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Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas

Slow cooker pork carnitas are an amazingly easy and delicious recipe that is full of flavor and cooks all day to tender and juicy perfection! This is definitely a carnitas recipe that you will make again and again!

Having a solid pork carnitas recipe on hand is a MUST! You can add it to a salad, pasta or some tortillas and you have so many different meals! If you love this pork recipe, you must absolutely try my Sweet and Sour Pork, Kalua Pulled Pork, and Creamy Pork Carnitas Pasta!

Shredded pork in a pan with a lime.

Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas

If you have been following me for a while, then it is no secret that I love my slow cooker! I have so many recipes that use it because let’s face it, the convenience of it is too irresistible! Meals like this pork carnitas recipe take only a few minutes to throw in the slow cooker! Then, I can leave for the day and come back to the juiciest and most tender meat with basically no effort! This pork carnitas recipe is no exception! It will combine all the flavors you love for a meal that your family will be sure to go crazy over!

So, if I haven’t convinced you of why you should use a slow cooker yet, I am here to tell you today that I found one of my all-time favorite tried and true slow cooker pork recipes! It slow cooks for eight hours in a spice rub and a citrus marinade and the flavor is out of this world! The outside edges get crisp and the inside is melt in your mouth tender. This pork carnitas recipe is a MUST try recipe that is insanely delicious! Add in my homemade tortillas and guacamole with chips and you have yourself a meal to remember!

What’s In Pork Carnitas?

These ingredients come together to make a perfect rub for the pork and a great marinade for it to soak in all day while it cooks.  The flavors are incredible and you will be shocked by how easy it is and how amazing your kitchen smells while it is cooking!

  • Pork Shoulder: Ask your butcher to help you choose a high quality meat since it will be the star of this recipe and you want a great cut.
  • Chili Powder: This adds a bit of spice.
  • Cumin: Cumin is a warm spice for a great depth of flavor.
  • Oregano: Make sure not to forget this! It adds an earthy flavors.
  • Salt and Pepper: Sprinkle this on to taste.
  • Orange and Lime juice: You won’t specifically taste the orange or lime juice.  They will just add a hint of brightness to the flavor.
  • Garlic: Minced garlic adds rich flavor.
  • Onion: Quartered onion will add deep flavor and moistness.

How to Cook Pork in a Slow Cooker

This pork carnitas recipe comes out of the slow cooker and just falls apart it is so tender. You can either eat the pork right out of the slow cooker or broil it in the oven to give it a crisp edge.

  1. Combine seasonings and coat pork: In a small bowl combine chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt, and pepper. Rub on the outside of the pork shoulder rub thoroughly.
  2. Combine remaining ingredients in slow cooker: Combine orange juice, lime juice, garlic and onion in the slow cooker, then place pork on the top. Finally, cook on low for 8 hours or high 4-5 hours.
  3. Shred Pork: Remove roast from slow cooker and shred. Next, return to slow cooker and heat for an additional 30 minutes.
  4. Broil: Remove the pork from the slow cooker and place on a baking sheet. Broil in the oven for 3-4 minutes to brown the edges of the pork.
Four pictures of how to prepare pork with a rub in a slow cooker.

What Goes with Pork Carnitas?

This slow cooker pork is so versatile and can be used in tacos, burritos, quesadillas, you name it.  It will add delicious flavor and taste to whatever you use it for.  Soon, this recipe will become a family favorite and you will use it again and again!  Here are a few more ideas to help you finish off these delicious slow cooker pork carnitas.

  • Toppings: Sprinkle generously with fresh cilantro, onion, lime juice, shredded cheese, guacamole, or pico de gallo.
  • Serve it with: Homemade tortillas or nachos.
  • Make it a salad: Get your favorite greens and add this to it as your protein!
  • Add it to pasta: Try my Creamy Pork Carnitas Pasta for somethinge new and you will love the result!

Storing your Cooked Pork

This recipe makes a huge amount of meat!  So, you will want to store what you don’t use right away to use all week in your tacos, nachos, or with a fresh salad!  Here are my tips for how to properly store your pork so it will last as long as possible.

  • Refrigerator: Place cooked pork in a shallow air-tight container or wrap tightly in heavy duty aluminum foil or plastic wrap. Your pork will last 3-5 days in the refrigerator.
  • Freezer: If you can’t use up all this juicy meet in 5 days, place it in an airtight container (make sure that you label it with the date!) in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Pork carnitas in a tortilla with toppings.
Print

Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas

Slow cooker pork carnitas are an amazingly easy and delicious recipe that is full of flavor and cooks all day to tender and juicy perfection! This is definitely a carnitas recipe that you will make again and again!
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Keyword pork carnitas, slow cooker carnitas, slow cooker pork carnitas
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 hours
Total Time 5 hours 10 minutes
Servings 12 People
Calories 153kcal
Author Alyssa Rivers

Ingredients

  • 4 pounds pork shoulder roast
  • 1 Tablespoon Chili Powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 3/4 cup orange juice 2 oranges
  • 1/4 cup lime juice 2 limes
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 onion quartered

Instructions

  • In a small bowl combine chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt, and pepper. Rub on the outside of the pork shoulder rub thoroughly.
  • In the slow cooker, combine orange juice, lime juice, garlic and onion. Place pork on the top. Cook on low for 8 hours or high 4-5 hours.
  • Remove roast from slow cooker and shred. Return to slow cooker and heat for an additional 30 minutes.
  • Remove the pork from the slow cooker and place on a baking sheet. Broil in the oven for 3-4 minutes to brown the edges of the pork.

Notes

Updated on August 28, 2021
Originally Posted April 20, 2015

Nutrition

Calories: 153kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 18g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 62mg | Sodium: 276mg | Potassium: 385mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 234IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 25mg | Iron: 1mg


from The Recipe Critic