Real Deal Carnitas |

Real Deal Carnitas

  • Author: Katja from Savory Lotus



  • 34 pound boneless pork butt, shoulder, or leg roast, cut into 23 inch pieces
  • 1 and 1/2 tsp unrefined sea salt (I use this one)
  • 1 tsp cumin powder (like this)
  • 1 tsp chili powder (like this)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/2 cup fresh-squeezed orange juice
  • juice from 2 limes
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • filtered water


  1. Preheat oven to 325’F
  2. Place pork pieces into heavy dutch oven (like this) and sprinkle salt, cumin, and chili powder on top. Give a little mix to evenly coated and arrange pork in a single layer in the pan.
  3. Add bay leaves, orange juice, lime juice, and garlic. Then add just enough water to cover pork pieces about 2/3 of the way. (Do not totally submerse.)
  4. Cover pan and place into oven for 2 and 1/2 hours, turning the meat once.
  5. Remove pan from oven. Carefully pull pork pieces out of pan with a slotted spoon and set aside. Remove bay leaves from pan and bring the remaining liquid in the pan to a boil on the stove top. Simmer until you have about a cup of liquid left. (Mine took about 8 minutes)
  6. When pork is cool enough to handle, shred into bite-sized pieces and arrange single layer onto a baking sheet lined with foil. Pour the remaining liquid from pan over shredded meat and place back into oven until crisp and brown to your liking- anywhere from 8-15 minutes.
  7. Serve with a bit of kale guacamole, fresh cilantro and spicy salsa. Heaven!