But today, in honor of beer month, I decided to step out of my puritanical-carnitas box and do the braising of the pork in a good, amber lager. I also added some spice beyond salt. It's gettin' crazy up in here. Crazy delicious.
Simple, rustic food is what I tend to gravitate towards, and this version of carnitas really fits the bill. A stove top braise in a fragrant beer bath and about 90 minutes is all it takes to achieve a plate piled high with tender pork. Once it is tender, you remove the lid and let the liquid evaporate and concentrate, inviting the whole garlic cloves and strips of lime zest to melt into it.
Carnitas and beer (month) definitely go hand in hand.
Beer Braised Pork Carnitas
These chunks of pork are braised in a flavorful beer bath until tender. Carnitas make a delicious filling or topping for tacos, tortas and beyond!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
Keywords: braised entree beer Mexican pork
Ingredients (serves 6)
- 4 pounds boneless pork butt, cut into 2-inch thick strips/hunks
- 2 (12 ounce) bottles Dos Equis Ambar, or another Amber Lager
- 8 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
- zest of 1 lime, cut into long strips with a vegetable peeler
- 2 teaspoons smoked sea salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- pinch of crushed red chile flakes
- sea salt, for sprinkling (optional)
- hot corn tortillas
- avocado or guacamole
- sour cream (or Mexican Crema)
Combine pork, beer, and 12 fluid ounces (1 1/2 cups) of water in a large pot, bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer, then skim any scum that rises to the top.
Once you've skimmed all the scum from the top, add the remaining ingredients and cover pot. Allow to simmer for 1 hour, until the meat is very tender.
Remove the lid and raise the heat to a steady boil; allow to cook until liquid is completely evaporated, ~30 minutes, stirring from time to time. The garlic cloves and lime zest will melt right into the meat, so you don't need to worry about removing them.
Scoop meat out onto a paper towel-lined plate or tray; sprinkle with a small smattering of salt. Serve warm in tortillas with salsa, guacamole or avocado, crema, and anything else you choose.
-inspired by and adapted from this recipe via Alaska Brewing CoNY Foodgasm! I already love a good beer, but Sophia's passion for beer is truly inspiring. Please check out all of this year's Beer Month recipes below!
- Beer Bacon Mac and Cheese from Hall Nesting
- Beer Braised Chicken Stew from Bowl Me Over
- Beer Braised Pork Carnitas from All Roads Lead to the Kitchen
- Beer Cheddar Fondue from Food Lust People Love
- Beer Mimosa with Raspberries from Who Needs A Cape?
- Iron Skillet Chicken + Carrots with Toasted Lager Mustard Sauce from Big Flavors from a Tiny Kitchen
- Triple IPA Chile Verde with Pork from NY Foodgasm
Speaking of Beer and Carnitas, you might also be interested in these recipes...
Carnitas (the best and the simplest)
Carnitas con Verdolagas
Carnitas Pizza with Chipotle-Avocado Crema
Oatmeal Brown Ale Rolls
Sweet 'n Tangy Beer-Glazed Chicken