These fully loaded sheet pan Pork Nachos are sure to get the party started. We take slow cooker carnitas and bake them between layers of tortilla chips and cheese, then top with guacamole, ranch dressing, fresh cilantro and hot sauce for a seriously easy and delicious meal.
Loaded Pork Carnitas Nachos
What’s better than a tray full of fully loaded nachos for dinner? Not only are these Pork Carnitas Nachos a family favorite, but they are also perfect for using up leftovers. It’s a win-win!
You can make a huge batch of Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas and use it to prep yummy dinners all week long. Top with the nacho toppings that we suggest below, or whatever you have on hand. And don’t feel like you need to stick with carnitas - you can add just about any freshly made or leftover meats, veggies, and toppings to mix things up.
For a slightly different flavor profile, here's another one of the best shredded pork recipes to use for these nachos.
Ingredients in Pork Carnitas Nachos
- Pork Roast - we like to use either pork loin or bone-in pork shoulder (or pork butt) for pork carnitas.
- Orange Juice - you can use fresh or bottled orange juice.
- Chicken Broth - use homemade or store-bought.
- Onions - white or yellow onions are what we typically use for this recipe, but red onions will work.
- Jalapeño - fresh jalapeños add the best flavor to this dish.
- Garlic - we use fresh minced garlic. You could add a touch of garlic powder, too, if you want.
- Cumin - this is a key ingredient in many Mexican dishes.
- Dried Oregano - either Mexican or Italian dried oregano will work great.
- Bay Leaves - you can use fresh or dried, although fresh have a stronger flavor.
- Salt and Pepper
- Limes - use fresh lime juice for squeezing over the carnitas just before serving.
- Tortilla Chips - use your favorite brand.
- Cheddar Cheese - shredded cheddar cheese is our family’s go-to cheese for nachos, but you could also use Monterey Jack or Pepper Jack.
- Ranch Dressing - either store bought or homemade.
- Pico De Gallo- So easy to make and adds tons of flavor.
- Guacamole - either make homemade guacamole or purchase some in the deli or refrigerated section of your grocery store.
- Cilantro - fresh chopped tastes great, but feel free to skip if you aren’t a fan.
- Hot Sauce - you can use your favorite brand
How to Layer Nachos
- Gather your ingredients: Start by collecting all the ingredients you will need, tortilla chips, shredded cheese, pork, and toppings like jalapenos, diced tomatoes, sour cream, and guacamole.
- Preheat the oven: Preheat your oven to 400°F (204°C). This will ensure that your nachos melt and heat evenly.
- Prepare a baking sheet: Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper. This will make clean-up easier afterward.
- Create a base layer of tortilla chips: Spread a single layer of tortilla chips on the baking sheet. Make sure to cover the entire surface with the chips.
- Add your pork: If you use a protein like cooked chicken or beef, scatter it evenly over the tortilla chips.
- Sprinkle on the shredded cheese: Generously sprinkle shredded cheese over the nacho chips and protein. Use a type of cheese that melts well, such as cheddar, Monterey Jack, or a blend.
- Add your desired toppings: This is where you can get creative. Add toppings like jalapenos, diced tomatoes, onions, black olives, or any other toppings you enjoy. Be sure to distribute them evenly to ensure each bite is flavorful.
- Repeat the layers: Repeat steps 4 to 7, creating additional layers of tortilla chips, protein, cheese, and toppings, until you have used up all your ingredients. Make sure to end with a final layer of cheese on top.
- Bake in the oven: Place the baking sheet in the preheated oven and bake for about 8-10 minutes, or until the cheese has melted and the nachos are heated through.
- Add finishing touches: Once the nachos are out of the oven, you can add some final touches. Drizzle on some sour cream or guacamole, sprinkle on some fresh cilantro or green onions, or squeeze some lime juice over the top.
More Nacho Topping Ideas:
- Sour Cream
- Diced Tomatoes- or Pico de Gallo
- Sliced Avocado or Guacamole
- Sliced Radishes
- Sweet Corn, Corn Salsa, or Mexican Corn
- Sliced Jalapeños
- Canned Green Chilis
- Black Beans
How to Make Pork Carnitas Nachos
- Add ingredients to the slow cooker. Spray your crockpot with non-stick cooking spray, then add the pork roast, orange juice, chicken stock, onion, jalapeño, and garlic. Season with cumin, oregano, salt, pepper, and top with bay leaves.
- Cook. Cover and cook on high heat for 5 hours or on low heat for 7-8 hours, until you can easily shred the roast with two forks. (Note: if the roast is difficult to shred, put the lid back on and cook for 30-60 more minutes, or until it’s easily shreddable. The slow cooking time will vary depending on the slow cooker and how full it is).
- Shred the meat. Remove roast from slow cooker and shred, removing any excess fat or gristle, and place on a baking sheet. Use any remaining juices from the slow cooker to moisten the shredded pork.
- Broil. Broil on low for 2 minutes and turn with tongs. Repeat 3-4 times, or until about 20 percent of the edges of the pork are a little crispy. Continue to add drippings from the slow cooker to keep the meat moistened.
- Build the nachos and serve. Spread half of the chips in a single layer on a large baking sheet. Add half of the cheese and shredded pork, then repeat with the rest of the chips, cheese and shredded pork. Bake in a preheated 400-degree oven for 8-10 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Remove from the oven and top with guacamole, drizzled ranch dressing, hot sauce and cilantro. Enjoy!
Our honest answer is that you shouldn’t. They will never taste as good as when you eat them fresh out of the oven. After time in the fridge, the tortilla chips will begin to absorb any moisture from the ingredients and it will be impossible to get them nice and crispy again. Plus, most of the toppings, like guacamole and sour cream, can’t be heated in the oven.
These nachos are great for using up leftovers! You can substitute any sort of freshly made or leftover shredded chicken, baked chicken (try our Copycat Chipotle Chicken), pot roast, Kalua shredded pork or even leftover Thanksgiving turkey.
You could also add cooked ground beef, bacon bits or skip the meat entirely and go vegetarian.
You bet, if you want to make a smaller batch, layer on a plate and microwave until the cheese is melty.
- BBQ Nacho: BBQ nachos are a delicious twist on the traditional flavor. Instead of the usual cheese, these nachos are smothered in tangy barbecue sauce and topped with pulled pork or chicken. Black Beans are a great combo here too. The combination of sweet and savory flavors creates a mouthwatering experience. Add a drizzle of Ranch dressing for a fun flavor variation.
- Vegetarian Nachos: Vegetarian nachos are a great option for those who prefer a plant-based diet. Instead of meat, these nachos are loaded with veggies like bell peppers, onions, corn, and black beans. They can be topped with vegetarian cheese or dairy-free alternatives for a satisfying and flavorful snack.
- Breakfast Nachos: Who says nachos are just for lunch or dinner? Breakfast nachos are a delicious morning option. They typically consist of tortilla chips topped with scrambled eggs, bacon or sausage, cheese, and sometimes even salsa or avocado. They offer a hearty and satisfying start to the day.
Pork Carnitas Nachos Recipe
Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas
- 3-5 lb Pork Roast
- ½ cup Orange Juice
- 1 cup Chicken Broth
- 1 large Onion yellow, white, or red onion minced
- 1 med Jalapeño minced
- 4 large cloves Garlic or about 4 tsp
- 2 teaspoon Cumin or chili powder
- 1 tsp Dried Oregano
- 2 large Bay Leaves
- 2 teaspoon Salt
- 1 teaspoon Pepper
- 2 large Limes for serving
- 7 oz Tortilla Chips or about a half bag
- 2 cups Cheddar Cheese
- ¼ cup Ranch Dressing
- 1 cup Guacamole
- 1 bunch Cilantro coarsely chopped
- Hot Sauce your favorite kind
How to Make Slow Cooker Carnitas
- Spray your crockpot with non-stick cooking spray, then add the pork roast, orange juice, chicken stock, onion, jalapeño and garlic. Season with cumin, oregano, salt, pepper and top with bay leaves.
- Cook on high for 5 hours or on low for 7-8 hours, until you can easily shred the roast with two forks. (Note: if the roast is difficult to shred, put the lid back on and cook for 30-60 more minutes, or until it’s easily shreddable).
- Preheat oven to a low broil.
- Remove roast from slow cooker and shred, removing any excess fat or gristle, and place on a baking sheet. Use any remaining juices from the slow cooker to moisten the shredded pork.
- Broil on low for 2 minutes and turn with tongs. Repeat 3-4 times, or until about 20 percent of the edges of the pork are a little crispy. Continue to add drippings (about ¼ cup at a time) from the slow cooker to keep the meat moistened.
- Once you have broiled the carnitas, remove and squeeze with fresh lime juice.
How to Assemble Nachos
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Spread half of the chips in a single layer on a large baking sheet. Add half of the cheese and shredded pork, then repeat with the rest of the chips, cheese and shredded pork.
- Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
- Remove from the oven and top with guacamole, drizzled ranch dressing, hot sauce and cilantro. Enjoy!
More Mexican-Inspired Recipes
- Spanish Rice
- Lime Rice
- Carne Asada
- Cheesy Bean Dip
- Chicken Fajitas
- Steak Fajitas
- More Tex Mex Recipes
- More Dinner Recipes
Our sheet pan Pork Carnitas Nachos are fully loaded with yummy ingredients like shredded cheese, guacamole, ranch dressing and fresh cilantro. Luckily they are super easy to throw together and perfect for using leftovers because your family is certain to ask for them again.