Work, Life, Harmony

Tangy pork carnitas with red cabbage slaw

Tangy pork carnitas with red cabbage slaw

My sister Kirby’s tangy pork carnitas recipe is so good! It’s a fun, easy recipe that is always a crowd pleaser and best part it, you make it in a Dutch oven or crock pot. Those who know me, know I love to make food that I can walk away from while it’s cooking. Anything in an oven of any kind─electric, convectional, toaster, Dutch, you name it.

Here’s how I modified it to fit my nutritional needs:

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 4 hours (in Dutch oven on stove, 6 hours in crock pot)
Makes 8 servings

What you need

4 lbs pork shoulder (I usually buy the 8 lb pork shoulder from Sprouts and freeze half for later)
About 32 oz tomato sauce or strained tomatoes (I use Pomi tomato sauce which is 17.64 oz per box. You can use any tomato sauce you like or even ketchup if you prefer.)
1/4 cup green onion, chopped
2 tsp onion powder
2 tsp ground oregano
2 1/2 tsp ground black pepper (1/2 tsp for rub, 2 tsp for sauce)
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp turmeric (you can also use garlic or hot sauce instead)
1 tsp sea salt (1/2 tsp for rub, 1/2 tsp for sauce)
Whole wheat tortillas
Buttery spread (I use earth balance, soy free)


8 oz red cabbage, shredded
1 oz kale, chopped (this is about one kale leaf)
1 carrot, shredded
6 tsp rice vinegar
3/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/4 tsp sea salt

How you do it

Poke meat with fork. Rub pork with 1/2 tsp ground pepper and 1/2 tsp sea salt.

Place pork in Dutch oven or crockpot.

Combine tomato sauce, 2 tsp onion powder, ground oregano, paprika, turmeric, and remaining ground pepper and sea salt.

Pour sauce all over pork. Flip pork and coat the other side.

Secure lid and roast. If using a Dutch oven, cook on stove top on low heat for 4 hours. If using a crockpot, cook on high for 6 hours. Carnitas are finished cooking when pork is tender and easily breaks a part.

Check every two hours, break meat apart with a large spoon.

While the pork is cooking, combine red cabbage, kale, and carrot. In a separate bowl mix rice vinegar, ground pepper, and sea salt. Pour rice vinegar mixture over red cabbage, kale, and carrot mix and toss until fully covered. Chill.

After 4 to 6 hours, when you are ready to serve, slightly heat the whole wheat tortillas melting a spoonful of earth balance in large skillet and browning each side for about 2 minutes each. Add pork to whole wheat tortillas. Top with cabbage slaw that was chilled while the pork was cooking. This dish pairs great with pico de gallo and chips.


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