Carnitas (Paleo + Whole30)

   There is so much I love about carnitas!  They are so versatile, easy to reheat, and a great way to change up the weekly dinner menu.  When I know a recipe is as tasty and as satisfying as this one, I don’t mind taking the extra step after the slow cooker to make it that much better.  The secret to this recipe is letting the pork marinate overnight (or two) before placing it in the slow cooker. The pork will then truly embody the delicious flavors it has been resting in.  My favorite way to enjoy this recipe is nestled inside Siete almond flour tortillas that have been toasted or alongside a few over easy eggs. Enjoy!


Pork Marinade:

  • 4 Tbsp avocado oil
  • 3 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 Tbsp cumin
  • 1 Tbsp oregano
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp chipotle chili powder (or chili powder)
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 4 lb bone-in pork shoulder.  Trim off fat.

In Slow Cooker

  • 2 oranges, juiced
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 cups diced onions
  • ½ tsp salt


  • In a small bowl, combine all marinade  ingredients and create a paste.
  • Rub marinate all over the pork and let marinate 24- 48 hours in the fridge.*
  • When ready cook combine orange juice, lime juice, bay leaves, and salt and add to slow cooker.
  • Place in pork and dump onions on top.
  • Cover and cook on low for 8-9 hours or until pork is tender.
  • Shred the pork and place back into the slow cooker to absorb the juice.   Discard bones and any access fat.
  • Let pork absorb the juice for about 20 min on the low setting.
  • To add crispness, pan sear the pork by heating a large sautee pan over medium heat and add about 2 Tbsp avocado oil.  Once hot add pork to the pan and drizzle with leftover juice from the slow cooker. Cook until desired crispness. **
  • Add more oil and juices to the pan and cook in batches.
  • Serve inside your favorite paleo wrap or lettuce wraps.  
  • Optional toppings include guacamole, peppers and onions, and salsa.


* I marinated for 48 hours.

**I let the pork sit in the juice from the slow cooker until I am ready to cook it on the stove.

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