Instant Pot Carnitas
This Instant Pot Carnitas recipe is perfect for tacos, burritos, enchiladas, taquitos, taco salads, etc. It’s quick, easy and had so much flavor. Crisp it up in the oven after cooking and you will have a homemade meal that tastes like it came from a Mexican restaurant!
I love Mexican food. And I love that you can take any meat and turn it into several easy meals after cooking it. Now that I have an Instant Pot, the possibilities are endless. My go-to right now is Carnitas. It’s shredded and crispy and delicious. There are so many ways to serve this shredded pork, I have some ideas after the recipe.
This recipe has A TON of flavor and spice (not spicy, but a spice flavor). Since ground ancho chili powder and ground chipotle powder were not available at my grocery store, I ground my own. This sounds hard, but it was super easy. See notes at the end on how to do this. Also, if you do love heat spice, I would recommend adding a chopped jalapeño or habanero into the liquid or just have it as a garnish.
Instant Pot Carnitas
- Instant Pot or electric pressure cooker
- 3-4 lb pork shoulder or butt, cut into larger cubes (bone-in or out)
- 1 tbsp ground ancho chili powder
- 2 tsp ground chipotle chili powder
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tbsp oil (olive, vegetable, coconut…I use olive)
- 1 can/bottle beer, use a pilsner or lager style (think corona!)
- 1 large orange, juiced (about ½ cup)
- 1 large onion, cut into fourths
- 1-2 tbsp canned chipotle peppers
- 3-5 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 bay leaves
- Mix the ancho chili powder, chipotle chili powder, cumin, coriander, oregano, and salt in a small bowl. Cut the pork into 2-3 inch cubes and rub the spice mixture all over
- Set your InstantPot to Sauté, add oil and brown the cubed meat on all sides in batches so it goes faster and you can move the meat around. After all of the pieces are browned, remove and set aside.
- Add the beer and orange juice to the pot and scrape up all the browned bits from the bottom. Add the onion, chipotle peppers, garlic and bay leaves to the pot and place the pork pieces on top.
- Place lid on the InstantPot, lock into place and set the Instant Pot to Pressure Cook on High for 90 minutes (make sure steam vent is closed).
- When done, allow the steam to release naturally. Once the pressure has all released, remove the pork pieces from the pot, leaving the cooking liquid in the pot. Turn the Instant Pot back to Sauté and allow the cooking liquid to simmer.
- Turn your oven broiler to HIGH. Shred the meat using forks, a knife or shredding claws. Place on a sheet pan with foil or parchment. Pour some of the leftover liquid on the shredded pork to keep it moist and broil until crispy and brown on top.
- This makes a lot of shredded pork so I always freeze half for later (we have 2 adults and 1 toddler). It freezes really well (EXTRA TIP: Add a little bit of the leftover cooking liquid to bag/container for freezing to have when it thaws out).
- Always read the instruction manual that came with your Instant Pot or electric pressure cooker and follow all safety guidelines.
→Tacos: soft, crunchy, fried, you decide!
Grinding your own spices
This is my secret… my Krups coffee grinder. I do A LOT with this small gadget (see post HERE), included grinding my own spices. Here’s how I did it:
1. I got a package of dried chilies, here is what it looks like:
2. I cut up the dried chili, put it in the grinder pulsed until it turned into a powder. It’s that easy and it really works! The smell is amazing and it makes quite a bit of spice powder. I put it in a small Tupperware container, labeled it and added it to my spice cabinet for next time.
Enjoy your carnitas and let me know how you served them. Tag me on Instagram @emilyfabulous_blog. If you love this recipe, sign up for my email list and I will send you even more delicious and fun recipes!