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Traeger's Hawaiian Kalua Pulled Pig

Posted by mmillet on June 29, 2014

Traeger's Hawaiian Kalua Pulled Pig


Kalua literally means "to cook in an underground oven". Obviously we're stretching that definition a little in this recipe just so that we can enjoy that same salty, fall-apart pork that is traditionally the centerpiece of most luaus. And if you've ever tasted it, you know you can't really blame us for wanting to recreate that piggy goodness.

Basically this is a "mock Kalua Pig" created by wrapping the pork butt in ti or banana leaves, salting it with a colorful, coarse Hawaiian sea salt and cooking it on your Traeger. Don't despair if you have difficulties finding banana leaves. You could easily substitute aluminum foil.

The recipe is simple and simply delicious. Find it in our From Pulled Pork to Peach Pie Cookbook. If you want to continue with the Aloha state theme, serve the pork with some grilled pineapple and baked yams.

Stay tuned and we'll also give you recipe for some to-die-for sweet 'n porky baked beans with a tropical flair and loaded with kalua pulled pork.


PELLETS: Hickory
PREP TIME: 15 min., plus marinate overnight
COOK TIME: 5 to 6 hours
SERVES: 10 to 12


1 5- to 7-pound pork shoulder (Boston butt), bone-in or boneless
2 to 3 tbsps. Hawaiian sea salt, or coarse salt (kosher or sea)
Freshly ground black pepper
2 frozen banana leaves (see above), thawed


If you have a hard time finding the Hawaiian sea salt, check on amazon.com or a similar online site. You should be able to find the banana leaves in the frozen section of your grocery store, but if not use aluminum foil.

Season the pork shoulder with the Hawaiian salt and pepper.

Put a banana leaf on your work surface. Lay the pork shoulder in the center of it, and draw up the ends as if you were wrapping a gift. Lay the second banana leaf at right angles to the first and draw up the ends to enclose the meat. Wrap the entire package tightly in aluminum foil. Refrigerate overnight.

When ready to cook, start the Traeger grill on Smoke with the lid open until the fire is established (4 to 5 minutes). Set the temperature to 300 degrees F and preheat, lid closed, for 10 to 15 minutes.

Place the wrapped pork directly on the grill grate and cook until the pork is falling-apart-tender, 5 to 6 hours. (An internal temperature in the meat of 190 degrees F is what you’re looking for.)

Transfer the pork to a cutting board and let rest, still wrapped, for 20 minutes. Carefully unwrap the pork and save any juices that accumulated in the foil.

Traeger's Hawaiian Kalua Pulled Pig

Traeger's Hawaiian Kalua Pulled Pig

Tear the pork into chunks and shreds, discarding any lumps of fat or bone. Serve immediately. Tropical islands, here we come!

Traeger's Hawaiian Kalua Pulled Pig


Hawaiian Kalua Pulled Pig Recipe.docx (12.35 kb)