How to Store Pork Shoulder
A tightly sealed pork shoulder can generally last in the refrigerator for two to four days.
1 of 6
Next: How to Freeze Pork Shoulder
How to Freeze Pork Shoulder
A pork shoulder can last up to six months if packaged in freezer-friendly materials like plastic wrap, aluminum foil, and freezer paper. Wrap the shoulder tightly to avoid air pockets and place in a heavy-duty plastic bag.
2 of 6
Next: How to Thaw Pork Shoulder
How to Thaw Pork Shoulder
As with all pork products, the best way to thaw is in the refrigerator. As pork and other meats are susceptible to bacterial growth, they should never be defrosted on the counter in open air.
3 of 6
Pork fares best in the freezer if packaged with freezer-friendly materials like waxed paper, aluminum foil, or heavy-duty plastic bags.
Wrap any meat tightly so that air does not escape and freeze at 0°F. Generally, fresh cuts of pork can last up to six months, while ground pork can last up to three.
4 of 6
Pork is easiest to thaw when placed in the refrigerator in its original wrapping. Small roasts will take three to five hours per pound, while larger roasts can take up to seven hours per pound. Thawing ground pork depends entirely on the thickness of its packaging.
It is safe to cook frozen or partially-frozen pork, but its cooking time may take 50 percent longer. Frozen pork should not be cooked in a slow cooker.
5 of 6
Sealed pork products can typically last in the fridge for two to four days, with ground pork having a slightly shorter shelf life at one to three. Ham or other smoked pork products like bacon can be stored for up to a week, though this only applies to products that aren’t vacuum sealed or prepared with preservatives. The latter can obviously last a lot longer.
6 of 6
Next: How to Store Pork Shoulder
Award-winning chef Thomas Boemer knows pork, and he knows barbecue (check out our interview, with great BBQ tips from the chef). His recipe for BBQ Pork Shoulder with Mustard Slaw is a perfect marriage of smoky, flavorful, unctuous pork and tangy, crunchy slaw that both complements and cuts through the rich savor of the meat. The pork shoulder is rubbed with a mixture of sugar and spices (like cayenne, paprika, and celery seed) before it spends a good long time on the grill over indirect heat. Once it’s rested, it’s chopped and mixed with a mustard-based BBQ sauce that has a hefty dose of cider vinegar too, and deftly balances tangy, spicy, and sweet. Finally, the marvelous meat is piled up on potato rolls with the creamy, crunchy mustard slaw (and maybe some pickles on the side), for the perfect backyard barbecue dish to serve a hungry crowd.
For more great ways to cook pork shoulder, get our Carnitas recipe, or our Sisig (Filipino Sizzling Pork) recipe.