Pulled pork Taco's need topping advice?

Joined Oct 22, 2008
I am smoking a pork butt today and will pull it to make pulled pork taco's using a soft taco shell. Thought I would garnished it with cole slaw but trying to think of other ideas I can garnish it with besides cole slaw. Not everyone likes cole slaw trying to think of something unique that blends well with pork. Any ideas?
Joined Apr 3, 2008
could try some fried onion strings or fried leek greens for a replacement of the crunchy cabbage. while I haven't tried it, some fresh anaheim or poblano chiles sliced and quickly sauteed or perhaps even smoked would go good.


Staff member
Joined Mar 29, 2002
Cole slaw is certainly the kicker as cabbage is better with a taco than lettuce.

A smoked/roasted tomato/tomatillo salsa could be good.

Cheese, plain or smoked. I'd done bbq nachos with cheese and been happy. Even the crumbly cotija would be good and probably better than cheddar. A little more assertive to stand up to the other flavors.

Some hot peppers, pickled jalapenos or something you smoked yourself. Also look at rajas, another twist on a pepper accent.

Sour cream and guacamole I'm a little mixed on. Maybe mix some ranch style dressing and barbecue sauce half and half. Offer some cooling dairy tones with some barbecue flair.
Joined Dec 4, 2009
"something unique"? How about (off the top of my head):

-- a chunky salsa of sweet potatoes, pineapple and cilantro

-- a sauce of tomatoes, chipotle and Dijon mustard

-- a relish of garlic, mustard and cornichons

-- a creamy tarragon, garlic and wine sauce

-- honey, citrus and mustard

-- raspberry, diced fennel bulb and thyme

-- manchego cheese.

Joined Feb 1, 2010
I would seriously keep it as simple as possible because the pork will probably be delicious! Cilantro, fresh lime, a slice or two of avacado...
Joined Apr 19, 2001
make your slaw w/vinegar instead of mayo, and add some cooked pureed tomatillo, cilantro, and a little of whatever hot you like. Top w/FF onions for crunch.
Joined Jan 25, 2010
have you ever had a kogi taco? kimchi slaw taste pretty good!

also you can do raddish julienne picked in white vinigar
Joined Dec 20, 2008
The easiest authentic topping is fresh made Pico de Gallo, there are lot of variations, but simply:
diced tomatoes, minced jalapeno pepper, diced red or white onion, cilantro, lime, salt. You can add pepper or garlic, and build from that point your own variations.

Sprinkle a little taco seasoning on the meat when you warm it up, heat the tortillas, (I have electric stove), I put the tortilla directly on the burner very low heat and rotate a few times, this gets a little crisp char, and then flip do again. It is slow but adds a little taste.

To give the meat a more authentic flavor, I keep a product from our local Costco in the fridge, a semi fresh tomatillo salsa verde, it is mostly liquid, when I heat the meat I wet the meat with the tomattilo salsa.
(I mentioned heat the meat, when I smoke pork butt, the left overs and there is a lot, are used for taco's or burritos)
Joined Jul 21, 2006
When we have pulled pork off the smoker, I like to just use a softened corn tortilla, some pork, bbq sauce, cheese, and a little cole slaw. I think caramelized onions would be really good and maybe some roasted red peppers, too.
Joined Apr 16, 2006
Pulled pork enchiladas are great, too. I've done 'em with red sauce & green sauce; both were fantastic.
Joined Jul 7, 2016
Apple Salsa??  Something like this perhaps...not my recipe, borrowed from the interwebs:

2 cups diced peeled Spartan apple (about 3/4 pound)

1/2 cup diced red bell pepper

1/3 cup fresh lime juice

1/4 cup diced red onion

1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro

1 tablespoon honey

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced

ed from the interwebs.
Joined Mar 7, 2016
A quick Cucumber Kimchi slaw would go really well with the pork.  Cucumber, scallion bottoms, ginger, garlic, rice vinegar, gochujang, honey, salt, and a little fish sauce.
Joined Aug 2, 2014
I have seen a couple coleslaw suggestions, I have had pulled pork tacos with an apple coleslaw and it came out great.  julienne the apples to replace the cabbage and your good to go.
Joined Jun 29, 2016
Quick pickled shallots. Super easy and "showy", plus they'll last in your fridge awhile so you can try 'em on all kinds of things. Pick a recipe that includes star anise.   
Joined Aug 15, 2003
Hey! How were your tacos 6 years ago??!?!?!? What did you end up putting on them?
Joined Aug 2, 2014
haha, I really have to start looking at the dates of things I'm responding to
Joined Sep 18, 2012
Finely shredded red cabbage, slices of red radishes, a slice of avocado, chopped cilantro, Pico di Gallo, stripped of fire-roasted poblanos (skin-removed, cut into thin strips), crumble Queso fresco. Accompany with lime wedges, and fire grilled Mexican onions*** and Chiles Toreados ( do both at the same time on the Barbee or grill.) Chiles Toreados can be made from jalapeños or Serrano chilies. There is no better cheese than Queso fresco for this purpose, I think its perfect. The avocado help keep everything lubricated as does the Pico di Gallo. I make my Pico di Gallo from small tomatoes, the Sun Gold or a sweet cherry is good. Yum!

*** called "cebollitas" or "little onions". The onions I use for this side are more bulby than scallions and less huge than normal white onions.

Joined Jan 4, 2011
It doesn't matter how old this thread is. This is a great summer topic. Good food never goes out of style. Good old ideas can always use a dusting off.
Joined Jan 31, 2012
Agreed, there are countless great threads i never knew existed,
that had they not been resurrected, i would have never been able
to learn from or add to them.
The only ones you gotta watch are when youre responding directly
to a member who hasnt been active since G W Bush.lol
Joined May 16, 2011
I think shredded jicama and red onion with a pink grapefruit and cilantro vinaigrette would be nice. 
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