Avatar photo
Recipe by
Comments Off on Carnitas
| Servings: Serves 4


  • ½ medium onion, roughly chopped
  • 8 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 Tablespoon oregano (Mexican oregano, if available)
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 Tablespoon kosher salt
  • ½ cup water
  • 5 pound Pork Shoulder, cut into 2 inch chunks
  • 1 cup Coca Cola
  • 3 bay leaves
  • ½ orange juiced


  1. Preheat the oven to 450° degrees.
  2. Blend the garlic, onion, oregano, thyme, salt and ½ cup of water in a blender until fairly smooth.
  3. Combine the pork and bay leaves in a 6-quart Dutch oven or deep baking dish that can hold the pork in no more than 2 layers. Pour the blended mixture, the orange juice and the Coca-Cola over the pork and stir and toss well.
  4. Cover the pot and cook in the oven until the pork is very tender, about 2 hours. The sides of the pot might look dark. That’s just fine.
  5. Uncover the pot and return it to the oven. Continue cooking, tossing well and scraping the bottom of the pot every 10 minutes until the pork is slightly crispy on the outside and deep golden brown, about 30 minutes. Coarsely shred the pork.
  6. Serve alongside corn tortillas, lime wedges and top with chopped white onion, chopped cilantro and either a fresh green salsa, a jalapeño and pineapple salsa or pico de Gallo with lemon zest. All of these recipes are in the cookbook.


MAKE AHEAD: You can make carnitas up to three days before you plan to serve them.


Adopted from Roberto Santibañez’s cookbook “Tacos, Tortas, and Tamales: Flavors from the Griddles, Pots, and Streetside Kitchens of México”