Crispy Cracklin' Pork Shoulder

PORK: it's also what's for dinner. Anytime you have the option of roasting a decent sized chunk of pork, having the skin still attached can unlock a whole new level of deliciousness which comes in the form of salty, crispy, utterly decadent crackling roasted skin. It's similar to the satisfaction of biting into a crisp, thick potato chip, except with the flavor of bacon. This now begs the question: why would you NOT request pork with the skin still attached? Well, if you're going to be smoking a piece of pork, the skin will typically dry out, so in some cases, omitting the skin may be a good option. But for roast pork? There's no question.

Here we are taking a really affordable piece of pork, treating it very simply, and transforming it into an unforgettable meal. Great for serving a group or just having extra to eat during the week. There's a couple small tricks which will help you get that amazing crispy skin, but make no mistake, this is really easy to accomplish with any type of standard home oven. It all starts with great quality pork, of course, and you can find this exact piece of meat on our online butcher shop. On to the roasting!

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours
Difficulty: Easy
May we recommend:
May we suggest:
  • Serving this meaty hunk with your favorite side dishes which you will have plenty of time to prepare during the roasting process

Step 1: Salt the pork ahead of time. This will accomplish two things. One, allowing the salt to work itself into the thick roast, and two, allowing the pork to chill, uncovered, in the fridge for up to 24 hours before cooking. This will help dry out the skin, which will help you achieve extra crispy roasted skin. If you don't have time to do this before hand, it's okay to omit this step. But if you do have the time and want to really nail the details, season liberally with salt the meat on all surfaces except the skin and place on a tray or rack into the refrigerator overnight, uncovered. You can also score the skin at this point if desired (cut shallow lines into the skin exposing seams of meat), which I will feature in another recipe to show you the difference. For this recipe, we will omit that step.