I’ve been on this Mexican kick lately, mainly because I have a surplus of avocados, salsa, tortillas, and cilantro from Super Bowl. So I’ve been trying to come up with ways to use up my slow cooker carnitas that I made for my nacho bar. It’s not a hard task but this is one that I thought I would share.
Carnitas is the flavor bomb of Mexican food. Slow cooked in beer, onion, garlic, oranges, and limes. Super simple, so flavorful, and you can make endless dishes with it.
Taco assembly is all about preference, you need fresh ingredients to bring it all together. I love using fresh cilantro, red cabbage, cotija cheese, salsa, but my favorite topping on tacos is something pickled. It’s brings a fresh tanginess that rounds out all the flavors. I make my own pickled shallots and it’s super easy.
4-6 Shallots, thinly sliced
1 cup Red Wine Vinegar
1/2 cup Water
1/4 cup Sugar
1/4 cup Kosher Salt
Boil together the vinegar, water, sugar and salt. Pour over sliced shallots. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
Serve pickled shallots on everything, they’re addictive and delicious!
Carnitas are so versitile and once you make a big batch you can make anything your heart desires. Nacho bar, tacos, enchiladas, flautas, taquitos, even Eggs Benedict. I highly recommend the eggs benedict!
As much as I’d like to recommend a wine pairing with this dish, I think it would be a sin to not recommend a fresh margarita.
I love all the gorgeous colors of Mexican food. Tacos can be one of the prettiest dishes served.
Pretty food, tastes good. “Just feed me tacos and tell me I’m pretty.”
Slow Cooker Carnitas Tacos
Slow cooker carnitas are so great to set a forget then put together when ready to serve up. Taco bar here is highly suggested.
- Slow Cooker Carnitas
- 2 tablespoons Olive Oil
- Kosher Salt and Ground Black Pepper, to season
- 3 pound Pork Shoulder
- 1 whole Onion, sliced
- 4-6 cloves Garlic, smashed
- 1 12 ounce Beer, lager or ale
- 1 cup Chicken Stock
- 1 tablespoon Dried Mexican Oregano
- 1 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
- 2 teaspoons Cumin
- 2 whole Limes, quartered
- 1 large Orange, quartered
- Taco Assembly
- 10 Corn Tortillas
- Monterey Jack Cheese, shredded
- Red Cabbage, Shredded
- Cilantro, rough chopped
- Pickled Shallots* see note
- Limes, quartered
- Salsa, your preference
- Cotija Cheese, Crumbled
- Step 1 In a large pan or cast iron skillet heat over medium high heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Season all sides of pork shoulder with kosher salt and ground black pepper. Sear all sides of the pork shoulder. Remove from pan and place pork in your slow cooker.
- Step 2 Add onion and garlic to pan, cook for about 2 minutes to let onions soak up some of the pan drippings and cook slightly. Stir in Mexican oregano, smoked paprika, cumin to pan. Turn heat to medium heat and deglaze pan with beer and chicken stock.
- Step 3 Pour all contents of the pan over the pork shoulder. Add limes and oranges to slow cooker and nestle around pork shoulder. Cook on low for 4-6 hours.
- Step 4 Remove carnitas to a pan and shred with tongs. Strain out solids in slow cooker and discard. Add liquid and shredded carnitas back into slow cooker. Keep warm until ready to serve.
- Step 5 There’s a couple ways to assemble your tacos, I like to fry up my tortillas for crispy carnitas tacos but you can also bake them.
- Step 6 To Fry: Heat 1 inch of oil to 350 degrees F in a large cast iron skillet. Spoon carnitas onto tortillas. Fold and fry 2 minutes per side until golden brown. Remove to a sheet pan fitted with a rack to drain. Fill with cheese and toppings of your choice. Serve and enjoy!
- Step 7 To Bake: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Spray a shallow pan with nonstick cooking spray. Spoon carnitas into tortillas. Top with cheese and stack side by side in pan so tacos are standing up. Bake for 15-20 minutes until brown. Fill with cheese and toppings of your choice. Serve and enjoy!
Savor and Enjoy!