/ / / / / Slow Cooker/ Pressure Cooker Pineapple Pork Carnitas

Slow Cooker/ Pressure Cooker Pineapple Pork Carnitas

Slow Cooker Pineapple Pork Carnitas are a sweet twist on carnitas and an easy dump and go slow cooker (or Instant Pot) recipe. Cooked in pineapple juice along with onions and peppers in the crock pot they make for a tasty weeknight dinner!

Table setting with pineapple pork carnitas in a serving dish and plated alongside rice and beans.

While visiting St Augustine one year we ate at this great Mayan place which had some really interesting food. It was possibly the best food we had in the South.

My husband and I got two different dishes to split and they were both incredible but by far my favorite was the Pineapple Pork Carnitas.

After our trip I was dying to make them and after a few attempts I finally got it figured out and it was awesome. Cooking the pork in pineapple juice gives this pork some incredible flavor and makes it so tender!

Want more tips? Get my resource guide on how to make Kid Friendly Latin American Food.

My kids who still seem wary of most meats absolutely love this dish. I think the pineapple gives it a really kid friendly flavor.

What to serve with it?

You can serve this as burritos, tacos, tostadas, or even as a salad! It would make really tasty nacho toppings as well. Really, just serve it up how you want.

My favorite sides to pair with this are Corn with Cumin Butter & Queso Fresco, cilantro lime or Mexican rice, and Cuban style black beans.

Often when I make Mexican food I like to make a drink to go along with it. Our favorites are Horchata and Agua de Jamaica which are both easy to make ahead.

spices, vegetables, a roast and canned goods on a table

Ingredients you need to make this:

  • pork roast
  • green pepper
  • red pepper
  • onion
  • chili powder
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • cumin
  • paprika
  • garlic powder
  • onion powder
  • red pepper
  • crushed pineapple
  • green chilies
  • pineapple juice

This is a great dish to make for a crowd using a pork shoulder roast which is one of the larger roasts you can buy but it is also a fairly inexpensive cut of meat. 

They often come in very large packages so I like to cut those roasts down into 2-3 sections since they can be so large. Some of our favorite recipes using pork shoulder include Garlic Balsamic Pork and Kalua Pork.

This is not spicy, but if you would like some heat you can add 2-3 Tablespoons of Mexican hot sauce (like El Yucateco) to the pineapple juice before pouring it over the roast.

collage of steps to prepare the roast in the slow cooker

How to make this:

  1. Place bell peppers and onion on bottom of crock pot and place the pork roast on top.
  2. In a small bowl combine spices. Sprinkle the spices over the roast.
  3. Spread the cans of crushed pineapple and green chilies over the top of the roast. 
  4. Pour pineapple juice over everything. Cook on low for 4-5 hours.
  5. Shred the meat in the crock pot. Cook for another 1-2 hours.

Tips and Tricks

I make them in my favorite slow cooker. It has 4 time settings so I can set it and know it will go to warm and not overcook the food!

Don’t skip shredding the meat and allowing it to cook for longer. This is when the meat really soaks up the pineapple flavor and makes it extra tender.

collage with pictures showing steps of cooking the carnitas

How to get crispy carnitas:

If you want crispy carnitas, spread the carnitas on a cookie sheet and place under the broiler for 5 minutes or until crispy.

How to make carnitas in the Instant Pot?

  1. Cut the pieces of pork roast into 2 inch chunks. Place in the Instant Pot and add the spices. Toss to coat. Add peppers, onions, crushed pineapple, green chilies, and the 1 cup of pineapple juice.
  2. Cook on manual high pressure for 40 minutes. Manually release pressure and remove lid once pin has dropped.
  3. Shred the meat and serve with some of the sides suggested below.

How can kids help make this?

Slow cooker meals are easy for kids to help make since there is no hands on cooking for them to do. Children of all ages can help measure the spices and mix them in a bowl and sprinkle over the roast.

Older children can help cut the vegetables and all kids can help add all the ingredients to the pot at the right time.

I would leave the shredding of the meat to an adult or older children since the meat is so hot. You can take chunks of meat out and place into smaller bowls so children can help shred meat that way.

Other Latin American inspired recipes:

a single plate of carnitas, beans, and rice

Pineapple Pork Carnitas

Slow Cooker Pineapple Pork Carnitas are a sweet twist on carnitas and an easy dump and go slow cooker (or Instant Pot) recipe. Cooked in pineapple juice along with onions and peppers in the crock pot they make for a tasty weeknight dinner!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 6 hours
Total Time: 6 hours 10 minutes
Course: Main
Cuisine: Latin American
Servings: 12 servings
Calories: 203kcal
Author: Jade Jones

Ingredients

Instructions

How to make in the slow cooker

  • Place bell peppers and onion on bottom of crock pot and place the pork roast on top.
  • Mix spices together in a small bowl. Sprinkle the spices over the roast.
  • Spread the cans of crushed pineapple and green chilies over the top of the roast. Pour pineapple juice over everything.
  • Cook on low for 4-5 hours. Shred the meat in the crock pot. Cook for another 1-2 hours.

How to make in the Instant Pot

  • Cut the pieces of pork roast into 2 inch chunks.  Place in the Instant Pot and add the spices.  Toss to coat.
  • Add peppers, onions, crushed pineapple, green chilies, and the 1 cup of pineapple juice.
  • Cook on manual high pressure for 40 minutes.  Allow the pressure to naturally release and remove the lid once pin has dropped.
  • Shred the meat and serve in tortillas with rice and beans.

Notes

How to get crispy carnitas:  If you want crispy carnitas, spread the carnitas on a cookie sheet and place under the broiler for 5 minutes or until crispy.
If you like spicy carnitas, add 2-3 Tablespoons Mexican hot sauce or substitute diced jalapenos for the green chilies to the pineapple juice and mix well before pouring over the pot roast.

Nutrition

Calories: 203kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 26g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 71mg | Sodium: 294mg | Potassium: 576mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 640IU | Vitamin C: 29mg | Calcium: 22mg | Iron: 1.1mg
Tried this Recipe? Pin it for Later!Mention @JonesinforTaste or tag #JonesinforTaste!

21 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Made this yesterday in slow cooker. Had to use bone-in pork shoulder (what’s available in COVID times), which increased the cooking time and made it harder to shred. I strongly suggest using boneless pork if possible for these reasons. Omitted the cayenne pepper b/c I used spicy canned jalapenos; it could have used more spice, so next time I’ll include the cayenne. It was delicious and easy; my family loved it.

    1. Hi Michelle, I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe. Using bone in definitely does not make this as easy to make. I recommend cooking for an extra couple hours and pulling out the pork to shred in a separate bowl or cookie sheet to make it easier to work around the bone.

  2. Hi Jade! Thanks for linking these up at the Retro Re-pin Party last week. I wanted to let you know that I’m featuring this recipe on this week’s Retro Re-pin Party! It will post Tuesday at 8pm ET. This week I’m cooking all things pumpkin, but I can’t wait to try this in my slow cooker next week!!

  3. I love recipes like this! We just had Pioneer Woman’s Spicy Shredded Pork today and this one needs to go in our rotation as well!

    1. Oh tamales! The next time I make this the extra filling will go right into tamales. The filling is what takes a long time so using leftovers is a great way to fill them. And hey, you have two meals from one!

  4. Hi Jade. Visiting from Bloggy Moms Bunch on FB. Following you on Twitter, G+, and FB. Would love if you shared some of your posts on the Merry Monday Linky Party.

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