Feeding A Crowd: How Much Pulled Pork For 50 People?

Preparing for a large gathering can be quite a challenge, especially when satisfying the taste buds of everyone present. One dish that never seems to disappoint is the mouth-watering goodness of pulled pork. However, an important question arises when planning this meal – how much pulled pork for 50 people should you prepare? Cooking the right amount of pulled pork is crucial to ensure that your guests enjoy their meal and leave the event feeling full and satisfied. This culinary delight can be served as a sandwich, a taco, or even added to a salad. The options are endless, but estimating the appropriate quantity of pulled pork needed is essential when catering to a large group.

In this article, we will guide you through determining how much-pulled pork you need for your special event, considering factors such as portion size, the accompaniments on the menu, and your guests’ preferences. So, let’s embark on this flavorful journey together!

What Is The Recommended Serving Size Of Pulled Pork Per Person?

What Is The Recommended Serving Size Of Pulled Pork Per Person


The recommended boneless serving size of pulled pork per person is approximately 1/3 of a pound. BBQ experts suggest this as a good rule of thumb, ensuring hosts do not run out of food. It is important to note that pork will shrink by 40-50% during cooking, losing about half its moisture and fat weight.

Hosts should estimate 1/3 pound of cooked pulled pork for boneless pork shoulders per guest. After cooking, the pork will only weigh roughly half as much as the raw pork. A basic formula to determine how much raw pork is needed is [Guests x 1/3] x 2 = Pounds of Raw Pork Needed. Hosts can use this formula to purchase the correct amount of raw boneless pork shoulder to feed their guests.


The recommended bone-in serving size of pulled pork per person is approximately 1/3 to 1/2 pounds of cooked meat. This calculation considers that the pork will shrink during cooking, losing about 40-50% of its weight in moisture and fat.

The formula follows to calculate how much raw pork is needed: [Number of guests x 1/3] x 2 = Pounds of required raw pork. This formula applies specifically to boneless pork cuts; increasing the estimate by about 10% is recommended for bone-in cuts.

However, the amount of pulled pork needed per person ultimately depends on various factors such as the menu, the type of event, and whether sliders or buns are being served. By calculating the portions ahead, hosts can ensure they don’t run out of food and provide enough for all their guests.

How Much Pulled Pork For 50 People?

Typically, raw pork shoulder loses around 30-40% of its weight during cooking, so it is recommended to plan for half a pound of cooked pulled pork per person if it is the main course with only 1-3 sides.

To be safe and allow for second servings and leftovers, one pound of raw pork per person is suggested, which would yield at least half a pound of cooked pulled pork. If serving pulled pork with 3+ sides, plan for one-third of a pound of cooked pork per person, requiring approximately 0.66 pounds of raw pork per person. Following these guidelines, a crowd of 50 would require about 33 pounds of raw pork shoulder to provide enough pulled pork for everyone.

How Much Time Is Required To Cook Pulled Pork For 50 People?

How Much Time Is Required To Cook Pulled Pork For 50 People

According to the recipe shared, the cooking time required for preparing pulled pork for 50 people is approximately 8 hours. The recipe suggests using about 33 pounds of pork shoulder or butt for the preparation, which should be slow-roasted in a preheated oven at 250 degrees Fahrenheit for 6 to 8 hours. Once the pork is cooked, it must be shredded and mixed with the prepared BBQ sauce.

If the dish needs to be prepared, the cooked meat should be cooled, placed in airtight containers, and refrigerated for up to 2 days. Therefore, to cook pulled pork for 50 people, one must plan and allow sufficient cooking time.


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What Is The Estimated Cost Of Catering Pulled Pork For 50 Guests?

According to MnM BBQ’s standard BBQ price list, the estimated cost of catering pulled pork for 50 guests is $15.95 per person. This price includes a choice between pulled chicken, mojo-marinated breast or 1/4 chicken, fresh coleslaw, baked beans, grilled flatbread with garlic and herbed olive oil, homemade BBQ sauce, and plastic utensils.

For an additional charge of $4.00 per person, the customer can substitute brisket or ribs for chicken or pork. It should be noted that these prices are subject to change based on fluctuations in meat prices. Customers are encouraged to inquire about pricing and menu options to ensure they receive the most accurate information.

How to Store Leftover Pulled Pork?

How to Store Leftover Pulled Pork

As someone who loves making pulled pork, I know how frustrating it can be when you have leftovers that you don’t know what to do with. The good news is that there are several ways to store leftover pulled pork so that it stays fresh and delicious.

First and foremost, separate the meat from any barbecue sauce or seasoning before storing it. This will prevent the meat from becoming too soggy or overpowering in flavor.

Next, store the pulled pork in an airtight container in the fridge. Make sure to use an appropriately sized container for the amount of leftovers you have. This will prevent excess air from getting in, which can cause the meat to dry out or spoil faster.

If you want to store the pulled pork longer, consider freezing it. Wrap the meat tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil, then place it in a freezer-safe container or freezer bag. Label the container with the date you stored it so you know how long it has been frozen.

Reheat the leftover pulled pork when you’re ready to eat it properly. If you’re reheating from the fridge, microwave it in 30-second intervals until heated. If you’re reheating from the freezer, thaw it in the fridge overnight and then reheat it in the oven or microwave.

These simple tips allow you to enjoy your delicious pulled pork leftovers without sacrificing flavor or texture.

Which Cut Of Pork To Use For Pulled Pork

Pulled pork is one of my all-time favorite dishes. The juicy, tender meat, paired with the smoky, tangy flavors of barbecue sauce, is a match made in heaven. But before you can achieve that perfect pulled pork, you need to choose the right cut of pork.

First, you’ll want to select a cut with enough fat to keep the meat moist and tender during the cooking process. The ideal cuts of pork for pulled pork are the shoulder or the butt. These cuts are often referred to as “pork shoulder” or “Boston butt.”

The shoulder is a large, tough cut of meat that is perfect for slow cooking. It has a good amount of marbling, which means it has enough fat to keep the meat moist and tender. The shoulder is also a relatively inexpensive cut of meat, making it a great choice for feeding a crowd.

The Boston butt, on the other hand, is the upper part of the shoulder. It has more fat than the shoulder’s lower part, making it even more tender and flavorful. The Boston butt is also a bit easier to work with than the shoulder because it has a defined bone that makes it easier to remove after cooking.

If you’re in a bind and can’t find either of these cuts, you can also use a pork loin or pork tenderloin. These cuts are leaner than the shoulder or butt, so you must be careful not to overcook them. You may also want to add extra moisture to the meat during cooking, like a marinade or a basting liquid, to help keep it tender.

Should You Make The Pulled Pork Yourself Or Order It From A Local Restaurant Or Caterer For A Party Of 50?

The question of whether to make pulled pork yourself or order it from a local restaurant or caterer is one that I have grappled with many times. The decision can be particularly daunting when planning a party for 50 or more. Today, I will share my experiences and insights on this topic in a matter-of-fact tone.

First of all, let’s consider the option of making the pulled pork yourself. One of the biggest advantages of doing it yourself is that you have complete control over the flavor and seasoning. You can experiment with different rubs, marinades, and cooking methods to create a unique and delicious dish that will impress your guests. Additionally, making the pulled pork yourself can be a fun and rewarding experience, especially if you enjoy cooking and want to showcase your skills.

However, there are also some significant challenges to making pulled pork for a large group of people. First and foremost, it is a time-consuming process. Depending on the recipe and cooking method, preparing the pork can take several hours or even a whole day. This can be a major obstacle if you are busy with other party preparations or have limited time to devote to cooking. Additionally, cooking for a large group of people requires a lot of space and equipment, including a smoker or grill, large pots or pans, and plenty of utensils and serving dishes.

Now, consider ordering the pulled pork from a local restaurant or caterer. The biggest advantage of this option is convenience. You can save time and effort by placing an order and delivering the food to your party location. This can be especially helpful if you are hosting the party at a venue that does not have a kitchen or cooking facilities. Additionally, ordering from a reputable restaurant or caterer ensures that the pulled pork will be of high quality and consistent flavor.

However, ordering pulled pork from a restaurant or caterer has potential downsides. First, the cost can be significantly higher than making it yourself, especially if you order from a high-end restaurant or catering company. Additionally, you may not have as much control over the flavor and seasoning as you would if you made it yourself. Finally, you may need to place your order well in advance to ensure that the restaurant or caterer can accommodate your party size and schedule.

So, which option should you choose? Ultimately, the decision depends on your personal preferences, budget, and available time and resources. If you enjoy cooking and have the necessary equipment and space, making the pulled pork yourself can be a fun and rewarding experience. On the other hand, if you are short on time or don’t have access to the necessary equipment, ordering from a local restaurant or caterer can be convenient and hassle-free.

In conclusion, making pulled pork for a party of 50 or more can be challenging. Still, with careful planning and consideration, it can also be a fun and rewarding experience. Whether you make it yourself or order from a local restaurant or caterer, the most important thing is to enjoy your party and celebrate with your guests.

What Are Some Creative Ways To Serve Pulled Pork At A Party For 50?

What Are Some Creative Ways To Serve Pulled Pork At A Party For 50

I know firsthand that serving food can be challenging, especially when feeding a crowd. Recently, I was asked for suggestions on how to do pulled pork at a party for 50 people. After some brainstorming and research, I came up with a few creative ideas that I thought would be perfect for any big event.

  1. Pulled Pork Sliders: Making sliders is one of the easiest and most popular ways to serve pulled pork. You only need small buns, pulled pork, and some toppings such as coleslaw, pickles, and barbecue sauce. Your guests can easily pick them up and eat them while mingling with others.
  2. Pulled Pork Tacos: Another option is to turn the pulled pork into a taco bar. Set out small tortillas, pulled pork, and toppings such as diced onions, tomatoes, cheese, and cilantro. This is a great option for those who want to customize their tacos to their liking.
  3. Pulled Pork Nachos: Who doesn’t love a plate of nachos? Layer tortilla chips with pulled pork, cheese, beans, sour cream, and jalapenos. You can even add some barbecue sauce to give it an extra kick.
  4. Pulled Pork Mac and Cheese: Consider adding pulled pork to your mac and cheese for a more hearty option. This is a crowd-pleaser that will leave your guests feeling satisfied and happy.
  5. Pulled Pork Quesadillas: Another creative way to serve pulled pork is by stuffing it into quesadillas. You only need some tortillas, pulled pork, cheese, and any additional toppings you desire. Cut them into small triangles for easy snacking.
  6. Pulled Pork Stuffed Potatoes: For a unique twist, consider stuffing your baked potatoes with pulled pork. Top it off with some sour cream, cheese, and chives for a delicious and filling meal.
  7. Pulled Pork Salad: If you have health-conscious guests, consider serving a pulled pork salad. Top a bed of greens with pulled pork, sliced avocado, tomatoes, and your favorite dressing.

How Far In Advance Can You Prepare The Pulled Pork Before The Party?

Pulled pork can be an excellent option for large parties because it can be prepared and reheated before mealtime. The meat can be cooked in a slow cooker or pot with various spices and marinades and pulled apart with forks before being coated in barbecue sauce. The pulled pork can then be refrigerated until about two hours before the party when it can be reheated on a low setting for around two hours.

Leftovers should be refrigerated immediately, consumed within four days, and reheated to a safe internal temperature before serving. With advanced preparation, pulled pork can be a stress-free and delicious option for any party.

Common Mistakes To Avoid When Making Pulled Pork For A Large Crowd

Common Mistakes To Avoid When Making Pulled Pork For A Large Crowd

Cooked pulled pork for a large crowd multiple that it is not an easy task. But with careful planning and attention to detail, it can be a huge success. In this blog post, I will share common mistakes to avoid when making pulled pork for a large crowd.

  1. Not Buying Enough Meat: This is the most common mistake people make when cooking for a large crowd. It’s better to have too much than too little. Plan for approximately 1/2 pound of meat per person.
  2. Not Allowing Enough Time: Pulled pork takes time to cook. You cannot rush it. Allow for at least 8-10 hours of cooking time for a 6-8 pound pork shoulder.
  3. Not Preparing the Meat Properly: Trick off excess fat and remove the skin before cooking. This will allow the rub to penetrate the meat and help it cook more evenly.
  4. Using the Wrong Rub: The right rub can make all the difference when cooking pulled pork. Make sure to use a rub that is designed explicitly for pork. Avoid using too much salt, as this can dry out the meat.
  5. Not Using a Meat Thermometer: A meat thermometer is essential when cooking pulled pork. It will ensure that the meat is cooked to the correct temperature, which is 195-205°F.
  6. Not Letting the Meat Rest: Allow the meat to rest for at least 30 minutes after cooking. This will allow the juices to redistribute throughout the meat, making it more tender and flavorful.
  7. Not Shredding the Meat Properly: Use two forks to shred the meat, pulling it apart in opposite directions. Make sure to remove any excess fat or gristle.
  8. Not Having Enough Sauce: Pulled pork is best served with a sauce. Make sure to have enough sauce for everyone. Plan for approximately 1/4 cup of sauce per person.

What Tips Are There For Cooking Pulled Pork For A Large Crowd Of 50?

It can be overwhelming to try and cook enough pork to feed so many people, but it can be done successfully with the right tips and tricks. Here are some tips that I have found useful when cooking pulled pork for a large crowd.

  1. Plan: The key to successfully cooking pulled pork for a large crowd is to plan. You will need to start preparing the pork well in advance of the event, as it can take many hours to cook. Ensure you have all the necessary ingredients and tools, such as a large slow cooker or smoker, plenty of wood chips or charcoal, and a meat thermometer.
  2. Please choose the right cut of pork: When cooking pulled pork for a large crowd, it is important to choose the right cut of meat. I recommend using a bone-in pork shoulder or Boston butt, as they are flavorful and tender cuts perfect for slow cooking. You will need to purchase enough meat to feed 50 people, which can be a lot, so choose a large cut.
  3. Season the meat well: To ensure that the pulled pork is flavorful and delicious, it is important to season the meat well. I like to use a dry rub that includes a mix of spices such as paprika, cumin, garlic powder, and brown sugar. Rub the mixture all over the meat and let it sit in the refrigerator overnight to allow the flavors to penetrate.
  4. Cook low and slow: When cooking pulled pork for a large crowd, it is important to cook the meat low and slow. This ensures that the meat is tender and juicy and falls apart easily. I recommend using a slow cooker or smoker set to a low temperature, around 225-250 degrees Fahrenheit, and cooking the meat for at least 10-12 hours. You will want to use a meat thermometer to ensure the pork reaches an internal temperature of 195-205 degrees Fahrenheit.
  5. Serve with delicious sides: Once the pulled pork is cooked and ready to serve, it is important to have some delicious sides to accompany it. I like to serve pulled pork with classic BBQ sides such as coleslaw, mac and cheese, and baked beans. You can also offer a selection of sauces and toppings, such as BBQ sauce, hot sauce, pickles, and onions, to allow your guests to customize their meals.

FAQs About How Much Pulled Pork For 50 People

How Much Pulled Pork For 10 People?

How Much Pulled Pork For 10 People?

When serving pulled pork to a group of 10 people, it is recommended to have around 3.3 pounds of cooked pulled pork or a little over one pound of raw pork. The general rule of thumb is to estimate about 1/3 pound of cooked pulled pork per person.

However, it’s essential to keep in mind that the weight of the meat will reduce by around 40-50% during the cooking process, losing moisture and fat. If using boneless pork, one can use the formula [Guests x 1/3] x 2 = Pounds of Raw Pork Needed to determine the amount needed. Ultimately, having a little extra is better than running out of food during the event.

How Much Pulled Pork For 25 People?

When serving pulled pork to a crowd of 25 people, it is recommended to have around 8.3 pounds of raw pork. This translates to approximately 3.33 pounds of cooked pulled pork. As a general rule of thumb, serving about 1/3 pound of cooked pulled pork per adult and 1/4 pound of cooked pulled pork per child is suggested. However, this figure can vary depending on the occasion and how the pork is served.

It would be best if you bought more raw pork than necessary, as there may be a loss of up to 40% during preparation and cooking. If you are unsure how much pulled pork to cook for your guests, it is always better to err on caution and have a little extra.

Is It Recommended To Offer A Variety Of Pulled Pork Sauces Or Stick With Just One Option?

It is recommended to offer a variety of pulled pork sauces to accommodate the different taste preferences of guests. While some prefer a spicy sauce, others enjoy a sweeter or vinegar-based sauce.

By providing multiple options, guests can customize their sandwiches to their liking. It is important to label each sauce clearly to avoid confusion and to ensure that guests are aware of any potential allergens.

Should The Pulled Pork Be Served Buffet-Style Or As Individual Servings For A Party Of 50?

When it comes to serving pulled pork at a party of 50, the decision to serve it buffet-style or as individual servings ultimately depend on the host’s preference and the event’s overall atmosphere.

Buffet-style may be the way to go if the party is casual and laid-back. This allows guests to serve themselves and go back for seconds or thirds if they wish. On the other hand, if the party is more formal or structured, individual servings may be more appropriate. This allows for a more controlled serving size and presentation.


In conclusion, when it comes to feeding 50 people with pulled pork, plan for 1/3 to 1/2 pounds of pulled pork per person, and it is worth noting that pork will shrink by 40-50% during cooking, losing about half its moisture and fat weight. However, make sure to consider the serving size and the appetites of your guests. Additionally, you may get away with preparing less if you serve other dishes alongside the pulled pork. Considering these considerations, you can confidently prepare enough pulled pork to satisfy everyone at your event.

Do you have any questions on how much pulled pork for 50 people? Let us know in the comments below.


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