This easy stew recipe with leftover carnitas meat isn’t quite a chili… but, it also isn’t quite a soup. So, after much deliberation, I finally settled on this being a Comforting Carnitas Stew. And, what a quintessential comfort food it is: Full of hearty beans & pork enlivened by bursts of crisp-tender sweetness from the corn and bell pepper, but with an underlying warmth from the seasoned carnitas and chipotle pepper.
Note: This also works well with leftover slow cooker salsa pork, or with any similarly seasoned slow cooked pulled pork!
Remember yesterday when I mentioned that I’d be sharing a couple of the recipes I made with the leftovers from my latest big batch of Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas? Well, I always at least try to keep my promises — but I’m also really excited about this leftover carnitas stew, because it’s soooo good, you guys. As always, one of the coolest thing about slow cooking up a large pork roast is all the leftovers you can then use in any number of recipes — and this one is definitely a keeper. Not feeling stewish today? See also: Leftover Carnitas Naan Pizza!
Bonus: Carnitas Stew also uses up the rest of the box of beef broth you may have left over from making the original batch of carnitas.
Comforting Carnitas Stew
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 a medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
One sweet (red, orange, or yellow) bell pepper, chopped
1 chipotle in adobo, minced
2 Tbsp tomato paste
28 oz can crushed tomatoes
1 can corn, drained
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can kidney or pinto beans, rinsed and drained
3 cups beef broth
1.5 tsp smoked paprika
2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp oregano
1 tsp cumin
Sea salt, to taste
Black pepper, to taste
3 cups leftover cooked pork carnitas
Heat olive oil in a large soup pot or Dutch oven over medium heat until shimmering, then add in the onion. Saute for three minutes, stirring occasionally, then stir in the garlic, bell pepper, and chipotle pepper.
Saute for another two minutes, then add in the tomatoes, tomato paste, corn, beans, broth, spices, and carnitas meat. Bring to a boil, then cover the pot, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Serve with optional: Chopped green onions or cilantro, sour cream, cheddar cheese, crushed tortilla chips, lime wedges…
To lime, or not to lime… that is the question!
This comforting carnitas stew works well either with or without an extra dash of fresh lime juice, so serve a few wedges on the side and let people add some in (or not) at their own discretion. The sweet pepper and corn also balance out the slight heat from the chipotle, so this recipe gives you all the smoky warmth and flavor you’re looking for in this sort of dish, with only a mild level of spice.
Carnitas stew is naturally gluten free (and optionally dairy free, if you don’t choose to top yours with cheese).
Comforting Carnitas Stew, printable recipe
Comforting Carnitas Stew
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 a medium onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- One sweet (red, orange, or yellow) bell pepper, chopped
- 1 chipotle in adobo, minced
- 2 Tbsp tomato paste
- 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
- 1 can corn, drained
- 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 can kidney or pinto beans, rinsed and drained
- 3 cups beef broth
- 1.5 tsp smoked paprika
- 2 tsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp oregano
- 1 tsp cumin
- Sea salt, to taste
- Black pepper, to taste
- 3 cups leftover cooked pork carnitas
- Heat olive oil in a large soup pot or Dutch oven over medium heat until shimmering, then add in the onion. Saute for three minutes, stirring occasionally, then stir in the garlic, bell pepper, and chipotle pepper.
- Saute for another two minutes, then add in the tomatoes, tomato paste, corn, beans, broth, spices, and carnitas meat. Bring to a boil, then cover the pot, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Serve with optional: Chopped green onions or cilantro, sour cream, cheddar cheese, crushed tortilla chips, lime wedges...
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Thursday 9th of May 2019
Made this last night. I pureed my Chipotles in Adobo and put in 3tsp of the puree and only 1tsp of the chili powder - I didn't want it to be TOO spicy as Rachel's recipe tend to be higher on the spicy hot scale than I am use to. For the simmering - I left the lid on for the first 10 minutes, cracked the second 10, and off the last 10 minutes as it was still pretty thin. It thickened up nicely and I was able to eat using tortilla chips. If you do plan to eat with chips - keep in mind they are salted. I did not add as much salt as I normally would have and that worked out fine - if I had it would have been too salty. A 3oz portion of tortilla chips worked out perfectly for 1/6 of the recipe.
Wednesday 28th of February 2018
Had this tonight-DELICIOUS! Thank you so much for posting these great recipes and the menu plan/grocery list! What a blessing!
Monday 19th of February 2018
Rachael Ray would call this a stoup! I am going to try this. Looks like another keep recipe! Thanks!