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Street Carnitas (pulled pork tacos)

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These Street Carnitas tacos tare filled with a cilantro lime slaw, avocado crema, and pickled onions. This recipe is super easy to make ahead of time and are perfect for Cinco de Mayo, celebrations, BBQs and more.

two plates full of tacos with slaw, lime, pickled onion, cilantro, and pulled pork
vibrant street carnitas tacos with pickled onion, jalapeño and slaw

Carnitas are a traditional way of making pulled pork. Our recipe for pulled pork uses special Mexican spices and is slow-cooked until the meat falls apart. Traditionally, carnitas are served with sides like sour cream, salsa, pickled onions, slaw, and more.

what you’ll need

To begin making your tacos, make your own slow cooker pulled pork or save time by purchasing pulled pork from the grocery.

ingredients for street carnitas, including pulled pork, avocado, cabbage, crema, slaw ingredients, pickled red onions
ingredients for street carnitas tacos

These street carnitas are made special with cilantro lime slaw, avocado cream sauce, and pickled onions.

  • Cilantro Lime Slaw made with red and green cabbage, carrots, roasted corn, cilantro, jalapeño, brine, cumin, lime juice and salt make an amazing slaw topping for tacos.
  • Avocado cream sauce is made with Mexican crema, garlic powder, onion powder, pickled jalapeños, brine and lime juice
  • Pickled onions are sliced onions pickled with apple cider vinegar, white vinegar, water, sugar and salt.

step by step instructions

Follow these simple instructions for making street carnitas.

instructions for making street carnitas, slaw, and avocado creme sauce
steps for making street carnitas
  1. Assemble slaw ingredients, mix and chill
  2. Using a taco stand, add pulled pork to corn or flour tortillas
  3. Make the avocado cream dressing (optional).
  4. Top with slaw, avocado cream dressing, cotija cheese, and cilantro
open taco with pulled pork, pickled onion, slaw, and avocado cream sauce next to lime wedges
the perfect street taco right at home


  • Save time
    • The best thing about these tacos is that you can prepare the ingredients in advance. Purchase pre-made pork or pickled onions if you do not have the time to make them at home.
  • Chill the slaw
    • By chilling the slaw overnight, it allows the flavors to mingle and is even more flavorful.
  • Tips for the avocado cream dressing
    • The avocado cream dressing shouldn’t be too thick or runny. You can add more crema or pickle brine to adjust the consistency.
  • warm or grill your tortillas before serving
corn tortilla with carnitas and pickled onions, topped with cilantro garnish next to lime wedges
crunchy slaw and refreshing cream sauce for the win


recipe substitutions

  • pork- use shredded chicken or steak
  • vegetarian– add beans or rice
  • dairy-free– swap the crema for avocado in the cream sauce
taco with pulled pork, red onion, and slaw garnished with cilantro
taco with pulled pork (carnitas)

what are the best toppings for carnitas?

There are endless toppings for carnitas! Try:

  • jalapeño slices
  • diced onion
  • shredded carrots
  • corn
  • salsa
  • cheese
  • guacamole
  • greek yogurt
tacos in a taco stand with lime wedges and pickled red onion
customize with your favorite toppings

storing leftovers

The best way to store carnitas with slaw and pickled onions is by keeping the individual components individually in an air-tight containers.

Carnitas, avocado cream sauce and slaw are best consumed within 3 days, while pickled onions last about 2 weeks in the fridge.

what to serve with carnitas

The best sides for pork tacos include:

street carnitas with red onion, lime and cilantro garnish

Street Carnitas

Make these amazingly delicious pulled pork Street Carnitas with cilantro lime slaw, avocado cream and tangy pickled onions.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories: 602kcal
Author: Amber



  • 2 lb pulled pork
  • 12 corn tortillas
  • queso fresco
  • 2 limes cut into wedges
  • ¼ cup cilantro chopped

Cilantro Lime Slaw

  • cups red cabbage
  • cups green cabbage
  • 3 carrots shredded
  • ½ cup corn roasted
  • ½ cup cilantro chopped
  • 1 jalapeño seeded and diced (or use pickled)
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • 2 tbsp lime juice
  • ½ tsp salt

Avocado Cream

  • 2 avocados
  • ½ cup Mexican crema or sour cream
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • 2 tbsp pickled jalapeños chopped
  • 2 tbsp pickled jalepeño brine
  • 2 tbsp lime juice

Pickled Onions


  • Combine all the ingredients for the slaw and chill in fridge while you prep the remaining ingredients.
  • Place all the ingredients for Avocado cream in a food processor or blender and pulse till the consistency you prefer.  Add more crema or jalapeno juice to thin it to the consistency you like.
  • To make the pickled onions, combine the vinegars, water, sugar and salt in a small microwavable bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds, stir to combine and let it cool.  Place the onions in a bowl or jar and pour the brine over the onions.  Allow to marinate for a few minutes or overnight before using.
  • Dampen 2 paper towels and squeeze dry, then place the tortillas in the middle, folding the paper towel over them.  Microwave on high for 30 seconds.  Or, if you like your tacos crunchy, heat just a bit of oil in a pan and cook each side of the tortilla for 15 seconds, flip and continue cooking.
  • Fill each tortilla with a couple heaping tablespoons of pulled pork, then top with slaw, avocado crema, queso fresco, chopped cilantro and pickled onions.


  • Pickled onions are easy and delicious to make and are great on everything from tacos to sandwiches, pizza and more.
  • I like to make a big batch of pulled pork and divide it up, freezing parts for tacos, sliders, and BBQ.
  • There are a lot of precooked pulled pork options in the grocery store.  I also like to get extra from the BBQ restaurant.
  • Store individual ingredients in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Warm and assemble as needed


Calories: 602kcal | Carbohydrates: 73g | Protein: 26g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 75mg | Sodium: 3038mg | Potassium: 723mg | Fiber: 11g | Sugar: 30g | Vitamin A: 6019IU | Vitamin C: 43mg | Calcium: 205mg | Iron: 3mg

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