When it comes to hosting a party or gathering, one of the most popular dishes to serve is pulled pork. However, determining how much pulled pork to serve per person can be a bit tricky, especially if you’re not used to cooking for large groups. Fortunately, there are some general guidelines you can follow to ensure that you have enough food to go around.
As a rule of thumb, you should plan to have about 1/3 to 1/2 pound of pulled pork per person if it’s the main dish. This means that if you’re hosting a party of 10 people, you’ll need about 3 to 5 pounds of pulled pork. However, keep in mind that this is just a starting point, and you’ll need to adjust your quantities based on a few different factors.
One of the main factors to consider is the other dishes you’ll be serving. If you’re also offering sides like coleslaw, baked beans, or mac and cheese, you may be able to get away with serving less pulled pork per person.
On the other hand, if you’re only serving pulled pork and a few basic sides, you may want to plan for closer to 1/2 pound per person to ensure that everyone is well-fed.
What is Pulled Pork
If you’re new to the world of BBQ, you may be wondering what exactly is pulled pork. Simply put, pulled pork is a type of BBQ dish made from slow-cooked pork shoulder or butt. The meat is cooked low and slow until it’s tender enough to be easily shredded or “pulled” apart.
When done right, pulled pork is incredibly flavorful and tender. The cooking process allows the meat to absorb a lot of smoky flavor, which is further enhanced by the use of rubs and sauces. The end result is a dish that is both savory and sweet, with a rich and complex flavor profile.
The quality of the pork used is also important when it comes to making great pulled pork. You want to look for a cut of meat that is well-marbled with fat, as this will help keep the meat moist and tender during the cooking process.
How Much Pulled Pork Per Person
If you’re planning on serving pulled pork at your next event or gathering, you’re probably wondering how much you need to buy. The amount of pulled pork per person can vary depending on a number of factors, such as the number of guests, the other dishes you’ll be serving, and whether you want leftovers.
As a general rule of thumb, you should plan to have about 1/3 to 1/2 pound of pulled pork per person.
When determining the serving size, keep in mind that pulled pork is usually served as a sandwich or on a bun. This means that you’ll need to factor in the size of the bun, as well as any toppings or sides that you’ll be serving. A good rule of thumb is to plan for about 1/3 to 1/2 pound of meat per sandwich or serving.
Pulled Pork Calculator
When planning on serving pulled pork, it’s important to know how much to make per person. To help you figure out the right amount, you can use a pulled pork calculator. These calculators use a few key pieces of information to determine how much pulled pork you will need to cook.
The first thing to consider is the size of your pork butt or shoulder. Most calculators will ask for the weight of your pork, which you can use to determine how many servings you can get from it. Generally, you can expect to get about a 50% yield from your pork butt, so keep that in mind when calculating how much to cook.
Next, you’ll need to consider how much pulled pork you want to serve per person. A good rule of thumb is to plan for about 1/3 to 1/2 pound of meat per person if you’re serving pulled pork as the main dish. However, if you’re serving other sides or dishes, you may want to adjust this amount accordingly.
Once you have these two pieces of information, you can use a pulled pork calculator to determine how much meat you need to cook. Some calculators will even allow you to adjust the serving size based on the number of adults and children you’ll be serving.
Factors Affecting Portion Size
When planning how much pulled pork to serve per person, there are several factors to consider. Here are some of the most important ones:
Type of Event
The type of event you are hosting will have a significant impact on the portion size you should plan for. For example, if you are hosting a large family gathering or party, you may want to plan for slightly larger portions to accommodate guests who may want second servings. On the other hand, if you are hosting a small gathering or dinner party, you may be able to get away with smaller portions.
Another important factor to consider is the appetites of your guests. If you are hosting a group of children or guests with smaller appetites, you may be able to plan for slightly smaller portions. However, if you are hosting a group of adults or guests with larger appetites, you may want to plan for larger portions to ensure that everyone is satisfied.
Other Menu Items
The other dishes you plan to serve alongside the pulled pork will also impact the portion size you should plan for. If you are serving several other main dishes or a variety of side dishes, you may be able to plan for slightly smaller portions of pulled pork. However, if the pulled pork is the main attraction and there are few other dishes being served, you may want to plan for larger portions.
Choosing the Right Cut of Pork
When it comes to making pulled pork, choosing the right cut of pork is crucial. The most common cut for making pulled pork is the shoulder, which is usually divided into two cuts: the Boston butt (also known as the Boston roast) and the picnic roast.
The Boston butt is the top part of the shoulder and is considered the best cut for making pulled pork. It is well-marbled, which means it has a lot of fat running through it, making it perfect for slow cooking. The meat is tender, juicy, and flavorful, and it falls apart easily when cooked.
The picnic roast, on the other hand, is the lower part of the shoulder and is a bit tougher than the Boston butt. It has more bone and less fat than the Boston butt, which means it requires a longer cooking time to become tender. However, it is still a good cut for making pulled pork, and many people prefer its slightly stronger flavor.
When choosing a cut of pork for pulled pork, you have the option of buying bone-in or boneless pork shoulder. Bone-in pork shoulder takes longer to cook, but it adds flavor to the meat. Boneless pork shoulder, on the other hand, is easier to work with, and it cooks faster than bone-in pork shoulder.
As a general rule, plan for about 1/2 to 3/4 pound of raw pork per person. However, the amount of pork you need will depend on the size of your crowd, the other dishes you are serving, and how much you expect your guests to eat. If you are serving a large group, it is better to err on the side of caution and buy a little more pork than you think you will need.
Cooking Pulled Pork
Cooking pulled pork can be done in various ways, such as smoking, grilling, or baking. Regardless of the method used, the key to making delicious pulled pork is to cook it low and slow. This allows the meat to become tender and juicy, making it easy to pull apart.
If you plan on cooking pulled pork for a lunchtime main course, you should start cooking it early in the morning to ensure it has enough time to cook properly. You can cook the pork in a smoker, which will give it a nice smoky flavor, or in an oven at a low temperature.
When cooking pulled pork, it’s important to keep in mind the amount of cooked pulled pork per person. As a general rule of thumb, you should plan on having about 1/3 to 1/2 pound of cooked pulled pork per person if it’s the main dish. This means that if you’re cooking for a group of 10 people, you’ll need around 3.3 to 5 pounds of cooked pulled pork.
To achieve this amount, you’ll need to start with more raw pork per person. As a general rule, plan for about 1/2 to 3/4 pound of raw pork per person. This will account for the weight loss that occurs during cooking, such as the fat and bone that will be discarded.
It’s also important to keep the pulled pork warm after it’s been cooked. You can do this by keeping it in a slow cooker on the warm setting or by wrapping it in foil and placing it in a cooler. This will ensure that the pork stays moist and doesn’t dry out.
When serving pulled pork, it’s often accompanied by sides such as baked beans or coleslaw. These sides can also be cooked ahead of time and kept warm until it’s time to serve.
Serving Pulled Pork
When it comes to serving pulled pork, there are a few things to keep in mind to ensure your guests are satisfied and full. Whether you’re serving pulled pork as the main dish or as part of a buffet, it’s important to plan ahead to ensure you have enough food for everyone.
As a general rule, you should plan for about 1/3 to 1/2 pound of pulled pork per person if you’re serving it as the main dish. However, the serving size can vary depending on the type of event and the other dishes being served. For example, if you’re serving pulled pork sandwiches, you may want to plan for slightly less meat per person, as the buns will add to the overall size of the meal.
Sandwiches and Sliders
If you’re serving pulled pork sandwiches, you’ll need to consider the size of the buns you’re using. Standard hamburger buns may be too small for a hearty pulled pork sandwich, so consider using larger buns or rolls. If you’re serving sliders, make sure to choose slider buns that are appropriately sized for the amount of meat you’ll be using.
Buffet vs. Sit-Down Dinner
If you’re serving pulled pork as part of a buffet, you may want to plan for slightly less meat per person, as guests will likely be sampling a variety of dishes. On the other hand, if you’re serving pulled pork as part of a sit-down dinner, you may want to plan for slightly more meat per person to ensure everyone is satisfied.
Pulled Pork Tacos
Pulled pork can also be a great addition to tacos, either as the main filling or as part of a larger spread. Plan for about 1/4 to 1/3 pound of pulled pork per person if you’re serving it as part of a taco bar.
Sides and Other Meats
When serving pulled pork, make sure to consider the sides and other dishes you’ll be serving alongside it. Classic barbecue sides like coleslaw, baked beans, and mac and cheese can all be great complements to pulled pork. If you’re serving other meats like hot dogs or burgers, plan for slightly less pulled pork per person.
Finally, don’t forget the barbecue sauce! Pulled pork is a savory and versatile dish that pairs well with a variety of barbecue sauces. Consider offering a few different options to your guests so they can customize their meal to their liking.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much pulled pork do I need for 20 people?
If you’re serving pulled pork as the main dish, you should plan on about 6-7 pounds of raw pork. This will yield about 20-25 servings, assuming each person will eat around 1/3 to 1/2 pound of cooked pork.
How many pounds of pulled pork do I need for 30 people?
For a group of 30 people, you should plan on using about 10 pounds of raw pork. This will yield approximately 30-35 servings, assuming each person will eat around 1/3 to 1/2 pound of cooked pork.
How do I store pulled pork leftovers?
If you have any leftover pulled pork, store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It will keep for up to 4 days. If you want to freeze your leftovers, place them in a freezer-safe container or bag and store them in the freezer for up to 3 months. When reheating, make sure the pork reaches an internal temperature of 165°F to ensure it’s safe to eat.
Laura is a passionate home cook and grill enthusiast who has spent years perfecting her culinary skills, with a particular focus on grilling techniques and flavor combinations. Her fascination with the grill, smoke, and the mouthwatering results they produce has led her on an exciting journey to discover the best methods for grilling delicious and unforgettable meals.