Crispy Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas

Crispy Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas. Cooked low and slow for 8 hours then broiled in the oven until crispy on the outside! They are the perfect addition to tacos, burritos, salads and quesadillas. Just in time for Cinco de Mayo!

Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas | chefsavvy.com

Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas

These Crispy Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas aka Mexican pulled pork is one of the best recipes I’ve ever made! These crockpot carnitas come out juicy and tender on the inside and nice and crispy on the outside. The pork is cooked low and slow for 8 hours until it is fall apart tender. The pork is so flavorful thanks to the carnitas seasoning, diced green chili, fresh squeezed lime juice, garlic and onions. After the pork carnitas are cooked I transfer it to the oven and broil until golden brown and crispy. This step is crucial and makes the best carnitas! My favorite way to serve these authentic carnitas is in tacos with tons of fresh cilantro and diced onion on top!

How to make Authentic Carnitas

  • Brown the pork: I like to sear the pork before adding it to the slow cooker. It adds so much flavor and also helps to lock in the juices! Make sure to choose either skinless pork butt or pork shoulder for the best carnitas. To sear the pork start by heating oil in a large pan over high heat. Add the pork and sear on each side until browned, about 1-2 minutes per side.
  • Slow cook: Transfer pork to a large slow cooker. Add the remaining ingredients to the slow cooker. Cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4-5 hours or until the pork is tender. Remove the bay leaves.
  • Shred the meat: Remove the meat from the slow cooker and shred. (Make sure to keep the liquid)
  • Broil: Transfer the shredded pork to a baking sheet and broil for 5 minutes or until crispy. Remove from the oven and pour 1/4 cup of the reserved juices from the slow cooker onto the crispy pork and toss. Place the baking sheet back in the broiler for an additional 5 minutes or until the meat is crispy. Pour an additional 1/4 cup liquid over the crispy pork and serve immediately with cilantro for serving, if desired.
  • Store: The pork can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days, or frozen for up to 3 months.
  • Reheat: The best way to reheat these carnitas is to re broil them until crispy or heat them up in a skillet with a little bit of olive oil!

Carnitas | chefsavvy.com

Can I make Carnitas in the Instant Pot?

Yes! If you are short on time but still want tender fall apart pork cook the carnitas in the pressure cooker! Simply cook on high pressure for 50 minutes to an hour or until tender! Broil as directed and serve!

Can this be made with chicken?

Absolutely! Simply substitute chicken breasts or thighs for the pork and cook for 4-5 hours on low or until tender (the chicken should shred easily). Broil as directed and serve!

Ways to serve Pork Carnitas

I love serving these pork carnitas with a generous sprinkle of cilantro and extra lime wedges. They go great in:

  • Tacos
  • Salads
  • Quesadillas
  • Enchiladas
  • Tamales
  • Burritos
  • Nachos
  • Tostadas
  • Over Rice

Pork Carnitas | chefsavvy.com

What to serve with Crispy Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas

Crispy Pork Carnitas | chefsavvy.com

Here are more Easy Slow Cooker Recipes to try!

Crispy Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas

4.77 from 39 votes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 8 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 6 -8
Crispy Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas. Cooked low and slow for 8 hours then broiled in the oven until crispy on the outside!

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 4-5 pound pork shoulder/pork butt trimmed of excess fat
  • 1 lime juiced
  • 5 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 medium onion roughly chopped
  • 1 4-ounce can diced green chiles
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon chipotle chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoons oregano
  • cilantro for serving if desired

Instructions

  1. Heat oil in a large pan over high heat. Add the pork and sear on each side until browned, about 1-2 minutes per side. Transfer pork to a large slow cooker.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients to the slow cooker. Cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4-5 hours or until the pork is tender. Remove the bay leaves.
  3. Remove the meat from the slow cooker and shred. (Make sure to keep the liquid)
  4. Transfer the shredded pork to a baking sheet and broil for 5 minutes or until crispy.
  5. Remove from the oven and pour 1/4 cup of the reserved juices from the slow cooker onto the crispy pork and toss.
  6. Place the baking sheet back in the broiler for an additional 5 minutes or until the meat is crispy. Pour an additional 1/4 cup liquid over the crispy pork and serve immediately with cilantro for serving, if desired.
  7. The pork can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days, or frozen for up to 3 months.
Nutrition Facts
Crispy Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas
Amount Per Serving
Calories 320 Calories from Fat 144
% Daily Value*
Fat 16g25%
Saturated Fat 5g31%
Cholesterol 124mg41%
Sodium 702mg31%
Potassium 761mg22%
Carbohydrates 6g2%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 1g1%
Protein 37g74%
Vitamin A 525IU11%
Vitamin C 10mg12%
Calcium 62mg6%
Iron 3mg17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: Crispy Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas, Easy Slow Cooker Recipes, Easy Weeknight Dinner, Pork

Originally published Feb 14, 2017

Leave a Comment






Comments - page 1/16

  • Caitlin

    how do you think this recipe would work with chicken??

  • Hi Caitlin!

    Yes this will work perfectly with chicken. I would cook on high or 4 hours or on low for 6.

    Thanks!

    Kelley

  • Jeannie Johansen

    You rock! This was so good I can’t even describe it. Perfect! I have tried making carnitas as well as pulled pork so many times. It always turned out dry & bland. Usually the dog got it. Never again. Thank you!

  • Jeannie Johansen

    Poor Buddy. He will no longer be eating carnitas….it’s all too good to share

  • phil

    couple questions,

    1. after it is broiled, why does it have to refrigerated in an airtight container? is it ok to just put foil or saran wrap over the baking pan and refrigerated that?

    2. would it be a good idea to marinate the pork over night before browning and slow cooking it?

  • Hi Phil,

    I always prefer to put whatever I cooked in a different container than the one cooked in for food safety.

    You can’t go wrong marinating the pork. I think that’s an excellent idea!!

    Thanks & Enjoy!

    Kelley

  • Cailey

    Would it be ok to use pork carnitas instead of pork shoulder?

  • Hi Cailey,

    Pork carnitas is not a type of meat. Is there another name for the type of meat you would like to substitute so I can better assist?

    Thanks!

    Kelley

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