Crockpot carnitas served in flour tortillas with lime wedges, red onion, and cilantro for garnish

Crockpot Pork Carnitas

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Our Crockpot Pork Carnitas recipe is flavored with Mexican spices and can be served in tacos, enchiladas, burritos, and nachos. This delicious shredded pork is so tender and juicy on the inside, while crispy and golden on the edges.

crockpot pork carnitas with cilantro, limes, and oranges for garnish

Crockpot Pork Carnitas is one of my favorite slow cooker pork recipes. I love that I can throw it in the crockpot in the morning, and it easily comes together in the evening for dinner. Carnitas are so versatile and can be thrown in burrito, taco, quesadilla, or use them as a topping for nachos. Serve them with the typical onion/cilantro or add a good guacamole or Pico De Gallo. If you love this slow cooker carnitas recipe, you are going to love Cafe Rio Sweet Pork recipe.

Ingredients for crockpot pork carnitas

  • Pork Shoulder or Butt: Pork shoulder/butt is ideal for pulling purposes.
  • Chili Powder: Regular chili powder is used in this recipe, but you can use Mexican chili powder and add a little more spice to the carnitas.
  • Ground Cumin: Has a warm earthy flavor and pairs well with chili powder and oregano.
  • Dried Oregano: Dried oregano is good when using it in dry rubs.
  • Salt: Use more to taste.
  • Black Pepper: Use more or less to taste.
  • Minced Garlic: I use minced garlic from a jar, but you can always use fresh garlic.
  • Yellow Onion: I like the flavor of yellow onions, but you can use white as well.
  • Lime Juice: Fresh lime juice always tastes better, but you can use bottled if you prefer.
  • Orange Juice: Like the lime juice, I like to freshly squeeze the juice from the oranges. You can also use bottled orange juice if you have it on hand.

How to make pork carnitas in the slow cooker

  • Trim and discard fat from pork. In a small bowl combine chili powder, ground cumin, dried oregano, salt, and pepper. Generously apply dry rub to both sides of pork and place in the slow cooker.
  • Add chopped onion, minced garlic, lime juice, and orange juice around pork.
  • Cover and cook on low for 6-7 hours or on high for 4-5 hours.
  • Remove pork from the slow cooker and shred. Return the shredded meat to the crockpot for an additional 30 minutes.
  • Serve right from the crockpot or follow the next step and broil in the oven.
  • For truly authentic crispy pork carnitas, place oven broil temperature to HI and lightly spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.
  • Spread pork evenly on prepared baking sheet and broil for 4-5 minutes or until the carnitas are crispy on the outside.
how to make crockpot pork carnitas
  • Serve inside warm tortillas for tacos, enchiladas, burritos, or on nachos.
Crockpot carnitas served in flour tortillas with lime wedges, red onion, and cilantro for garnish

How to make carnitas in the instant pot

  • Trim fat from pork. In a small bowl combine chili powder, ground cumin, dried oregano, salt, and pepper. Generously apply dry rub to both sides of pork and place in the instant pot.
  • Add chopped onion, minced garlic, lime juice, orange juice, and an additional 1 cup of water or chicken broth around pork.
  • Place the lid on and set the instant pot on Manual/High for 70 minutes. When the timer beeps, release pressure completely. Remove lid and shred pork.
  • Add pork back to the instant pot for an additional 30 minutes.
  • For truly authentic crispy pork carnitas, place oven broil temperature to HI and lightly spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.
  • Spread pork evenly on prepared baking sheet and broil for 4-5 minutes or until the carnitas are crispy on the outside.
  • Serve inside warm tortillas for tacos, enchiladas, burritos, or on nachos.
Crockpot carnitas on a sheet pan with cilantro and an orange slice for garnish

What to serve with pork carnitas

Crockpot carnitas served in flour tortillas with lime wedges, red onion, and cilantro for garnish

Crockpot Carnitas

April King
Our Crockpot Pork Carnitas recipe is flavored with Mexican spices and can be served in tacos, enchiladas, burritos, and nachos. This delicious shredded pork is so tender and juicy on the inside, while crispy and golden on the edges.
4.8 from 5 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 6 hrs
Total Time 6 hrs 10 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Servings 8
Calories 252 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 4 lbs. pork shoulder or butt
  • 2 Tbsp. chili powder
  • 4 tsp. ground cumin
  • 3 tsp. dried oregano
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 3 tsp. minced garlic
  • 1 yellow onion, roughly chopped
  • juice from 2 limes
  • juice from 2 large oranges

Instructions
 

  • Trim and discard fat from pork. In a small bowl combine chili powder, ground cumin, dried oregano, salt, and pepper. Generously apply dry rub to both sides of pork and place in in the slow cooker.
  • Add chopped onion, minced garlic, lime juice, and orange juice around pork.
  • Cover and cook on low for 6-7 hours or on high for 4-5 hours.
  • Remove pork from the slow cooker and shred. Return the shredded meat to the crockpot for an additional 30 minutes.
  • Serve right from the crockpot or follow the next step and broil in the oven.
  • For truly authentic crispy pork carnitas, place oven broil temperature to HI and lightly spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.
  • Spread pork evenly on prepared baking sheet and broil for 4-5 minutes or until the carnitas are crispy on the outside.
  • Serve inside warm tortillas for tacos, enchiladas, burritos, or on nachos.

Notes

Nutrition Disclaimer: All information presented on this site is intended for informational purposes only. Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate. I am not a certified nutritionist and any nutritional information shared on Modernmealmakeover.com should only be used as a general guideline.

Nutrition

Calories: 252kcalCarbohydrates: 5gProtein: 41.2gFat: 10gSaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 92mgSodium: 742mgPotassium: 561mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 13.3IUVitamin C: 43.9mgCalcium: 4.7mgIron: 23mg
Keyword Carnitas, crockpot carnitas, Pork Carnitas, Slow cooker carnitas
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12 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    These look absolutely delightful! I’ll pair them with corn tortillas to make it gluten free for out next taco Tuesday! 😋

  2. Carnitas are my all-time favorite meat for Mexican dishes! Love that you made this recipe easy with instant pot and slow cooker variations. I’ll have to give it a try and make some tacos soon!

  3. 5 stars
    Your recipe is amazing! I remember trying to make shredded pork one day and did not like it. BUT following your recipe, I got what I wanted to taste!!! Thanks a lot!

  4. 5 stars
    My family loves these carnitas and we always make it for taco night. Delicious!

  5. Oh my goodness.. looks so delicious and inviting.. Can’t wait to make it this weekend.

  6. I’ve been avoiding making Carnitas for so long because I thought they were hard. You really do make it look so easy!

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