Just four simple ingredients tossed in your slow cooker make these shredded pork tacos weeknight-friendly. Topped with a crunchy Mexican slaw, smoky roasted salsa, and guacamole, these babies are impossible to resist.
Slow Cooker Pork Tacos
To be the most efficient in the kitchen calls for a wee bit of planning. But I’m the type of cook who has a habit (good or bad?) of adding a dash of this and a bit of that and ultimately departing from the recipe. I also have a habit of getting so immersed in my day that by the time the dinner bell should be ringing, I’m just starting to think about what the heck we’re going to fix for our last meal of the day.
But over the past year, I’ve made some great strides in being a better kitchen planner and cooker because I’ve put my idea of the perfect planner into practice (get a free download of it here!). And instead of going to the grocery store every single day, I’m becoming more efficient at planning a few meals for the week and sticking to my idea. Sure, I leave a little wiggle room because hey, life happens, and I like to think I can be nimble on these so-not-a-good-dancer-feet.
One of my main goals this year has been to cook once, eat thrice. Okay, maybe it’s more like eating twice with hopefully a few leftovers to throw in for lunch. Slow cooker meals are such an easy solution for cooking this way and I’m pretty much always inspired to extend my batch cooking when a recipe like this one for slow cooked pork beckons.
A few weeks ago I shared the recipe for Smoky Roasted Salsa from my blogging friend Rebecca Lindamood’s cookbook Not Your Mama’s Canning Cookbook. The cool thing about her cookbook is that not only does she share some super fun, not your average canning recipes, but she uses those recipes as the springboard to whole meals. Exactly what I’m looking for.
So when I made the salsa recipe for the blog, I pretty much knew this recipe in taco form would quickly be following up after.
What’s in These Shredded Pork Tacos?
You don’t need much to create flavorful, juicy pulled pork tacos. Here’s what goes into this pork taco recipe:
- Bone-in pork shoulder
- Smoky Roasted Salsa
- Chipotles in adobo sauce
- Mexican Coleslaw
- Cotija cheese
- Fresh cilantro
How to Make Pork Tacos
Place the pork shoulder into a slow cooker and top with a mixture of smashed garlic, smoky salsa, and chopped chipotle peppers. Cook on low until the pork is fall-off-the-bone tender.
Once cooked through, shred the pork with two forks and transfer to a large baking dish. Bake until hot.
While the pork bakes, transfer the cooking juices from the slow cooker to a pot on the stove. Simmer until reduced to 1/4 its original volume.
When the pork comes out of the oven, toss with the reduced pan juices. Then, it’s finally time to assemble your pulled pork tacos.
To top my tacos, I made this crunchy and fresh Mexican Coleslaw. It’s so easy to make you’ll wonder why you’d ever use plain old lettuce when you can add flavor? And of course, top with more smoky salsa as needed. It’s really the best way.
Can I Use Store-Bought Salsa?
Of course! If going the store-bought route, be sure to choose a high-quality salsa that’s slightly smoky in flavor.
Can I Make These Tacos in an Instant Pot?
I’m sure you can! However, I’ve only made these shredded pork tacos in my CrockPot, so I can’t speak to the best method for pressure cooking the pork. If you’ve made this recipe in your Instant Pot, please leave me a comment letting me know how it turned out!
Tips for Making the Best Pork Tacos
With just 4 ingredients, this slow cooker recipe could be one of the simplest you’ll ever make. Is it flavorful? You bet it’s flavorful. It’s the salsa that makes it so. While I canned my salsa, you can certainly, always, always, always just make a half batch, or even a quarter batch and place in the fridge until you’re ready to use. Or, choose a really good store-bought brand if you just can’t muster the making.
I turned this slow cooker pork into tacos, but you could certainly use as the filler for just about any Mexican-inspired recipe. Tortas. Enchiladas. Tostadas. Nachos. Or go outside the comfort zone and create a spicy Pulled Pork Mac ‘n Cheese or Pulled Pork Pizza. Plus, it makes enough to serve in several different iterations, so get creative and get cooking.
Also note that you can easily freeze the shredded Mexican pork to use in future recipes. Just be sure to freeze the pork in some of its juices so it doesn’t dry out.
More Easy Taco Recipes to Make
- Blackened Fish Tacos with Creamy Avocado Sauce
- Grilled Steak Tacos
- Just Like Taco Bell Tacos
- Easy Shredded Chicken and Zucchini Tacos
- Shrimp Tacos with Avocado Crema
If you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment below or take a photo and tag me on Instagram with #foodiecrusheats.
Slow Cooker Smoky Pulled Pork Tacos
- Place the pork shoulder in a 6 1/2 to 8 quart slow cooker. In a medium size bowl, mIx the salsa with the smashed garlic cloves and the chipotles in adobo sauce. Pour the salsa mixture over the pork. Cover with the lid of the slow cooker and cook on low for 12-14 hours, or until the pork falls off of the bone. Chill the crock with the contents still in it until cold all the way through.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Scrape away the congealed fat around the pork shoulder and use a bit of the fat to grease a 9 X 13-inch baking dish. Discard the rest of the fat but reserve the cooking juices.
- Transfer the meat to a large cutting board and scrape away any visible fat. Use your hands to shred the meat into same-size pieces. Transfer the meat to the baking dish and bake, uncovered for 20 minutes or until the pork is hot all the way through. At the 10 minute mark, check to see if the meat is getting too dry. If so, toss it with a fork to keep it from drying out too much.
- While the pork bakes, strain the cooking juices through a fine mesh sieve into a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to simmer and cook until reduced to 1/4 its original volume.
- When the pork is hot, pour the reduced pan juices over the pork and toss to coat.
- Warm the tortillas, either in a damp towel in a warm oven at 200 degrees F, or lightly char the tortillas over the flame of a gas stove. Assemble the tacos with a 1/3-1/2 cup pulled pork, Mexican coleslaw, guacamole and sprinkle with cotija cheese. Garnish with cilantro and serve with more smoky salsa if desired.
- Pulled pork recipe from Not Your Mama's Canning Book, Rebecca Lindamood
What to Serve with Pork Tacos to Make a Meal
- Pico de Gallo
- How to Make the Best Easy Grilled Corn
- Creamy Avocado Salsa Verde
- Chopped Mexican Kale Salad
- Southwest Quinoa and Grilled Corn Salad
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