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Slow Cooked Carnitas (Mexican Pork)

5 from 5 votes

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This slow-cooked, Carnitas recipe just falls apart in shreds. Perfect for filling tacos, burritos, and nachos! Make it in the oven or crockpot.

I cooked my Mexican pork in the oven but a crockpot (or pressure cooker!) would be a great option too. I think that’s all you need to know because this is the simplest Carnitas Recipe on planet earth. Oh, and did I mention this recipe contains like 5 ingredients. Hello, awesome dinner! Give this a whirl tonight ๐Ÿ™‚

Carnitas

Slow-Cooked Carnitas

I big puffy heart love Mexican food. Mostly tacos. Lettuce tacos, actually. I seriously cannot get enough. Sometimes when I feel the tex-mex cravings running through my veins, I’ll scramble some eggs with onions, green peppers, and mushrooms and then top the whole thing with cheddar cheese and salsa. That and a little buttered toast and I’m in heaven. HEAVEN I tell you.

And THIS shredded Mexican Pork with some rice, black beans, and taco toppings is also heaven. So yummy and so darn easy that you could do this with your eyes closed.

This recipe could also be considered a slow cooker Carnitas recipe! Carnita refers to cooked shredded pork used in tons of Mexican dishes. So there you have it, this is my Mexican Pork (Slow Cooker Carnitas) recipe.

Preparing Mexican Pork

Carnitas Recipe

That’s right, Carnitas only take 5 simple ingredients to make, here’s what you’ll need:

  • Onions and Garlic –ย a classic combo that creates a great base flavor.
  • Olive Oil –ย this is used to saute the onions and garlic and to brown the pork roast.
  • Pork Roast –ย I love using a pork roast for this as opposed to a pork butt or shoulder. I love a good shoulder or butt as much as the next girl {wait…what?} but the pork roast is leaner and shreds nicely. Low fat is always good.
  • Salt and Pepper –ย don’t forget to season! Seasoning while the pork is still raw and tender allows for the salt and pepper to penetrate all the way through the meat, making the whole thing even tastier.
  • Green Enchilada Sauce – I use the brand with the palm trees on it… I don’t know if that helps you guys at all. Since this is the main flavor, make sure you pick a good one, ok? You can also use a red enchilada sauce if that’s your thing.

That’s it! Let’s get cookin’.

Browning Mexican Pork

How to Make Carnitas

  1. Start by chopping half a gigantic onion. Is it just me or are all the onions at the store look like they’ve been dipping into the ‘roids?
  2. Mince up some garlic too. I love garlic.
  3. Now grab your pork roast out of the fridge and notice the black speck on it after you take a picture. Remove the speck and salt & pepper this big lovely baby.
  4. So, what you’re going to want to do is saute the onions and garlic in some oil–then once they are translucent, push them to the sides and sear the meat.

You want to get the meat brown on all the sides you can. Brown meat means yummy Carnitas! ๐Ÿ™‚

Mexican Pork and Enchilada Sauce

  1. Once your meat has browned, transfer it to a baking dish OR put it into a warm crockpot {not a cold one!}.
  2. Find some yummy green enchilada sauce and slather the whole roast.
  3. Cover this with foil and bake at 225 for 2-3 hours. (Or cook in a crockpot on low for 4-6 hours or until mighty tender.) You basically cook this until it falls apart by just looking at it–super fork tender.
  4. Shred-it all up and leave it in that lovely cooking liquid until you’re ready to use it.

So, this is basically it. Suuuuuper simple Carnitas.

Cover with Tinfoil

How to Serve Carnitas

Carnitas are fabulous in tacos, burritos, on nachos, in salads,ย or by the spoonful. Seriously tasty stuff right here.

Shredding Carnitas

Leftovers

Any leftovers can be saved in an airtight container, in the fridge, for up to 5 days.

Freezing

Add this to your menu for the week and store any extras in the freezer! You’ll thank me later ๐Ÿ˜‰

Frozen carnitas lasts up to 4 months in the freezer!

Carnitas

More Meaty Recipes to Try!

For more Mexican meat recipes like this Mexican Pork, check out the recipes listed.

Printable recipe below. Have a great day, friends!

5 from 5 votes

Slow Cooker Carnitas (Mexican Pork)

This slow-cooked, Carnitas recipe falls apart in shreds. Perfect for filling tacos, burritos, and nachos!ย Make it in the oven or crockpot.
servings 4 servings
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 3 hrs
Total Time 3 hrs 20 mins

Ingredients

  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 large onion chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1-1 1/2 lb. pork roast
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 1/4 cups green enchilada sauce good quality

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 225 degrees or turn on crockpot to medium. Preheat oil over medium heat in a large skillet.
  • Saute onions for 2 minutes or until they start becoming translucent. Pour in minced garlic and cook another minute.
  • Sprinkle salt and pepper over pork liberally. Push onions and garlic to the edges of the pan and sear meat on all sides until brown.
  • Transfer entire contents of the pan into a baking dish with high sides. Pour enchilada sauce over top, cover with foil and bake for 2-3 hours or until meat is fork-tender. Shred pork and serve in tacos, burritos, on nachos, etc.

Nutrition

Calories: 324kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 39g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 107mg | Sodium: 734mg | Potassium: 656mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 500IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 14mg | Iron: 1.4mg
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: carnitas, carnitas recipe, Mexican Pork
Polaroid photo of granola bars

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Recipe Rating




52 Responses
  1. Sara {Home is Where the Cookies Are}

    Hey – do we share a brain? Or a stomach? Or have some weird telepathy or something?? You keep making these dishes I am dreaming about. This looks fabulous – and I absolutely LOVE how easy it is. This is perfect for marathon school/activity nights! Thanks for such a great recipe!

  2. Will @ Cheap and Easy Food Blog

    That looks amazing! I’ve been craving some Mexican food lately, and this looks like it would hit the spot and have amazing leftovers. I love that it can be done so easily in the oven, which would be nice since I haven’t gotten my hands on a crock pot yet.

    Thanks so much for sharing this!

  3. Jennifer | Mother Thyme

    This looks delicious! Definitely adding this to our dinner menu for next week! Simple, delicious and tasty. Can’t beat that! ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Lisa

    Oooo I will have a happy mister tonight with this little gem. Off to brave the elements to pick up the ingredients right now. (yah not to bring anyone in arctic places down but San Diego cold is a relative term and I’m freezing my kishkas off here!)

  5. Kathryn

    I also don’t have a crock pot so I like recipes that i can cook slowly in the oven! Love mexican flavours too so this is right up my street.

  6. Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking

    What a delicious and simple weeknight recipe, Lauren! This looks so flavorful and delicious – not to mention warm for those cold winter nights! Thanks for sharing.

  7. Jolene (www.everydayfoodie.ca)

    Looks fabulous! I love Mexican food SO much, but I haven’t made shredded pork in ages! I love it in crepes with a poblano sauce. Yummmmm!

  8. Mary-Michael

    I am SO with you! I had taco salad for lunch yesterday and a quesadilla for dinner last night!

    Cannot wait to try this! Thanks!

  9. KC

    Thank you for such mouth watering, tongue tingling, appetite squelching recipes! I recently discovered your blog (thank you Pinterest) and am now an everyday reader. My cooking repertoire is greatly expanded (and my husbands waistline) thanks to you!

  10. Jennifer

    5 stars
    I made this for the in-laws for dinner last night,everyone loved it. We all said it was even better than we thought it would be. I used my LeCruset heavy pan so I could brown the meat and do the onions all in one pan then put the cover on it and put it in the oven. Soooooooo good! Thanks Lauren!

  11. Lauren's Latest » Cheesy Green Chile Pork Enchiladas

    […] these purdy little enchiladas. Full of porky cheesy green chile-y goodness. And, if you have this pork made ahead of time, they come together in a snap! Also, this recipe makes about 24–2 pans […]

      1. Robert C Garcia

        Robert from Nampa. Glad to see you and the fam and all your postings. Just love em. Keep it up kiddo. Just to steer you in the right direction regarding the Brand name you seem to have forgotten; if you translate “the palm trees” into Spanish you get Las Palmas. Bingo, yes? Love your sweets postings but rats, I recently found out I’m diabetic now. Oh well, I can still just look! Bye now.

  12. Chris

    Why is it that when I get to the last ingredient it’s one we don’t have overhere in The Netherlands. And I can’t figure out something simular and international to replace it. ๐Ÿ™

  13. Sam

    I prefer to do this in a large oval shaped slow cooker. How long should I cook this for on low? I plan to use this as a filling with some Monterey Jack cheese topped with more sauce, shredded cheese, diced red onion and black olives. Thanks so much and no kitchen is complete without a slow cooker.

  14. Maxine Reece

    I’m looking forward to making this. We love green chile and pork so this will be great for us. I have made several of your recipes. Thanks!

  15. Dee

    sometimes pork roast is mostly white meat which can be drier than dark. Do you usually use pork roast that’s mostly white or dark?I use pork shoulder roast/butt & slow cook it in oven or crock pot seasoned with spice to make pulled pork & sometimes the white meat portion is harder to shred.

  16. Rose James

    This looks so simple and delicious to make and you can freeze it for later which is a huge plus. Thanks for the recipe I look forward to trying it.

  17. Anna

    5 stars
    Seriously, this recipe is myyyyyy faaaaaavorrite!! Yum yum yum! I have followed you for a while now and love following your family…and yum-oh recipes! You make living in NYC look so dreamy! ๐Ÿ™‚

  18. Cooky Mom

    5 stars
    I’ll definitely have to make this soon… I’ve been making beef tacos a lot lately but they’re getting a little old. I could use a change of pace, and this looks amazing!

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