Of the many missions I have tasked myself with (who has the best French fry, what about best plant based burger), the most recent goal I’m working toward has me particularly excited – who has the best store bought pulled pork? The newest contender in my refrigerator – this handsomely packaged tray from Kroger.
Cooking: Microwave or bake. You have to cook the whole package in one go, which is fairly routine for this type of product; leftovers are easy to reheat again after that. I actually managed to overcook a small portion of the pork following the microwave guidelines – so do be careful.
Taste and texture: Not good. The first notable let down is the lack of sweet smoke. You notice this from the moment you start cooking the dish – there’s a dearth of any of the excitement this dish is meant to deliver. The pork is visually unappealing when cooked, it’s exceptionably fatty and in a single word, disappointing.
Verdict: A hard pass for me. The pork lacks any redeemable characteristics. The lack of smoke is a big failure, and the extreme fattiness just compounds an otherwise lackluster dish.
What else is out there: if you’re looking to bring the BBQ to your home, I recently discovered Southside Market & BBQ out of Texas. Here’s some of their rope sausage I tasted – they also offer a range of smoked meats delivered to your door too. In the grocery store my current favorite is the Niman Ranch pulled pork product.
Kroger Hardwood Smoked Pulled Pork nutrition and cooking
Is Kroger Hardwood Smoked Pulled Pork any good?
Nope. It’s not. The pork lacks a depth of smoky flavor an is ultimately too fatty for my tastes. Look elsewhere for your pulled pork fix.
Hi, I’m Stuart, nice to meet you! I’m the founder, writer and wrangler at Gastronomic SLC – Utah’s biggest and oldest online food magazine; I’m also a former restaurant critic of more than five years, working for the Salt Lake Tribune. I’ve worked extensively with multiple local publications from Visit Salt Lake to Salt Lake Magazine, not least helped to consult on national TV shows.
I’m a multiple-award winning journalist and have covered the Utah dining scene for the better part of fifteen years. I’m largely fueled by a critical obsession with rice, alliteration and the use of big words I don’t understand. I started Shop Smart to catalogue my adventures in the grocery store and kitchen. Follow along on Instagram too!