I actually got this pork carnitas recipe when I was about 10 years old. Although I am Italian and love cooking Italian food, my most favorite food of all,to cook and to eat, is Mexican food.
I obtained this recipe from the wife of a man that my Dad once worked with. She was an extraordinary Mexican cook. She used to make her own flour tortillas and fill them with this wonderful tasting meat.
I asked her what kind of meat it was and she told me it was carnitas, which means small or little meat in Spanish and it was made usually with pork. She jotted down the recipe and I took it home and my Mom let me make it. I did okay for my first attempt at anything other than Italian food.
Since the first time I made it, I have experimented with different spices and ingredients from time to time to kind of enhance the flavor of the meat. You can really use any spices that suit your taste.
This is my pork carnitas recipe that I use today. Hope you enjoy its ease and mouthwateringly delicious taste.
Table of Contents
Pork Carnitas Recipe
- 4 lb boneless pork butt, cut into 4 inch chunks
- 3 cans of chicken broth or stock plus enough water to cover meat1 onion, peeled and quartered
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 onion, peeled and quartered
- 1 tsp ground chipotle chile (optional, I like the smokey flavor it gives the meat)
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp Black pepper
- 1/2 orange, washed and halved
- 1 tbls brown sugar (optional) (this helps to crisp the meat without drying it out, but can make meat a little sweet)
- Place pork butt in 4 qt stock pot. Cover the meat with the chicken broth and water.
- Add bay leaves, cumin, oregano, onion, chipotle chile, (if using) salt and pepper. Squeeze the juice of the orange, through your hands to catch any seeds, over the pot with the meat, then toss the orange rinds into the pot.
- Bring mixture to a boil. Lower heat and simmer covered for 2 1/2 to 3 hours. You may have to add more water to keep the meat mostly covered.
- When pork is fork tender. Remove from the pot. With two forks shred the meat. Place meat on a baking sheet. Sprinkle the meat with half of the brown sugar, if using. Spoon some of the braising liquid over each piece of meat. Place in a 400° oven for 20 to 25 minutes. Turning once half way through cooking and sprinkling other side of meat with the remainder of the brown sugar, if using. Cook until the edges of the meat start to become crisp. Salt to taste. Serve with warm flour or corn tortillas, cilantro, onion, guacamole, cheese or any other toppings that suits your taste.