Slow Cooker Carnitas

Two of the most popular recipes I have ever posted are my Shredded Beef Tacos and my Easy Slow Cooker Shredded Beef. Are you noticing a theme? They are similar recipes, and I have to admit that they are some of my favorites, too. They are easy to prepare, and the results are simply fabulous. It’s amazing what slow cooking will do for a not-too-expensive cut of beef. The meat just melts in your mouth.

The original Shredded Beef Tacos (which, even though they are from October of 2009 are still very popular every month!) were inspired by the barbacoa at Chipotle, a favorite of mine.  But, since pregnancy has kind of ruined my love of spicy food (I am hoping it returns shortly after the little one arrives!), I have since become a fan of the less spicy carnitas when the hubby and I go to Chipotle. We won’t discuss how frequently we have made trips to Chipotle in the last nine months.

So, I have started picking up pork roasts whenever I can at the local farmers market.  I am able to get great quality meat (hormone-free, all natural, local, you get the picture…) from a sweet couple who I chat with each week. I like that I am able to support a local farm and also get great quality meat (which cannot be found at local supermarkets around here).

I also like that I can make my own homemade carnitas without having to take a trip to Chipotle. Much like the Chipotle version, I have been making my carnitas without much heat. But, that doesn’t mean the dish is lacking in flavor. I make sure that the shredded pork is well seasoned. Since the spices aren’t overpowering, it lends itself well to lots of toppings and condiments. If you aren’t in the mood for heat (like me!), you can top it with lots of veggies, guacamole, and cheese.  Or, if you want to spice things up a bit, you can add some hot salsa or chipotle hot sauce, which is my hubby’s new obsession. Regardless of what toppings you like, I think this recipe is a crowd pleaser. Once you discover how easy it is to prepare,  I think you’ll find that it’s a cook pleaser, too.

Slow Cooker Carnitas
Serves 6 - 8

  • 2 pound pork roast
    (You could certainly make a larger roast and adjust the spices accordingly)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Pinch of ground cloves
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 lime

Place the pork roast in your slow cooker and sprinkle with the minced garlic, cumin, salt, pepper, and cloves.  Pour the water over the meat and squeeze the juice from the lime down over the roast.  Cover and cook on low for about 6 – 8 hours.

Remove the roast from the slow cooker and use two forks to shred the meat.  Return the shredded meat to the slow cooker and allow to cook an additional 30 minutes uncovered before serving.

5 Responses to Slow Cooker Carnitas

  1. I adore pork carnitas- looks great!

  2. Paula says:

    It’s easy to see why your shredded beef tacos are popular with your readers.

    I’m not a big lover of “spicy” so these are perfect for me!

    P.S. I hope your love of spicy food comes back after the baby arrives :)

  3. This looks absolutely amazing Jen. I love my slow cooker in the cooler months!

  4. Such a great idea! I hope your spicy love comes back! :) I couldn’t stand the thought of Chinese food when I was pregnant, but I came right back to it after kiddo was born. :)

  5. [...] some chips.  He was also perfectly happy to eat some enchiladas verdes made with leftover carnitas… [...]

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