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Recipe: Make-Ahead Shredded Pork for Carnitas

Recipe: Make-Ahead Shredded Pork for Carnitas

Here is one of the easiest ways ever to prepare pork shoulder. Once you get the hang of this, you can add other spices to it. Serve over a bowl of rice, or wrapped in a tortillas with some store bought pico de gallo. Use the leftover meat to make enchiladas or tacos (see How to Make Meals That Stretch).


4-5 lbs pork shoulder (aka Boston butt)
kosher salt
3 cups chicken broth or water
1 white or yellow onion, quartered
1 tbsp dried oregano
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp paprika


An hour before starting to cook, remove the meat from the refrigerator, rinse, and pat dry with paper towels. Sprinkle with salt.


Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F.

Place pork in a 5 to 7 quart Dutch oven and add the broth, onion, oregano, cumin, and paprika. Add a generous pinch of salt. Place over high heat, cover, and bring to a boil; spoon some of the hot liquid over the top of the meat, then cover again and transfer to the oven. Cook until meat is literally falling apart, about 4 hours, spooning liquid over meat once or twice during cooking.

Remove pot from oven and place on stove top. Transfer meat to a platter. With a large spoon, push meat off the bone in chunks; discard bone and any large pieces of fat. Put meat back in pot and turn on heat to medium-high; cook, stirring to break it up with a spoon, until liquid in pot has almost entirely evaporated and meat begins to sizzle, 5 to 10 minutes (the meat should pull into shreds as you work; don’t worry if there are some larger chunks).

For more great ideas on carryover cooking, see How to Make Meals That Stretch.

Amanda Haas is a cookbook author and founder of the website One Family One Meal, a site that provides free recipes, menu plans, and shopping lists to parents who want to cook healthy meals their entire family will love. Her most recent book project is Williams-Sonoma’s Essentials of Roasting, Revised Edition.

Image Source: Courtesy Amanda Haas

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, POPSUGAR.

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