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Slow Cooked Hawaiian Pork Roast with Coconut Rice

Slow Cooker Hawaiian Pork Roast

I wish I could tell you I just got back from a spectacular Hawaiian vacation.  But I didn’t. 🙁  It’s been a few years since visiting Maui, but I remember it like yesterday.

Probably because when I vacation with Ranger Craig it’s not really a vacation.  It’s an adventure of epic proportions.  Seriously.

Coconut Rice

I remember vividly our first vacation twentysomething years ago.

I thought we might lounge on the beach and sip cocktails.  Not a chance.

Slow Cooker Hawaiian Pork Roast with Fresh PIneapple

We were hiking long stretches of beach, exploring old ruins and caves, sunfish surfing, snorkeling, day tripping out to a remote island, only to hike its gigantic mountain.

By the fifth day I put my foot down.  I suited up, grabbed my beach towel and told Ranger Craig we were hanging on the beach that day.  He relented.  But only in Ranger Craig style.

A room with a view

While I was lounging on my beach chair sipping a refreshing cocktail and reading a fabulous mystery, Ranger Craig went surfing, snorkeling and then surfing again.

I saw him for lunch.  And then finally at dinner.  I knew then life with Ranger Craig would always be an adventure.

Look! No Hands! My third dive all by myself 🙂

So that leads me to our more recent Maui vacation.  You guessed it.  Not much lounging on the beach.  Instead Ranger Craig thought we should both get scuba diving certified.

Hmmm… I thought that would be nice.

The first dive I almost had a heart attack and died.  I’m not kidding.  Of course, Ranger Craig chose the one diving company in town that believes getting into the ocean for your first dive is the best way to learn.  Well, maybe for most people.

Ranger Craig and a Maui Sea Turtle

But I’m not most people.  Although adventurous at heart, athletic I’m not.

Finally when I was brave enough to stick my head in the water and breathe properly, guess who I saw casually cruising the ocean floor.  Yep, my husband.  In my somewhat competitive nature,  I was not going to let Ranger Craig get scuba diving certified without me.

Sunset on the beach

So, I grabbed my instructors hand and the rest is history.  Although, my instructors hand may never be the same again.  I held a tight grip on his hand for the first two dives.  By the third dive we had to have a little chat.  I had to let go, my instructor said.

Thankfully, the third dive I was so overwhelmed by swimming with sea turtles, I didn’t even notice the instructor had left my side.

Ranger Craig wants to return to Hawaii for another vacation someday soon.  I’m sure he will come up with something new for us to try.  Probably paddle surfing.  That won’t be pretty.  🙁

Ranger Craig and I were reminiscing about our Maui vacation recently and laughing (lots of hysterical laughing) about my arduous scuba diving training.  In honor of our fun and adventurous vacation I thought a Slow Cooked Hawaiian Pork Roast would be perfect.  Served with coconut rice just takes this dish over the top.

Slow Cooked Hawaiian Pork Roast with Coconut Rice

Serving Size: 6


  • 3-4lbs Pork Shoulder, bone in
  • 4 cloves garlic, smashed and halved
  • 1 sweet onion (Walla Walla or Vidalia) sliced
  • 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
  • 2 cups chopped fresh pineapple (if you can’t find a fresh ripe pineapple, organic canned is a good substitution)
  • ½ cup Tamari (or soy sauce)
  • Salt and pepper
  • Drizzle of oil
    For the Coconut Rice
  • 3/4 cup canned coconut milk (not the light or reduced fat)
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 cup Jasmine or Basmati rice
  • ¼ teaspoon salt


  • Warm up your slow cooker by turning it on to high.
  • Season the outside of the pork shoulder with salt and pepper.
  • In a large heavy bottom skillet, heat a drizzle of oil on medium high heat and brown all sides of the pork shoulder. Browning gives the meat a richer flavor while searing in the moisture.
  • Transfer the pork shoulder to the slow cooker and turn the temperature down to low.
  • Layer the sliced onion, garlic cloves, pineapple and grated fresh ginger on top of the pork shoulder and then add the Tamari. Cook for about 5 hours or until the internal temperature of the pork roast reaches 145F and is tender and falls apart.
  • Transfer the pork to a platter, slice or shred and ladle the pineapple and onions with a little sauce over the pork roast. Serve with coconut rice and stir fried greens.
  • To prepare the rice
  • Combine coconut milk, rice, water, and salt in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium high heat, stirring a few times, then cover and cook for 15-18 minutes, or until the rice is tender. Fluff with a fork, cover, and keep warm.
  • Notes

    The rice recipe can easily be doubled.

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