Posts Tagged ‘slow cooker recipes’

A variation on pork carnitas using a slow cooker

August 6, 2012 Leave a comment

Took about 7 hours, but well worth it.

In the recent past, I’ve posted about making Puerco Pibil in the crockpot. One of the drawbacks to doing this was how strong the spices were in the house. My eyes were watering for a while, as if I’d just chopped up a whole mess of onions. That’s good and that’s bad, as they say.

From that last experiment, I still had a large cube of pork butt in the freezer. Yesterday I decided to throw it into the crockpot, bone and all, with the following ingredients:


  • 1 tsp salt (can use more if so desired)
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tbsp achiote paste (for the red coloring and some extra flavoring)

Achiote paste can be hard to come by, unless you have a grocery store nearby that has a pretty good stock of Hispanic foods. In the previous Puerco Pibil posts, I made the achiote from scratch; this time, I went the easy route. It doesn’t carry the same flavor punch, but when you’re not in the mood to be in the kitchen all day, you have to sacrifice a little, right?

As in all things, one of the traits I love most about the slow cooker method is the fact that you don’t have to thaw out the meat beforehand. I threw the thing in totally frozen with the spices and a cup of chicken broth. 6-7 hours on low, and the meat will get tender enough to shred off the bone into the broth.

One of the trademarks for carnitas is having a bit of crunchiness. So, when you’re done, scoop out the meat using a strainer into a baking dish, shred it up, and pop in the oven using the broiler setting for about 6 minutes. Take the pan out (be careful, it’ll be really hot), stir up the meat again and pop back in for another 6 minutes.

Boo-yah… tasty, crunchy pork carnitas without having to use a deep fryer.

Crockpot Charro Beans recipe – stickied post

August 1, 2010 11 comments

Printable version here: Crockpot Charro Beans

I’m often asked how this recipe came about. Well, let me tell you the story:

My mother has always made charro style beans in a large stockpot on the stove. They just always seemed to lack a certain something. Seasoning? Texture?

So when she gifted me with a medium-sized crockpot one day, I decided to attempt my quest at charro bean recipe creation.  The first step had to be the ultimate seasoning. Enter Fiesta Pinto Bean Seasoning. My local supermarket (in this case, HEB), stocks a pretty good selection of Fiesta seasonings, including the one I wanted to try. And so, the following recipe came about:

Crockpot Charro Beans


  • 1 piece salt pork, chopped up in 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1 lb pinto beans
  • 1 bunch cilantro, chopped
  • 3 green onions chopped (including the stalk)
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (or you can add a can of Ro-tel for a little extra spice)
  • 1 heaping tbsp Fiesta Pinto Bean Seasoning (or whatever is local to you. I live in Texas, so this is the brand I use). If you look at the label, it calls for 2 tbsp. I find that this can make the beans pretty salty, so I reduced it down to 1. It really depends on your taste preference.


  1. Soak the beans in a bowl of water for about six hours. After they’re done soaking, put them in the crockpot.
  2. Add all other ingredients and fill crockpot with water until the water level is at least an inch above the beans. Stir it up a little with a spoon to get everything incorporated.
  3. Set on low setting and allow to cook for 8-9 hours. I normally get it going the night before and let them cook overnight. Makes me wake up hungry every time I do this 🙂

Charro Beans… love them 🙂


The beauty of these beans is you can freeze them, mash them up with some oil for refried beans, or put some in a bowl and eat them charro style. My dad swears charro style includes rice in the bowl along with the beans, but whatever’s clever.

It’s also important to note that you can alter the ingredients. if you don’t like cilantro, don’t use it. If you want them spicy, add jalapenos or even habanero peppers if you’re really gung ho about spice. It’s pretty versatile.


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