This homemade carnitas taco recipe is the best, most flavorful taco recipe you will ever eat!
I always feel like I make a ton of carnitas but we usually eat most of it (or all of it!) in one sitting! It is so delicious!
Other taco favorites:
You guys know I love tacos! And here in the southwest I get plenty of opportunity to try so many different types.
One of my favorites is pork carnitas tacos- and I wanted to share my favorite recipe with you!
How to make pork carnitas tacos:
- Cut up the pork and rub all sides with salt.
- In a large stock pot heat oil and then brown all sides of the pork pieces.
- Add in the spices, orange slices, onion and broth, bring to a boil and the reduce heat to a simmer for ~1.
- While pork is cooking whip up some easy red chile sauce.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- When pork is done scoop out the meat onto a cutting board and shred with a fork.
- Then place shredded pork on baking sheet and spoon on a good amount of leftover broth over the shredded pork.
- Bake in a preheated oven for 10 minutes, then spoon more leftover broth over the pork and bake for 10 more minutes.
- Fry up some taco shells, top with red chile sauce, onion, cilantro and enjoy!
Pork Shoulder or Pork Butt?
Pork shoulder and pork butt are the same cut of meat- confusing I know, but it is what it is. It is truly from the shoulder of the pig.
Pork Butt buying tip: Sam’s or Costco usually has a great deal on pork butts, but Walmart isn’t bad either. I usually buy an 8lb, freeze half right away and cook the rest.
What temperature should pork reach before it is safe to eat?
Pork butt needs to reach 145°F before it is safe to eat HOWEVER, I highly recommend cooking it until it is between 200°F and 210°F. I love using my Dash thermometer for quick temperature readings! (affiliate link)
When it reaches between 200°F and 210°F the cartilage in the pork finally breaks down into a shreddable delicious meat- perfect for tacos.
What type of sauce for pork carnitas tacos do I recommend?
Watch how to make my red chile sauce here:
Red Chile Sauce Tip: If you want your red chile sauce smooth- just blend longer and strain- that easy!
This Mexican pulled pork is so delicious! I love the bits of orange and onion in it- not to mention all the delicious spices!
Make sure to check out these other tasty recipes:
- Smoked Chicken
- Best Homemade Hamburgers
- Green Chile Burgers
- Green Chile Stew
- Lucky Charms Cookies
- Homemade Chocolate Cake
- Easy Lemon Cookies
Watch how to make this recipe!
- 2-3 lbs pork butt
- 2 tbs oil
- 2-4 tsp salt
- 2 tsp lime juice
- ½ onion chopped
- ½ tsp dried oregano
- 2 tsp chili powder
- 1 tbs garlic powder
- ¼ tsp cumin
- 1 orange sliced into rounds
- 32 oz beef broth
- 1 batch red chile sauce
- 12-15 corn tortillas
- Trim the fat from the pork butt, and slice the whole thing into several large chunks (like 3-4) then rub the salt on all sides of the pork.
- Heat oil in a heavy bottom stock pot, then add the pork. Brown all sides of the pork pieces. This will take 7-10 minutes. Make sure to keep flipping the pork to get a nice brown on the sides and to not burn them.
- Once browned, add in all the spices, onion, orange slices, and beef broth. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for 1 -1.5 hrs or until the pork is cooked all the way through. The pork needs to reach at least 145°F.
- While pork is cooking on the stove make a batch of the best red chile sauce!
- Once cooked, using a slotted spoon, transfer the meat to a cutting board and shred. Keep the water it was boiled in- you’ll need it soon! Preheat the oven to 350°F. While oven is preheating, shred the pork. I find using two forks the easiest method to do this.
- Place shredded meat on a parchment lined baking sheet. spoon a good amount of the reserved seasoned water over the meat and bake the meat for 10 minutes. Then spoon more seasoned water over the pork and bake for another 10 minutes.
- Fry up some taco shells, add red chile sauce, fresh onion, cilantro and enjoy!
- The pork needs to reach at least 145°F BUT between 200°F and 210°F is best to break down cartilage and have it be shreddable.
- This can be served with my red chile sauce- highly recommend or my cilantro lime sauce- also tasty!
- Get my favorite kitchen thermometer here- the Dash from Thermoworks! (affiliate link)