Crockpot Carnitas

Last week I went grocery shopping like I do every week, only this time I had to pick up things that I could cook on the griddle or in the deep fryer or crockpot because my stove decided to emit some smells strong enough to make me call the local fire department to make sure that my house wasn’t about to explode from my trying to bake a cupcake order for a dinner party the next day.

The fire department determined that it wasn’t a plug or outlet issue and that I should leave it unplugged until I could get an electrician to look at it. The Husband and I have two friends that are electricians, but they are both super busy, so in the meantime we have to make do.

We did a bit of eating out the first couple of days, but that got old (and expensive) real fast, and I only go to my mom’s once a week, so I had to figure out a way to make do.

Fortunately, everyone in my house likes hot wings and chicken tenders and breakfast for dinner, but last night I was determined to have pork carnitas tacos and had to figure out how to make it work. I’d made them before but having no use of my stove or oven proved to be a bit tricky. I hopped on Pinterest to see what methods I could maybe put together to make this work with what I had and decided that where I would have seared the meat on the stove I would drop the pork cubes in the deep fryer for a few minutes to lock in the flavors of the seasonings. After that, I put the meat in the crockpot on high for four hours. I miss the charring that the broiler provides, and I hate the hot grease smell that seems to linger in my house for far too many days after unplugging the deep fryer, but overall, they were absolutely delicious, and I just might use this method again!

Yields about 8 tacos

Crockpot Carnitas

35Prep Time

4 hrCook Time

4 hr, 35Total Time

Save Recipe


  • 1 ½ - 2lbs. pork stew meat
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 1 orange
  • ½ lime
  • 1tsp. salt
  • 1 ½ tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 ½ tsp. onion powder
  • ½ tsp. black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp. ground cumin
  • ½ Tbsp. chili powder
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 ¾ C vegetable stock
  • ¾ C water
  • ½ Tbsp. cornstarch
  • Oil for frying


  • Preheat the oil in your deep fryer to 400 degrees.
  • Cut the orange and lime in quarters and set aside.
  • Squeeze one-half of the lime and orange over the pork and stir to coat.
  • Put the spent orange quarters in the crockpot with the onions. Squeeze the other half of the orange quarters over the onions in the crockpot and put the spent quarters in as well.
  • Season the pork with the salt, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic, and onion powders and stir to ensure even coating. Place in the basket of the deep fryer and cook in batches for about 2 minutes per batch.
  • Put each finished batch of pork in the crock pot and add in the bay leaves, water, and vegetable stock, and cook on high (4 – 6 hours) until tender.
  • Place one-half tablespoon cornstarch in microwave safe bowl. Remove one-half cup of the liquid from the crockpot and add to the cornstarch and whisk until smooth.
  • Microwave on high for 3 – 4 minutes until boiling and thick.
  • Carefully remove the sauce from the microwave and add in the pork, stirring to coat.
  • Place pork in a warm tortilla shell and garnish with your favorite taco toppings.

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