Cuban Carnitas

Yield: approx 3lbs of meat


4 # boneless pork shoulder cut into large cubes

1 Bottle (26 oz) Bitter orange juice marinade or bitter orange juice

4.5 tsp salt

cup sugar

1.5 tsp msg or accent

2 tbsp cumin

4 tbsp syracha (or your favorite hot sauce)

3 lb good quality pork lard



The day before

1.) Mix bitter orange juice, salt, sugar and msg into a large bowl and stir till dissolved

2.) Add meat to #1 stir, cover and marinate in fridge overnight (12-16 hours is best, minimum 4 hours)

The day of

1.) Pre-heat oven to 325 f

2.) In a large pot bring lard to a slow bubble

3.) Strain pork from marinade and toss with cumin and syracha

4.) Add meat to lard and turn heat up to medium high

5.) When lard has medium bubbles breaking through the surface cover with foil and put into oven

6.) Cook approx 3 hours until fork tender and remove meat with slotted spoon, drain on paper towels to remove grease.

7.) Turn oven up to 375 f

8.) Put pork on tray and cook in oven for 8 minutes to crisp

9.) Remove and serve with sour cream, your favorite salsa and guacamole



This is my take on the great Mexican classic. I was looking for a way to use bitter orange and I found it here. The orange tastes like a cross between a sweet grapefruit and lemon, it works perfectly with the fatty pork by cutting its richness. Make a huge batch because there never seems to be enough. Msg is not as bad for you as stated, and has an amazing affinity for proteins and meats. This rivals the carnitas I buy from my local shop and I hope you enjoy them.