These pulled pork nachos with pickled red cabbage and garlic orange aioli are unbelievable. They are just good! You get the fatty pork combined with the acidity of the pickled cabbage. Then that sauce, while simple, adds that extra layer of flavor that this dish needs.
Now, I know that these nachos aren’t “real” to some nacho enthusiast. We know that they aren’t “authentic” (whatever that means). Those same experts would say that nachos should at least have cheese. Well, I have news for you, these puppies are divine, and guess what, there’s no cheese in sight.
About that Pickled Cabbage
This is a quick pickle. It was done for the flavor and the appearance, not for the health benefits you get from real pickling. I know some people that really pickle food as a hobby and they would pull my card if I didn’t acknowledge that.
So Much Color…
So you will notice that these pictures are bright and full of color and beautiful. I know we are a little biased here. But if these bright and beautiful colors don’t make you smile then the flavors sure will.
This recipe is very easy to make but it does take a bit of time. In our opinion it’s worth it just to mix it up a bit instead of the same old, same old, you know? Chances are if you make these for a game day party, people will appreciate the novelty.
Now, let’s talk about style. We went with Texas-style nachos. What that means is that you dress each nacho individually. You can go messy-style which is probably the most common way to eat nachos. Most people just plop down a bunch of chips then add cheese, jalapenos, and any other toppings.
We much prefer the Texas-style. You don’t end up with soggy chips and each chip has all of the toppings you want on it. With messy-style each nacho is a surprise and that’s not always a good thing.
Now, let’s jump into making these nachos.
First, let’s make that pulled pork. We kept it very simple. We just took a pork roast and put it in the slow cooker with salt, pepper, chicken stock and garlic. It cooked on high for 4 and a half hours.
Once cooked use two forks to shred as pictured below.
Then we pickled the cabbage.
In a bowl, add the shredded cabbage, apple cider vinegar, red wine vinegar, sugar, salt and bay leaf. Cover and let it sit at room temperature for about 3 hours. After 3 hours place it in the refrigerator. This is good for a quick pickle. Depending on how small you chopped it, you may need to chop the cabbage again after it has been pickled.
Next, let’s make the orange garlic aioli. It’s very simple to make. Take a small bowl and add the mayo, garlic, orange zest and juice, lemon juice, salt and pepper.
To plate we used a cookie sheet. We placed the corn chips on the cookie sheet and added the toppings to each chip individually. First add a little pulled pork then the pickled cabbage. Lastly, add that delicious orange garlic aioli. We put the aioli to a squeeze bottle to spread it more uniformly.
Pulled Pork Nachos with Pickled Cabbage
- 2.5 Pound Boneless Pork Roast
- 1 ½ Teaspoon Salt
- 1 Cup Water
- 1 Teaspoon Chicken Base
- 1 Medium Onion Sliced
- 6 Cloves Garlic Smashed
Pickled Red Cabbage
- ¼ Head of Red Cabbage Shredded
- 1 Cup Water
- 3 Bay Leaves
- ½ Cup Apple Cider Vinegar
- ½ Cup Red Wine Vinegar
- 2 Teaspoon Sugar
- 2 Teaspoon Salt
Orange Garlic Aioli
- ½ Cup Mayo
- 1 Medium Orange 1 Teaspoon zest and 3 Tablespoons of juice
- 2 Cloves of Garlic Grated
- 1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice
- Salt and Pepper to Taste
- Take the pork roast season with 1 ½ teaspoons of salt. Pan sear on all sides in a medium pan on high heat (about 2-3 minutes per side). Then add the seared pork to the slow cooker. Add the water, chicken base, onion and 3 garlic cloves. Cook on low for 4.5 hours. (See note)
- While the pork is cooking in a large bowl mix the apple cider vinegar, red wine vinegar, water, sugar, and salt until sugar and salt dissolve. Add the bay leaves, and 3 garlic cloves to the bowl.
- Shred the red cabbage and add it to the bowl with the vinegar mixture and mix until combined. Push the cabbage down to make sure the liquid if covering it. Cover with plastic wrap and let it sit at room temperature for at least 3 hours. After the 3 hours are up put the cabbage in the fridge until the pork is done about 1 hour.
- In a small bowl mix the mayo, orange zest, orange juice, grated garlic, and lemon juice until combined. Add salt and pepper to taste. (See note). Refrigerate until the pork and cabbage is ready.
- When the pork is done take 2 forks and shred the meat. If you are serving this recipe the way we did on individual chips. Then you would add some pork on a chip, top with the pickled cabbage and a drizzle of the sauce. (See note) Enjoy!
- Depending on the size roast you get the cooking time can vary slightly. My husband just happened to pick one that was only 2.5 pounds.
- When seasoning the sauce I started with a pinch of salt and tasted it. I didn’t think it needed more than that. But taste it as you add the salt and adjust as you see fit.
- You can service this recipe family style with layering the chips on a baking sheet or large plate and top it with the pork, cabbage and sauce. Either way you will enjoy the flavors and won’t be able to stop eating it.