Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 3 hours 30 mins
Total time: 3 hours 40 mins
A classic Mexican dish of succulent pork that is beautifully crispy and caramelized on the outside and tenderly voluptuous, melt in your mouth on the inside. (Inspired by a petite and cute crossfit girl that loves carnitas and is scary strong)
  • 5 lbs bone in pork boston butt roast or pork shoulder bone removed then (You could also use a 3-4 pound boneless boston butt roast or pork shoulder to save yourself from having to cut out the bone) cut into 2 inch chunks
  • 1½ teaspoons mexican red chile powder
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3-4 cloves garlic peeled and sliced thinly
  • ¼ cup fresh squeezed lime juice
  • water to cover pork
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with foil and place to the side.
  2. In a small bowl mix red chile powder, cumin, and sea salt then place cut up boston butt roast in medium sized bowl and toss with spice mixture.
  3. In a large dutch oven or large heavy bottom pot (I used a 5 quart heavy bottomed pot) place spice tossed boston butt roast around bottom of the dutch oven or pot being sure that it is in a single layer, it is okay if they are touching just make sure they aren't on top of one another.
  4. To the dutch oven or pot add lime juice and then pour in water so that it covers ¾ of the pork but doesn't completely submerse it then add sliced garlic, bay leaves and cinnamon stick.
  5. Place in the dutch oven or heavy bottomed pot in oven uncovered for 3½ hours turning the meat a couple of times while cooking.
  6. Once the meat is finished pull it out and discard bay leaves and cinnamon stick but do not discard what is in the dutch oven or pot (the lard), as soon as the meat is cool enough to handle tear into bite sized pieces and add torn meat to foil lined baking sheet and pour fat from the bottom of the dutch oven or pot over the meat so that it's evenly covering the bottom of the baking sheet and meat.
  7. Place meat back in the oven until crispy and caramelized to your liking on the outside. (I usually do mine for 10-20 minutes depending on the size and what I'm feeling)
The liquid will eventually evaporate but don't worry this is supposed to happen, it should be somewhat close to done when it does, if it evaporates very early on then add an extra ½ cup of water but no more than that. We want the liquid to be evaporated when they're almost done that way they fry a little bit in the fat before we take them out and we have only the fat left to pour over the meat to fry it in the oven with. Also I served this with my Cauliflower Tortillas and they were amazing.
Recipe by Slim Palate at