How to Boil a Pork Shoulder for a Picnic

The pork shoulder picnic is one of two regions of the pork shoulder. The other is the Boston blade roast, which is the upper area of the shoulder. The picnic portion of a pork shoulder is the lower arm. It is relatively inexpensive cut of meat used for casual dining, including picnics. It tends to be tough, so boiling is a cooking alternative that tenderizes the meat. Use boiled pork shoulder as an entree or in sandwiches.

Raw pork shoulder on a cutting board next to a knife. Credit: littleny/iStock/Getty Images

Step 1

Trim the fat off the pork shoulder picnic.

Step 2

Place a 3 to 4 pound pork shoulder picnic into a 5-quart Dutch oven or large pot.

Step 3

Fill the pot with water about one to two inches above the pork shoulder picnic.

Step 4

Add salt and pepper to taste. Use additional seasonings, such as rosemary, garlic or bay leaf, if desired.

Step 5

Bring the pot to a boil.

Step 6

Lower the heat and cover the Dutch oven with a lid.

Step 7

Simmer for three hours or until the meat becomes tender to the touch of a fork.

Step 8

Use a meat thermometer to test for doneness. Insert a meat thermometer into the thickest portion of the pork shoulder picnic. An internal temperature of 160 F indicates doneness.

Step 9

Remove the pork shoulder picnic from the pot and slice. Use the meat to make sandwiches for a picnic or lunch.

Things You'll Need

  • Dutch oven or large pot

  • Meat thermometer


Reserve the cooking liquid to make a sauce or to stew vegetables, if desired. If the pork shoulder picnic was frozen, the cooking time increases by 50 percent.

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