Tacos Al Pastor Recipe

Tacos Al Pastor

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for al pastor
1 4 lbs pork “butt” roast
1/4 pineapple sliced into long 1/4″ thick strips

2 ancho chiles
1 guajillo chile
1 bay leaf

3/4 C fresh pineapple
1/2 onion
1 Chipotle chile (in adobo sauce)
1 Tbs adobo sauce
1 Tbs vinegar
5 cloves of garlic
1 Tbs + 1 tsp kosher salt
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp achiote paste (or 1/2 tsp paprika)

for serving
small white corn tortillas
minced vidalia onion
minced cilantro
lime wedges
salsa verde

How to make Tacos Al Pastor

for more pictures and full story click here

Put the pork in the freezer until its firm enough to cut (about 30 minutes).

Put the the ancho and guajillo chiles along with the bay leaf in a put of water and bring to a boil. Turn off the heat and allow the chiles to steep until they are rehydrated. Discard the seeds and stems and toss the chiles in a food processor along with all the other ingredients.

Take the roast out of the freezer and orient the roast how you’d have it sitting in the roasting pan (fat side up). The idea here is that you want to slice the meat into 3/4″ thick slices that will stack on top of each other in the roasting pan. I don’t slice all the way through which helps when you’re trying to put the roast back together.

Slather the marinade between each layer until every nook and cranny is covered. Tie the roastback together. Cover it and allow it to marinade for no more than an hour. Fresh pineapple has a powerful enzyme that breaks down proteins and if you let it sit too long you’ll end up with mush. If you’re using canned pineapple let it marinate overnight as most of the enzyme is destroyed in the canning process.

When the roast is ready to go in the oven, set the oven to 450 degrees F. Put the roast on a rack in a roasting pan and add water to the bottom of the pan (this is to keep the drippings from smoking). Roast for 30 minutes at this temperature then place the pineapple slices on top of the roast and turn down the heat to 300 degrees F. Roast until the meat is tender (about 3 hours).

After removing the meat from the oven, cover it with foil and let it rest for about 20 minutes. When you’re ready to serve, just cut the meat up into small cubes. I like to pan fry it at this point to give the pieces a bit more caramelization but it’s up to you.

To assemble the tacos just heat up a pile of tortilla’s in the microwave covered with a damp paper towel for about 30 seconds. Using 2 tortilla’s per taco, fill with meat, then top with minced onions, cilantro and salsa verde. Serve with a wedge of lime for squeezing.

  • MissJ9
    MissJ9 says

    Good grief, those are a vision indeed.

  • mhinatsu
    mhinatsu says

    How many servings does this make? I can't wait to try this recipe, it looks delicious!

  • norecipes
    norecipes says

    Thanks! We had taco's for 3 nights, then turned half of it into a mexican stew, so I'd say this is probably good for 20+ tacos.

  • worldpeas
    worldpeas says


  • Marinrey
    Marinrey says

    How much meat does this take?

  • Caduceus
    Caduceus says

    I love al pastor so much. Thank you for this.

  • gootjr
    gootjr says

    Here is a link to a picture of a portable Al Pastor machine. You just hook up propane and turn on the motor and wait for the tacos. They are $250 complete and there is a all stainless one available. http://s423.photobucket.com/albums/pp319/gootjr/Al%20Pastor/

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