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5 from 4 votes

Instant Pot Carnitas

Tender, juicy pork shoulder that's pressured cooked in beer and seasonings makes the best Instant Pot Carnitas!
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Natural Release15 mins
Total Time1 hr 25 mins
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Servings: 8
Calories: 283kcal
Author: Julie Evink


  • 3-4 pounds boneless pork shoulder trimmed and cut into 4 inch by 4 inch squares
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons canola oil or olive oil
  • 12 ounces Mexican beer Pilsner or lager beer
  • ½ cup fresh orange juice
  • ¼ cup fresh lime juice
  • 5 garlic cloves minced
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Chopped fresh cilantro to garnish optional

Serving suggestions

  • Warm corn tortillas chopped onions, chopped cilantro, avocado, salsa, pico de gallo, crumbled Queso Fresco, lime wedges etc.


  • Season the pork with 2 teaspoons of kosher salt and ½ teaspoon black pepper.
  • Turn the Instant Pot to the sauté setting. Heat 1 Tablespoon of oil and, working in 2 batches, add the pork pieces and sear until evenly brown on both sides, about 3-4 minutes per side. Transfer meat to plate and proceed with remaining oil and pork. Remove the last batch and place on a plate. Press cancel on the Instant Pot to turn off heat.
  • Pour the beer into the hot Instant Pot and using a wooden spoon scrape the bottom of the pot to remove any browned bits stuck to the bottom. Stir in the rest of the ingredients and return the pork and any juices on the plate to the Instant Pot.
  • Place the lid on top of the Instant Pot and make sure the valve is in the sealed position. Cook in HIGH pressure for 60 minutes. Let the pressure naturally release for 15 minutes at the end of cooking time. Then release any remaining pressure and remove the lid.
  • Remove the pork from the pressure cooker and shred the meat.
  • While you are shredding the meat, turn the pressure cooker to the Sauté mode and reduce the liquid for about five minutes.
  • Return shredded pork to the Instant Pot and toss to get the meat coated in cooking liquid. Then press cancel to turn off heat.
  • Turn the oven broiler to high. Place the top oven rack about 6 inches from the heat source.
  • Transfer the pork to a baking sheet and spread the pork out into an even layer. Transferring some liquid with the pork is ideal.
  • Broil pork for about 4-5 minutes, flip it over and broil for another 4-5 minutes or until the edges of the pork begin to brown.
  • Remove the baking sheet from the oven, sprinkle with chopped cilantro (optional) and serve with suggested toppings.



How To Serve It
Pork Carnitas Tacos: Pile that delicious meat in corn tortillas or flour tortillas. Top them with onions, salsa, avocado, and sour cream!
Burritos: Or, use it to make the best burritos! Fill large flour tortillas with Mexican rice, carnitas, pico de gallo, shredded cheese, and all of your other favorite fillings.
Taco Bowls/Burrito Bowls: Skip the tortillas and pile the meat on rice and add your favorite taco toppings. Enchiladas: Roll the carnitas up in corn tortillas, place them in a baking dish, add enchiladas sauce and cheese. Bake them until hot and bubbly.
Nachos: Grab the tortilla chips and use your carnitas to make the best nachos ever! Top them with cheese, diced jalapenos, red onion, and sliced olives and add some sour cream, guacamole, and salsa on the side for dipping.
Make Ahead Tips
It will keep well in the refrigerator for up to four days. Be sure to store it with the cooking liquid – this will keep the meat from drying out. Reheat in the microwave for quick meals!
You can also freeze it for several months to have on hand later.


Calories: 283kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 39g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 102mg | Sodium: 1266mg | Potassium: 731mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 196IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 33mg | Iron: 2mg