Top 5 Pulled Pork Rub Recipes for Any Taste and Occasion

We handpicked five rub recipes that ideally enhance the flavor and taste of pork.
Jeremy Bivens
Jeremy Bivens
Research Writer
Jeremy Bivens is a passionate writer and grilling enthusiast. He's been working as a freelance journalist for over 15 years now and has a particular interest in food writing read more
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Bruce Williams
Bruce Williams
Expert Consultant
Claims that grilling is the art that he has been learning all his life long and is not planning to stop. Has been grilling for as long as he can remember. Author of numerous read more
Last updated: August 13, 2023
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Nothing is more fun in the summer than hanging out with your friends and family and having a barbecue session in your backyard. If you are a pork lover, pulled pork is a great way to have this type of meat at your barbecue session. Not only do you get to eat juicy cuts, but you get to enjoy a burst of well-balanced flavors with pulled pork. However, the difference between a good pulled pork and a bad pulled pork often lies in the pulled pork rub being used.

A pulled pork rub has to have a balance of flavors that enhances the taste of the pork itself. You can buy numerous ready-made pork rubs, however, this article provides you with a number of pulled pork rub recipes that you can easily make at home. Not only are these recipes delicious, but they are also foolproof as we have tried and tested them for your beforehand.

Pulled Pork Rub Recipe 1

This pulled pork rub is bound to make your pork taste amazing, so when you take your first bite, there are bursts of flavor in your mouth. Top 5 Pulled Pork Rub Recipes for Any Taste and Occasion


This pulled pork rub keeps the 3 S’s in mind which is savory, sweet, and spice. All the ingredients for this recipe can be easily found in your pantry or local grocery store. This recipe requires:

  • Brown sugar to add the sweet flavor
  • Kosher salt
  • Smoked paprika and cayenne that adds a spicy kick to the pulled pork rub
  • Black pepper
  • Cumin
  • Onion and garlic powder


For this special rub, take a large bowl and add in a cup of brown sugar. Then add in 4 tablespoons of smoked paprika along with 2 tablespoons of crushed black pepper. To this mix, add half a tablespoon of cumin, onion powder, and garlic powder each. Last but not the least, add in cayenne pepper according to the spice level required. Generally, we recommend adding in a teaspoon of cayenne pepper. Although cayenne pepper can be spicy, it also has numerous health benefits.

Mix all the ingredients together and make sure that they are well combined. Then, pour the rub mixture in any air-tight jar or use it on your pork immediately.

This rub mixture can last you more than a year if stored in a cool, dry place.

Pulled Pork Rub Recipe 2

Pulled pork burgers are the best way to consume pork. You can always reheat pulled pork and use it for your burgers and sandwiches. With this pulled pork rub recipe, you get flavorful pulled pork that goes well in burgers.Top 5 Pulled Pork Rub Recipes for Any Taste and Occasion


This recipe requires extremely basic ingredients that are able to balance each other very well. You will need:

  • Paprika powder
  • Dark brown sugar
  • Salt and pepper
  • Garlic powder
  • Onion powder
  • Mustard powder
  • Chili powder
  • Chili pepper
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Cumin


For this recipe, take a large bowl and add in half a cup of paprika powder along with one-third cups of dark brown sugar. Next, add in a tablespoon of cayenne pepper and a tablespoon of cumin as well as a tablespoon of dry mustard. Then, add in equal parts, i.e., ¼ cup of salt and garlic powder. You will also need to add two tablespoons of black pepper, chili powder, onion powder, and chili pepper, each. Make sure that you get precise measurements, otherwise, the flavors can get unbalanced.

Once, you are done mixing you will end up with 2 whole cups of pulled pork rub. You can use 1/3cup of this rub for about 10 pounds of pork. After rubbing the mix and marinating it for sufficient time, make sure that you use the best wood to grill.

Using a good smoking wood can further enhance the flavors.

Pulled Pork Rub Recipe 3

If you are a garlic lover, then this pulled pork recipe is just for you. With the perfect garlic flavors, this recipe adds a twist to the basic pulled pork recipe.Top 5 Pulled Pork Rub Recipes for Any Taste and Occasion


To get this flavorful pulled pork rub, you will need the following ingredients:

  • Minced garlic (Make sure it’s minced finely)
  • Black pepper
  • Paprika
  • Brown sugar
  • Salt


This recipe is fairly simple and easy to follow. All you need to do is to take a bowl and add in the dry ingredients which include 1 tablespoon black pepper, 1 tablespoon paprika, 1 tablespoon brown sugar, and 1 tablespoon salt. Once you have mixed these well together, add in 8 cloves of minced garlic and your rub is ready to be applied on the pork.

Since this pulled pork rub uses fresh ingredients such as garlic, you will only be able to store it for up to two weeks in an air-tight container. However, you can always use the rub on the pork roast and use the leftover pulled pork over time.

Pulled Pork Rub Recipe 4

Your pulled pork rub does not always have to be dry as this wet mustard rub is an amazing alternative. This pulled pork rub can be easily applied on the pork while the wet ingredients set in their flavor properly.Top 5 Pulled Pork Rub Recipes for Any Taste and Occasion


The ingredients for this recipe are the following:

  • Dijon mustard (you can use any other type of mustard as well!)
  • Parsley
  • Lemon zest
  • Rosemary
  • Black pepper
  • Salt


To get started with this rub, take a bowl and add 2 full cups of Dijon mustard along with a cup of minced parsley. To this mixture, add in half a cup of lemon zest, half cup rosemary, quarter cup black pepper, and a tablespoon of salt. Mix these well together and use it immediately.

Pulled Pork Rub Video Recipe

Below is one more combination of ingredients to try out if you like spicier rubs.

Final Thoughts

Pulled pork is nothing without its flavor which is provided by the rub that marinates it. Making a pulled pork rub is extremely easy and simple. You can find all kinds of variations for different recipes. Chose a recipe with the flavor that you want to marinate your pork in. If all above fails, store-bought rubs such as this one can save your life.

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