Slow Cooker Cuban Sliders

Weeeeeell hello there.

Slow Cooker Cuban Sliders / Bev Cooks

I see your dinner and raise you CUBAN SLIDERS.

Let me just start by saying two things. Three things. A few things:

* There will never be enough articulation in any universe to describe my immortal devotion to these sliders.

* Obviously I didn’t invent this recipe, but I did tweak a couple o’ thangs to Bevi-botch it.

* We were supposed to get snow last night and all it did was shoot a rainy snot rocket and call it a day.

* My coffee’s stronger than usual.

Slow Cooker Cuban Sliders / Bev Cooks  Slow Cooker Cuban Sliders / Bev Cooks

So it all started three or fours weeks ago when I ordered a Cuban sandwich from our fave neighborhood joint. I took one bite, nearly fell to a sublime demise, returned to consciousness for another bite, then fainted and never woke up. Except for the next bite. I looked at Aaron through a blur of weeps and said, “I have to m . . . I have to ma  . . . make for blo . . .  for blog.” Then I fainted again.

THEN we watched Chef a few days later. And I was so inspired and so pumped up (<—ew) and so exhilarated and actually kind of into Scarlet’s Cleopatra-esque ‘do, that I researched like crazy what it takes to really make a Cubano sandwich irresistible. And then I fainted from my internal hullabaloo.

I should see someone about all this fainting.

Slow Cooker Cuban Sliders / Bev Cooks

Speaking of, do you say Cuban or Cubano? I feel like Ricky Riccardo when I say Cubano. And I like it.

So this is it: the seasonings basically don’t change across the board. The spices for the meat are cumin, dried oregano, chile flakes and salt. A lot of recipes call to sprinkle the goods on the meat and stick it in the oven forever. Which I can dig. Many others called to stick the meat in the slow cooker and just toss in the spices with some orange juice and lime juice. Which I can totally fist bump.

So I did it differently, natch. I made a little dry rub of all the goods, reaaaaally rubbed it into the meat (once trimmed of a ton of fat), then SEARED that bae bae in a skillet before adding it to the slow cooker. OoooooOOOOOoooo yeah, because later when that meat falls apart in the cooker, you can still see some good charred sear marks. And you will dance in your giddy pants, like everyone is watching. Because I’m secretly recording you from the window and putting it on YouTube right now.

Lastly, don’t skip the mustard and pickles. That tang against the succulent pork, salty ham and buttery swiss cheese is esseeeential in the way Cubans are supposed to taste. The sandwich, not the people.

Oh gosh.

And of course, the bread. If you can FIND Cuban bread, do it! You could slice it into three-inch pieces for a slider feel. Or just use your favorite slider buns because you’re fantastic at living.


Slow Cooker Cuban Sliders / Bev Cooks

I’m almost begging you.

Slow Cooker Cuban Sliders:

What it took for 8 sliders (and maybe some extra meat, holla):

* 1 (3.5 pound) pork shoulder, trimmed of as much fat as possible
* 1 heaping Tbs. cumin
* 1 heaping Tbs. dried oregano
* 2 tsp kosher salt
* 1 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
* 4 cloves smashed garlic
* 1 medium white onion, thinly sliced
* 1 lime, for the juice
* 1 cup orange juice
* 1/2 cup chicken stock
* 8 slices ham (Virginia is great)
* 8 slices swiss cheese
* Dijon mustard, for spreading
* thinly sliced pickles
* 8 ciabatta slider rolls (or any slider bun you love)

In a small bowl, combine the cumin, oregano and salt. Toss with your fingers to mix. Evenly rub the spices all over the pork shoulder. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Sear the pork until browned all over, about seven minutes total.

Transfer to a slow cooker. Add the garlic, onion, lime juice, orange juice and chicken stock. Cook on low for 6-8 hours, or until the meat completely falls apart and you want to caress it. You can shred it easily with a pair of tongs (not to be confused with thongs), or a couple of forks, whatever. What I did was shred it in the pot, then drain most of the liquid, reserving the juices for dipping. Then I cried from bliss.

Split the slider buns and lightly toast them, with a light coating of mustard and a slice of swiss cheese on the top halves.

Place a slice of ham on the bottom halves, followed by a good mound of shredded pork, and a couple of pickle slices. Place the halves together and oooommmmggggggg.

Slow Cooker Cuban Sliders / Bev Cooks

I just fainted again.



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73 Responses to Slow Cooker Cuban Sliders

  1. Kevin @ Closet Cooking February 26, 2015 at 7:30 am #
    I would inhale these by the dozen!
  2. Ashley Renee February 26, 2015 at 7:32 am #
    You and Jess are KILLING IT with your sliders game today. Can I make both in the same day? Is that excessive? Should I combine them? No. No, I shouldn't do that. But I should DEFF make them both this weekend... to eat separately of course. It's early... and my coffee isn't strong enough!
  3. Angie February 26, 2015 at 7:44 am #
    These look amazing! We eat cuban pretty much every week, but we go to a little deli, I don't make the pork as much as I should, it's so easy. I absolutely am in love with these Cuban sliders though, so cute and fun!!!
  4. Amy @Very Culinary February 26, 2015 at 7:56 am #
    Holla! I think *I* might have fainted. Dude. I want this for breakfast.
  5. Carolyn February 26, 2015 at 10:42 am #
    This was the best Insta pic I've seen in a while. Someone help me with Cuban bread- what is it?
  6. Tiffani February 26, 2015 at 10:46 am #
    And if you add a hit of Tabasco to each slider, it's HEAVEN. Can't wait to try this recipe!!
  7. Thao @ In Good Flavor February 26, 2015 at 9:46 pm #
    Yum! These sliders look so good! I need to make some soon.
  8. Juliette February 27, 2015 at 8:12 am #
    I got a massive girl crush on Scarlett from that movie! She is so damn beautiful in it with her dark hair and tight figure!! I was jonesing big time for a Cuban after it, so I might have to tackle this recipe asap.
  9. Cecile@My Yellow Farmhouse February 27, 2015 at 8:22 am #
    I'm Pinning this recipe immediately & can't wait to try it !!
  10. laura February 27, 2015 at 10:59 am #
    girl, these are in my crockpot now. i've been craving a cuban sandwich since watching Chef, too. imma tell all my frands about these!
  11. Trish @ Well Worn Fork February 27, 2015 at 3:58 pm #
    Oh my god - these look amazing!!
  12. Jillian @ Yoga Pants Kitchen February 27, 2015 at 5:11 pm #
    Dead. Dying. Done. I love Cuban sandwiches and these are perfection! Jillian
  13. Em February 28, 2015 at 3:04 am #
    I went out and bought a slab of pork as soon as I read this yesterday. It went in the slow cooker allllll day and ran off with my heart 20 minutes ago. I. Am. Smitten. They were everything I hoped for and MORE! Thank you x a zillion xxxxxx
    • Bev Weidner February 28, 2015 at 6:34 am #
      You have MADE my weekend. Thanks so much for letting me know!
  14. Kate March 1, 2015 at 6:56 am #
    Wowza! These look amazing, and so simple that I could actually pull this off on any given night! Love it!
  15. Amy March 1, 2015 at 8:50 am #
    Mmhmm! Those are so going on my list for this week. I've already got the pork in the freezer and a busy week to boot, so those look perfect!
  16. Mackenzie @MrsOlsonsKitchen March 1, 2015 at 12:26 pm #
    I lourves me a cuban, and I lourves me some ricky and lucy! What an excellent combo Bev! :)
  17. Kamagra Polo March 2, 2015 at 1:46 am #
    Its Amazing Recipe.Looking Yummy and Delicious.I like it.Thanks for sharing
  18. Kari March 2, 2015 at 8:35 am #
    I have been craving a Cuban sandwich ever since watching Chef! Kari
  19. Aggie March 2, 2015 at 6:15 pm #
    Cubanos (I feel like it) are my favorite. Can never pass one up if it's even near me. I could go to town on these sliders. Incredible. How did you get the cheese all melted up like that? And I really really need to watch Chef.
  20. Jamie March 11, 2015 at 12:45 pm #
    Holy cow, Bev, these are insanely good. I'm late to the Cubano game but now I'm on board for evah and evah. Soooo good. = )
  21. Megan Rust March 17, 2015 at 9:35 am #
    So... no chile flakes?
    • Bev Weidner March 18, 2015 at 7:51 am #
      HAHA! I completely forgot. (toddlers) Add a small pinch to the dry rub and you're good to goooo.
  22. Frances in TX March 22, 2015 at 4:34 pm #
    This sounds fabulous! Must make ASAP. Also watch the movie!
  23. Brie March 31, 2015 at 7:46 am #
    I'm thinking these would be bomb (sorry) served up on a homemade Hawaiian roll. Yes? No? Maybe so?
  24. Drew May 1, 2015 at 2:00 pm #
    The finished product looks incredible. I'm definitely going to be trying these this weekend. Thanks for sharing!
  25. Nichole C May 8, 2015 at 1:50 pm #
    I legit love me a good Cuban/Cubano (I feel kind of like a fake adding the "o" at the end, for me)...I have made Cuban sammies, Cuban Kebabs, and Cuban Crostinis --- WHY have I never made sliders?! I need this in my life,
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    Those are so going on my list for this week. I've already got the pork in the freezer and a busy week to boot, so those look perfect.
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