Smoked, roasted, braised, and stewed. Tacos, tinga, posole, and ramen. Seriously, it’s all here, and it’s all delicious.
I’m a sucker for pork butt recipes. Our freezer is filled with a bunch of shoulders (another name for the cut), because we serve it year-round.
In the summer, The One and I take to the great outdoors (well, to the limits of our backyard) and the grill and smoker. There’s nothing like slowly-smoked pork. Tacos, anyone?
Autumn is all about braised pork butt recipes, our favorite being carnitas.
Winter and spring are when we make casseroles, soups, and the delicious pork tinga below.
These sweet 16 recipes will have you lapping up supremely-succulent, deeply-flavored pork dishes every month of the year.
Just learning to get over my fear of new recipes and broke out the slow cooker for its first run. This slow cooker pulled pork recipe was not only easy but absolutely delicious. I froze a good chunk of the pork afterward and took out some for pulled pork and egg breakfast sandwiches. 10/10, so glad you shared this.–Jesse
This roast pork butt recipe is THE perfect recipe for slow-cooked, fall-apart tender, crispy flavourful bark with a pork butt. Search no more. You have found the recipe you were looking for.
So unbelievably easy and really hard to make a mistake. Definitely make sure you have that meat thermometer.–Bree
This smoked pork shoulder was absolutely mouth-watering, tender, and easy. Five stars without a doubt.–LaBorde
I tried the crockpot version of these pork tacos, and it was fantastic. Not to mention really easy to throw together. We ate our shredded pork over brown rice with guacamole on top. There was really no need to add anything else.
The pork was very flavorful and moist. I will definitely be making this again…and again…and possibly again.–Jesica
This recipe is how I found my way to this food blog. I had never cooked carnitas before, and I was VERY skeptical. I have tried it all the ways, and it always comes out spectacular!! Texan friends were enamored!–Amy C.
I just took this recipe on a test run for a potential Christmas Eve dish, and it’s earned the coveted spot! Not only is it indecently delicious, but my house also smells like Christmas. And you can get the family into the kitchen to help create the “shoe.” Thanks for another winner, Leite’s!–Kristen K.
This is absolutely one of my favorite recipes on the site. I made it on the weekend and was again surprised by just how good it is. Everyone who got a taste agreed AND they were actually pretty stunned when I told them how easy it is.
Honestly–it’s perfection. Serve it with brown butter garlic mashed potatoes for a divine dinner.–Jenny L.
Pork Butt FAQs
What’s the difference between pork butt and pork shoulder?
Pork butt and pork shoulder both come from the shoulder of the pig and can be used interchangeably.
Despite the name, pork butt does not come from the rear end of the pig. Pork butt is often also sold as “Boston butt” and was given its name because inexpensive cuts of meat, such as pork shoulder, were originally transported in large barrels called butts.
What’s the best way to cook pork shoulder?
Low and slow. Pork butt is a relatively fatty cut of meat and needs a long, slow cooking time in order to break down the connective tissue and render soft, shreddable meat. You’ll know it’s ready when it can be easily pulled apart with a fork.
What is the internal temperature of cooked pork butt?
Pork shoulder should be cooked to an internal temperature of 195°F to 200°F (90°C to 96°C) for best results. This may seem counterintuitive since pork is normally only cooked to 145°F (63°C) in order to stay moist and tender, but a higher internal temperature is needed for pork shoulder recipes in order for the fatty tissue and collagen to break down.
Do I need to marinate the pork before cooking?
Nope. You can, and it’ll impart additional flavor to the meat, but pork shoulder is naturally very flavorful, and you can achieve excellent results by simply seasoning it with salt and pepper and roasting the pork butt in the oven.
Can you freeze pulled pork?
Definitely. We highly recommend portioning out cooled shredded pulled pork into meal-size portions, stashing them in resealable bags, and tossing them into the freezer. They’ll be good for at least 3 months.
What do you serve with pork butt?
Shredded pork is usually served on buns with barbecue sauce on top. Popular sides include mac and cheese, creamy coleslaw, and baked beans. But depending on your recipe, you might go for an Asian vibe with a smashed cucumber salad or Asian-inspired coleslaw. If Mexican is more your thing, definitely go for quick pickled onions and elote.
It’s obvious from our large collection of pork and ham recipes that we love our pork, particularly meltingly tender, shredded pork shoulder. It’s incredibly easy to cook, making it perfect for a newbie home cook, it feeds plenty (hello, leftovers!), and it’s incredibly forgiving and hard to overcook.
Last but not least . . .
16 Superb Pork Butt Recipes
- 1 tablespoon (1/2 oz) unsalted butter
- 1 store-bought or homemade hamburger bun split
- 2 slices American cheese
- 4 ounces smoked pork butt or slow cooker pulled pork
- In a cast-iron pan or griddle set over medium heat, melt the butter.
- Place the bun halves, cut side up, in the skillet. Place 1 cheese slice on each bun half. Top the bottom bun half with the pulled pork. Using a spatula, place the top bun half, cheese side down, on the other side that’s topped with pulled pork.
- Cook, turning occasionally and gently pressing the sandwich with the spatula, until the cheese is melted, about 5 minutes.
- Serve immediately. Don’t forget the napkins.
If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #LeitesCulinaria. We’d love to see your creations on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.