Low Carb Carnitas
Low Carb Keto Carnitas - Pulled Pork
One of the most important parts about maintaining the keto or a low carb diet long-term is planning and preparing meals ahead. Both my husband and I work full-time and have a toddler that has a lot of extra-curricular activities in the evenings, so our time is usually spent in the car driving to and from work or piano classes. Every Saturday we cook a few recipes that we can use for lunches and quick dinners during the work week. This low carb keto friendly pulled pork recipe is very versatile and easy. I use the slow cooker so it is basically a start it and forget about it recipe. We use the carnitas in taco bowls, quesadillas, Mexican pizza and even bahn mi sandwiches.
Fatty cuts of pork such as pork shoulder work better for this recipe. I only had pork loin and used that, but I had to add extra fat with butter and avocado oil. If you do not eat pork, chicken thighs work great for this too. On one of my trips to Aldi (my favorite grocery store), I found dried Mexican chilies: Ancho, Guajillo and Poblano chilies. I soak a few of them in hot water to re-hydrate them and then grind a paste from the chilies and garlic that takes the place of the sauce for the pulled pork.
- 1 lb pork (I used pork loin, but pork shoulder would be better)
- 1 dry poblano chili
- 1 dry ancho chili
- 3 dry Guajillo chilies
- 2 tsp garlic
- 1 tsp thyme
- 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
- 2 tbsp avocado oil
- 2 tsp cumin powder
- 50 g onion, chopped
- salt to taste (you can always add more at the end, so don’t overdo it – 1 tsp works for us)
- Remove the stems and some of the seeds from the chilies. Soak them in hot water for about 10 minutes until they re-hydrate. Drain the water and put them in a blender together with 2 cloves of garlic and some water.
- Grind the chillies, garlic to a paste.
- Put the pork in the slow cooker. Pour the paste all over it. Add the apple cider vinegar, spices and onion and enough water to cover ¼ of the pork.
- Turn the slow cooker on low for 6 hours, then turn to high for 2 more hours until the onion, spices and chillies have softened and turned into a sauce and most of the water has evaporated.
- Pull the pork apart with a fork and let it cook a while longer until it is all moist with the sauce.
- Pork can be substituted with chicken thighs.
- Add one piece of pork belly or butter for more fat if only using lean cuts of meat.
- If you do not have dry chillies, chili powder works great too. Use about 2 tbsp of it to achieve similar results
- Apple cider vinegar can be replaced with plain vinegar or red wine vinegar.
- Number of Servings 6
- Calories Per Serving 150
- Fat 8g
- Carbs 6g
- Fiber 2g
- Net Carbs 4g
- Protein 16g
- Fat 48%, Protein 42%, Net Carbs 10%