Chef John’s Paper Pork Shoulder

Chef John’s Paper Pork Shoulder

“This ‘paper pork’ was inspired by a technique for smoking beef brisket that involves wrapping the meat in parchment paper after a certain point in the cooking process, in an effort to keep the meat moist and succulent. I decided to try it for an oven-roasted pork shoulder, wrapping it from the beginning, and it came out so perfectly tender and juicy, I’ve been doing it that way ever since.” – Chef John


Cooking time:  12 h 


2 tablespoons ground almonds

2 tablespoons finely ground dried apple

2 tablespoons kosher salt

1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon smoked paprika

1 tablespoon brown sugar

2 teaspoons onion powder

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Roast Wrap:

1 (7 pound) pork shoulder roast

Unbleached parchment paper

Heavy duty aluminum foil



  1. Preheat oven to 225 degrees F (110 degrees C).
  2. Mix salt, black pepper, paprika, brown sugar, onion powder, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper together in a bowl.
  3. Sprinkle rub mixture evenly and thoroughly on each surface of the pork roast, pressing it onto the surface.
  4. Cut a 4-foot piece of unbleached parchment. Place roast at one end and roll roast tightly in the parchment. Cut a second piece of parchment and roll the roast, positioning it in the opposite direction before rolling.
  5. Cut a long piece of heavy duty aluminum foil and tightly wrap the parchment-wrapped roast. Wrap the roast in a second piece of foil, and then a third, rotating the position of the roast each time. Place wrapped roast in a roasting pan with folded edges facing up to minimize leaking.
  6. Place in preheated oven and roast until tender, about 12 1/2 hours (or 1.75 hours per pound of pork).
  7. Remove pan from oven and allow the wrapped roast to rest at least 1 hour before unwrapping. Brush roast with accumulated juices in the parchment paper.