Molasses and Cumin Roast Pork & Pit Beans
Recipe by Chef Michael Williams
Michael Williams

Molasses and Cumin Roast Pork & Pit Beans

  • Prep time 45 mins
  • Cook time 10 hours
  • Ready in 10 hours

This is my signature dish and one of my favourite dishes to cook. The low and slow method of roasting the shoulder until tender while making your whole house smell amazing is exhilarating. The beans are pretty darn good too!


  • Pit Beans:
  • For the pork:


  1. I would recommend making the beans in advance unless you have two ovens.  They reheat beautifully and can be made several days in advance.
  2. For the beans, preheat a large crock or pot on medium high heat.  Add a little oil and then the onions, carrots and celery.  Sauté for several minutes until the onions begin to brown.  Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute longer.
  3. Now add the spices, give a good stir and sauté for an additional minute.
  4. Now you can add the beans, vinegar, tomato and molasses.  Stir well to bring it all together, bring to a simmer and then place in a 300 degree F oven for 2 hours.  Check the moisture level throughout the cooking process to make sure they don’t get too dry.  Add ¼ cup of water as necessary to prevent burning!
  5. Let’s get on to the pork.  Place the onion rings in the bottom of a small roasting pan.  These are going to be the base that the pork sits on.
  6. Place the pork onto the onions and drizzle with molasses.  Use a pastry brush to spread if necessary. Season liberally with the spices and sprinkle some of the ginger and then flip and repeat.  In the end the roast should be liberally coated in the molasses, spices and ginger and it should be sitting on top of the thick onion slices.
  7. Pour enough root beer to come up to the bottom of the pork and place into the oven.  I like to slow roast for 10 – 12 hours at a temperature of 220 degrees F.  Alternatively you can bump up the heat to 350 and have the roast ready in 1 ½ – 2 hours.  In the end, the pork should be so tender that it pulls apart effortlessly.  This is called fork tender.
  8. Serve this dish with a couple slices of pork garnished with some of the onions and a drizzle of the root beer jus as well as some pit beans and a side of slaw if you want to lighten the meal a little.


This roast can be thick sliced and presented as such, but you can also shred this roast and use as an amazing pulled pork in wraps, sandwiches, pasta dishes or heck, toss it into the beans!  That would be amazing.

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Reviews on "Molasses and Cumin Roast Pork & Pit Beans" (15)

  1. November 14, 2021
    A question rather than a comment, would the pork and also the bean casserole need to be covered while roasting or left uncovered?
    • November 15, 2021
      The pork does not need to be covered. The beans may benefit from being covered about half way through, but if you keep an eye on the moisture level that is not necessary.
  2. November 14, 2021
    Michael, love your show. I try to watch it every week. Haven’t tried this dish as yet, but it looks darn good, can’t wait. Keep on cooking my friend.
  3. November 16, 2021
    Can this be subbed with a beef roast?
    • November 16, 2021
      I have not tried, but if I did, I would use a Beef Shoulder Blade Roast. I think it would be delicious and worth a go!
  4. November 21, 2021
    Excellent pork..I cooked mine for about 9 hrs at 220 degrees. The beans were tasty, but I would suggest not using chickpeas..even after hours and hours of cooking they were crunchy..I might try kidney beans and another type of bean instead of the chickpeas.
  5. November 23, 2021
    tried the pork-delicious ! Now for the beans .....enjoy the show .
  6. November 27, 2021
    Best pork roast ever! Love this recipe.
  7. December 5, 2021
    We have used this recipe a couple of times now, once with pork roast and the second time with pork ribs. Both were outstanding flavour treats. An added benefit is having assistants. My 9-year old granddaughter loves making the beans dish from opening cans, to dicing and measuring in ingredients. Thank you Michael for all your recipes and your inspiring presentation each week.
    • December 5, 2021
      This is amazing feedback. Thank you! So glad to hear that you make it a family event.
  8. August 3, 2022
    I first saw you make this on TV and I had to try it. The pit beans are a nice touch, but the technique on the pork is absolutely brilliant. I do substitute cola for the root beer as that flavour is polarizing in this household, I also add a literal handful of whole garlic cloves in with the onions and I find I get the best texture for serving as a roast cooking it at 220 for about nine hours, covered. This makes a chunky jus which I prefer to hit it with an immersion blender and turn into a sauce. Thank you Chef Michael Williams for this recipe! It makes absolutely melt in the mouth pork full of flavour. I've always liked low and slow for this cut, what I've learned from you is just how this very low temperature of 220 is not only possible, it is perfect!c I will be using this as a basis for many recipes in the years to come.
    • September 11, 2022
      Thanks for letting us know Jim. Sounds amazing!
  9. September 11, 2022
    Last weekend I used this recipe after watching the show. I skipped the root beer and used back ribs instead of shoulder. Best ribs I've ever had. This weekend the shoulder is in the oven, avec root beer. Can't wait till it's done. The kitchen smells so good the guy next door asked what I was making hahaha.
    • September 11, 2022
      Sounds delish! Thank you for sharing and enjoy your dinner!

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