Delicious Instant Pot Carnitas Recipe

Instant Pot Carnitas

Instant Pot Carnitas is a delicious Mexican dish made with tender and flavorful pulled pork. It is traditionally cooked slowly in a pot or oven, but with the help of an Instant Pot, you can have this mouthwatering dish ready in a fraction of the time. The Instant Pot Carnitas recipe is perfect for a weeknight dinner or for entertaining guests, as it requires minimal effort but yields maximum flavor.

To make Instant Pot Carnitas, you will need a few key ingredients including pork shoulder, spices, citrus juices, and onions. The pork shoulder is the perfect cut of meat for this recipe, as it becomes incredibly tender and juicy when cooked in the Instant Pot. The spices used in this recipe, such as cumin, oregano, and chili powder, add a delicious depth of flavor to the dish. The citrus juices, typically orange and lime, help to tenderize the meat and add a bright and refreshing element. The onions provide additional flavor and help to keep the pork moist during cooking.


The ingredients for Instant Pot Carnitas are relatively simple and easy to find. Here is a list of what you’ll need:

  • Pork Shoulder or Butt: This is the main ingredient for carnitas. It’s a flavorful and tender cut of meat that works perfectly for this dish.
  • Spices: You’ll need a combination of spices to season the meat, including cumin, oregano, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, salt, and pepper. These spices add depth and flavor to the carnitas.
  • Orange Juice: The citrusy flavor of orange juice helps to tenderize the meat and adds a hint of sweetness.
  • Chicken Broth: This provides moisture and helps to cook the meat evenly.
  • Bay leaves: Bay leaves add a subtle earthy flavor to the carnitas.
  • Vegetables: You’ll need an onion and some garlic cloves to add savory notes to the dish.

With these ingredients, you’ll be able to create delicious and flavorful Instant Pot Carnitas that can be enjoyed in a variety of ways.

Step-by-step instructions for making Instant Pot Carnitas

To make Instant Pot Carnitas, follow these simple steps:

  1. Prepare the pork shoulder: Trim any excess fat from the pork shoulder and cut it into large chunks. Season the meat with salt, pepper, cumin, and oregano.
  2. Sear the meat: Set your Instant Pot to the “Sauté” mode and heat some oil. Sear the seasoned pork shoulder on all sides until browned. This will help to lock in the flavor.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients: Once the meat is seared, add chopped onion, minced garlic, bay leaves, orange juice, and chicken broth to the Instant Pot. These ingredients will add a delicious flavor to the carnitas.
  4. Cook the carnitas: Secure the lid on the Instant Pot and set the pressure release valve to the “Sealing” position. Cook the carnitas on high pressure for about 60 minutes. Once the cooking time is up, allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes, then do a quick release to release any remaining pressure.
  5. Shred the meat: Remove the pork shoulder from the Instant Pot and shred it using two forks. Discard any excess fat or bones. The meat should be tender and easy to shred.
  6. Crisp up the carnitas: If you prefer crispy carnitas, transfer the shredded meat to a baking sheet and broil it in the oven for 5-7 minutes until it becomes crispy and browned.

Once the carnitas are ready, serve them in tacos, burritos, or bowls with your favorite toppings such as salsa, guacamole, sour cream, and cilantro. Enjoy!

Tips from Professional Chefs on Making Instant Pot Carnitas

Preparing Instant Pot Carnitas can be a delightful experience, especially when you follow the recommendations of professional chefs. Here are a few tips they suggest:

  • Choose the Right Cut of Meat: To achieve tender and flavorful carnitas, it is crucial to select the right cut of meat. Chefs recommend using pork shoulder or pork butt for this recipe. These cuts have enough marbling and fat content, which will make the meat juicy and tender after pressure cooking.
  • Season Generously: The secret to delicious carnitas lies in the seasoning. Don’t hold back on the spices and herbs. Use a combination of cumin, oregano, garlic powder, chili powder, salt, and pepper to give your carnitas a robust flavor.
  • Sear for Extra Flavor: Before pressure cooking the pork, take a few minutes to sear the meat in the Instant Pot. This will add an extra layer of flavor to your carnitas. Heat the inner pot on the sauté function and sear the pork until it develops a golden brown crust.

Following these tips will help you create the perfect Instant Pot Carnitas that are tender, flavorful, and sure to impress your guests.


I recently purchased the Instant Pot Carnitas recipe and I have to say, I am extremely impressed with the results. The recipe was incredibly easy to follow, and the flavorful results were absolutely delicious. The combination of the tender and juicy shredded pork, with the crispy edges, was simply divine.

The Instant Pot made the cooking process so much easier and quicker than traditional methods. The pressure cooking function ensured that the pork cooked to perfection, resulting in a melt-in-your-mouth texture. I also loved that I was able to easily adjust the cooking time to suit my preference for a slightly crispier finish.

Another standout feature of this recipe was the incredible depth of flavor. The combination of spices and seasonings, including garlic, cumin, and oregano, created a rich and aromatic taste that was truly mouthwatering. The recipe also included a zesty citrus twist, which added a bright and refreshing element to the dish.

I highly recommend the Instant Pot Carnitas recipe to anyone who enjoys flavorful and tender pork. Whether you’re cooking for a weeknight dinner or hosting a gathering, this recipe is sure to impress. The ease of use and incredible taste make it a definite winner in my book. I can’t wait to try more recipes from Instant Pot!

As a busy working mom, I’m always on the lookout for quick and easy recipes that my family will love. That’s why I was so excited to try the Instant Pot Carnitas recipe. I had heard great things about it, and let me tell you, it did not disappoint!

The recipe was incredibly simple to follow. I just had to gather a few ingredients, like pork shoulder, spices, and orange juice, and throw them all into the Instant Pot. Then I set the timer and let the magic happen. In just under an hour, the most amazing aroma started wafting through my kitchen.

When it was time to serve the carnitas, I couldn’t believe how tender and flavorful they were. The meat practically melted in my mouth, and the spices gave it a delicious kick. I served them with warm tortillas, cilantro, and a squeeze of lime, and my family couldn’t stop raving about how delicious they were. Even my picky eater couldn’t resist going back for seconds!

The Instant Pot Carnitas is by far one of the best recipes I have ever tried. As a busy working woman, I am always looking for quick and delicious meals that I can prepare in no time. This recipe exceeded all my expectations.

The Instant Pot made the cooking process so easy and convenient. I simply marinated the pork with a blend of spices and let it sit for a few hours. Then, I placed it in the Instant Pot and set the timer. In just under an hour, the pork was perfectly cooked and tender. The aroma that filled my kitchen was absolutely mouthwatering!

Once the pork was cooked, I shredded it and let it crisp up in the oven. The result was the most amazing carnitas I have ever tasted. The meat was juicy, flavorful, and had just the right amount of spice. I served it with warm tortillas, freshly made salsa, and a squeeze of lime. It was a restaurant-quality meal made right in my own kitchen.

I have made this recipe multiple times now, and each time it blows me away. It has become a family favorite, and I love that I can easily feed a crowd with just a few simple ingredients. The convenience of the Instant Pot and the incredible flavor of the carnitas make this recipe a winner in my book. I highly recommend trying it out!

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