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Pulled Pork Sandwich Toppings

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One of the best ways to enjoy pulled pork is a simple one: pulled pork sandwiches. What is a sandwich without its toppings, though? Adding pulled pork sandwich toppings like coleslaw, cheese, or even international options like kimchi is a great way to make a simple dish a memorable one to share with family and friends.

The smoky and salty flavors of pulled pork complement tangy sauces and robust vegetables perfectly, resulting in a harmonious and well-balanced taste. Adding some toppings to the pulled pork will give it an added texture that will surely elevate the dish.

Consider both the classic and non-traditional options on this list the next time you make smoked pulled pork on your Traeger. If you can’t decide, that’s OK; a pulled pork toppings bar can be a fun way to offer a variety of options.

Classic Pulled Pork Sandwich Toppings

Pulled pork sandwiches have been around long enough to have some traditional toppings, which include those listed below.

BBQ sauce

Barbecue sauce is almost always welcome on a pulled pork sandwich. Choose between any barbecue sauce you enjoy, such as Carolina style, Kansas City style, or Texas style. You can also create your own sauce and add more sweetness or heat to fit your preferences.


Even if you aren’t a fan of a side of slaw, coleslaw makes a refreshing and crunchy topping that counters the savory flavors of pulled pork meat. There are two basic types of coleslaw: creamy (made with mayo) and vinegary, and many slaw feature both. Coleslaw is traditionally made with shredded cabbage and carrots, but there are all kinds of variations, such as this recipe, which features mango.



Whether you're a fan of sweet, savory, tangy, or bold, pickles are a classic choice to balance the rich and smoky flavors of the pulled pork while adding a crisp texture. Sweet pickles, bread and butter pickles, and dill pickles all make perfect pairings for your smoked pulled pork meat. You don't have to stick to using just cucumber pickles, either; any veggies that can be pickled are fair game, including jalapeños, carrots, or asparagus spears.


Onions are an affordable and versatile topping for a pulled pork sandwich, and while you can add them raw, sautéing or grilling gives them a sweeter flavor that won’t overpower the rest of the food. If you've already added them to your slaw or pickle mix, you can decide whether you need them on their own.

Another way to enjoy onions is as fried onion straws or "frizzles." Made like onion rings, these much thinner onion pieces crisp up nicely and don't overwhelm the sandwich. For those who prefer the milder taste of cooked onions, this is definitely a method to consider.


Mustard is another premium pulled pork sandwich topping to include in your topping choices. Wood-fired pulled pork meets its match with a dollop of tangy mustard, creating a symphony of flavors as the zesty kick cuts through the savory richness of the pork.

Creative Pulled Pork Sandwich Toppings

If you're looking for more adventurous pulled pork sandwich toppings, we've got you covered. Consider these bold culinary options if you’re ready to make your pulled pork stand out.

Fried Egg

You’ve likely seen fried eggs on burgers, so why not enjoy them on pulled pork? When prepared over easy, you’ll get the combo of crispy egg white edges and the gooey yolks that add richness to an already tasty dish. Fried eggs take an ordinary sandwich to another level.


The creamy texture and unique flavor of avocados make them perfect for almost any sandwich. This includes smoked pulled pork. Since both the meat and avocados have a more mild flavor, look for some sweet or spicy sauces to help pull everything together. If you want to amp up the texture, fry the avocado slices in panko or flour breading and your choice of zesty spices. Sprinkle on chili powder or smoked paprika to give these fried slices an extra kick.

Jalapeño Peppers

The spice of a jalapeño pepper isn’t for everyone, but heat-seekers might enjoy a few slices, raw or pickled, to add crunch and flavor to their pork recipe. For a flavorful char taste, smoke the peppers on your Traeger.



Pineapple is often paired with pork, whether it be pork chops or a baked ham, so it makes sense that it would taste great on a pulled pork sandwich. For added flavor, use fresh pineapple rings and grill them for a few minutes on each side. Not only will it help break down pineapple fibers and make them more tender, but the charred sugar from the juice will give your pulled pork sandwich an extra punch of flavor.

Grilled Vegetables

If you're looking to freshen up your sandwich, consider adding grilled vegetables cooked on your Traeger Grill. From zucchini to carrots, grilled veggies can add a nice contrast to the smoky flavors of your pulled pork sandwich.

Roasted Garlic Aioli

Garlic is the heart of a good aioli sauce, which often also includes oil and eggs (similar to mayo.) This bolder spread is especially memorable when made with roasted garlic, which gives it a nuttier flavor.

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

Hummus isn’t just for crackers and crudites. It’s also a delicious topping for your favorite pulled pork sandwich recipe. While hummus comes in many varieties, the roasted red pepper blend makes an especially fine addition to pulled pork and adds a creamy texture to your sandwich similar to coleslaw.

Grilled Corn

Sweet corn kernels, cooked on your Traeger, add sweetenss and color to pulled pork. If you have trouble keeping the kernels in place on top of your sandwich, mix them into whatever sauce you're using to pull it all together.


Pork roast with gravy is more of a Sunday dinner dish, but it has possibilities as a lunch or game-time recipe when modified a bit. Use your favorite pork or brown gravy as the sauce of your pulled pork sandwich. You can even add a small scoop of mashed potatoes for a true comfort food experience.

International Pulled Pork Sandwich Topping Flavors

We may think of pulled pork as an American dish, but pork shoulder or pork butt is actually a common ingredient used globally, making it the perfect pick for showing off your international culinary skills.


Kimchi, a mix of tangy salted and fermented vegetables, has become very popular to use in a variety of dishes, and these traditional Korean vegetables bring a lot of flavor. If you want to add spice to your sandwich, kimchi makes an easy substitution for coleslaw for your pulled pork sandwich toppings.



Salsa is affordable and easy to make yourself, but if you don’t have time or ingredients on hand, consider any of the available salsas from the fresh section of your grocer. Salsa works well with avocados and grilled corn toppings for a truly Tex-Mex experience.


Can pulled pork work with tomato sauce? Of course! Marinara and some melted mozzarella cheese or even provolone make a unique way to enjoy pulled pork that’s a bit out of the ordinary (and kids like it, too).


Using tzatziki sauce as a pulled pork sandwich topping may not be the first thing you think of, but trust us, it works. Tzatziki combines the coolness of Greek yogurt and finely diced cucumbers into a tangy sauce that’s amazing on gyros. Try dressing your entire sandwich like a gyro and include some tomato, lettuce, and red onion for a different take on this classic meal.

Pulled Pork Sandwich Recipes

You can always use your favorite pulled pork recipe and add your choice of toppings, but if you're looking for options that are pork-lover-approved, consider one of the following.

First up is Chef Matt Pittman's Pulled Pork recipe. A testament to the art of low-and-slow smoking, Matt's recipe provides all the detials that make the difference for making turly outstanding pulled pork.


Another great choice is our Show Me The Honey Pulled Pork dressed with our sweet and tangy in-house BBQ sauce. Slow-cooked for hours, you'll place the pork butt, fat-side up, directly on the grill grates until it's caramelized to perfection. To monitor the internal temperature, make sure to use the MEATER 2 Plus wireless meat thermometer for real-time data on your cook to ensure you get the perfect result.

Homemade pickles and BBQ sauce are the key ingredients in these tiny BBQ Pulled Pork Sliders. Just be sure you leave enough time to brine the cucumbers!

For sweeter notes and tons of flavor, try out the Apple Juice-Brined Pulled Pork recipe. Start by brining the pork in a bath of sweet apple juice, then slow-cook it to perfection on your Traeger grill. The result is a succulent texture and a flavor infused with apple goodness.

BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwich

by Traeger Kitchen

Prep Time

15 Min

Cook Time

9 Hr





It doesn’t get much better than this cookout classic. Tender, applewood-smoked pulled pork meets cool and crunchy coleslaw for a sandwich that will send you to hog heaven.

Pulled Pork
1 (8-10 lb) bone-in pork butt
1 1/2 Cupapple juice, divided
4 Tablespoonbrown sugar
1 Tablespoonkosher salt, plus more to taste
1/4 CupTraeger Pork & Poultry Rub, divided, plus more to taste
To TasteTraeger Sweet & Heat BBQ Sauce
1/2 CupMayonnaise
1/2 Cupsour cream
2 Tablespoonwhite vinegar
1 Teaspoonkosher salt
1/2 Teaspoonfreshly ground black pepper
1/2 Teaspooncelery seeds
1/2 Mediumgreen cabbage, shredded
1/2 Mediumpurple cabbage, shredded
2 Largecarrots, shredded
For Serving
4 burger buns
dill pickles
  • 1

    Make the pulled pork: When ready to cook, set Traeger temperature to 250℉ and preheat, lid closed for 15 minutes.

  • 2

    Trim the pork butt of all excess fat, leaving 1/4 inch of the fat cap attached.

  • 3

    In a small bowl, combine 1 cup apple juice, the brown sugar, salt, and 2 tablespoons of the Traeger Pork & Poultry Rub. Stir until most of the sugar and salt have dissolved.

  • 4

    Inject the mixture into the pork butt, spacing every square inch or so. Season the pork butt with the remaining 2 tablespoons of Traeger Pork & Poultry Rub.

  • 5

    Place the pork butt directly on the grill grates. Insert the probe into the center of the pork, avoiding the bone and any large pockets of fat. Close the lid and cook until the internal temperature reaches 160℉, about 6 hours.

  • 6

    Remove the pork butt from the grill and increase the temperature to 275°F. Wrap the pork in two layers of aluminum foil, leaving one end of the foil open. Pour the remaining 1/2 cup apple juice into the opening, then secure the foil tightly. Place the pork in a large pan.

  • 7

    Place the pan with the pork on the grill grates. Re-insert the probe. Close the lid and cook until the internal temperature reaches 205°F, about 3 hours more.

  • 8

    Meanwhile, make the coleslaw: In a medium bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, sour cream, vinegar, salt, pepper, and celery seeds. Add the green and purple cabbage and carrots and toss until well coated. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

  • 9

    Remove the pork from the grill and unwrap. Shred the pork, removing and discarding the bone and any excess fat or tendons. Transfer to a medium bowl and season with more Traeger Pork & Poultry Rub and salt, to taste. Toss with Traeger Sweet & Heat Barbecue Sauce until well coated.

  • 10

    To serve, pile the pulled pork on the bottom burger buns, then top with the coleslaw, pickles, and the top buns. Enjoy!

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