Gluten Free Crispy Carnitas

Brianna Hobbs | Flippin' Delicious

Gluten free crispy carnitas can be put in burritos, tacos, or on top of salad. It’s whipped up in the slow cooker, making it super easy too!

Gluten Free Crispy Carnitas Photo

There is a special place in my heart for tacos. I just really love tacos! No particular childhood memory, or amazing taco I had some time a long time ago.  I just straight up love tacos! One of my favorite taco recipes are these gluten free slow cooker turkey mole tacos.

Street tacos is where it is at! They are often naturally gluten-free because they are served on a doubled up corn tortillas. So BONUS!

Nothing beats some savory crispy pork piled high on those corn tortillas, with just a little sour cream, guacamole, cilantro, or some cotija cheese and maybe pico de gallo or fresh pineapple salsa and a squeeze of lime. Simple, and amazing! They don’t need a whole lot, just simple and clean flavors.

Gluten Free Crispy Carnitas Picture

I used country-style pork boneless ribs for my easy slow cooker crispy carnitas recipe, but you could also use a pork roast or shoulder. I’d cut it into large chunks to help it cook evenly. The important thing is that you pick a cut of pork that has a good marbling of fat. You want that fat, because that is what makes the carnitas crispy. And those crispy bits are the best part!

It will take 3-4 hours to cook on high, or 6-7 on low, depending on your slow cooker, and how much pork you cook at once.

Just place your pork in your slow cooker and season it with just a little bit of brown sugar, cumin, garlic and onion powder, good ol’ salt and pepper, and maybe a dash or chile powder. Then just let it cook low and slow.

Gluten Free Crispy Carnitas Image

To make carnitas crispy, and that is what makes them special, remove the lid and turn the heat on your slow cooker up for the last 30-45 minutes and stir your carnitas to shred them. The meat should shred really easily and be super moist. Removing the lid lets the extra liquid evaporate and the carnitas will kind of fry in their own drippings. Just like when you fry bacon.

To crisp up your carnitas even faster, and to get them even crispier move them to the stove top. Just fry your carnitas to a heavy bottomed saucepan while stirring. It will only take a few minutes over medium high heat.

Seriously, my husband and I just could not stop eating these easy slow cooker crispy carnitas. We were stuffed and just kept on eating. Those crispy shreds are the very best! 

Gluten Free Crispy Carnitas Pic

Gluten Free Crispy Carnitas Recipe

    6 Servings


  • 1 1/2-2 pounds Country-Style Pork Boneless Ribs, Or pork shoulder roast
  • 2 tablespoons Brown Sugar
  • 2 teaspoons Ground Cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Chili Powder
  • 2 teaspoons Salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
  • 2 teaspoons Onion Powder
  • 2 teaspoons Garlic Powder


  1. Place your pork in your slow cooker and season with all the spices and brown sugar.
  2. Cook on high for 3-4 hours or low for 6-7 hours or until the pork is tender and falling apart.
  3. Remove the lid and turn the heat to high and stir the pork to break it up in the small chunks and shreds. Continue to stir occasionally until the excess moisture evaporates and the shreds of meat crisp up. If there is a lot of fat go ahead and remove some of it so that your carnitas aren’t oily, but you do need some fat to get your carnitas crispy.
  4. Alternatively, and for even crisper meat, move the meat with some of the pork fat to a heavy bottomed pan and stir over medium high heat until the carnitas are nice and crispy.


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Brianna Hobbs

About Brianna

Brianna is the blogger behind Flippin' Delicious, which we think is a perfectly apt name for everything you'll find on her site. Here on Food Fanatic, you'll find her helping to make gluten free dinners everyone can enjoy.