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National Pulled Pork Day

Date Pattern:

Every October 12th

History of National Pulled Pork Day

Have you ever wondered about the origins of National Pulled Pork Day? Why is this delicious dish celebrated across the United States?

In this article, we will explore the rich history and traditions associated with pulled pork, as well as the ways in which people celebrate this special day. Get ready to embark on a mouthwatering journey through time!

Origins of Pulled Pork

  • Pulled pork has deep roots in the southern United States, where it is considered a culinary treasure. The process of shredding slow-cooked meat dates back centuries and has its origins in the southern states.

  • Early settlers, particularly those of Spanish descent, slow-smoked their meat using indirect fire. This method not only preserved the meat but also imparted a unique smoky flavor.

  • The term “barbecue” also finds its roots in southern history. It is believed to have originated from the Spanish word “barbacoa,” which referred to a wooden structure built to slow-cook meat over a fire.

  • Shredding the meat became common in the southern regions due to the lack of tools for carving, and thus, pulled pork was born. This technique proved to be both practical and delicious, making it a staple of southern cuisine.

Smoking Meat and Barbecue

  • Slow-smoking meat has been a longstanding practice in the southern United States due to the hot and humid climate. Bugs were a constant problem, and the slow-smoking process acted as a natural bug repellant.

  • Another reason for smoking and barbecuing meat was the necessity of preserving it in the absence of refrigeration. Smoking helped to extend the shelf life of the meat without compromising its taste.

  • Over time, barbecuing became not just a method of preservation but also a social event. Friends and families would gather around the smoking pit, enjoying each other’s company while waiting for the meat to become tender and juicy.

  • The art of barbecuing has evolved, with various methods and techniques unique to different regions of the southern United States. From the Carolina pulled pork to the Florida smoked pork, each state boasts its own distinct style.

National Pulled Pork Day Celebration

Importance of Pulled Pork in Southern Culture

  • Pulled pork holds a special place in southern culture and traditions. It symbolizes the warm embrace of family and friends coming together to enjoy a meal.

  • In southern states like Florida and the Carolinas, pulled pork is often the star of barbecues and gatherings. Its versatility as a BBQ protein makes it a crowd-pleaser, satisfying even the pickiest of eaters.

  • The tradition of slow-cooking and pulling pork has been passed down through generations, creating a sense of continuity and heritage. It is not just a dish; it represents a way of life.

Ways to Celebrate National Pulled Pork Day

  • On National Pulled Pork Day, there are numerous ways to celebrate and indulge in this delectable dish. Here are some ideas to make the most of this special day:

    • Gather your friends and family for a block party and showcase your cooking skills by preparing different variations of pulled pork.

    • Experiment with different cooking methods such as a wood-fired smoker, slow cooker, traditional oven, or Instant Pot to create unique flavors and textures.

    • Explore various spices and brines to infuse your pulled pork with tantalizing flavors.

    • Try out different recipes using pulled pork, such as sandwiches, nachos, soup, or even adding it to cornbread or loaded fries.

    • Share your love for pulled pork on social media by posting pictures and recipes, and engage with others who share your appreciation for this mouthwatering treat.


National Pulled Pork Day is a celebration of the rich history and traditions associated with this beloved dish. From its origins in the southern United States to its significance in southern culture, pulled pork has become a symbol of family, togetherness, and delicious food.

So, on this special day, gather your loved ones, fire up the grill, and savor the tantalizing flavors of perfectly cooked pulled pork. Don’t forget to share your creations and spread the joy of National Pulled Pork Day!

Throwing a National Pulled Pork Day Party

Backyard Barbecue Gathering

When it comes to celebrating National Pulled Pork Day, there’s no better way than throwing a backyard barbecue gathering with your friends and loved ones. This casual and relaxed setting allows everyone to come together and enjoy the mouthwatering flavors of pulled pork.

Here are some tips to make your party a success:

  1. Prepare the Pulled Pork Sandwiches:

    The star of the show is, of course, the pulled pork itself.

    Slow-cook a large pork shoulder or butt until it becomes tender and easily shredded. Season it with a dry rub or a flavorful marinade to enhance the taste.

    Once it’s ready, pull the pork apart with forks or meat claws and serve it on soft buns or rolls. This allows guests to build their own sandwiches according to their preferences.

  2. Side Dishes to Complement the Pulled Pork:

    No barbecue gathering is complete without delicious side dishes.

    A classic accompaniment to pulled pork sandwiches is coleslaw. The crispy and creamy texture of coleslaw balances the rich and smoky flavor of the meat.

    Other popular side dishes include potato salad, baked beans, collard greens, and corn on the cob. These dishes provide a diversity of flavors and textures, adding depth to the overall meal.

  3. Refreshing Watermelon for Dessert:

    To round off the meal, serve slices of juicy watermelon as a refreshing and light dessert.

    The sweet and hydrating nature of watermelon serves as the perfect palate cleanser after indulging in the rich flavors of pulled pork.

  4. Beverages to Quench Your Thirst:

    Offer a variety of beverages to satisfy different tastes. Ice-cold lemonade, iced tea, and soda are all popular choices.

    For those who prefer alcoholic options, consider serving beer, wine, or a signature cocktail that pairs well with the smoky notes of the pulled pork.

Dining Out for Pulled Pork

If hosting a backyard barbecue gathering isn’t feasible or you simply want to let someone else do the cooking, consider dining out at restaurants renowned for their delicious pulled pork. The southern United States, in particular, is home to countless barbecue places that have perfected the art of smoking and serving this beloved dish.

Here are a few notable restaurant chains to consider:

  1. Sonny’s BBQ:

    Sonny’s BBQ is a popular chain that has been serving up authentic southern barbecue since 1968.

    With locations scattered across several states, they have perfected their pulled pork over the years, ensuring each bite is packed with flavor.

  2. Dickey’s Barbecue Pit:

    Dickey’s Barbecue Pit is another well-known chain that prides itself on slow-smoked meats and traditional barbecue flavors. Their pulled pork sandwiches are a crowd favorite, often paired with their signature barbecue sauces.

  3. Famous Dave’s:

    Famous Dave’s is a barbecue chain that infuses their dishes with a mix of various regional barbecue styles.

    Their slow-smoked pulled pork is often served in generous portions and can be paired with a selection of mouthwatering sides.

  4. Jim ‘N Nick’s Bar-B-Q:

    Jim ‘N Nick’s Bar-B-Q is famous for their slow-cooked meats, including their mouthwatering pulled pork. With a commitment to using quality ingredients and traditional cooking methods, their pulled pork sandwiches are a must-try for any barbecue lover.


Whether you choose to throw a backyard barbecue gathering with friends and family, or dine out at a trusted barbecue joint, celebrating National Pulled Pork Day is all about indulging in the smoky and savory flavors of this beloved dish. With its rich history, cultural significance, and mouthwatering taste, pulled pork has firmly secured its place as a favorite barbecue protein in the southern United States and beyond.

So gather your loved ones and embark on a culinary journey through the world of pulled pork on this special day!

In conclusion, National Pulled Pork Day is a celebration of the rich history and traditions associated with this beloved dish. Pulled pork has deep roots in the southern United States, where it holds a special place in Southern culture and serves as a symbol of togetherness and delicious food.

From its origins in slow-smoking and shredding meat to the various ways it is celebrated, pulled pork has become a culinary treasure. Whether you choose to host a backyard barbecue gathering or dine out at renowned barbecue restaurants, the smoky and savory flavors of pulled pork are sure to delight your taste buds.

So, on this special day, gather your loved ones, embrace the traditions, and savor the joys of National Pulled Pork Day.

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