The Best Bread for Pulled Pork Sandwiches

In my world, making great pork sandwiches is really important.

There are some important rules that you need to follow if you want to blow people’s minds with the perfect pulled pork sandwich. You need the right pulled pork recipe. And if you’re making our Italian-style pulled porchetta that we make at Mortadella Head you need the right spice blend.

If you’re making a traditional American-style pulled pork you need a great dry rub. And you definitely want a delicious bbq sauce to drizzle over your pulled pork.

But you also need the right bread for your pulled pork sandwich. In this article, I’m going to teach you what bread you should be using to make your pork sandwich the best around. We’ll go over the best buns to use, the type of bread to use depending on the pork recipe, and the best way to prepare each kind of bread.

The Pulled Pork Basics

First of all, you want to start off with a great pulled pork recipe.

Pulled pork is a great meal any time of year. You can make it outside in a smoker or on your grill in the summer. You can also make it in a dutch oven, slow cooker or instant pot in your kitchen during the winter.

The Dry Rub

Start off with a small bowl of your favorite dry rub. I like to massage my pork butt with some olive oil and then give it a good coating of the spice blend. Don’t underestimate the importance of a good spice rub.

At Mortadella Head, our pulled porchetta dry rub has garlic powder, salt, black pepper, fennel, rosemary and crushed red pepper.

And at Boston Burger Company our dry rub is a mix of brown sugar, spices, and mustard powder. People love it on our pulled pork hamburger called the WTF!

The Right Cut of Meat

The best cut of pork for pulled pork is something with a lot of fat that will break down during the long slow cooks at low temperatures.

If you don’t know which to choose, try either a Boston butt or a pork shoulder.

Both of these cuts are a type of pork butt. Here’s a good source to learn the difference between the two.

The Cooking Process

First, you want to make sure your pork is at room temperature when you cook it.

Take it out of the fridge at least a half-hour before you’re ready to cook it. After the pork is coated in the spice blend, I like to sear it on all sides to a golden brown before it goes in for the long slow cooking process.

You really want to let the pork cook at a low temperature of about 250 °F degrees.

A good sear also works well for a pork loin that will be cooked at high heat for a shorter time.

Pork tenderloin has less fat than pork butt, so it’s not the right cut of meat for pulled pork. It doesn’t have as much moisture. But with your favorite barbecue sauce, it can still be delicious if you cook it right.

The Best Bread for Pulled Pork Sandwiches

Here is a list of what I think are the best breads to use for your pulled pork sandwiches.

Potato Rolls

These soft rolls are always a favorite. Potato rolls are a nice soft bun that everyone loves. You can find them in the bread aisle at your grocery store.

Potato buns are about the size of an average hamburger bun. The sweet flavor of a potato roll goes great with a nice tangy barbecue sauce.

I like to butter them and toast them in a frying pan before I load them up with pulled pork and coleslaw. Heat up some baked beans and put together an easy family dinner.

a bun of potato bread, one of our favorite types of bread for pulled pork sandwiches


Ciabatta bread originated in Italy. It wasn’t popular until the early 1980s.

It is believed that it was created because people really liked French bread and this style is similar.

Ciabatta is usually hard on the outside and is airy on the inside. This is due to the high amount of water mixed with the flour when making this style of Italian bread.

It usually comes in a large oval loaf or a smaller crusty roll.

For a great pulled pork sandwich, take a one-inch Ciabatta slice, brush it in olive oil and toast it. Pile it with our pulled porchetta and broccoli rabe. Add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice and you’ll feel like you’re on the Amalfi coast.

ciabatta bread, an Italian type of bread which is great for pulled pork sandwhiches


Have you ever made pulled pork sandwiches on brioche buns? Once you try it it might be your favorite way going forward. Brioche is a French style of bread that is heavy on butter and eggs.

Toast the brioche with a little butter and load up the pork filling with some bbq sauce and pickles. The vinegar from the pickles and bbq sauce compliment the rich pork and buttery bread. Don’t knock it until you’ve tried it!

Sub Roll

At Mortadella Head we love our sub rolls! The ones we use are long hard rolls on the outside and soft on the inside.

A lot of you might be thinking, “You’re nuts! Who uses a sub roll for pulled pork?!

Well, let me tell you about our Cuban Crisis sub. As you know, a traditional Cuban sandwich uses sliced pork roast. Not ours.

We use our slow-cooked Italian-style pulled pork, mortadella, pickles, and Swiss cheese. You can use a different cheese if you want, but Swiss is really the best bet for this sandwich.

Then we grill it to perfection until all of the cheese and other flavors blend together perfectly. It’s definitely a sandwich you should be making at home!

Slider Buns

If you’re having a party, slider buns are a no-brainer. They are smaller buns so they’re perfect for an appetizer or if you are having lots of other options at the party.

A good way to use them is to set up a cool slider bar for your guests. It’s a fun way to feed a crowd any time of the year.

Set out your slider buns along with the pork filling and lots of toppings. Keep the pork in a crock pot so it stays warm and juicy. The people at your party will love the idea of building their own pork sliders.

Some of the toppings you can put out are different types of bbq sauce, pickles, coleslaw, American cheese, cheddar cheese and sliced onions.

Hamburger Buns

Hamburger buns are very traditional when it comes to making pulled pork sandwiches. A pulled pork and cheese sandwich with bbq sauce and pickles is definitely an old school favorite for many.

If you want a great pork sandwich recipe, take a burger, load it up with mac and cheese, pulled pork and a tangy barbecue sauce.

Do it in this order for the best results. Place bread on a frying pan with butter and toast. Drizzle the bottom bun with bbq sauce. Then place a burger on it. Add a scoop of mac and cheese to the burger. Place pork on mac and cheese. Now add some pickles and more bbq sauce. Boom!

a hamburger with pulled pork, mac and cheese, pickles and bbq sauce

Kaiser Rolls

Another really great bread for a pulled pork sandwich is a Kaiser roll. This round bread roll is sometimes called a Vienna roll or a hard roll. It originated in Austria and can sometimes have poppy seeds on top. They look kind of like a deli roll and are perfect for big, fat, overstuffed sandwiches. They really stand up to the juicy pulled pork slathered in bbq sauce.

2 buns of kaiser rolls, another good bread for pulled pork

Other Types Of Bread For Pulled Pork – Which One Is Your Favorite?

Just because this is a list of what I think is the best bread for pulled pork, feel free to try other types of bread. The next time you make pulled pork sandwiches try using sourdough rolls. You could also put it on naan bread for a change. It’s also common at some bbq joints down South to serve their pulled pork with slices of white bread.

Whatever you decide, I’m sure it will be delicious if you use a great pulled pork recipe and your favorite bbq sauce!

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