Pressure Cooker Carnitas

These are the easiest, most delicious carnitas you will ever make. Depending on how much time you have on your hands, make them in either the electric pressure cooker OR slow cooker.

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I have made these carnitas embarrassingly often since first discovering the recipe 3 years ago. The original recipe is for the slow cooker, which is great if you have all day, or have the presence of mind to throw everything together before you leave for work. For me, this is not always the case. After receiving an electric pressure cooker for Christmas, I decided to adapt the recipe. That way, I’m able to have carnitas in a fraction of the time.

Our favorite way to eat these carnitas is Chipotle burrito bowl-style. Toss some of this crispy yet tender pork in a bowl with some Cilantro Lime Rice and a variety of taco/bowl toppings (beans, cheese, guacamole, etc.), and you’re in business. They’re also excellent in a taco (corn tortillas, please).

The slow cooker preparation comes from Damn Delicious.

You’ll need (yields 8 servings):

  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 2 onions, quartered
  • 1 tbs chili powder
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 2 onions, quartered
  • 3-4 lbs pork shoulder, boneless and trimmed of excess fat
  • 2 oranges, juiced
  • 2 limes, juice
  • fresh cilantro, chopped

Combine all of the spices in a small bowl. Set aside.

For the Pressure Cooker

Cut the pork shoulder into 2- to 3-inch chunks.

Add the garlic cloves, quartered onions, and cubed pork to the electric pressure cooker (PC) insert. Sprinkle the spice mixture over everything. Using your hands, toss the garlic, onions, and pork around in the spices, rubbing the spices into the meat. Add the orange and lime juice to the PC insert.

Place the lid on and lock it. Depending on what kind of PC you have, you’ll want to do a couple of different things. If you have an Instant Pot: Cook for 25 minutes on high pressure. If you have one without the high/low pressure manual options (like mine): select the “meat” menu and cook for 25 minutes. Depending on your preference, you can allow the pressure to release naturally or do a quick release.

For the Slow Cooker

Add the garlic cloves, quartered onions, and pork to the slow cooker. Sprinkle the spice mixture over everything. Using your hands, toss the garlic, onions, and pork around in the spices, rubbing the spices into the meat. Add the orange and lime juice to the slow cooker.

Put the lid on and cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4-5 hours.

Both Preparations

Here’s where both the electric PC and slow cooker recipes come back together.

Now that the pork shoulder is cooked through, you’ll want to crisp things up a bit. Preheat the broiler to high. Remove the pork from to a baking sheet lined with foil, and shred the meat. Spoon some of the juices and onions that are left over onto the shredded meat. Broil for 2-3 minutes.

Remove the sheet pan from the oven and toss the meat around a bit with tongs. Pour some more of the juices over the meat and broil for 2-3 additional minutes. Remove from the oven, top with chopped cilantro, and serve immediately. Definitely enjoy with some Cilantro Lime Rice.

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Pressure Cooker Green Chicken Chili

This soup is flavorful and a little spicy. Best of all, it comes together quickly in the pressure cooker!

Pressure Cooker Green Chicken Chili | A Nerd Cooks

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Like so many others out there, I received an electric pressure cooker for Christmas! Based on my observations on various social media channels, I know that the Instant Pot was a very popular present to give and receive. My parents picked up this Farberware model for me.

I’m just a little bummed that I waited this long to start using an electric pressure cooker. They’re so convenient! I love that you can throw an entire meal in there and have it on the table in like half an hour, with hardly any effort on your part.

This chili is as convenient as that, too. Just sauté some vegetables right in the pressure cooker before adding the rest of the ingredients, locking the lid, and stepping away. A little more than half an hour later and you have a seriously delicious chili. I’ve made it twice in the past two weeks. And since there are only two of us in the house, we get to have leftovers throughout the week. Perfect.

Pressure Cooker Green Chicken Chili | A Nerd Cooks

You’ll need (yields 6-8 servings):

  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, minced, seeds and ribs removed (leave the seeds and ribs for a spicier chili)
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 4.5 oz can diced green chiles (I used mild, but use whatever you prefer)
  • 15 oz can green enchilada sauce (I used medium, but again, use whatever you prefer)
  • 15.5 oz can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 4 cups chicken broth (reduce to 2 cups if you prefer a thicker chili*)
  • 1 cup frozen corn kernels
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • shredded cheddar cheese, sour cream/Greek yogurt, multigrain tortilla chips (for topping)

Add the olive oil to your electric pressure cooker (PC). Using the sauté/brown function, heat the oil and cook the onions, garlic, and jalapeño for 3-4 minutes. Add the cumin and oregano and sauté for another minute or two.

Add the chicken thighs, diced green chiles, enchilada sauce, cannellini beans, chicken broth, and frozen corn to the PC. Place the lid on and lock it. Depending on what kind of PC you have, you’ll want to do a couple of different things. If you have an Instant Pot: Cook for 25 minutes on high pressure. If you have one without the high/low pressure manual options (like mine): select the “chicken/poultry” menu and cook for 25 minutes. Allow the pressure to release naturally.

Open the PC and remove the cooked chicken thighs to a plate. Shred with two forks and return to the PC. Taste, and add salt and pepper to taste.

Ladle into bowls and top with cheese, sour cream/Greek yogurt, and crushed tortilla chips (we like multigrain), if desired.

*A few readers have mentioned, via Facebook and Reddit, that this chili is a bit on the thin side. As noted above, you can feel free to reduce the amount of chicken broth that you use if you prefer a thicker chicken chili.

Pressure Cooker Green Chicken Chili | A Nerd Cooks

Pressure Cooker Green Chicken Chili | A Nerd Cooks