Paleo Tequila Carnitas Recipe and a Resource to do Paleo on a Budget

Nov 26, 2014
paleo tequila carnitas recipe

I'm excited to share some exciting news with you today plus a delicious paleo tequila carnitas recipe!

Often we hear from people who want to try the paleo diet but they get hung up on the endless complicated recipes and the idea that the paleo diet has to be expensive. Surely you can't eat a diet that consists of mostly whole, nutritious foods and not spend at least $1,500 a month on food. 

It's my pleasure to tell you that you can do paleo without breaking the bank! There are a couple things that we whole-heartedly believe you should do if you want to save some dinero while following a paleo diet:

1. Keep it SIMPLE
2. PLAN your meals in advance

Really, these are two of the biggest keys to paleo success. The truth about any effort to lose weight or body fat is that the battle is won (or lost) in the kitchen. To be successful in the kitchen you have to plan and you have to keep things simple.

As our good friend Ciarra, blogger at Popular Paleo and author of The Frugal Paleo Cookbook, reminds us:

"Most meals are a matter of meeting our need for food as conveniently as possible and with minimal effort. So why complicate that when it comes to the paleo diet?"
Ciarra, The Frugal Paleo Cookbook

This brings me to the exciting news. Our friend Ciarra has published a new cookbook! The Frugal Paleo Cookbook is something we've been looking forward to for a while. It's entire focus is sharing paleo recipes that are easy to create with accessible ingredients and that taste amazing! No complicated stuff here. Most of the recipes have less than 10 simple ingredients. But don't confuse simplicity with a lack of flavor. Many of the recipes have interesting flavor profiles that can be traced to Ciarra's, Chinese-Italian heritage.

The first twenty pages are full of great tips and strategies on how to keep your budget in check while providing your family with healthy paleo meal options. Want to know how to cut $1,000 from monthly food bill? Ciarra talks about doing this herself in the first twenty pages of the book. You can do it!

I love that Ciarra keeps the tone simple, conversational and positive. This is a great addition to any paleo noob's or veteran's recipe arsenal.

You can pre-order the book between now and December 1st by going here now. If you pre-order the book you'll receive some awesome bonuses that Ciarra has generously put together for you. 

Now it's time for a taste of what's in store for you when you pre-order The Frugal Paleo Cookbook!

Tequila Carnitas from The Frugal Paleo Cookbook

Carnitas are my very favorite thing to eat since going Paleo. Affordable pork shoulder simply seasoned and slowly braised gets my vote every time.

But all of that aside, let’s talk about the elephant in the room: is tequila Paleo? The short answer is yes. Any variety other than “Joven” or “young” tequila will do, since that particular one is flavored with caramel and is likely not gluten-free. Otherwise, “resposado” and “anejo” tequila comes from a plant, is gluten-free and contains no added sugars or artificial ingredients. That, my friends, gets tequila on the Paleo-friendly ingredient list and therefore into my Dutch oven with a hunk of pork and a twist of lime.

Pile this on top of a batch of cauliflower rice or a baked sweet potato and you’ve got a meal deserving of a social media share!

Serves: 6 to 8


3 lbs (1.3 kg) pork shoulder, boneless
1 batch Taco Seasoning Blend (see below)
1 tsp (5 g) kosher salt
2 to 3 tbsp (30 to 45 g) lard or coconut oil
1 small onion, thinly sliced
5 cloves garlic, crushed
1 large jalapeño, seeded and fined minced (about 1/4 cup/45 g)
juice of two limes, about 1/2 cup (118 mL)
1 cup (237 mL) pure tequila (gluten-free, no added sugars)
1/2 cup (118 mL) water
Fresh cilantro and additional lime wedges, for garnish

Taco Seasoning Blend

1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp coriander
1/2 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp chili powder


1. Cut the pork shoulder into four or five even chunks and coat with Taco Seasoning Blend, plus the kosher salt.

2. Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat and melt the lard or coconut oil (though lard is my favorite). Drop in the seasoned pork and sear the sides. If the spices are starting to burn, reduce the temperature just a bit. It’s also a good idea to work in batches to avoid overcrowding the pan. If too many chunks of meat go in together, the result will be steaming, not searing. Not pretty.

3. Once seared, return all meat to the pan, drop in the onion, garlic and jalapeño. Lightly mix the ingredients, but make sure the pork gets priority at the bottom of the dog-pile.

4. Next pour in the fresh lime juice, tequila, and water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the temperature to a simmer and cover.

5. Let the pork braise on the stovetop for 2 hours, or until the pork falls apart easily when gently pressed with the back of a fork.

6. Remove the Dutch oven from the heat, shred the pork (discard any fatty bits) and mix together with the juices. Scoop all the pork out, transfer to a baking dish and pop it under the broiler for a few minutes to crisp up the carnitas. Just eyeball it.

7. Pour the remaining braising liquid over the carnitas and serve with fresh cilantro and a few lime wedges for squeezing. Other toppings that go great with carnitas are avocado, sliced radishes, finely diced red onion and even fresh pineapple, if you’re feeling adventurous.

There's more where that came from!

If you're looking for more paleo recipes that won't break the bank while keeping your waistline trim, then we suggest pre-ordering The Frugal Paleo Cookbook and taking advantage of the awesome bonuses before December 1st! You're worth it!

Your Favorite Paleo
Recipes at Your Fingertips!

Start eating better to lose weight and feel great

Create My Free Account

comments powered by Disqus
Free 7-Day Paleo Quick Start Program!

Enter your name and email to to get instant access to the 7-Day Paleo Success Program. Start implementing paleo diet strategies to lose weight and feel awesome in just 7 days!

Welcome to

We believe that eating healthier meals is the foundation of being healthy, looking awesome and living longer. We write articles and create tools to help you eat, move and live better. Read more on our ABOUT PAGE.

The 28-Day Reset

Four weeks to a fitter, healthier you! A comprehensive program built on a foundation of support and accountability. Start getting results that last!