Slow Cooker Beef Carnitas – Tender, slow cooked beef just begging to make the best tacos you’ve ever eaten.
I know. Carnitas are traditionally made with pork. But, well, beef was what I could find at a good price and we wanted tacos. Tacos are a serious business at our house. We take them quite seriously. I, for one, am never satisfied with a ground beef taco. It feels like the peanut-butter-and-grape-jelly-on-Wonder-bread of tacos. They get the job done, but you can always do better, add more flavor, and make it more exciting.
We LOVE our shredded beef taco recipe (and I still whole-heartedly recommend you try it if you haven’t). It’s delicious. But they do require a bit of planning ahead, and I don’t always have the time to go through the browning and the chipotle pepper and spice-blend pureeing steps. Enter: beef carnitas. In the slow cooker.
These were a cinch to pull together. I had a few spare moments after Milo went to bed and Sophie was happily playing with Michael after dinner one night, so I sliced up the veggies, sprinkled the spice rub on the beef and refrigerated it in the crock overnight. The next morning, I pulled out the crock, settled it into the slow cooker and forgot about it till many hours later. With a quick shred (I was able to just pinch the meat with tongs and it fell apart), we were ready to go.
We served these plain with corn tortillas (we love Tortilla Land brand that you cook yourself. They also happen to be gluten-free, but we loved them even before that was a concern). You could certainly dress them up with shredded lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, sour cream, salsa, or guacamole. I liked mine with a little of our favorite mango-pineapple salsa and some guacamole. Michael did it man-style: meat + tortilla + a few manly grunts here and there. If you’re Paleo or on Whole30, you can skip the tortillas and make a big salad out of the carnitas.
Whatever you fancy, these are delish.
p.s. If you’re on the hunt for a great slow cooker, we’ve been really happy with ours. It’s easy to program and has clips on the lid to prevent spills. Holla!
- 2-3 lbs chuck roast
- 2 tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ tsp black pepper
- ½ tsp cumin
- ½ tsp smoked paprika
- ¼ tsp garlic powder
- ¼ tsp onion powder
- 1 onion, sliced (I like sweet onions)
- 1 green pepper, sliced
- 1 red pepper, sliced
- 1 (4oz) can diced green chiles (don't drain)
- corn tortillas*
- your favorite taco toppings: shredded lettuce, salsa, guacamole, cheese, sour cream, cilantro, etc.
- Place roast in the slow cooker. In a small bowl, whisk together chili powder, salt, pepper, cumin, smoked paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder. Sprinkle spice mixture over the roast. Scatter the onion, bell peppers, and green chiles over the roast.
- Cook on low for 7-8 hours, or until beef is pull-apart tender. (You should be able to easily shred it with a fork or a pair of tongs).
- Serve with corn tortillas and your favorite taco toppings.
Recipe adapted from Eat Live Run