It has nearly been eighteen years since I moved to sunny Southern California, as a naïve young college student from the cold, wet north. Eighteen years of tacos, burritos and quesadillas…it’s hard not to love Mexican food here, where the border is close and the carnitas are muy bueno!
The problem with most south-of-the-border meals is that while the flavors are amazing, it’s heavy with grains and dairy. That’s why I am slightly obsessed with creating lightened up versions of all my favorite Mexican dishes. Over the years I’ve come up with…
And now my latest creation…BBQ Carnitas Tacos!
These BBQ Carnitas Tacos are about as hearty and satisfying as a grain-free meal can be! The tender, savory pulled pork mixed with tangy BBQ sauce is the perfect contrast to crisp lettuce and crunchy radish. Serve with a side of extra BBQ sauce for dipping!
2 (3 pound) boneless pork shoulder
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 yellow onion, sliced
6 sprigs fresh oregano
2 tablespoons garlic, minced
1 cup chicken broth
¾ cup apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons coconut palm sugar
½ cup natural BBQ sauce ( avoid ones with added sugars)
1 head butter lettuce
2 tablespoons chives, minced
¼ cup tomatoes, seeded and minced
1 bunch radishes, thinly sliced
Place a large skillet over high heat and in two batches, using 1 Tablespoon of olive oil per batch, brown the pork on all sides.
Place the onions, oregano and garlic in the bottom of a slow cooker and top with the browned pork. Deglaze the skillet with ½ cup of the chicken broth and pour over the pork.
In a bowl combine the remaining ½ cup broth, vinegar and coconut sugar. Pour over the pork.
Cover and cook on high for 6 hours or on low for 8 hours.
Remove the meat and shred. Strain the dripping and skim off the fat.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Place the pork on a baking sheet and drizzle with ½ cup of drippings. Roast until the pork begins to brown, about 20 minutes. Combine the pork with the BBQ sauce.
Assemble the tacos by filling large lettuce leaves with a scoop of pork. Sprinkle with chives, tomatoes and radishes. Enjoy!