Slow Cooker Paleo Pork Carnitas

Did you know “Carnitas” means “little meat” in Spanish? How cute is that? And delicious.

These are the best Carnitas we’ve ever made in our own kitchen. I’m speed typing this and hitting publish so I have it in my “slow cooker” search whenever I’m meal planning for the week.

Start with a 4lb pork shoulder. I found this at Whole Foods: (I haven’t seen any change since the Amazon switch, I wonder if/when that’s coming?)

Mix the seasonings.
1 tablespoon chili powder
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 teaspoons salt, or more, to taste
1 teaspoon ground black pepper

Rub it all over the meat. I put it back in the paper and let it sit in the fridge for a couple hours but you can use it straight away as well.

Cut two onions in quarters and peel four cloves of garlic.

I usually use jarred minced garlic but I used whole fresh garlic for this recipe because it calls for whole, not diced. And as long as I don’t have to cut it, that’s fine with me. 🙂

Juice two limes and two oranges… Smells so fresh! 

Place garlic, onions, orange juice, lime juice and pork into a slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours. You can also do high for 4-5 hours but I highly recommend low and slow heat. 🙂

Then go about your day!

For us that that looked like dropping M off at preschool and going on a walk to the library to do homeschool:

And I bought myself an extra hour and a half sans Michael by putting him in lunch bunch (which he loves) so I could go to the semi-annual consignment sale down the street. So glad I went. I got some great Fall finds. Michael said “thank you for these shoes mommy! Are they super-fast running shoes?” Of course the answer is always yes.

Next we went to piano lessons for Brielle. This is when M and I get to read all the piano teacher’s great books!
Eventually we got to dinner time (around 8:30 actually, after we got back from church) and what I had planned to be black beans and salsa and tomatoes and lettuce bowl with our Carnitas turned into “Let’s do this! we are starving!”

So the last step: Remove the pork from slow cooker and shred it into pieces (hence, “little meat”) and put it back in the juices in the crockpot. We did this in super-fast motion, with kids under-foot.

Then we put the pieces of meat in a hot frying pan (using a tablespoon or so of the drippings in the slow cooker) and fried it up in small batches until it was crisp on the outside. (The original recipe says to broil for a few minutes in the oven, so that is an option too but this tastes better to me.)

And don’t forget to add salt at the very end. It takes it from “wow this is good” to… “Damn this is good!” Which is actually the name of the site where I got this recipe! 🙂

Serve the ridiculously delicious “little meat” with black beans and rice or on a (heated) tortilla with salsa and etc etc etc.

Tonight we ate it with salsa and nothing else. Well, corn on the cob and some rice made an appearance toward the end of the meal after it was done cooking, but we were too famished to wait for it!

Yum! This will be on our meal planning rotation until we get totally sick of it. 😀














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