Instant Pot Pulled Pork – Kristine’s Kitchen

Instant pot pulled pork slow cook recipe

Instant Pot carnitas are irresistibly tender and juicy with the best crunchy edges! This easy recipe makes delicious Mexican shredded pork to serve in tacos, burritos bowls and nachos.

Instant Pot crispy carnitas on a baking sheet.

If you haven’t tried Instant Pot carnitas yet, you’re missing out. This Mexican shredded pork is seasoned with onion, garlic, cumin, orange juice and lemon juice. It is delicious and tasty, with the most delicious crispy edges.

After the pork is cooked in the instant pot, it is melted tender and easily crushed. The shredded pork is placed under the grill for a few minutes for crispy before serving. I can never resist sneaking out a few bites, straight out of the pan.

My favorite way to serve carnitas is wrapped in hot tortillas, topped with chopped onions, cilantro and avocado. Everyone always comes back for seconds when the Instant Pot carnitas are on the table!

Close-up of the instant pot carnitas taco.

These carnitas are one of our favorite Instant Pot recipes of all time. Usually, pork carnitas are cooked slowly like my classic Carnitas recipe. By cooking carnitas in our Instant Pot we speed up the process without sacrificing any of the tender texture that melts in the mouth or the delicious taste.


pot carnitas recipe

ingredients <img src="" alt="Ingredients

for instant pot carnitas recipe.” />

You’ll need just a few ingredients to make this carnitas recipe


  • Pork shoulder or pork butt: The best cut of pork to use for carnitas (and Instant Pot Pulled Pork!) is a boneless pork shoulder or pork butt. The meat will become incredibly tender in the pressure cooker, and the marbling of fat will make the carnitas especially tasty.
  • Condiments: Dried oregano, ground cumin, chili powder, salt and pepper are used to season the meat while cooking.
  • Orange juice and

  • lemon juice: The acidity of citrus fruits provides a delicious flavor and provides the cooking liquid to allow the Instant Pot to pressurize. Some recipes use chicken broth or beer, as well as citrus, but I’ve kept this recipe as simple as possible. I recommend using freshly squeezed orange and lemon juice.
  • Onion and garlic

  • : Chopped yellow onion and chopped garlic are essential for flavor.

How to

Make Instant Pot Carnitas

If you’re new to instant cooking, check out my guide on How to Use an Instant Pot to help you get started


  1. Cut the pork into 2- or 3-inch pieces and place it in the instant pot. Raw pieces of instant pot pork.
  2. Combine seasonings in a small bowl. Then sprinkle the seasoning over the pork in the instant pot and rub it all over the meat. Condiments added to instant pot pork.
  3. Pour the orange juice and

  4. lemon juice, and add the onion and garlic. Two photos side by side showing adding orange juice to the pot and onion, garlic and pork in the pot.
  5. Cook under high pressure for 1 hour. The instant cooker will take about 15 minutes to reach the pressure and then the cooking time will start countdown.
  6. When the cooking time is over, let the pressure release naturally for 15 minutes. This natural release makes the meat more tender. Then quickly release any remaining pressure before opening the Instant Pot lid.
  7. Shred the pork, discarding any excess fat.
  8. To make the carnitas nice and crispy, spread the shredded pork on a bordered baking sheet. You can line the baking sheet with aluminum foil for easy cleaning. Add some of the juices from the instant pot to the pork. Put the carnitas under the grill in the oven for 5-10 minutes, until the edges are nice and crispy. Shredded pork on baking sheet.
  9. Serve the carnitas wrapped in tortillas, in a bowl of burritos, in a salad or as desired.

Find the complete recipe with ingredient quantities and instructions on the recipe card below.

Instant carnitas in tongs held on a baking sheet.

How to serve


These carnitas make the best pork tacos, wrapped in hot flour tortillas or corn tortillas. They’re also perfect for making pork nachos or burrito bowls, served over Instant Pot rice (also see how to cook rice on the stove) with your favorite ingredients. Or serve them in a salad. Whether you’re making tacos, burrito bowls, or salad, try some of these flavor-boosting ingredients:

  • White or red onion
  • Fresh cilantro
  • Avocado or guacamole
  • Sliced jalapeño
  • sauce
  • Pico de Gallo
  • Roasted sweet potatoes
  • Black beans
  • Corn

tomatoes Instant carnitas served on corn tortillas with jalapeño, avocado, red onion and cilantro.

Storage and reheating tips

Instant Pot carnitas are very friendly to meal preparation. Here’s how to store and reheat them


  • Refrigerator: Store carnitas in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to
  • 3 days.

  • Freezer: Once completely cold, freeze in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Defrost overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
  • To reheat: Reheat on a baking sheet in the oven or microwave.

More favorite

instant pot

recipes Check out these healthy instant pot recipes or try one of these favorites:

Instant Pot

  • BBQ Chicken
  • Instant Pot

  • Pork Chops
  • Instant Pot Pot

  • Roast
  • Instant Pot

  • Mac and Cheese Instant Pot
  • Goulash

Instant pot carnitas in the  serving dish. Culinary specialist with more than 10 years of experience in the restaurant industry.

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