Pork Carnitas Rice Bowl
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Pork Carnitas Rice Bowls

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Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas are easily one of the most versatile recipes I can think of.  You throw them in the slow cooker really quickly in the morning, come home after work, and Voila!!  Dinner is pretty much ready.  The nice thing for me is that a pork shoulder has a pretty good amount of meat and its just Rob and I.  So we always end up with a lot of leftovers.

I think I am not up to 3 or 4 ways to use the pork carnitas, the original recipe was for tacos (while I love tacos, its a pretty obvious use).  The next way was as a Southwest Flatbread, which I found to be a fun twist for them.  I also recently used some leftover pork to make a pork-tortilla soup.  I will have that recipe up soon, so get excited!

The rice bowl version is a bit like the original taco version, in that it is a bit more classic.  The benefit was a healthy and generally easy weeknight meal.  The rice is a pretty classic lime-cilantro style.  All I do is zest and juice a lime and about a tablespoon of minced cilantro.

I whipped up a super simple corn salsa (canned corn, lime, cilantro, jalapeno, and red onion) to go with it for freshness.  Pair that with some avocado slices and a cilantro-lime crema (optional or dairy free alternative to make it dairy free), and done!

Pork Carnitas Rice Bowls

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time8 hrs
Total Time8 hrs 10 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Servings: 4 People


Spice Mix

  • 1 heaping tsp cumin
  • 1/2 heaping tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 heaping tsp ancho chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp Mexican oregano
  • pinch of cinnamon
  • salt and pepper


  • 3 lb pork shoulder
  • 1 12 oz. Beer Old Ox Golden Ox- local VA brewery
  • 1 Orange halved and juiced
  • 2 limes halved and juiced
  • 1 yellow onion quartered
  • 1 Jalapeno halved remove the ribs and seeds for less heat
  • 2 large garlic cloves crushed

Cilantro Lime Crema

  • 1/2 pint sour cream
  • 1/4 cup cilantro leaves
  • 1 lime juiced and zested

Corn Salsa

  • 1 can Sweet Corn Strained
  • 1/2 Red Onion Diced
  • 1/2 Jalapeno Diced
  • 1 Lime Zested and Juiced


  • Mix the ingredients in the spice mix in a small bowl and lightly rub all over the pork.
  • Combine the pork, fresh ingredients, and liquids in the slow cooker and cook on low for 8-10 hours.
  • When the meat is fork tender, remove from the slow cooker and shred. Place on a baking sheet and cook for 10 minutes to crisp

Cilantro Lime Crema

  • Add all ingredients to a food processor. Blend until combined.

Corn Salsa

  • Combine the ingredients and stir well.

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