Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas are slow-cooked for hours with a blend of Mexican-inspired spices and citrus juice to become tender and full of flavor!
The pork is then pulled and crisped in a skillet or oven to be added to tortillas or burrito bowls! This is such a great recipe and a fun way to enjoy shredded pork.
With a prep time of just 10 minutes, you can easily have these pork carnitas on the table by dinner time with little effort!
Adobe Sauce, Citrus, and Toppings – Authentic Carnitas Recipe
The flavor of this simple slow cooker pork roast carnitas is so yummy and good! Who knew that the combination of cumin, oregano, and garlic would send your taste buds over the top! Add some fresh cilantro to really bring out that Mexican food flavor.
If you’re craving a new Mexican dish for Taco Tuesday, this is the one for you.
And since your crockpot gets to do all the work for you, you’ll actually have some time to sit and rest, too.
This simple meal for the family is literally always a hit!
- Pork Roast – Using a pork roast is what makes this meat so tender. It’s easy to cook, holds flavor extremely well, and shreds up quite nicely once slow cooked in the crockpot. I use a pork shoulder for this recipe. Just like Slow Cooker Pulled Pork, this slow cooker recipe uses a fattier cut of meat to become tender and full of flavor after it’s cooked.
- Spices –The blend of spices is perfect for taking this roast recipe from blah to AMAZING! You can always add in some extra black pepper or even more than what the recipe calls for.
- Adobo Pepper – For an added kick!
- Orange & Lime Juice – Adding the citrus juices to this simple carnitas recipe brings out a fun citrus flavor that takes this roast over the top!
HOW TO MAKE SLOW COOKER PORK CARNITAS
In a small bowl, whisk together the dried oregano, cumin, salt, and pepper or other Mexican spices that you love)
Rub seasoning mixture onto pork shoulder on all sides
Add onion, garlic, orange juice and peel, lime juice and chipotle pepper to slow cooker
Place pork on top
Cover and cook on low for 4-6 hours or until internal temperature is 145 degrees F
Shred pork with forks
Heat oil in a skillet on stove ** see tips for success below
7. Cook in skillet
Add pork and some of the juice from the slow cooker
Turn often to brown the pork until juices have evaporated and pork is nicely browned
Repeat with more pork if your skillet doesn’t hold all of it
Serve immediately with tortillas and toppings
Store leftovers in the refrigerator
TIPS FOR SUCCESS
- You can also crisp the pork on the baking sheet in the oven under the broiler for 5 minutes or until crispy.
- If you have meat leftover, add to your freezer for later.
- Add in as many toppings as you want for the ultimate burrito bowl or salad!
How do you store leftovers of this slow cooker carnitas recipe?
Leftover carnitas can be stored in an airtight container so that you can reheat authentic pork carnitas or other delicious tacos.
What toppings go well with delicious carnitas?
Traditional carnitas is a really simple recipe that you can top with just about anything. Pico de Gallo is a great choice, black beans taste great, and don’t forget the sour cream and red onion as well.
What side dishes go well with this pork recipe?
If you want to pair a side dish with these pork shreds, you can! Rice is a great side dish but I’m also a big fan of Adobo sauce and a warm tortilla as well. You can even pan fry and make crispy carnitas as well!
Can you overcook carnitas in slow cooker?
You can! You can always overcook meat so it’s important to pay attention to the cooking time and temperature.
What cut of pork is used for carnitas?
The pork shoulder is the cut of meat that is used to make carnitas. This is because it’s tender!
What does carnitas stand for?
The word “carnitas” translates to “little meats” which is very fitting for this recipe!
EASY PORK RECIPES
Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas
- 3-4 pound pork shoulder, trimmed slightly
- 1 ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 small onion, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- ⅓ cup of orange juice
- 2 teaspoons finely shredded orange peel
- ⅓ cup lime juice
- 1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, chopped
- 1-2 tablespoons oil – vegetable or canola
- Tortillas and toppings
- Lettuce wraps
- In a small bowl, whisk together the dried oregano, cumin, salt and pepper
- Rub seasoning mixture onto pork shoulder on all sides
- Add onion, garlic, orange juice and peel, lime juice and chipotle pepper to slow cooker
- Place pork on top
- Cover and cook on low for 4-6 hours or until internal temperature is 145 degrees F
- Shred pork with forks
- Heat oil in skillet on stove ** see notes
- Add pork and some of the juice from the slow cooker
- Turn often to brown the pork until juices have evaporated and pork is nicely browned
- Repeat with more pork if your skillet doesn’t hold all of it
- Serve immediately with tortillas and toppings
- Store leftovers in refrigerator