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Sweet and Savory Slow Cooker Pulled Pork from Down South Paleo

pulled pork sliders

The caption for the above picture should be “get into my belly now.” These paleo pulled pork sliders from the brand new cookbook Down South Paleo are absolutely as good as they look! You definitely want this recipe and I’m thrilled that Jennifer Robins, the author and powerhouse behind the successful blog Predominantly Paleo, has given me permission to share her recipe and even gave the OK for me to provide suggestions for making the recipe paleo autoimmune protocol (AIP) friendly.

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If you are reading this post before August 17, you can also enter to win a copy at the bottom of this post. Simply post a comment telling me which recipe (bolded in the review) you are most excited about and then verify your entry using the Rafflecopter widget. Entries will close at midnight on Monday, August 17 and a winner will be randomly selected and notified on August 18. [Open to US residents only.]

UPDATE (August 16, 2015): This is now an autographed copy of Down South Paleo! Here is a picture of Jennifer signing it at her launch party today here in Alexandria, Virginia…


What makes Down South Paleo so great?

Jennifer is a fourth-generation Texan who wasn’t willing to give up her favorite comfort foods even when she realized she needed to change her way of eating to deal with a major autoimmune health crisis. Down South Paleo features more than 100 recipes for comforting family favorites from south of the Mason-Dixon line, including soul food, Tex-Mex, Cajun and creole, and Gulf seafood-inspired dishes – all of them free of grains, dairy, soy, refined sugar, and other junky ingredients. The book is also infused with Jennifer’s charm and wit, evidenced by the cheeky chapter titles such as “When the Rooster Crows” for breakfast dishes, “Roughage” for salads, and “Wet Your Whistle” for cold and hot beverages, which is a category most paleo cookbooks seem to omit but something even a Southern transplant like myself knows is a key element of good living, especially on hot summer afternoons (hello there Naturally Sweetened Sweet Tea!).

Ready Set AIP - Your on ramp to the Autoimmune Protocol lifestyle

We were fortunate to get an advance copy of the book and have been enjoying perusing and cooking from it for a few days now. The first recipe we made were the Cajun-Spiced Chicken Wings and the accompanying dairy-free Ranch Dressing. There are a lot of wing recipes and techniques out there and I haven’t met one yet that I didn’t like, but this one is different in that it features a technique that creates a crispy exterior without needing a deep fryer.

I also made the Stuffed Poblano Peppers, a grain and dairy free variation on the Tex-Mex favorite, and followed it up with the Mixed Berry Cobbler for dessert, which I immediately highlighted because I notice it was AIP-friendly without any modifications needed (more on that later…). Finally, the star of the book so far has been the Sweet & Savory Slow Cooker Pulled Pork, which I share at the end of this post. Mr. Gutsy couldn’t resist the aroma and ate his portion straight out of the slow cooker as he was shredding the meat, but I had a wee bit more patience and paired mine with the Sweet Potato Slider Buns!

Other recipes that I have flagged and can’t wait to make are the Corned Beef Hash with Brown Gravy, the Coconut Pancakes with Peach Compote, and the southern classic Grandma’s Grain-Free Biscuits and Sausage Gravy from the breakfast chapter. For dinner, I’m looking forward to the delectable sounding Mama’s Fried Chicken and Mr. Gutsy wants me to make him the New Orleans Jambalaya as soon as possible! When the freezing weather arrives in Virginia and I still have tomatoes on the vine I know I will be turning to this book for Fried Green Tomatoes and I guess I need to throw a party for an excuse to make the Lump Crab Hushpuppies and other “Nibbles.”

Baked goods and sweets are a big part of Southern cooking, and though Jennifer acknowledges they shouldn’t make up the bulk of a health diet, she has obviously worked hard to come up with healthier versions of all her family favorites, including a Chocolate Chip Georgia Pecan Pie, Texas rodeo-inspired Funnel Cakes, and even a grain and dairy free version of Tres Leches Cake!

What about my healing diet?

Every single recipe in this book is gluten free, grain free, dairy free, and soy free so if you are following a standard paleo diet template, you will be able to open the book to any page and start cooking. You will also find additional allergen information in the headnotes to each recipe, so if you have sensitivities or allergies to nuts, eggs, or nightshades (or all three), you will be able to easily see which recipes will work for you.

If you are on the elimination phase of the paleo autoimmune protocol (AIP), you will discover that nightshades and seed-based spices appear with relative frequency since they are traditional in many of the Southern cuisines that make up the basis for this book, but many recipes could be easily tweaked to remove those items. Many other recipes have just one or two non-AIP ingredients and would therefore be fine for people who have begun reintroducing foods into their diet.

The same goes for people following the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) and Low-FODMAP diets. If you know your restrictions and are comfortable making simple modifications, you will do just fine. If you make multiple sensitivities or are just starting out on the elimination phase of a healing diet, you may want to hold off on this one (though it would make a great holiday gift for the Southern food loving friends and family in your life!).

The Bottom Line

As a fellow current Virginia resident, I’ve had the privilege of getting Jennifer and her delightful family, and we’ve bonded over shared experiences with health difficulties, love of good food, and life as a military spouse. She is a warm and caring person and it is evident throughout this book. Oh, and the food is delicious!

I recommend this book for people who love any kind of food, particularly good Southern comfort food, but want to eat the healthiest possible versions of that food. If you cannot or choose not to eat gluten, grains, dairy, and/or soy then this would be perfect for you. If you have additional restrictions such as a need to avoid nuts, eggs, or nightshades, this book would still be a great addition to your paleo cookbook collection.

Sneak Peak: Recipe for Sweet and Savory Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

My suggestions for modifying this recipe to make it AIP-friendly are to eliminate the paprika, cumin, and mustard powder (paprika is a nightshade, cumin and mustard are seed-based spices) and replace them with a teaspoon of cinnamon and increase the garlic powder to 2 teaspoons.

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Sweet and Savory Slow Cooker Pulled Pork from Down South Paleo

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

5 from 1 review

  • Author: Jennifer Robins
  • Total Time: 4 hours 10 mins
  • Yield: 5 servings 1x


By the taste of this, you’d think lots of effort from a skilled hand had to be behind the recipe. But the truth is the slow cooker holds the secret to this perfectly “shreddable” sweet and savory pork. Wonderful served alone or as a lil’ “sammich.”


  • 1 1/2 lbs (680 grams) pork loin or pork shoulder
  • 1 onion, sliced into rings
  • 1 teaspoon (3 g) sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon (3 g) paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon (3 g) garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon (1 g) dried parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard powder
  • 1/4 cup (50 g) coconut palm sugar
  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) local raw honey
  • For serving: Sweet Potato Slider Buns (page 146 of Down South Paleo)


  1. Place the pork loin in the bottom of the slow cooker.
  2. Place the onion rings around the pork.
  3. Sprinkle all the seasonings on top of the pork, saving the apple cider vinegar and honey for last.
  4. Once the pork has been seasoned, pour the vinegar on top of the pork and then drizzle the honey over the seasonings.
  5. Cook on high for about 4 hours, or until the meat shreds easily with a fork and knife.
  6. Serve on the Sweet Potato Slider Buns for a house full of smiles!
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 4 hours
  • Category: Main
  • Cuisine: Southern

Enter to win a signed copy of Down South Paleo!

UPDATE: The giveaway is now closed. Congratulations Barbara H.!

Post a comment below that tells me which of the recipes in this book you are most excited to make or why you want to win this book. Then come back up here and verify your entry in the Rafflecopter widget. All entries will be verified – remember, open to US residents only.
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pulled pork 2

30 replies on “Sweet and Savory Slow Cooker Pulled Pork from Down South Paleo”

I am working on becoming totally PALEO and your book sounds like it could be a informative and fun way to get there! These pulled pork sliders sounds delicious, and overjoyed they are a way to possibly get my family to agree that PALE-E-O is the way to go! (Sorry, had to rhyme it)

I absolutely love biscuits and gravy, and miss being able to order them in restaurants, so that would be my first recipe to try out 🙂

This looks awesome….I know what is going to happen with the next pork butt that comes to my house! However, I’d be all about a good bun for the “sammich as my first recipe.

Hi Jaime,

Are you aware that the comments section has been shut down on your blog post regarding Thrive Market — dated February 22, 2015 — ?

By “shut down,” I mean your readers are not allowed to post new comments on that blog post. I notice that blog posts dated earlier and later are still open to receive comments, so it doesn’t appear to be a date-related problem.

A representative from Thrive Market has responded to me in the comment section of that blog post, and I would greatly appreciate the opportunity to address the points that she made. I hope you can reopen the comments section. Thanks!

I’m actually just excited to try out the pulled pork recipe from her book. That sounds awesome…apparently I’m hungry. lol

Can’t wait to try the pulled pork – mmmm…. I’d also like to try the sweet potato bun sliders 🙂 I’ve been AIP for about 8 months now and recovering from auto immune illnesses. Thanks!!

Reaching 50 has made my husband and I both very aware we are changing like it or not~ I enjoy your blog, some of the recipes I have rocked! Think anything you ‘sign’ on too would be amazing. On to our next duty station soon, Korea! Need to lock in the very healthy!
Thank you for al that you do!

Being Southern folks we were raised on fried chicken and sweet tea. Chocolate cake for dessert. This was our favorite for Sunday dinners. Now my husband is diabetic so I am trying to ease (sneak) him into the Paleo diet. Mama’s Fried Chicken would be my first recipe to try for him. Definitely have to have the Naturally Sweetened Sweet Tea to go with that, and for dessert Chocolate Chip Georgia Pecan Pie! YUMMY! Who could ask for more?

The Stuffed Poblano Peppers and the Jambalaya – love spicy ethnic foods! And the pecan pie and berry cobbler. And the pancakes…and…well you get the idea 🙂

I can’t wait to try the biscuits and gravy. My mama and papa made them every time we had all the family together. That and gallons of grits covered in butter. But I would be so happy to find biscuits and gravy that don’t hurt my tummy.

I would love to try this Pulled Pork Slider recipe and the SWEET POTATO BUNS recipe to go with it. Thank you!

I can’t wait to try all the recipes, my Dad’s family is from the South! I especially want to try the sweet potato slider buns. Yummy.

Have been eagerly waiting for this book’s release so I can find healthy TexMex and Southern comfort food recipes. Excited for fried chicken and sweet tea!

My best friend’s mom is southern and doesn’t quite understand what the paleo stuff we’re doing is all about. We’d love to win this to show her that what we’re eating is healthy but also tasty. The blondie recipe looks delicious!

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