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Slow Cooker Mexican Pulled Pork Tacos

August 5, 2013

By Kath Dedon


The Slow Cooker Mexican Pulled Pork on Simply Recipes has been on my “to-do” list ever since I first saw it. The mouth-watering photo that Elise posted and her description about how her friends swooned over it made me want to try it ASAP. With 6 people for dinner last night, I decided the group was big enough to give it a try.

….. Oh. MY!This recipe for Slow Cooker Mexican Pulled Pork Tacos is even better than it sounds! My photos and words don’t do it justice. We all loved it, and everyone proclaimed that it is one of the best things I’ve ever made! (I think Bob still puts my Baklava at the top of the list.)

The recipe takes time, but it’s mostly unattended time, and it couldn’t be easier. I think if you just try Slow Cooker Mexican Pulled Pork Tacos it will be one of your favorites, too!

(Be sure to head over to Simply Recipes to see the beautiful step-by-step photos. I found all of the comments helpful, too.)


Slow Cooker Mexican Pulled Pork


Slow Cooker Mexican Pulled Pork Tacos

(Adapted from a recipe by Elise Bauer on


If you don’t have a slow cooker you could try a method similar to the one I used for Pulled Pork in the Oven. After the roast has been refrigerated with the spices, brown it in a large pot. (A Dutch oven would be ideal.) When it’s browned all over, add about 1/2 cup water to the pot, stirring up all of the tasty bits on the bottom. Sprinkle the reserved spice mix over the roast. Cover it with a lid or as tightly as you can with aluminum foil and roast at 300˚ for 1½ hours. Turn the roast over, cover it again and continue to roast for another 2½ to 3 hours or until it is fork tender. Because this recipe doesn’t have any added sauce I would leave it covered the whole time so it doesn’t dry out.


(print the recipe)


Serves 6 – 8 (or more with a larger roast)


4 tablespoons chili powder(I use a salt-free blend.)

1 tablespoon kosher salt

1 tablespoon sugar (I used maple sugar.)

2 teaspoons ground cumin

1 teaspoon cayenne

1 teaspoon dried oregano crumbled with your fingers into smaller bits

1 teaspoon onion powder

1 teaspoon garlic powder

¼ teaspoon cinnamon

Scant pinch of ground cloves


3¼ pound boneless pork shoulder roast

2 tablespoons vegetable oil


Corn tortillas(at least 2 – 3 per serving, depending on whether you want single or double tortillas for each taco)


Optional toppings

Avocado, sliced


Radishes, sliced

Quick Pickled Onions(recipe follows at the end of the taco recipe)

Salsa or Pico de Gallo (We had delicious homemade salsa that Laura and Byron made using peppers from their garden! Yum!)


1. The day before you want to serve the tacos, mix all of the spices together and rub them generously all over the pork roast. (If the roast has been tied, cut the string off first.) Reserve any leftover spice for the next day.




2. Cover the roast and refrigerate overnight.

3. Heat the oil in a pan and brown the pork roast on all sides. This will take 15 – 20 minutes.


Browning the pork


4. Put the browned roast in the slow cooker and add in as much of the remaining oil and spices in the pan as you can.

5. Sprinkle the rest of the reserved spices over the roast. Put the slow cooker cover on and cook on Low for 6 – 10 hours, until it is fork tender. It should be falling-apart done. (It took 6 ½ hours in my 6 quart slow cooker. It would have needed 10 hours in my older 4 quart cooker which cooks at a lower temperature.)


Extra spices are sprinkled all over the browned roast and it’s ready to go in the slow cooker.

In the slow cooker


6. Remove the pork from the slow cooker and put it on a cutting board. Using two forks, shred it into bite-sized pieces.

7. Stir the pork back into the spicy juices in the slow cooker. It can be kept on Warm until it’s time to serve.


Pulled pork


8. Heat the tortillas using your favorite method. I like to heat them for about 30 seconds on each side in a hot cast iron skillet. I put them in foil as I go to keep them warm.

9. Assemble the tacos using your favorite toppings and enjoy the feast!


Mexican Pulled Pork Tacos

Quick Pickled Onions

This is adapted from an easy Bon Appétit recipe.


½ cup apple cider vinegar

1 tablespoon honey

1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt

1 red onion, sliced in half vertically and then sliced in thin horizontal slices


1. Whisk the vinegar, honey, and salt together in a large bowl until the honey and salt are dissolved.

2. Add the onion slices. Cover and leave at room temperature for 1 – 2 hours, stirring occasionally.

3. Drain for immediate use, or refrigerate for up to 2 weeks. Drain before using.


Mexican Pulled Pork Tacos with cilantro, avocado slices, Quick Pickled Onions, radish slices, and a bit of salsa.

Mexican Pulled Pork Tacos cropped



14 Comments leave one →
  1. August 6, 2013 7:12 pm

    I was dreaming about these today — SO GOOD!

  2. August 8, 2013 10:28 am

    I could eat this every day. I love all the spices on there. You know I’ve never put a roast in the crock-pot without liquid, I will have to try it. I really should use it more, it’s so easy. Hope you are having a great summer. The pickled onions bring it over the top. I’m moving you again, I swear this techy stuff will get the best of me yet.

    • August 8, 2013 10:35 am

      Give it a try, Gina. It’s so good! Be sure to use a pork shoulder roast; a pork loin or tenderloin would be too lean.

  3. August 13, 2013 6:37 am

    I must say, this does look delicious. Complimenti!

  4. Mok permalink
    October 31, 2013 10:46 pm

    4 TABLEspoons of chilli powder then 1 teaspoon of Cayenne pepper… wouldn’t this come out insanely hot?

    • November 1, 2013 5:15 am

      No, it was just right. I think the slow cooker tames the spices. Also, I used a “medium” chili powder, not one that was labeled “hot”.

  5. afracooking permalink
    February 4, 2015 12:34 pm

    Wow – now that is one impressive piece of meat! That is Comfort food with a capital C!


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