Instant Pot Crispy Pork Carnitas (Paleo, Whole30)

Can kids become possessed?

I think mine was today.

We went out to breakfast and then grocery shopping and she was great. But then we got home and the Spawn of Satan emerged. She wanted TV… no. She wanted our phones to watch YouTube… no. She wanted her tablet… no. We are strict with screen time and every time explained that she had already watched TV that morning and she had whole playroom full of toys to play with.

I finally convinced her that she should play and she picked dress up. OBVIOUSLY, she had to decide to be Anna from Frozen. Where is the Anna costume. Eff if I know!!! She wore it to daycare on Halloween and I don’t remember seeing it since. Maybe she has worn it? I tried all different options, all unacceptable.

We finally got her to nap thinking she was just tired and that she would be a nice normal, regular jerk of a 4 year old… wrong, she was still very much possessed by some hellish creature. She then spent a good bit of the afternoon telling us she was going to throw a fit and stomp her feet.

Do not laugh at your kids if they tell you this, it will make things so much worse. Resist to laugh at the tiny terrors. (HA!!!)

And days like that are exactly why I need recipes like Instant Pot Crispy Pork Carnitas in my life.

Quick, easy, delicious, versatile. Check! Check! Check! Check!

I’m sure I could list other awesome reasons why this recipe is a winner but I’m trying to focus and write this quickly before the Spawn of Satan discovers that I have hidden myself away from her screeches.



The Instant Pot makes this insanely flavorful in a short amount of time. You can have this on the table in under an hour and a half. Can’t beat that!

You don’t have to put it under the broiler when you are done, but it gives the shredded pork edges a nice bit of texture that sets it apart from your average pulled pork.

Plus, these Crispy Carnitas are Paleo and Whole30 compliant, which just rocks.

We plan on doing another round of Whole30 later on this year so we are always on the look out for yummy recipes that will satisfy us and keep us inspired while doing a round. This is going to be on our dinner table often, and I’m sure it will be on your’s too.

Instant Pot Crispy Pork Carnitas

Makes 6-8 servings

Total time: less than 1 1/2 hours

Instant Pot: 6 Quart+


  • 3.75 – 4 pounds bone-in pork shoulder, excess fat trimmed off
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 5 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 Cup water
  • 2 Tablespoons course salt
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon Cayenne


  1. Place the pork shoulder in the pot of a pressure cooker (6 Qt+) with the olive oil. Turn on the saute function. Brown all of the sides of the pork. Turn off.
  2. Cover the pork with the rest of the ingredients.
  3. Lock the cover one and then cook on high pressure for 40 minutes. Let pressure release naturally, about 15 minutes.
  4. Remove the pork shoulder from the pot; discard the bone. Pour the liquid in the pot through a mesh strainer, let the fat separate, and then skim it from the liquid. Set aside.
  5. Allow the pork to cool enough so that you can shred it by hand or with 2 forks. Add 1/4 Cup of the liquid to the pork, mix well.
  6. Spread the pork out on a rimmed sheet pan.  Place under the broiler until meat is crisp on the edges, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  7. Serve in tacos, burritos, rice bowls, salads.
  8. When storing, pour more liquid into the pork to keep it moist. I suggest reheating in a skillet


Products used


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3 thoughts on “Instant Pot Crispy Pork Carnitas (Paleo, Whole30)

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