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Italian Style Pulled Pork Sandwich Recipe

Italian Style Pulled Pork Sandwich

Dax Phillips
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 10 hrs
Total Time 10 hrs 10 mins
Course Sandwiches
Cuisine Italian Style
Servings 15


  • 3-4 lb pork shoulder fat trimmed
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley chopped
  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds
  • 1 tbsp dried red chili flakes
  • 4 sprigs fresh rosemary stem removed, finely chopped
  • 1 whole head of garlic finely diced
  • 2 whole bay leaves
  • 1 whole yellow onion thinly sliced
  • 4 cups of beef stock
  • 14 oz can of crushed tomatoes
  • 1 bunch of rapini
  • 2 cups of fresh spinach tightly packed
  • 1 cup additional beef stock
  • salt to taste
  • cracked black pepper to taste
  • bolillo rolls to your serving
  • Chicago style sport peppers optional
  • 2 slices provolone cheese per serving


  • Start by making your rub for the pork. To a small mixing bowl, add the fennel seeds, red chili flakes, chopped rosemary, parsley, and garlic. Give a good mix, and season with some salt and pepper.
  • Add the pork shoulder to a large cast iron skillet, or dutch oven, large enough to hold all of the broth and tomato mixture. Make sure it is fat side up.
  • Add the garlic mixture to the top of the pork shoulder. Next pour around the shoulder the beef stock, add the crushed tomatoes, bay leaves and onions.
  • Preheat your oven to 425 degrees and let the pork shoulder rest on the counter as the oven heats up. Your goal here is to build a nice crust, then either cover with foil and reduce the heat to 300 degrees and braise for 2-3 hours, or what I did was simply transfer everything to a slow cooker, covered it and forgot about it until the next day (I recommend this approach as it was like butter).
  • Once the oven is heated, add the pork, and build a nice crust, about 25 minutes or so. Next, carefully remove from the oven, then place in a slow cooker, on low, and cook for about 10 hours or so. I simply did this overnight.
  • Now let’s make the greens. To a stock pot, add the rapini and spinach. Give a pinch of salt and crushed red chili flakes, and the additional cup of beef stock. Bring to a simmer, stir, and cover, cooking until the greens are completely wilted. They will not be pretty, but they are super delicious, and great for you to boot.
  • Now let’s make the sandwich. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Slice your roll, but not all of the way through. Layer in the cheese, and place in the oven, cooking until the roll is crusty and the cheese is nice and melted. You want a crusty roll here as when you fold in the pulled pork and greens, it gets pretty darn saucey. You’ll see. It’s like the best gravy for swiping your sandwich into.
  • During this time shred the pork. It should simply fall apart. Once shredded, mix everything together. Remove the roll from the oven, then add some greens, fold in the pork mixture to your liking, and top with a couple of sport peppers. I liked adding the peppers as that vinegar and subtle heat cuts through that savory pork.