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Kalua Pork (slow cooked pork)

August 7, 2009

This is not my pic, as ours was eaten too quickly! :)

This is not my pic, as ours was eaten too quickly! 🙂

This is a delicious recipe that hails traditionally from Hawaii.

Typically, a large pit is dug in the ground, and lava rocks are heated over an open flame until they are extremely hot. The rocks are placed in the pit, which is lined with greenery such as banana leaves or ti leaves (they insulate, aid the steaming process, and add flavor). A cleaned whole pig (seasoned with Hawaiian sea salt) is placed inside the hot pit and then covered with more greenery for insulation and flavor – it is then covered with a protective covering, more soil, and left to cook through the day (about 8 hours).

Anyone who grew up in Hawaii is definitely familiar with this dish and it is one of my husbands favorites! However, I cook it a little differently, as you may have imagined. It is a super simple recipe with an extremely long cooking time! You need a crock-pot for this one, unless you want to adapt it to a dutch oven and cook it in the oven.

I serve this dish with brown rice from Sally Fallon’s “Nourishing Traditions” and a brilliant cabbage salad that can be found here -She forgets to mention to add a tbs. or so of black sesame seeds! They are so pretty and yummy!


  • 1 pork shoulder or butt (about 6 lbs.)
  • 1 tbs. sea salt
  • 1 tbs. liquid smoke (I used the kind that had only 2 ingredients).


  1. With a fork, poke holes all over your pork shoulder.
  2. Rub salt and smoke all over the roast.
  3. Stick the shoulder into the crock-pot and cook on low for 16-20 hours, flipping midway.
  4. If there were bones take them out.
  5. Shred the meat with a fork and mix drippings back in.
  6. Serve over rice and cabbage salad!
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