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Kalua Pork on top of cooked cabbage on a black plate

Instant Pot Kalua Pork

Instant Pot Kalua Pork tastes like you are eating at a luau! The pork is seasoned with red Hawaiian sea salt, garlic, and smoky bacon or liquid smoke. This pressure cooker Kalua Pork is fall apart tender, and has the unique flavor of the Islands! Aloha!

Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine American, Hawaiian
Keyword instant pot hawaiian pork, instant pot kalua pig, instant pot kalua pork, instant pot recipes, pressure cooker kalua pork
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 33 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 18 minutes
Servings 6 - 12
Calories 102 kcal
Author Sandy Clifton


  • 5-7 lbs Pork Shoulder (Pork Butt)
  • 7 Garlic Cloves, peeled and cut in thick slivers
  • 1-2 Tbsp Hawaiian Red Alaea Sea Salt (or coarse sea salt) As much as needed to coat meat
  • 2-3 slices Smoky Bacon, thick cut (or 2 tsp liquid smoke)
  • 3/4 cup Water
  • 1 med Head Green Cabbage, cut in 4-6 wedges
  • 1 lb Baby Carrots, (optional) cut in half


  1. Cut the pork shoulder into 3 equal pieces.

  2. Cut slits in the pork meat and stuff with the garlic slivers.

  3. Sprinkle the red sea salt all over each piece of the pork.

  4. Wrap the bacon around each piece of pork (if using liquid smoke instead, add it with the water).

  5. Add the water to the inner liner of the pressure cooker (and liquid smoke, if using).

  6. Place the pork pieces in the pot.

  7. Place the lid on the pot and set the steam release knob to the Sealing position.

  8. Press the Pressure Cook/Manual button and then the + or - button or dial to select 90 minutes.

  9. When the cook cycle is finished, let the pot naturally release the pressure (this could take 20 minutes or so. If you don't want to wait that long, let it naturally release for at least 10 minutes. Then manually release the remaining pressure.

  10. After the pin in the lid drops down, open it and remove the pork with tongs to a large bowl.

  11. Defat the liquid/drippings (if desired) and add the cabbage wedges (and carrots, if using) to the liquid in the pot. Close the lid and set to Sealing. Use the + or - button or dial to choose 3 minutes.

  12. Meanwhile, use two forks to shred the pork. Then cover and wait for the cabbage to finish.

  13. When the veggies are done cooking, do a Quick Release of the pressure/steam. Then open the lid once the pin has dropped down.

  14. Remove the veggies to a serving bowl, and place the shredded pork on top of it. Taste the liquid in the pot and adjust salt if needed. Then ladle some over the meat and cabbage to flavor it and keep it moist.

  15. Serve and enjoy! This makes a lot, so it is great for parties, meal planning, etc.

Recipe Notes

Adapted from Taste of Home