Sep 16, 2010

Crockpot Pork Carnitas

crockpot carnitas 1

I fell in love with slow cooking pork after making these recipes – pulled pork sandwiches and pork tostadas.  So I was immediately intrigued by this recipe – which has a citrusy flavor imparted in the pork.  When I make a crockpot meal – I almost always prepare it in advance the night before and then either myself or my husband will turn on the crockpot the next day.  Well, I guess I didn’t read the recipe closely enough – because when I went to just throw this together at 9pm – I realized you are supposed to sear the pork and then cook onions/garlic before you put everything in the crockpot.  Regardless of that little oversight – it was still an easy recipe – but I would definitely plan this better in advance next time!


  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 1 boneless pork shoulder, 3 to 4 lb.
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups Mexican lager-style beer
  • Grated zest and juice of 1 large orange
  • Grated zest and juice of 1 lime
  • 1 Tbsp. dried oregano

For serving:

  • Warm corn or flour tortillas
  • Lime wedges
  • red onion, diced
  • avocado, diced
  • queso fresco or any shredded cheese
  • Chopped fresh cilantro


1. In a small bowl, combine the salt and pepper. Season the pork roast generously with the mixture.

2. In a large fry pan over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil. Add the pork and cook, turning frequently until browned on all sides, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a platter and set aside.

3. Add the onion and garlic and sauté just until they begin to soften, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the beer and deglaze the pan, stirring and scraping up the browned bits from the pan bottom with a wooden spoon.

4. Transfer the pork to a slow cooker and pour in the beer mixture. Add the orange and lime zests and juices and the oregano.

5. Cover and cook according to the manufacturer's instructions until the pork is very tender, about 5 hours on high or 10 hours on low.

6. Transfer the pork to a carving board and cover loosely with aluminum foil. Using a large, shallow spoon or a ladle, skim as much fat as possible from the surface of the cooking liquid.

7. Using a knife and a fork, coarsely cut and shred the pork into small bite-size pieces.

8. Transfer the pork to a serving platter and moisten it lightly with the cooking juices, and serve immediately with the tortillas, lime wedges, chopped onion, avocado and cilantro.

Source: My life on a Plate – originally from Williams Sonoma

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