Slow Cooker Pork Tacos

(Last Updated On: 25 January 2021)

There are two things that I think about A LOT the first, is travelling around Mexico stuffing my face with Tacos, and the second is owning a Taco truck. I adore Tacos and have read more Taco cookbooks than you would ever think possible. Maybe, I’ve found my food blog niche, and today is my first ever accidental chef taco recipe – slow cooker pork tacos.

I read somewhere once that there is no such thing as a “traditional taco” and that you can just basically use the taco as a blank canvas. Of course, there are the world-famous regional Mexican tacos: carnitas, al pastor and Asada. There’s the ancient process of nixtamalization for making masa harina, a vital ingredient for making corn tortillas, which themselves are essential for creating any decent taco. The history around the humble taco is so intriguing to me. I’d strongly recommend giving the Taco Chronicles a watch on Netflix if you love Tacos too.

Assembled Pork Taco. Corn Tortilla with deep red rib meat on top, topped with bright tomato, onion and coriander on a light blue plate.

So what we’re saying is, the corn tortilla is the vessel, and you can essentially put anything you like in it. The only limit is your imagination. For me, a taco needs a sauce or salsa, the main “meat” and something fresh, raw and crunchy.

Preparing Pork Tacos.

Today’s slow cooker pork tacos are made using pork spare ribs, rather than a joint of pork. It’s so simple to turn them into a crispy, sweet, spicy taco; all you need is a slow-cooker (or crockpot).

Ingredients for Slow Cooker Pork Tacos on a concrete effect background. In the shot are Pork Spare Ribs, individually porks, BBQ sauce, a whole bulb of garlic, two red onions, honey, two cloves, one star anise, 4 bay leaves and a small blue bowl containing the spice rub.

There are plenty of other things to do on a Taco Tuesday than just eat tacos, and this recipe means you can do them all! All you’ve got to do is compile a super quick rib rub, quarter a couple of onions, pierce a bulb of garlic, and then you can get on with your day – the slow cooker pork tacos will be ready for the final stages when you return.

Cook the pork ribs in the crockpot for 7 – 8 hours on low, or 4 – 5 hours on high. That meat will be tender and falling off the bone – which is absolutely what we want for this recipe.

Pork spare ribs in a silver bowl covered in spice rub.

When you return from your wonderfully successful Tuesday out in the big bad world, remove the ribs from the crockpot. Remove all the meat from the bones, and shred. Discard as many of the gristly bits as you can during this process. If you miss some, fear not, you’ll be able to grab them during the skilleting.

Pre-heat a cast iron pan (or frying pan) until it’s super smoking hot. Carefully add the rib meat. Cook the pork for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. You want the meat to go crispy on the edges, don’t worry too much about it catching the bottom of the pan, it’ll add to the taste.

While the pork is crisping and smelling stunning, deseed and finely dice the tomatoes, finely chop the red onion and roughly job your coriander and add to a bowl, just before serving hit the salad with a large pinch of salt, and the juice of half a lime.

What should I serve with my Tacos?

In my opinion, you HAVE to serve your Taco Tuesday Tacos with corn tortillas. If possible you should also make them at home – I’m perfecting my recipe before I share it, but it’s a super simple process. A tortilla press deffo simplifies the process.

I served these tacos with my super simple Mango, Maple + Coriander Hot Sauce – the sweetness and the heat just elevates the tacos.

three slow cooker pork tacos on a pale blue plate. The meat is dark brown and topped with a green mango, maple and coriander hot sauce. On top of the taco is a salsa of coriander, tomato and red onion.

Want to keep this recipe for later? Why not save this Pin to your Taco Tuesday or Food Inspiration boards on Pinterest. Drop me a follow while you’re over there. You’ll get not only my recipe pins, but you’ll see what inspires me too. I probably pin more of other peoples recipes than my own.

Slow Cooker Pork Tacos

These perfectly balanced tacos are 1) a breeze to make 2) absolutely divine, your Taco Tuesday just got LIT. 
Servings 12 tacos
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 4 hrs


Dry Rub

  • 30 g Light Brown Sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Smoked Paprika
  • 1 tablespoon White Pepper
  • 1 tablespoon Salt
  • 1 tablespoon chilli powder

For Slow Cooker

  • 1.4 kg Pork Spare Ribs
  • 300 ml Apple Cider
  • 250 g BBQ sauce
  • 100 g Honey
  • 1 whole star anise
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 5 bay leaves
  • 2 red onions
  • 1 whole head of garlic pierced with a skewer

Quick Salsa

  • 2 big salad tomatoes
  • 1 red onion
  • large handful of coriander
  • large pinch of salt
  • juice of half a lime

To Serve

  • 12 corn tortillas
  • lime wedges
  • Mango, Maple & Coriander Hot Sauce check out my story highlights @the_accidentalchef_


  • Combine the dry rub ingredients in a bowl.
  • Tip the mixture over the ribs and thorough rub to coat.
  • Quarter onions, and pierce garlic with a skewer – add to the bowl of the slow cooker along with the rest of the slow cooker ingredients. Place ribs in the slow cooker. Cover with the lid and cook on low for 7 – 8 hours, or 4 – 5 hours on high. 
  • Once the slow cooker dings, carefully remove the ribs from the pot. Remove all the meat from bones, and shred. Keep an eye out for any bits of fatty gristle and remove them. 
  • Heat a frying pan over high heat, until super hot. Add the rib meat and fry for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. The edges will crispy and it’ll be DELISH. 
  • Whilst the rib meat cooks; deseed and finely dice the tomatoes, chop the red onions and roughly chop the coriander. Just before serving, add a large pinch of salt and the juice of one lime. 
  • Optional delicious step: Add a ladle full of the stock from the slow cooker just before serving. 
  • Warm your corn tortillas and serve in the centre of the table. 
Author: JPLongland
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Slow Cooker
Keyword: Family Favourites, gluten free, taco tuesday
In Season: Year Round

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