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Shredded Pork Carnitas Quesadilla

Tender chipotle shredded pork and fried onion with cheddar and creamy queso quesadilla.

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WHAT’S GOING  ON HERE

Pork shoulder

Shredded pork is the perfect meat for carnitas cooked low and slow the fat just melts making the meat creamy and tender. Braised and basted in fat, vinegar and spices it’s perfect for any time of day.

Chipotle

Chipotle are smoked jalapenos they are often in a bit a tomato sauce. Chipotle adds a little bit of sweet heat and a whole lot of smoke.

Spices

You can really keep your adobo spice as simple or as complex as you’d like. The pork can take any and all flavor and since it’s such a large cut it needs a lot of it. This spice rub features kitchen staples black pepper, cayenne, cumin, thyme and oregano. With a nice even layer of salt to really penetrate the meat it makes for a super juicy roast.

Onions

Onions are an added flavor I like to add once I shred and refry the pork. The sweet onions add a little sharpness and chewy texture to the bite.

Broth

Broth gives the pork something to break down into and soak up. Beef or vegetable are both great options.

Vinegar + Lime

Vinegar and lime break down the pork to make it fork tender. The vinegar adds the acid while the lime boost up the flavor. Once the lime is squeezed toss the entire carcass in so that the oil from the skin seeps into the dish.

TIPS & TRICKS FOR THE BEST PORK CARNITAS QUESADILLA

 

low and slow

low and slow is the best way to make this dish. this pork requires no searing or prep other than seasoning. low and slow cooking is the best for partially submerged meat just cover it so the steam can cook everything evenly. once the bone is easily removable from the pork the shoulder is ready for shredding.

shredding  the pork

shredding the pork is best warm not cold. once the pork get cold enough that the fat congeals the pork needs to be completely reheated to get an easier finer shred. shred the pork once the poor has sat from the oven for 20 minutes when it is a little easier to handle.

cooking the quesadilla

cooking the quesadilla is important. you can use fats like lard, butter or olive oil to help the tortillas get a golden crust. add the quesadillas to a preheated pan that is set to around medium so that the cheese has time to melt before the outside of the tortilla crisps.

Serving

serving this dish like any other filling. serve over rice or as a filling for burritos, tacos, gorditas or chimichanga. make sure to add some finely chopped white onion, cilantro and slices of fresh lime.

Pepper alternatives for more heat

adjust the heat by using your favorite peppers. chipotle are a great starting points they have a ton of flavor but not so much heat build onto that by adding dried or fresh peppers great peppers for this dish include Serrano, chili de Arbol, jalapeño, or habanero.

SIMILAR INGREDIENTS TO

DUCK CARNITAS

CRISPY CARNITAS QUICHE W/ MASA CRUST

SAVORY SPINACH EGG WHITE CUPS

ENJOY THIS RECIPE WITH

TACO TRUCK GREEN SAUCE

TAQUERIA STYLE RED SAUCE

REFRIED PINTO BEANS

Shredded Pork Carnitas Quesadilla

Shredded Pork Carnitas Quesadilla
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INGREDIENTS

  • Pork Carnitas
  • 4lb Pork Shoulder
  • Salt
  • FOR THE ADOBO
  • 3 Chipotle Peppers in sauce, minced
  • 2 Jalapenos
  • 1 White Onion, peeled and sliced
  • 8 Garlic Cloves, whole
  • 1 Lime, halved
  • 1/4c Vinegar
  • 2Tb Vegetable Oil
  • 1Tb Garlic Powder
  • 2tsp Cumin Powder
  • 2 tsp Smoked Paprika
  • 2tsp Oregano
  • 1tsp Cayenne Pepper
  • 3Tb Cilantro, rough chopped
  • 1tsp Thyme
  • 6 Bay Leaves
  • 4-6c Beef Broth
  • FOR BUILDING THE QUESADILLA
  • 1 Yellow Onions, sliced
  • 6 Tortillas
  • 2c Queso Quesadilla, shredded
  • 1c Cheddar Cheese, shredded

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Add jalapeno, onions and garlic to a Dutch oven.
  • Add in pork shoulder and rub with chipotles in adobo,
  • Cover with garlic powder, cumin, smoked paprika, oregano and cayenne. Season generously with salt.
  • Add lime, vinegar, oil and beef broth to the side of the pork. Add in bay leaves, thyme and cilantro.
  • Cover and roast at 350F for 6-8 hours.
  • Once the bone starts to poke out of the meat and can be easily removed the meat from the pot the pork is ready to be removed from the oven. Reserve the pot liquid to fry the meat. Shred the meat with two forks.
  • Once the meat is finely shredded, Heat 2Tb of cooking oil over medium high heat. Add in 1 sliced yellow onion and start to cook. Cook for 10 minutes till golden brown. Add in shredded pork, add in 1c of juice from the Dutch oven and fry into the meat. Once thickened its ready to serve.
  • To makes the quesadillas sprinkle 1/4c white cheese onto a tortilla, followed by 1/4c shredded carnitas, followed by cheddar cheese. Top with another tortilla.
  • In a preheated skillet, add in butter along with quesadillas. Fry 3 minutes on both sides till the tortillas are golden brown and crispy and the cheese is melted.
  • Remove from the skillet. Cut into pieces. Serve!
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