7 Ways To Make The Most Of Your Leftover Carnitas

leftover carnitas

It’s a sad day for our family when we have to throw away leftover carnitas.

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It’s worse than throwing out an entire meal of rice and beans or fish tacos.

What can you do with leftover Carnitas? You can make these 7 recipes:

How to store leftover carnitas

The best way to store leftover carnitas is in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

You can keep it there for up to 5 days, but it’s best if you get through them within a few days because they’ll go bad after that point.

If you want to freeze your leftovers, wrap them tightly with plastic or place them in a heavy-duty freezer bag and leave them on the countertop overnight.

This will allow the meat to chill thoroughly before being placed into the freezer where it can be stored for up to 3 months without losing much flavor or texture.

If you have leftovers that are already frozen, thaw them in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.

You can also heat them in the microwave or on the stovetop to make sure they’re hot and ready to eat.

7 ideas for leftover carnitas


Next, you can choose to make tacos with leftover carnitas.

This is a great option if you have more than enough carnitas left over, and also if you want to save yourself the trouble of making more tortillas.

All you really have to do is fill up some corn or flour tortillas with shredded pork or chicken and top it with any of the following: tomatoes, lettuce, onions and cilantro.

If you’re feeling bold (and don’t mind getting messy), try adding some avocado slices too!

If you’re in the mood for something a little more filling, try making some tacos with leftover carnitas and rice.

You can make this dish by heating up some oil in a skillet over medium heat and then adding your desired amount of carnitas to it.

Once the meat has visibly browned on both sides, add some onion and garlic powder (or fresh onions and garlic) to the mix and cook until fragrant.

Then, add some canned tomatoes, green chiles and rice to the skillet and cook until everything is thoroughly combined.

Once it’s done cooking, remove the mixture from heat and fill up your tortillas with it.

If you’re feeling extra hungry or in need of a healthier option, try making tacos with leftover carnitas and beans instead! To make this dish, heat up some oil in a frying pan over medium heat (or if you don’t have any leftovers on hand, simply use olive oil).


If you want to make burritos, there are a wide variety of options.

You can wrap your leftover carnitas in a tortilla with beans, avocado and salsa.

Or you could add rice and beans or refried beans and cheese to make something more like an enchilada.

If you want it on the simpler side, lettuce tomato and guacamole might be your best bet—just be sure not to overstuff your burrito! Finally, if you’re feeling indulgent (and I say this as someone who definitely is), sour cream, salsa and guacamole will taste amazing inside that same tortilla-wrapped mixture of meaty goodness that we just talked about.

If you’re looking for a way to use up some meat and make it into something special, burritos are the way to go.

They’re easy to make and can be put together in just about any combination of ingredients you desire—and they’ll definitely fill you up!


The next day, you can use leftover carnitas to make enchiladas.

In fact, I’d recommend making a double batch of carnitas the first time around just so you can have leftovers for this dish.

Enchiladas are one of my favorite things to order at Mexican restaurants and they’re super easy to make at home too.

So if you’ve got some leftovers from a batch of carnitas, here’s how to put them in an enchilada:

  • Heat your oven up to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Put about 1/4 cup corn or flour tortillas on an oven tray (depends on what type of tortillas you used)
  • Add some leftover carnita meat onto each tortilla
  • Top with cheese (optional), salsa verde (Mexican green sauce), avocado slices and sour cream


The most obvious thing to do with leftover carnitas is make tamales.

The process is pretty straightforward: you’ll need a recipe for tamale dough and the filling, which involves shredding up the meat and mixing it with some beans, rice and spices.

You can use corn husks or banana leaves instead of corn husks (it’s a little easier), but either way you should treat yourself to a slow cooker—it makes the process incredibly easy.

Once you’ve filled all your wrappers, toss them in water as they steam to keep them moist as they cook.

If you don’t have enough time on your hands for all this work, there are also plenty of options online that will show how to freeze the pre-made tamales so that they’re ready whenever you want them!

The best way to store carnitas is in the freezer, but you can also keep them in the fridge for up to three days.

Just make sure they’re wrapped up tightly so that no air gets into the container.

You can also use them as a filling for tacos or burritos, or even on top of nachos!


Leftover carnitas can be used in a variety of ways.

One great option is to make nachos with the meat, adding sour cream and guacamole.

Beans or refried beans are also a delicious option—and if you’re feeling especially indulgent, add lettuce, tomatoes, and other vegetable toppings as well!

Carnitas are also a great option for taco night! Add some avocado slices and salsa, and you’ll have a delicious dinner in no time.

The possibilities are endless.

You can use the carnitas to make enchiladas or burritos, which are both great options for dinner or lunch.

And if you want a snack that’s easy to grab on the go, throw some carnitas into a quesadilla!


Tostadas are a Mexican dish made with corn tortillas.

To make tostadas, you’ll need leftover carnitas and some fresh avocado slices or guacamole.

The first step is frying the tostada shells—you can use any leftover tortillas or even store-bought chips that are fried until crispy.

Once they’re done, place them on a plate and top them with your carnitas and fresh avocado slices or other toppings like shredded lettuce, salsa, sour cream and cheese! Alternatively, you could skip this step entirely if you’re short on time and use store-bought tortilla chips instead!

How to Make Carnitas: – Cut the pork into large chunks and place in a slow cooker.

– Add the onion, garlic and orange juice over the meat.

– Cook on low for 6 hours or until tender.


The torta is a Mexican sandwich, and it’s one of my favorite lunchtime staples.

The name is derived from the word torta, or “round” in Spanish.

A traditional torta is made on a roll called bolillo bread—which resembles Texas Toast—but other types of rolls can be substituted for the bolillo if you prefer them (I know some people who prefer French bread).

Tortas are usually served hot or cold with fillings like carnitas and avocado slices; some have just about anything inside!

The torta can be either a breakfast sandwich or an afternoon snack, but they’re always delicious.

In Mexico, they’re sold from street vendors who roast the meat on a spit in front of their carts.


As you can see, there are so many delicious ways to use up leftover carnitas.

You can use them in tacos, burritos, nachos, or tamales—and the options don’t stop there! If you’re looking for new recipes, try out enchiladas or tortas next time you make a batch of pork.

I hope these ideas help inspire your own creation!