Healthy Crockpot Pulled Pork is a low calorie, low carb recipe. Perfect for easy meals and meal prep. Serve over a salad, in lettuce wraps, in grain free buns, over cauliflower rice or brown rice. A simple, slow cooker meal that takes little effort and tastes delicious! Gluten Free + Low Calorie + Low Carb + Paleo
One of my most popular crockpot recipes is my crockpot BBQ chicken. A classic recipe that never gets old and makes healthy eating easy and delicious thanks to the slow cooker, which makes everything taste delicious.
So, it only makes sense to have a healthy crockpot pulled pork version here! Pork tenderloin is a lean protein and I talk about how important good, quality protein is to have with your meals not only for weight loss, but hormones. Protein is something my clients are always eating too little of.
Humans naturally crave carbs and fat. Two foods the body loves to depend on for instant energy and to store more fat. Getting adequate protein in the diet helps most individuals naturally eat fewer calories throughout the day. An easy way to take care of your health!
What Makes This Pulled Pork Recipe Healthy?
There are so many recipes on the internet and as a nutritionist, I cringe when I see a "healthy" recipe on a website posted by someone who has no nutritional background that's loaded with added sugar, not balanced with all three food groups and has low nutrient density. Not everything you see on the internet that says "healthy" is really a healthy recipe.
- Low Calorie - 1 cup (or one serving) equals 190 calories which is considered low calorie. As I always say, calories are not everything. Nutrient quality is so important. 190 calorie donut will not do the same thing to your metabolism as a 190 calorie well balanced meal or snack.
- Low in Added Sugar - This recipe uses a low sugar BBQ sauce. So many are loaded with a TON of sugar. See my recommendations below on this.
- Low Fat - Total fat is 6 grams, 1 of which is saturated (less optimal) fat. The remaining fat comes from healthy fat.
- High Protein - 32 grams of protein is great and in the ideal range for most women.
- Low Carb - The low sugar BBQ sauce keeps the carbs low in this recipe. I do recommend adding some healthy carbs to the meal so you feel full. See the recipe card for ideas.
- Gluten Free / Paleo - All ingredients are gluten free and Paleo friendly.
Ingredients for Healthy Pulled Pork Crockpot Recipe
Here's what you need to make this healthy pulled pork recipe. It may be obvious, but you'll also need a slow cooker. This is the one I have.
- Pork Tenderloin
- BBQ sauce, low in added sugar
- Chicken Broth
- Onion Powder
- Garlic Powder
How To Make Pulled Pork in a Slow Cooker
You can cook on high for 3-4 hours or low 6-8 hours. I generally do mine on low and then set it to the warm setting. You want to slow cook the pork tenderloin long enough until it's tender and shreds easily with tongs or forks.
I do recommend cutting off the silver parts or visible fat from the pork tenderloin to make it as lean as possible. A little fat is okay, but it is very easy to consume fat in the diet and individuals are generally consuming more fat than they are aware of.
Can You Make BBQ Pulled Pork in the Instant Pot?
What Are Healthier Low Sugar BBQ Sauces?
Store bought BBQ sauces are loaded with added sugar. Added sugar is snuck into many foods and many foods you would never think to have added sugar. It's a big problem, but an even bigger problem for human health as it contributes to inflammation, disease development and weight gain.
I do have a homemade low sugar BBQ sauce recipe if you want to make your own. It's super simple!
A few low sugar BBQ sauce brands I like include Stubbs, G Hughes, Primal Kitchen Classic, Primal Noble Made Classic, Tessemae's or Annie's Original. I recommend reading the nutrition data label on the product. Generally, you want to see 1-2 grams of added sugar or less.
Substitutions for Healthy Crockpot Pulled Pork
Here are the substitutions you can make for this healthy pulled pork recipe made in a slow cooker. As always, remember that when you make substitutions that it will change the nutrition from the information you see in the nutrition data in the recipe card below.
- Pork Tenderloin - You can do chicken as shown in this recipe. Turkey tenderloin or lean beef like flank steak, tenderloin, venison or veal.
- Chicken Broth - Vegetable broth, beef broth or any stock can be used.
- BBQ Sauce - I recommend a BBQ with minimal added sugar i.e. 1-2 grams of added sugar per serving. You can make your own as shown in this recipe (it's easy!). Low sugar BBQ sauce brands I like include Stubbs, G Hughes, Primal Kitchen Classic, Primal Noble Made Classic, Tessemae's or Annie's Original
- Garlic Powder - You can use minced garlic or garlic chopped fresh.
- Onion Powder - Onion flakes can be substituted or you can omit.
- Instant Pot - You can make this recipe in the Instant Pot. Follow the instructions in this post to do so.
Healthy Crockpot Pulled Pork
- Cut the silver part of the pork tenderloin and any excess fat off it. Add the pork tenderloin to the slow cooker with the broth, BBQ sauce, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper.
- Cook on low 6-8 hours or high 3-4 hours. The meat should fall apart and shred easily with a tongs or fork. Shred the meat then serve!
- You can serve over a salad, on a grain free or gluten free bun, over cauliflower rice, brown rice or quinoa with veggies, or in lettuce cups.
- Store leftovers in the refrigerator in a container up to 7 days.