Simple Carnitas


Pork, water, salt – that’s it for this simple batch of carnitas.

I set up my Big Green Egg  for an indirect cook – filling the firebox with lump charcoal and using the plate setter with a trivet on it to diffuse the heat. Once the Egg had stabilized at 300°F, I added a couple of chunks of hickory for smoke.

I cut an 8 pound boneless pork shoulder roast (Boston butt)  into 3-inch chunks, discarding any big pieces of connective tissue, but keeping all of the fat. I put the meat into a 12-quart Dutch oven, mixed in 2 tablespoon of kosher salt, and added a cup of water.

I put the Dutch oven on the grill uncovered, closed the lid, and let it simmer undisturbed for about an hour. The idea is to have the water render the fat out of the meat, then when the water evaporates the meat starts to fry in it’s own lovely grease.

I gave it a stir, and let it continue to cook for another hour until the liquid had cooked down and the meat began to brown. There was enough fat rendered from this batch to brown the meat, but had there not been, I would have added a little lard or peanut oil.

Once the meat started to brown I started checking  and stirring  about every 15 minutes until the meat was crispy, but not dry or burned. The meat was done after about 3 hours total cooking time.

Here it is served on hot corn tortillas with a big glob of guacamole. Heaven.

5 thoughts on “Simple Carnitas”

  1. Excellent Blog you have going on here. I found it not too long ago and have been extremely pleased with everything that I have cooked. The carnitas were no exception to that. with the salt, i used about 2T of a paprika based rub that I made that really helped things out. As for the guac…3 avocados, 1/2 red onion diced, 1 diced jalapeno, one diced tomato, about 1t of salt. Couldn’t have been better. Thanks for the recipe.

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