Classic Braised Pork Carnitas
Author: Alison Needham
Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 3 hours
Total time: 3 hours 10 mins
This pork is tender and flavorful and makes the perfect taco when piled onto fresh corn tortillas. Or you can shred it, toss it with barbecue sauce and eat on a bun. Though it takes 3 hours to bake, the prep time is minimal and the results are out of this world.
  • 2 pounds of boneless pork shoulder or butt
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 C stock (beef or chicken is fine)
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • juice from ½ an orange (about 1 ounce)
  • 2 onions, roughly chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, peeled and smashed
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat a large, heavy pot over high heat (I use my le creuset--you'l want something with a lid). Add a glug of olive oil to the pan. Season meat well with salt and pepper, then brown quickly on each side (about 2 minutes per side).
  2. Add stock, orange zest and juice, onions and garlic. Place lid on pot and put in the oven. Bake for 2 hours or until meat is almost fork tender. Remove lid (and keep it off), drain off all but ½ C juice and return to the oven for another hour, turning meat halfway through. This will help brown the pork nicely.
  3. Remove from oven and shred meat, discarding any fatty bits. If you like your carnitas tender and juicy, stop here. If you like them crispy (like me), place the meat on a large rimmed cookie sheet and set under the broiler for a few minutes or until all the meat is dark golden brown and crackling hot. Serve with corn tortillas, chopped cilantro and green onions, guacamole and salsa.
Recipe by A Girl Defloured at