Cochinita Pibil (or my version of it) in the Instant Pot

July 11, 2019  •  Meat & Poultry

I sometimes get weird ideas about creating a recipe, and this one has been eating at me for awhile. True cochinita pibil would be wrapped in banana leaves and immersed in coals in the ground to cook, but that’s not really possible in the patio of my condo, so I decided to give it a try in the Instant Pot. The flavor was intense and satisfying, but I found the texture of the meat from the butt a little tough, despite the pressure cooker, so I’d recommend doing this recipe with a bone in shoulder roast instead.

Cochinita Pibil - Instant Pot
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 10
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 6 large garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 orange, juiced
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 2 lemons, juiced
  • 1 small pork roast, about 5 pounds (I used a bone in butt, although I think shoulder would be better)
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • Pickled pink onions, for garnish
  • Sliced avocado, for garnish
  1. Combine all of the spices, the garlic, and the onion with the citrus juices in a small covered container and shake well. Place the roast in the Instant Pot and add the cinnamon sticks. Pour the mixture over the top and then cover, close, and set to cook on the pressure cooker setting at high for 90 minutes.
  2. Once the pressure has released naturally, remove the roast, and cut into large chunks so that it can cook enough for you to chop/shred the meat. Discard and fat or bones, and skim as much fat as possible from the juices in the Instant Pot. Return the shredded meat to the juices in the Instant Pot and cook for an additional 30 minutes on the pressure cooker high setting.
  3. Serve over rice or with tortillas to make street tacos. Garnish with pickled pink onions and avocado.


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