Making the Most of Pork Shoulder Bones: 12 Delicious Ways to Use Them

As any pork lover knows, bone-in pork shoulder is incredibly flavorful However, once the meat is gone, you’re left with the bone. Rather than tossing it out, get the most value by repurposing pork shoulder bones in tasty recipes

In this article, I’ll explain what pork shoulder bone is, share preparation tips, and suggest 12 mouthwatering ways to use pork bones before and after cooking.

Pork shoulder, also called Boston butt, is a well-marbled, tough cut that comes from the upper part of the front leg. It’s sold bone-in or boneless.

The bone is part of the hog’s shoulder blade. It’s shaped like a oval ball at one end with a long, thin portion extending from it.

This bone adds incredible flavor during roasting or barbecuing. When removed after cooking, it still has value. Simmering it makes a nutrient-rich bone broth.

Tips for Preparing Pork Shoulder Bones

  • For maximum flavor, leave the bone in during roasting or smoking.

  • Chill broth for easy fat removal before use in soups or stews.

  • Freeze bones until you have enough pork bones for a big batch of broth.

  • Roast bones at 400°F for 30 minutes before making broth to intensify flavor.

  • Add aromatics like onion, garlic, carrots and celery when simmering bones.

12 Clever Uses for Pork Shoulder Bones

1. Bone Broth

Simmer bones to extract gelatin, minerals and collagen for gut health.

2. Bean Soup

Pork bone broth boosts flavor in hearty bean and veggie soups.

3. Ramen Bowls

Elevate ramen with tasty pork broth and sliced shoulder meat.

4. Congee

Asian rice porridge is soothing with pork broth as the base.

5. Risotto

Stir tender rice with warm pork broth infused with garlic and herbs.

6. Pork and Greens

Braise raw or cooked bones with collard greens, kale or chard.

7. Split Pea Soup

Earthy split peas shine when cooked in a savory pork broth.

8. Pork and Sauerkraut

Simmer raw or cooked bones with sauerkraut and veggies.

9. Pho

Vietnamese noodle soup relies on pork broth seasoned with spices.

10. Tortilla Soup

Mexicans love pork broth for flavoring hearty tortilla soup.

11. Fried Rice

Toss fluffy rice with diced pork, veggies and drippings for homemade fried rice.

12. Pork Sauce

Reduce broth and blend in skillet drippings for an amazing gravy or sauce.

Get More from Your Ingredients

With a little creativity, you can transform pork shoulder bones into incredibly nourishing broths, soups and more before or after cooking the meat. Making the most of ingredients saves money while letting you savor delicious bonus dishes.

So next time you cook bone-in pork shoulder, hold onto those bones. With these tips and recipe ideas, you can give them a tasty second life.

5 Ways To Use A Pork Shoulder


What can you do with bone from pork shoulder?

The original pork bone broth recipe published here was a casual way to repurpose a large quantity of pork bones – the kind you might have leftover from cooking a pork shoulder or have saved up in the freezer from multiple meals. This is the kind of bone broth I make most often.

Is bone in pork shoulder good for pulled pork?

Go for bone-in or boneless, whichever you prefer. Bone-in shoulders take a little longer to cook, but can make the meat more flavorful and juicy. Boneless cuts can be sliced into smaller chunks for easier handling and quicker cooking.

What is a bone in pork shoulder called?

PRIMAL CUT: SHOULDER Pork Butt Roast: This large, flavorful cut (often labeled Boston butt or pork shoulder at markets) can weigh as much as 8 pounds when sold with the bone in. Many markets take out the bone and sell this cut in smaller chunks, often wrapped in netting to hold the roast together.

Do you leave the bone in pork shoulder?

Leaving the bone in adds a bit of extra flavour and having a layer of fat helps to keep the meat nice and moist as it roasts. This isn’t the kind of joint you carve into neat slices. If you’ve cooked it right, it should pull apart into shreds with a couple of forks.

Leave a Comment