Take your taco night up a notch with these instant pot carnitas. Tender, juicy, and begging to be turned into the taco of your dreams. The instant pot does the work. All you have to do is decide…How many tacos?
You Can Carnitas Too
When I lived in Colorado, there was a taco place that we’d drive hours (in the snow!) to get to. They had the most incredible flavor combinations and it was worth the drive every time. That taco place is on the Top 5 list of things I miss about CO. Other tacos just aren’t the same.
So in an attempt to fill the void, I’ve gone all out when making my own tacos at home. Fillings, toppings, sauces, tortillas in all of their glorious forms. This instant pot carnitas recipe tastes like the taco shop ones. With the instant pot, it takes a fraction of the time and the meat turns out incredibly tender.
And you don’t have to drive. Enjoy! – Linds x
Why Make Carnitas Instant Pot?
Pressure cookers and instapots are the PERFECT method for cooking juicy pork carnitas in no time at all. Here’s why you’ll never want to cook them any other way:
- Wayyy quicker! Instapot pork carnitas take 45 minutes(!!). While the same cut of meat takes 7 hours in the slow cooker.
- Super juicy. Pork shoulder/butt are pretty tough pieces of meat that do best when cooked for long periods of time. Using a pressure cooker reduces that time and gives you the same, juicy results.
- Perfect meal prep. This makes 12 servings, which store and reheat easily.
Instant Pot Pork Carnitas Ingredients
- Pork butt, i.e. Boston butt. Pork shoulder will also work here — the shoulder is located just below the butt and is a very similar cut of meat. Butt tends to have better marbling and is typically sold without the skin.
- Seasoning – a combination of salt, pepper, cumin, and oregano is all you need.
- Cooking liquid – chicken broth, lime juice, orange juice, and onions.
Can I Add Some Heat?
Totally! Add sliced jalapenos to the citrus juice — feel free to leave a few seeds in there if you like major spice.
Worried about the carbs in orange juice?
You can skip it. That said, we enjoy these keto carnitas with the OJ, see below that 1 serving (if you divide the recipe into 12) has only 1 g of net carbs.
What About Chicken Carnitas?
You can absolutely make chicken carnitas (ya they’re a thing!). Just follow the pork carnitas instant pot steps below and swap the protein.
How to Eat Instapot Carnitas
These instant pot carnitas are delicious every way, including:
- Tacos, with your favorite flour or corn tortillas. Psst — for keto carnitas check out my keto tortillas, or these keto tacos for a list of tortilla alternatives.
- Burrito bowls, with rice, cauliflower rice, black beans, salsa, shredded lettuce, sour cream and/or cheese.
- Burritos stuffed with your faves.
- Nachos – Again, for a low carb option, check out my keto tortilla chips, or consider making zucchini nachos.
Storing + Reheating
Store leftover instant pot carnitas and their cooking liquid separately in the refrigerator. Reheating is best done in the microwave, with addition cooking liquid ladled on top.
More Mexican Inspired Recipes
Instant Pot CarnitasPrint Recipe Pin Recipe
- 2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 4 pounds boneless pork butt cut into 2-inch chunks, excess fat removed (note 1)
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1 small onion peeled + cut into quarters
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 1/3 cup orange juice about 1 orange juiced (note 2)
- Season. In a small bowl combine the salt (2 teaspoon), pepper (1 teaspoon), cumin (1 tablespoon), and oregano (2 tablespoons). Lay cubed pork (4 pounds) on a flat surface and sprinkle 1/2 the seasoning over the top, pressing the adhere. Flip and repeat on the other side with remaining seasoning.
- Cook. Add the chicken broth(1 cup), lime juice (2 tablespoons), orange juice (1/3 cup), onions (1), and seasoned pork to the instant pot. Place the lid on top, and set the vent to "sealing". Set pressure cooker to high pressure for 30 minutes. Once done, release the steam by turning the vent to "release" (pressure release should take about 15 minutes).
- Shred. Remove the instant pot lid, and shred the pork using 2 forks. Use tongs to serve the meat, be sure to ladle juice on top!
- For crispy carnitas: turn on oven broiler. Place shredded pork on a rimmed baking sheet. Ladle 1/4 of the juice over the carnitas. Broil for 4-5 minutes, or until the pork has crisped to your liking. Remove baking sheet from the oven, and ladle excess juice on top, toss to combine.
- Serve. Use tongs to add carniatas to tortillas, bowls, or burritos. Top with freshly chopped cilantro and enjoy!
Fans Also Made These Low Carb Recipes:
- Pork butt may also be labeled as Boston butt. Pork shoulder will work here as well!
- Orange juice - worried about the added carbs? Feel free to skip!
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