• Island Style Innovations

January “Tips from Tats” – Making Kālua Pig at Home

Updated: Jan 25, 2019

Kālua is a traditional Hawaiian cooking method that utilizes an imu, a type of underground oven.

You can easily create the same delicious flavors at home with this easy and ʻono (delicious) kālua pig recipe.


(1) Pork shoulder roast (any size that fits in your crockpot)

(2) Tablespoons of sea salt

(2) Tablespoons of liquid smoke


  • Place roast in your crockpot.

  • Sprinkle salt over roast.

  • Pour liquid smoke over roast.

  • Cover and cook in high for 6-10 hours depending on the size of your roast.

The kālua pig will be ready when you are able to easily shred the meat with your tongs. If it is not ready, check approximately every hour. When the kālua pig is shredded and mixed with its own juices, do a taste test.  If it needs more salt, feel free to add to your liking.

Serving Suggestions

  • Kālua pig sliders – serve with King’s Hawaiian Sweet Rolls.  Compliment with a sweet chili aioli spread (mayonnaise and sweet chili sauce).

  • Kālua pig and cabbage – add a coarsely chopped head of cabbage to the crockpot after meat is shredded and cook until softened.  A local favorite!!!

  • BBQ kālua pig – Add your favorite BBQ sauce and serve with coleslaw or potato salad.

  • Create your own recipe… the options are endless!!!