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Test Kitchen Approved

Carolina Whole Hog BBQ

Carolina Whole Hog BBQ

Carolina Whole Hog BBQ

Recipe By Mike Johnston, Savory Spice founder


1 serving per pound of hog

Recipe By Mike Johnston, Savory Spice founder

'Cue in the Carolinas is all about pork. Typically Carolina BBQ refers to a whole hog that's been smoked and then chopped or pulled. We built a backyard cinderblock pit for our whole hog adventure and provide links to "how-to" instructions if you're up for a similar project.

Recipe Notes

*Whole hogs can range in size from 25lb to 200lb. Ask your butcher for a hog that is already split to make it easier to prep.

Savory's 'Cue Glue helps the seasoning stick to your protein and seals in moisture. Simply slather on 2 to 3 tsp. per pound on all sides of the meat before applying the seasoning.

You'll need a smoker pit large enough to hold the size hog you're planning to smoke, as well as a hog stretcher to secure the hog while it smokes. We built a backyard cinderblock pit for this project. For instructions to build a pit, make a hog stretcher, and more how-to details for prepping and smoking a whole hog, check out these instructional posts by


Savory Spice ingredients in this recipe

  • Cue Glue

    'Cue Glue is a meat binder that's exclusive to Savory Spice. This "BBQ glue" helps stick your spices & seasonings to your grilled meats. As a b...

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  • Salt & Pepper Tableside Seasoning

    Salt & Pepper Tableside Seasoning may seem like an obvious, simple one to always have on hand – but this salt and pepper mix is a Savory Spice ...

    View full details
  • Carolina High Country BBQ Rub

    Carolina High Country BBQ Rub is our take on the classic blend of spices & seasonings behind the flavor of North Carolina BBQ. This dry rub has...

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Prepare smoker pit with wood charcoal and wood of choice and heat to 250 to 275 degrees. Meanwhile, cover a large work table with butcher paper or disposable table cloth. Splay the split hog open so it lays flat. Wet the skin thoroughly all over using a spray bottle. Slather hog all over (both sides) with ‘Cue Glue if using, then rub generously with Salt & Pepper Tableside and Carolina BBQ rub. Wrap the hog ears and tail with foil. Secure the hog in a stretcher and set over smoker once it’s to temperature. Maintain smoker temperature between 250 and 275 degrees and smoke until hog reaches an internal temperature of 200 degrees.

Cooking time depends on size of hog:

  • 25 to 50 lbs: 3 to 6 hours
  • 50 to 100 lbs: 6 to 12 hours
  • 100 to 200 lbs: 12 to 24 hours

Cover work table with fresh butcher paper. Remove hog from smoker and stretcher and set it on the work space. Use a cleaver and large carving fork to start pulling sections of meat and skin away from the bone.

  • For chopped pork, put meat (including skin) on a large chopping board and use a cleaver to finely chop it.
  • For pulled pork, set meat in a large bowl and start pulling it apart with 2 forks until it’s shredded.
  • Carve meat from the jowls (cheeks) of the hog’s head and use like bacon in baked beans, green beans, or collard greens.
  • Use any hog remains (head, feet) to make a homemade pork broth.