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Tangy Slow-Cooker Pork Carnitas Tacos Recipe

After making these pork carnitas in the slow-cooker, you'll want to throw these in your usual dinner rotation!
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Why head to a restaurant for tacos when you can make this delicious pork carnitas recipe right at home? Thanks to this handy slow cooker recipe, you'll be able to make a large batch of pork carnitas—perfect for a crowd as you celebrate your favorite day: Taco Tuesday!

While pork carnitas can be made with pork shoulder, I found that making this with pork roast to be easy enough. You can find pork roast between four to five pounds at most grocery stores. The roast I used was from Trader Joe's!

To cook, you simply have to rub on some homemade taco seasoning, throw in some cut-up onions, and sprinkle on some lime juice. But the secret ingredient for a perfect pork carnitas taco? Freshly squeezed orange juice! That's right, buy two oranges, cut them in quarters, and squeeze out the juice right into the slow cooker on top of the meat. It will give the pork a juicy, tangy flavor that can't be beat.

This recipe can roast on high for four hours, but for best results, let it roast on low for eight. The meat will be falling off by the time you start breaking it apart! Serve it with tortillas, limes, queso fresco (or cotija!) cheese, and, of course, some pickled red onions.

How to make pickled onions

Making homemade pickled onions is easy. Thinly slice a red onion and place it in a large jar. In a medium bowl, mix together a cup of apple cider vinegar, 2 tablespoons of sugar, and 1 tablespoon of salt. Once the salt and sugar dissolve, pour the mixture into the jar with the onions. Store in the fridge for at least an hour before serving, but for best results, make a batch the night before making tacos.

Pork carnitas recipe
Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

Makes 8-10 servings


1 pork roast (around 4 pounds)
2 oranges, juiced
1 onion, quartered
4 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons taco seasoning
queso fresco
pickled onions
limes, cut in quarters

How to Make It

  1. Place the pork roast in the slow cooker. Rub on the taco seasoning on all edges of the roast.
  2. Place in the quartered onion slices around the roast.
  3. Pour on the squeezed oranges, as well as the lime juice.
  4. Cook on low for 8 hours (best results), or high for 4 hours.
  5. Serve on warmed tortillas with flaked on queso fresco, pickled onions, limes, and cilantro.

Easy, healthy, 350-calorie recipe ideas you can make at home.

3/5 (572 Reviews)
Kiersten Hickman
Kiersten Hickman is a freelance health and nutrition journalist. Read more about Kiersten