Crazy delicious and easy Instant Pot Carnitas will satisfy all your carnitas needs!

Tender, juicy carnitas in your Instant Pot or pressure cooker!  Simple ingredients with a special ingredient to finish them off!

Carnitas, carnitas, what is it about carnitas? They’re just so…delicious! The pork is just so tender and flavorful! That and they satisfy my taco cravings.

But carnitas takes time. I like to do them outside on my disco when the weather allows or throw them in my slow cooker, but still…time. Now that the Instant Pot has seeped its way into your life and taken over everything, time is not an obstacle!

These Instant Pot carnitas will forever change the way you eat. No, not really, but it may change the frequency in which you eat carnitas.

You can choose to do these carnitas two ways: You can brown. You cannot brown. Both are equally delicious but not browning obviously doesn’t give you brown bits. If you don’t give a flying fig about brown bits, don’t brown and just throw everything in the pot.

The last step though, guys, the last step … It just makes it. It takes it to places you never thought to go. Sweetened condensed milk. Yeah, sweetened condensed milk! Did you know they now make squeezable version of this instead of in the can? Well, they do and it’s perfect for this application right here.

I add condensed milk in my disco carnitas and it’s mind blowing, so of course, I added it to this one. Just squeeze or drizzle a bit right before going in the oven. Believe me, you HAVE TO DO THIS! Ok, you don’t have to, but at least try a little section and see what it’s all about.

And you can do whatever you want with carnitas. Don’t limit yourself. I love them in tacos, but that’s no surprise. My wife likes them over rice – no surprise either. But dudes, nachos, scrambled eggs, tostadas, mixed in with refried beans, added to chili. Any and everything!

Oh and don’t forget, if you’re not into heat, remove the seeds from the peppers and you’ll be fine. Even with the seeds, it’s not spicy but I know people are feeding kiddies and also no one controls the heat in peppers except momma (good old Mother Nature). So use your best judgement and enjoy!

Tender, juicy carnitas in your Instant Pot or pressure cooker! Simple ingredients with a special ingredient to finish them off!
5 from 3 votes

Instant Pot Carnitas


  • 4 pound pork butt, cubed in 2" cubes
  • 2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 poblanos, roughly chopped remove seeds for less heat
  • 2-3 jalapenos, roughly chopped remove seeds for less heat
  • 1 serrano pepper, roughly chopped remove seeds for less heat
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large red onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 2 teaspoons coriander
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 3/4 cup orange juice OR juice from 2 oranges
  • 3/5 cup beef broth
  • oil for browning
  • condensed milk, optional but optimal
  • tortillas, chopped onions, cilantro, sour cream, whatever fixin's you like



    If you're short on time, you can just put all the seasonings on the meat, toss to coat well and place it in the pot with the veggies and liquid, stir and skip to step 4.

  2. If you're gonna go for the gusto, turn your Instant Pot/pressure cooker to saute. When the pot is hot, add oil of your choice. Let the oil get hot and brown the pork chunks on both sides. You'll have to do this in batches.

  3. Once all the meat is browned, add the poblano peppers, jalapenos, serrano, onion, and garlic. Saute for about 5-8 minutes, just until they begin to soften a bit.

    Add the pork and its juices back to the pot. Add the cumin, coriander, chili powder and oregano. Pour the orange juice and broth over the top. Stir to combine.

  4. Pressure on high for 30 minutes and let the pressure come down naturally.

  5. Turn on the broiler in your oven. With a slotted spoon, remove the chunks of meat and veggies to a baking pan. Press on the top of the chunks of meat with a fork, just to break them up some. If you prefer yours shredded, go for it.

    If you're using the condensed milk, dip your spoon in the can and drizzle over the top of the meat and veggies. Don't go crazy, but just drizzle it on.

  6. Place the pan under the broiler and broil for about 10 minutes. Be careful and don't walk away from it, it can go from awesome to burnt in seconds. You just want the edges getting a bit crispy.

    Remove and stuff in your face. Enjoy!

Tender, juicy carnitas in your Instant Pot or pressure cooker! Simple ingredients with a special ingredient to finish them off!
Tender, juicy carnitas in your Instant Pot or pressure cooker! Simple ingredients with a special ingredient to finish them off!

This post parties at: The Weekend Potluck,

6 thoughts on “Instant Pot Carnitas”

  1. 5 stars
    My 3rd or 4th slightly different carnitas recipe and this one is the best I’ve tried. I do love to crisp my edges up but the sweet condensed was awesome! Seemed a nice balance to the slight heat of these. Love it

  2. 5 stars
    I made these tonight. Really delicious! I didn’t make the chipotle salsa, but next time I may put a bit of chipotle pepper in adobo sauce (I puree a can and keep it in the fridge for chilis and other dishes) to get the smoky flavour. Your recommendation for Eagle Brand was spot on. Only thing I did different was to zest the oranges before I juiced them and sprinkle that over the pan before it went in the broiler.

    Thanks for the great recipe. It’s going to be one of our celebration meals in my house.

  3. 5 stars
    What a fabulos pot of Carnitas, I can’t wait to try this recipe, the flavor will be great! Hope you are having a great week and thanks so much for sharing with us at Full Plate Thursday,461!
    Miz Helen

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