Leftover Smoked Pork Shoulder Recipes

Leftover smoked pork shoulder recipes

Barbecuing is a blast - just you and the grill, the sizzle, the heat, the smell hovering in the air, and at the end, a tasty, juicy, flavorful dinner. Our recipe for Smoked Pork Shoulder is phenomenal for your barbecue, but it makes a ton. What happens to the meat that doesn’t get eaten? What do you do when the barbecue is over?

Leftovers can be tricky - flavors change in the refrigerator, meat dries out, and sometimes it just seems easier to throw all that extra food into the garbage can.

We’re here to help reduce your waste (and keep money in your wallet). With this recipe for one of our favorite leftover-busting meals Smoky Pork Gumbo, you can serve delicious dinners back to back. Barbecue one night, gumbo the next, and those unappetizing leftovers in the fridge are a distant memory.

Leftover Smoked Pork Shoulder Recipes

What You Need For This Gumbo Recipe

  • 1lb leftover smoked pork shoulder You could absolutely use regular pork shoulder here, but that smoky flavor really brings the gumbo together and levels this recipe up.
  • ¾ cup white rice, uncooked Do not use minute rice in this recipe! Minute rice will suck up all the liquid in your gumbo and create a gloppy consistency in the final product. If you’re interested in using brown rice, know that we don’t recommend it for this gumbo. For those who are dead set on it, add ¼ cup more water, and expect about 15 minutes longer cooking time on the rice step. This will have an effect on the veggies, making them softer, possibly even mushy.
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil If you’re watching your saturated fats, olive or canola oil will work here as well. Do not use coconut or peanut oil. Their flavors are not neutral, and they leave a strong taste if used.
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 2 sticks celery, chopped
  • 1 bulb fennel, trimmed and chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 1 red chili chopped
  • 1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 8.75 oz can sweet corn
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 bay leaf

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Leftover Smoked Pork Shoulder Gumbo Recipe (123 downloads)


  • Large dutch oven. This is a family-sized recipe, so you’ll need at least a 5 qt dutch oven.
  • Wooden spoon or spatula
  • Whisk

Step 1: Pulling

If your pork is still in shoulder form, you’ll want to cut it into smaller pieces. These should still be fairly large -- think about the size of a fist -- but the smaller size will make the pork a little easier to work with.

There are many ways to shred the pork at this point, but our favorite is simply to insert two forks into the meat and pull in opposite directions. This will give you a long, thin shred which is ideal for gumbo, and it keeps the juices of the meat intact so it doesn’t dry out.

Once your pork is pulled, you’ll want to cover it or place it back in a container so that it doesn’t dry out while you prep the rest of the recipe.

Gumbo recipe

Step 2: The Roux

Roux, or a sauce base, is made from a oil and flour. To make the roux, put your dutch oven on the stove top on low heat. Pour in the oil. A pro-tip when making sauce bases is to not let your oil get too hot. You don’t want it to splatter when you flick water at it, but you do want it to be warm.

Once the oil has reached that perfect temperature, add the flour, stirring to avoid lumps. This is where the whisk comes in handy.

When you have a non-lumpy roux to work with, allow it to simmer at a low heat (called “cooking it out”) for around 5 minutes. This keeps you from getting a raw flour taste in your sauce. You can tell it’s done when it starts turning golden brown. Remove it from the heat at this point so that it doesn’t burn.

Step 3: The Veggies

Your golden brown roux is ready for the veggies. Add the chopped onion, green pepper, celery, fennel, garlic, and chili. Put them back on the low heat, and allow them to cook for another 5 minutes, or until they start to feel soft. Remember to stir them often so they don’t burn and stick to the dutch oven bottom!

Step 4: Tomatoes, Stock, Thyme and Bay Leaf

Add your tomatoes, vegetable stock, thyme, and bay leaf to your softened veggies. Mix everything together, then allow the gumbo to simmer for around 30 minutes on low heat. Leave the gumbo uncovered while it simmers, or you’ll end up with a watery mess at the end!

Step 5: Rice

We’re going to add rice to suck up the last of the liquid and give us that gumbo texture. Add your uncooked white rice to the dutch oven and stir until everything is well mixed together. Then you get to step away again for about 15-20 minutes while the rice cooks. It’s done when it feels tender but not mushy. Your gumbo should be taking on a pretty thick consistency at this point.

Add rice for gumbo texture

Step 6: Pork and Corn

For your last step, drain the corn and add it and the pulled pork to the dutch oven. Warm the whole gumbo through, and then it’s ready to serve!

Does a warm bowl of delicious Smoky Pork Gumbo sound like it would hit the spot? Rice, veggies, and smoky-spicy flavor makes this one of the best comfort foods out there, and it has the added benefit of getting rid of those old barbecue leftovers in a way that’s utterly delicious. While there are many leftover options, our stamp of approval is on this one due to its simplicity, easiness, and general all-over goodness.

Do you have any tips? Ideas? Did you try the tutorial? Share your results and comments in the section below, and if you liked this recipe, share the love with your friends!

Frequently Asked Questions

How long is leftover pork good for?

How do you reheat leftover pork?

Do you have to shred pulled pork before storing the leftovers?

What are some ways to use leftover pulled pork?

Can you eat pulled pork cold?

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