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Instant Pot Carnitas

These Instant Pot carnitas were inspired by a Chipotle addiction during my many Whole30 Resets. Since it is the only meat that is technically compliant on the program. I craved piles of pork with heaps of guac on the daily. To curb the visits, I learned how to make carnitas myself.

What put me over the edge was knowing that I had an instant pot to do all the work for me. Otherwise I knew I would have dried out the meat in the oven rendering everything useless except the pleasant aroma of pork in the house. If you don’t have one for these instant pot carnitas, a slow cooker will do you just fine on LOW for eight hours or HIGH at 5-6.

These instant pot carnitas also use Saucy Lips Zesty Cilantro sauce. Saucy lips is a line of clean sauces to help flavor your health journey. If you don’t have Saucy Lips on hand, check out the recipe notes below.

Instant Pot Carnitas

instant pot carnitas | Thyme & JOY
These instant pot carnitas are paleo, Whole30 friendly and use saucy lips zesty cilantro sauce for perfect pork in 90 minutes. | Thyme + JOY

Instant Pot Carnitas | Whole30 & Paleo Friendly

5 from 1 vote
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Prep Time: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours
Servings: 4


  • 3 pounds Pork butt or shoulder
  • 1 bunch cilantro chopped (save some for garnish)
  • 10 cloves garlic keep whole
  • 1 tbsp avocado oil or bacon fat
  • cup lime juice
  • ½ cup Saucy Lips Zesty Cilantro Sauce
  • 1 piece orange juiced
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup water


  • Cut your roast into equal pieces and make slits in each one to stuff garlic in. Coat with salt and pepper.
  • Add oil to instant pot and turn on saute function. 
  • Add pork pieces in single layer to instant pot and let pork pieces cook for about 5 minutes flipping once. Add 1 cup of water to instant pot. 
  • Add 1/2 bunch of chopped cilantro to instant pot sprinkling evenly. Add lime and orange juice. Drizzle 1/2 cup of saucy lips on top of pork.
  • Cover instant pot and put on manual high pressure for 90 minutes.
  • Once instant pot is finished cooking, pull out meat and discard any large fat pieces. Shred the meat and put it on a baking sheet in a single layer.
  • Broil on high until crispy and top with salsa, tomato, onion, cilantro and sauce.


** Option without Saucy Lips Sauce: add 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar and increase the lime juice to the juice of 4 limes. Add extra cilantro if needed. 

Thyme and JOY is a parnter with the Whole30 Approved program. For more information about the Whole30 reset and Personal chef services in charleston check out these links:

Whole30 Personal Chef

Whole 30 Timeline

Whole 30 Resources

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