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Pork Carnitas Recipe & Traditional Mexican Food Cookbook Giveaway

Pork Carnitas are an absolute favorite in our house, though we don’t have them very often. Being a household of two, this recipe makes plenty for us to eat on for a few days or to freeze some for another day. The flavor makes it worth every penny and every minute it takes! Definitely high on my recommendation list!

If you’d like to make your Pork Carnitas a part of a Cinco de Mayo celebration or even just a full Mexican or Spanish meal, try making some Tamarindo with it! Tamarindo is considered a Mexican drink, though it’s also famous in Costa Rica and the fruit originated in Africa!

This is another recipe that I totally recommend a dutch oven for, as they cut down on dishes and can easily go from the stove top into the oven. If you don’t have one, you could take the handles off of a pot that has a lid (so they don’t melt) and put it in the oven that way. Although you will need to pay attention so that you can modify the cooking time. I’ve never tried it that way, so I can’t really tell you how long to cook it in a metal pot.

What You’ll Need


    • 4 pound boneless pork butt, with fat trimmed and cut into 2 inch cubes
    • 1 ½ tsp salt
    • ¾ tsp pepper
    • 1 tsp ground cumin
    • 1 white onion, peeled and cut in half
    • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 TBSP fresh lime juice (though refrigerated lime juice can work too)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 medium orange, juiced, keeping the spent halves

How to Make Pork Carnitas

  1. Pork Carnitas: How to Make This Traditional, Delightful Homemade RecipeMove oven rack to lower middle position and pre-heat oven to 300°.
  2. Put all ingredients, including orange halves, in dutch oven.
  3. Bring mixture to a simmer over medium-high heat, uncovered. When it begins to simmer, cover pot and transfer into the oven.
  4. Cook until meat falls apart when prodded with fork, about two hours (in a dutch oven, adjust for any other type of pan).
  5. Line a cookie sheet or baking pan with parchment paper.
  6. Use a slotted spoon to remove the pork from the dutch oven and place on the parchment paper.
  7. Remove the onion and orange halves from the liquid.
  8. Bring the liquid to a boil on high heat and condense it down into a syrup like consistency, be sure and stir often so that it doesn’t burn on the bottom. Takes about 20 minutes.Pork Carnitas: How to Make This Traditional, Delightful Homemade Recipe
  9. Use 2 forks to pull apart the pork into three equal sized pieces then gently fold pork back into the syrup mixture, trying not to break the pork down any further. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed.Pork Carnitas: How to Make This Traditional, Delightful Homemade Recipe
  10. Spoon the syrup covered pork, spreading evenly to a single layer, back onto the parchment paper. 11. Move the rack to the middle of the oven and turn the oven to broil. Put the cookie sheet back in the oven until it is well browned and edges are slightly crisp, about 5 to 8 minutes, then flip the meat and repeat.

Pork Carnitas: How to Make This Traditional, Delightful Homemade Recipe @Crafty_ZooWhat to Serve With Them

We mentioned the Tamarindo in our intro, so we’ve got our drinks prepared, remember you can make the Tamarindo up to two days ahead of time. So, we’ll just discuss sides here.

Serve the Pork Carnitas on yellow corn tortillas, we like to warm ours in a hot cast iron skillet. We also usually have Spanish Rice and sometimes a salad. Guacamole is also a wonderful addition to serve on them! Plus, it’s healthy and who doesn’t love a little bonus of healthiness in a delicious meal!

For dessert, you could do a Pineapple Pie (easily made ahead of time) or, for something quick, some fried apples with ice cream!

If you’d like to branch out and go full on traditional, I highly recommend the cookbook Aguas Frescas & Paletas. It is filled with other traditional Mexican drinks and frozen delicious treats!

What will you serve with it? I’d love to hear your thoughts and any changes you made!

Enter to win this and other fabulous Giveaways! Buen Provencho!

One lucky Winner Will Get Their Very Own Copy of:

Buen Provencho!

Buen Provencho by Ericka SancezBuen Provencho is a cookbook full of traditional Mexican flavors with healthy ingredients that everyone can find. Flipping through the cookbook will have your mouth watering with fantastic photographs all throughout!

This book is written by the same author who wrote Aguas Frescas and Paletas and includes over 100 Mexican recipes. Authentic flavors with less calories! Breakfasts, salsas, holidays, dinner and more!

Giveaway is open to US, Canada and US APO/AFO addresses!

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter



Hi all! My name is Kaycee. I am now learning to navigate life as a single woman. Turns out, it's not all about husband and children. Who knew? So, I'm on a journey of self discovery. I have 5 children, 3 of which are married, 5 2 are in Heaven (my beautiful baby Acadia Reign and my Diva Princess Tara Elizabeth), and 7 grandchildren! Plus, a ton of fabulous nieces and nephews! My educational background is in Psychology and Child Development but my heart is in ministry, crafts, fun, reviews and my website, My Crafty Zoo. Or at least it was, now I'm learning who I really am, beneath all of the busy family life. It's an adventure to be sure. I look forward to continuing to share my life through word and pictures with you and love hearing your feedback! Thank you for taking the time to read and allowing me to share! I look forward to reading your comments!

40 thoughts on “Pork Carnitas Recipe & Traditional Mexican Food Cookbook Giveaway

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  • Jeanna Massman

    I love Mexican food. We live in an area with lots of excellent Mexican food restaurants.

  • My family enjoys Mexican food and this cookbook would inspire me to try new recipes.

  • The Mexican recipes will always be colorful and full of spices. Love them, Kayce! And cheers from #OMHGWW

    • Absolutely! I have always loved Mexican food and Mexican inspired flavors! Or, at least, what we consider Mexican. haha

  • Chris L

    I really like Mexican food but i do not know how to cook much of it. This would be great!

    • You should definitely try this recipe! It’s super easy and very rewarding!

  • I like that this book goes from breakfasts to dinners to holidays.

  • Victoria Barbour

    I love Mexican food and my daughters best friend is from Mexico. I would love to make dishes that remind her of home when she comes over to visit.

    • That would be such a sweet gesture! I hope that you find all of the flavors you both love and enjoy great moments together!

  • Francine A

    I love trying new recipes. Thank you .

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  • Merysa Rios

    Looks super yummy! Thanks for the recipe! 🙂

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  • LeAnn Harbert

    I need to try this recipe the next time my granddaughter spends the weekend.

    • I have so many great memories of helping my Grannies cook! I’m looking forward to making the same memories with my grands! Bet yours will love making it with you!

  • Darlene Carbajal

    I love looking for new Mexican recipes! My favorite food!

    • Mine too, friend! It’s delicious! I love that this cookbook has healthier alternatives for some of the ingredients! Seems I don’t burn as many calories as I use to!

  • Elizabeth

    Carnitas are my favorite—they make great tacos and tortas!

    • Absolutely! The meat is definitely great on pretty much everything! Plus, if we just eat the meat and veggies, it counts as diet food. hahahaha

  • Looks tasty to serve for dinner.

    • Definitely makes an amazing dinner! I’ve never gotten complaints for this recipe!

  • Vivienne

    Those look so good! I’m usually not a pork person but those carnitas sound mouth watering.

    • They are amazing, I swear! You could do the same recipe with chicken I think, maybe just adjust the cook time so that it doesn’t get dried out.

  • Theresa Norris

    Love Mexican recipes any time.

    • Same here! I could eat Mexican food every day of the week!

  • Lisa Babs

    My husband and I were talking the other day about how we need to learn to cook Mexican food; since there are no good Mexican restaurants near us. The Buen Provecho cookbook seems a great way to achieve this. I love that it uses healthy ingredients that we can easily find!

    • Definitely sounds like a good time to learn then! I would hate to not have any good Mexican food places near me! We don’t have any good Chinese food places and that just stinks!

  • That looks really delicious! I love trying new recipes.

  • Looks good…I love trying new recipes.

  • I’ve really come to enjoy traditional Mexican dishes (as opposed to Tex-Mex). I’m always on the lookout for another recipe to try.

    • I’m always looking for new recipes as well! Haven’t been posting as many new ones and really need to get back to that! Been working so hard to getting old stuff taken care of that it’s falling to the wayside! Balance is a hard thing!


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