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  • 4 lbs pork shoulder (5 lbs if bone in)
  • 1 can of coke
  • 1 orange
  • 2 limes
  • 1-2 cinnamon sticks
  • 3-4 assorted dried chiles (ancho/guajillo)
  • (1+ T seeds, toasted and ground?) cumin
  • 1 large yellow onion
  • kosher salt to taste (start with forefinger pinch)
  • water


  1. Quarter onion.
  2. Cut citrus across equator.
  3. In a large dutch oven, add pork, coke, juice and rind of citrus, all other ingredients.
  4. Add enough water to get halfway up meat.
  5. Bring to boil.
  6. Skim scum/foam.
  7. Reduce heat and partially cover (with lid).
  8. After 1 hour, remove orange and lime rinds, squeezing out any liquid.
  9. Mid-way through (about 2 hours) cooking, taste liquid and remove chiles if the braising liquid is particularly spicy hot. Finished carnitas will not be as spicy as liquid. Add more salt if needed.
  10. Simmer until a chopstick can easily pierce the meat.
  11. Remove meat and let rest for 10 minutes. Continue reducing cooking liquid (if any).


  1. Remove bones and cartilage from meat, returning in chunks (the size you want) to pan.
  2. Fry in remaining fat and sauce.
  3. NOTE: If cooking to store, add meat back to sauce and coat, then fry when desired to eat.