Carnitas Puercas (mexican-style Pork Tacos) Recipe

Pork Roast or Loin

Takes about 510 Minutes

Serves 8

Carnitas Puercas (mexican-style Pork Tacos) Recipe
Posted by TimSylvester

Delicious Carnitas Puercas done as an easy to make crock-pot meal.

Tagged: Mexican Pork Carnitas Crock pot Easy Delicious Dinner Tortillas Puerca Tacos Cumin Onion Milk Orange Juice Oregano Pork Roast or Loin

Prep Time: 480 minutes + Cook Time: 30 minutes = 510 minutes


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My recipes have no real directions (I just put things together that sound like they will taste good, based on my knowledge of various cuisines), so if you're confused about "how much" to use, use however much your judgment instructs you to use. ALL AMOUNTS GIVEN ARE ESTIMATES AND SHOULD VARY BASED ON YOUR PERSONAL TASTES!
If you have a pork roast or loin, lay it fat side down. Using a sharp knife, cut it through to the fat, but not through the fat, in about 1-2" wide strips. It is important the meat still be attached by the fat. If you have a tenderloin, move to the next step.
Mix the cumin, oregano, red pepper, chili powder, black pepper, salt, and brown sugar into a bowl. If using bullion powder, mix it in as well.
Put your crock pot on High, and put the cut into the pot, fat side down.
Dust the meat with the spice mixture. If you cut the meat, make sure the spices get down into the cuts. Most, say 80%, of the spices should go directly on the meat. Turn the meat over, fat side UP, and dust the fat with the remaining mixture. If you are using a tenderloin, just dust it all over with the spices, there's not much fat to worry about.
NOTE: The brown sugar adds a sweet touch to the meat, if you want it spicier, just omit the brown sugar, up the cumin and red pepper a bit, and the spiciness will come out. Maybe slice a jalapeno and add it to the crock pot if you want.
Cut the ends off your onion, cut off its skin, cut the onion in half. Take the both halves, and cut them into eight wedges. Crumble the wedges apart over the pork.
Add the bay leaf and ancho chili to the crock pot, preferably on the bottom of the crock pot if it's not all covered by the meat.
Drizzle the olive oil (or grape seed oil) over the pork loin and the onions.
Cut off a good sized chunk of butter (real butter, don't bother if you only have margarine!), about an inch and a half long, and put it in the crock pot.
Add the milk to the crock pot, try not to wash all the spices off the meat. Add the orange juice, again avoid washing off all the spices. Juice the limes, and add the lime juice to the crock pot.
Let this mixture cook for about eight hours. You'll know it's done when you go to remove the meat from the crock pot, and it crumbles and falls apart.
Preheat the oven to 400.
Take the meat out of the crock pot. It should be falling apart. Using a knife, carefully scrape off all the fat you can. Throw it away. Using the back of a knife, press the meat apart into bundles (you are making pulled pork at this point). It should be very tender and easily fall apart. Press it all apart, taking care to smash any chunks larger than mouth-sized.
Put all the pulled pork into an oven dish, like a 9x13 aluminum or Pyrex. Using a ladle, drizzle the juices from the crock pot all over the meat. Toss the meat a few times, making sure it's all nicely wet with the juice and spices and tiny fat nodules from the crock pot. This is also a good time to ensure you've broken the meat apart nicely.
Strain the remaining drippings from the crock pot. Throw away the ancho chili and the bay leaf. Add the caramelized onions to the pork. Freeze the rest of the drippings as broth for a future meal, or pour it out.
Put the pork into the oven for 10-15m, until the broth has cooked off, and the tips of the meat are getting crispy. If there's still broth in the pan after 10-15 minutes, pull it out of the oven, toss the meat in the juice that's still in the pan, and put it back in the oven a few more minutes.
Serve with hot corn tortillas (heat them on a griddle or large pan) and cheese - I prefer Mexican style cheeses, like Asedero or Blanco, Kraft actually makes a good 4-cheese Mexican mix, but there's two types, so make sure you get the "authentic" type, NOT the kind that's all Cheddar and Colby Jack.
I'd also suggest serving this with my guacamole, green salsa, and ESPECIALLY my pico de gallo.


  • 3 lb pork roast
  • loin
  • or tenderloin
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 cups orange juice (or equiv. amt of oranges)
  • 2 limes
  • 1 med. white onion
  • 2 cups Chicken broth
  • chicken bullion cube
  • or chicken bullion powder
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • 1 Ancho chili pepper
  • 1-2 tsp Cumin
  • 1/2-1 tsp Oregano
  • 1 tsp Red pepper
  • 1/4 tsp Chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp Black pepper (fresh cracked preferred)
  • 1/4 tsp Salt (Sea salt preferred)
  • 1/4 tsp Brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp Olive oil (if you don't have it
  • go get it! Don't use anything else except Grape Seed Oil)
  • Butter (real butter
  • unsalted preferred)
  • Fresh corn tortillas
  • Cheese

Comments & Reviews

    TimSylvester writes on 27/3/09

    I forgot to say, after you've got everything in the crock pot, it is VERY IMPORTANT you set it down to Low.


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