Slow Cooker Chinese Pulled Pork

Easy Slow Cooker Chinese Pulled Pork! With spices, honey, ginger, soy sauce. Just put it in the crockpot and go!

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 4 hours
  • Yield: Serves 6 to 8


  • 3 to 3 1/2 pounds pork shoulder, cut into very large chunks (3 to 4 inches)
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons of Chinese 5-spice powder*
  • 1/4 cup hoisin sauce
  • 3 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 3 Tbsp honey
  • 2 Tbsp dry sherry or Shaoxing cooking wine
  • 2 Tbsp minced fresh ginger
  • 2 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 12 Hawaiian dinner rolls
  • 1 large scallion sliced

*To make Chinese 5-spice powder, toast 1 teaspoon peppercorns in a skillet until fragrant. In a spice grinder, grind the roasted peppercorns with 2 whole star anise, 1/4 teaspoon cloves, 1 teaspoon of fennel seeds. Stir in 3/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon.


1 Season the pork with 5-spice powder: Rub the 5 spice powder into the pork chunks, all over, and let sit while you prepare the sauce in the next step.

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2 Whisk together the sauce ingredients: Whisk together the hoisin sauce, soy sauce, honey, sherry, ginger, and garlic in a medium bowl.

3 Place pork and sauce in slow cooker: Place the seasoned pork shoulder pieces in a slow cooker, cover with the sauce.

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4 Slow cook for 4 hours on high or 8 hours on low, until the meat easily pulls apart. About halfway through the cooking, turn the meat over in the pot.

5 Ladle off excess fat: Use a ladle or a large metal spoon to remove excess fat that has risen to the surface while the meat has been cooking. Don't discard it yet, you may want to add some of it back.


6 Shred the pork: Use two forks to pull apart the pork into shreds. If the pork still seems dry, add back some of the fat.

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7 Serve over sweet Hawaiian dinner buns topped with sliced green onion or cilantro.


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  • Nancy

    I made a few minor dietary modifications and it was great. We also can’t do bread. So I made an Instant Pot “fried rice” with vegetables. And then mixed this pork and sauce into the rice. Was fantastic! Will definitely make again. Thanks.


  • Elizabeth

    This was so easy and very good but I think it could have had more spice? Not sure about adding more Chinese 5 spice. Maybe I’ll make it with more garlic? Any recommendations?


    • Emma Christensen

      Hi, Elizabeth! It sounds like your Chinese 5 spice was maybe a little less potent then the one we used, or perhaps you just like your dishes more strongly flavored! In any case, yes, you can definitely increase either the 5 Spice or the garlic. Enjoy!

  • Adam

    Bloody awesome! Impressed all the flat mates this week!


  • Lillis

    Amazing!!! So delicious. This recipe got rave reviews from all my guests. The only ingredient I didn’t have on hand was the sherry. I didn’t replace it – just left it out. Everything else, I followed as written, including grinding the spices myself instead of using a mix. Excellent recipe!


  • Tish

    Hi can I use pork butt with this recipe?

    • Emma Christensen

      Hi, Tish! Yes, pork butt should work just fine. Enjoy!

    • Ben

      Pork shoulder and pork butt are the same cut.

  • Becca

    I made this for my boyfriend and I a few weeks ago and it was amazing – we ate it two nights in a row. My new favorite slow-cooker recipe! Seriously something special, highly recommend it. And so easy!


  • Amanda

    I also don’t have a slow cooker, but I do have a pressure cooker. Would there be a way to modify this recipe for the pressure cooker?

    • Elise Bauer

      Great question, anyone who regularly uses a pressure cooker want to chime in?

      • Rowena Yap

        I use stove top pressure cooker. Pork takes about 30 – 40 minutes to be super soft. Use less water otherwise the gravy will be too watery.

  • keena

    Absolutely delicious and easy to make. Topped it w Bobby Flay Asian cabbage slaw recipe for a little crunch and tartness. Worked great w sweet potatoes. Mixed some gochujang w hoisin for topping sauce. It was a hit!


    • Elise Bauer

      I’m so glad you liked it Keena, and what a great idea to top it with an asian cabbage slaw. Perfect!

      • keena

        Oops. Not sweet potatoes…sweet rolls!

  • Denise P.

    I made this today and it was delicious. The pork was very moist and tender. I couldn’t find the Hawaiian Dinner Rolls so I used onion buns instead. It was still very good.


  • Betty

    This looks delicious, and I want to try it. We don’t have Hawaiian dinner rolls where I live, and I wonder what would be a good substitute. I don’t make my own yeast breads (due to failures in the past.

  • elainepill

    I can’t wait to try this!

    my latest trick for removing the fat AFTER cooking is to cook the meat over night, then put it in the fridge in the morning before work, then remove hardened fat just before reheating for dinner. learned it from the smitten kitchen brisket recipe (i think) and now i use that method for most slow cooker recipes with fatty meat!

  • Miguel

    I always like to sear/brown the meat before going into the crockpot. Any advice against this practice regarding this recipe? Although there is no way to go wrong with pork….

  • leona So

    Sorry I forgot to mention I do not have as slow cooker, left it in the state when I moved
    to europe, i cook things on top of the stove or in the oven. yes it take several hours also but it comes out perfect.

  • leona So

    Yes it can ofcourse use a good solid pot to cook it in

  • Meryl

    If I wanted to make this in the oven instead (don’t have a slow cooker) what would you suggest for time and temperature?

    • Carolyn Hinkelman

      I would season, gather up in heavy duty foil and bake at 325. Foil will act as slow cooker. YOu could pot it also, with lidded pan on top of the stove on #5 on electric stove. I have lidded skillets that work well. I am just a mother, grandmother, great grandmother and not a professional cook, so take this with a grain of salt or not if you have high blood pressure. LOL

  • nancy

    I don’t have a slow cooker, can this be made in the oven? it sounds delish.