Cafe Rio {Copycat} Sweet Pulled Pork

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The hardest part about moving to North Carolina is they don’t have any Cafe Rio’s.  We tried to prepare ourselves for this by going every week before we came, but I still am having major withdrawals. I have tried at least 5 different Cafe Rio Recipes and I finally found the one.  It is a little bit of a process, but I had fun doing it and it was totally worth it!  This recipe tastes EXACTLY like I am eating at Cafe Rio!  And then with the Cilantro Ranch over my salad.  I have died.

Everyone always requests my homemade cornbread with this.  And if you are looking for a little easier recipe try my other sweet pulled pork.  A little tangier than sweet but they are both amazing!

Rating: 5 stars Difficulty of Recipe: 5 stars (worth it all)
Things that I changed:  Nothing
Things I would do differently next time:  The recipe calls for 2 pounds of pork.  With the sauce you could put 3-4.
Will I make it again?  Yes
Recipe from: Favorite Family Recipes

Ingredients for Sweet Pulled Pork Salad:

  • 6 large Tortillas (click HERE)
  • Shredded cheese, Mexican blend
  • Cafe Rio Rice (Click HERE)
  • Cafe Rio Black Beans (Click HERE)
  • Cafe Rio Sweet Pork 
  • Lettuce (NOT iceberg, use leafy green or Romaine)
  • Diced tomato, onion, and cilantro (pico de gallo)
  • Guacamole
  • Sour cream
  • Tortilla Strips (Click HERE)
  • Cotija cheese, crumbled (or you can use Parmesan)
  • Cafe Rio Cilantro Ranch (click HERE)
  • OR Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette 

  • Ingredients for Sweet Pulled Pork:

  • 2 pounds pork (we use boneless pork rib meat)
  • 3 cans Coke (NOT diet)
  • 1/4 c. brown sugar
  • dash garlic salt
  • 1/4 c. water
  • 1 can diced green chilies
  • 3/4 (10oz) can red enchilada sauce (I use Old El Paso brand, medium spiciness but any will work)
  • 1 c. brown sugar


Put the pork in a heavy duty Ziploc bag to marinade. Add about a can and a half of coke and about 1/4 c. of brown sugar. Marinade for a few hours or overnight.
Drain marinade and put pork, 1/2 can of coke, water, and garlic salt in crock pot on high for about 3-4 hours (or until it shreds easily, but don’t let it get TOO dry). Remove pork from crock pot and drain any liquid left in the pot. Shred pork.
In a food processor or blender, blend 1/2 can Coke, chilies, enchilada sauce and remaining brown sugar (about a cup, you can add a little more or less to taste..). If it looks too thick, add more Coke little by little. Put shredded pork and sauce in crock pot and cook on low for 2 hours. That’s it!

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