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Slow Cooked Sweet Barbacoa Pork

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Sweet and spicy slow cooked barbacao pork sweetened with brown sugar, cola, chipotle chilies, green chilies, cumin and spices. Delicious over cilantro lime rice and black beans.


Sweet and spicy slow cooked barbacao pork sweetened with brown sugar, cola, chipotle chilies, green chilies, cumin and spices. Delicious over cilantro lime rice and black beans.Slow Cooked Sweet Barbacoa Pork

I also have a Barbacoa Beef recipe.

This was a recipe request to make over Cafe Rio’s sweet pork recipe, only problem is I’ve never eaten at Cafe Rio. After reading dozens of copycat recipes, I came up with my own lightened up version, which was a huge hit in my home. This had enough for several meals and made a burrito bowl out of the leftovers. I used cilantro lime rice, black beans, pico de gallo, lettuce, avocado and a little low fat cheese. But this was also great served over rice.

Sweet and spicy slow cooked barbacao pork sweetened with brown sugar, cola, chipotle chilies, green chilies, cumin and spices. Delicious over cilantro lime rice and black beans.
Since the marinade gets tossed after it cooks, I wasn’t sure how to calculate, so I counted half the sugar and cola from the marinade just to be sure. Adjust the heat to your liking. This is medium heat but if you like it hot, add more chilies, if you prefer it mild, use less. Enjoy! The crock pot is parked on my counter lately, it’s so helpful on the days I have to go in to work. What can beat coming home from work and smelling dinner just about ready!

And since so many are asking, although I have and love my Instant Pot, I still love my slow cooker! I have the 6 Quart Hamilton Beach Set ‘n Forget Programmable Slow Cooker (affil link). I love it because you can adjust the time you want it to cook, and it automatically turns to warm when it’s done. It also has a probe for meat that automatically shuts off when done. I hated my old crock pot, it burnt everything and my food had a weird taste. This slow cooker is so great, I actually own several!

Slow Cooked Sweet Barbacoa Pork

4.84 from 6 votes
Sweet and spicy slow cooked barbacao pork sweetened with brown sugar, cola, chipotle chilies, green chilies, cumin and spices. Delicious over cilantro lime rice and black beans.
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Mexican
Sweet and spicy slow cooked barbacao pork sweetened with brown sugar, cola, chipotle chilies, green chilies, cumin and spices. Delicious over cilantro lime rice and black beans.
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 5 hours
Marinate Time: 2 hours
Total: 7 hours 5 minutes
Yield: 10
Serving Size: 3 oz


For the Marinade:

  • 2.5 lbs pork loin roast, all fat trimmed
  • salt and pepper
  • garlic powder
  • 6 oz Coke zero
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar, unpacked
  • 1/4 cup water
  • Step 2
  • 8 oz Coke zero
  • 6 oz can sliced green chilies
  • 8 oz tomato sauce
  • 1 chipotle chile in adobo sauce
  • 1/8 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp cumin
  • 1/8 tsp chipotle chili powder, to taste
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar, unpacked


  • Season pork with salt, pepper and garlic powder and place in the crock pot.
  • Add 6 oz of coke and 1/4 cup of brown sugar. Marinate refrigerated for a few hours or overnight turning meat at least once while marinating.
  • Remove crock from refrigerator, add water, and cook on high for about 3-4 hours (or until it shreds easily).
  • Remove pork from crock pot and discard any liquid left in the pot. Shred pork with two forks.
  • STEP TWO: In the crock pot, combine 8 oz coke, green chilies, tomato sauce, chipotle chile, garlic powder, cumin, chipotle chili powder and remaining brown sugar.
  • Put shredded pork back in the crock pot and combine with sauce. Adjust salt and pepper to taste, cover and cook on high 1-1/2 hours more.

Last Step:

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Serving: 3 oz, Calories: 202.5 kcal, Carbohydrates: 11.5 g, Protein: 26 g, Fat: 6.5 g, Saturated Fat: 2 g, Cholesterol: 66 mg, Sodium: 11.5 mg, Fiber: 0.5 g, Sugar: 10 g


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216 comments on “Slow Cooked Sweet Barbacoa Pork”

  1. I am excited to try this recipe with my new slow cooker. I see the Coke ZERO as an ingredient, but it’s not available in my area. I understand if I use Classic Coke it won’t be as ‘skinny’, but should I make any other adjustments?

  2. Made this for the first time, and followed recipe except cut brown sugar back to 1/4 and used Swerve replacement brown sugar. Had only 1.6 pound pork loin, so cut back a bit on the sauce amount when putting pork back in for the last 1.5 hour. But made the whole batch and cooked the remainder down to use as a sauce on top if desired. Husband loved it. So many ways can have it with rice and beans we did tonight as suggested ( I actually tried the cuban black beans and rice cooked together recipe to try something new) Would be great in taco or burrito or even salad. We did have a big romaine salad on side with tomato, hearts of palm, avocado etc.

  3. Avatar photo
    Rachael Martin

    Could I substitute Zevia soft drink instead of Coke Zero?  Has anyone tried?  I have an allergy to artificial sugars but otherwise this sounds yummy

  4. Avatar photo
    Mom of a great cook!

    My daughter makes this snd we love it.  I don’t have a slow cooker…. Can I make it in the oven ? 

  5. Is the coke zero what makes this recipe not gluten-free? Seems like it is to me? I’d love to know the variation if it’s not!

  6. Could this be cooked on the slow cooker mode of an Instant Pot? PS, I’ve been using this recipe for yyyeeaaarrrsss because my family is obsessed, it’s SO good!!

    1. It’s 1 chile from a can of Chipotle chile in adobo sauce. If you want more heat, I sometimes run mine through the little food processor, and add a little extra sauce.

  7. I made this the other day for the first time using my instant pot. It was a pork tenderloin kept whole but scored for marinating and cooking. Marinated the meat for a few hours before cooking with all the ingredients (taste marinade before putting on meat to see if more sweet or heat is needed). Then instant pot set for 80 minutes for 2.5lbs of pork loin, natural release 10-15 minutes. I put the pork on a lift to minimizing burning. The four adults and the toddler ate it up with leftovers for the next day. Served it with buttered corn, seasoned black beans, white rice, sour cream, and pico de gallo. It was great. I will definitely make it again.

    1. I’m going to try this method.  Thank you for posting!  Did you add the step 2 sauce before cooking or after?

    2. Thank you! I was wanting to make this on a weeknight but I’m not home from work 3 hours before dinner.

  8. Made this over the weekend and it was so good! I upped the spices and served over brown rice. Will definitely make this one again! Thanks Gina!

  9. Could you substitute chicken breast for pork? I made it with pork last week it was awesome but wanted to try chicken.

  10. Pingback: Slow Cooked Cafe Rio Style Sweet Barbacoa Pork from Skinnytaste | Slow Cooker or Pressure Cooker

  11. Pingback: Slow Cooked Sweet Barbacoa Pork - Powerful Handmade site

  12. Avatar photo
    Kristen williams

    How long would you cook this in the instant pot ? This is my family’s favorite recipe! We have been making it for years thanks to you . I finally got the instant pot!

  13. I’ve got a food allergy kid and was hoping to sub something for coke zero…any suggestions???

  14. Do you think I could make step one in the evening, refrigerate overnight, in the morning  combine everything for step 2, leave it in the fridge for a few hours and then cook the step 2 part in the afternoon?

  15. Pingback: Slow Cooked Pork Burrito Bowls – Sodium Optional

  16. Avatar photo
    Cynthia Trew

    This sounds divine! I want to use a pork tenderloin instead of a pork roast.  How should I adjust my crock pot cooking time?

  17. I made this last night and OMG it was soooooo good. I made the Cuban Black Beans and the Cilantro Rice. It was one of those dishes where you want to just keep eating no matter how full you are. I didn't have any coke zero, so I just used regular coke, next time I will try with the coke zero, and believe me there will be a next time. All of your recipes look so good. Tonight I am making the chicken tenderloins with mushroom sauce. Cannot wait.

  18. I was wondering if the Coke could be replaced with anything else or if the recipe would be very different if I leave it out? we don't do soda at all. thanks!

  19. I made this earlier this week and was a big fan. Its pretty sweet but also has some heat to it! I never put it on rice but I did eat it over salad several times and put it on a sandwich!

  20. Avatar photo
    Jessica Kelly

    I made this with only the green chilis last night with the chipotle rice and the black beans recipe. It was amazing! I wasn't sure how much heat the 1 pepper would add and I didn't want to not be able to feed my young kids 😛 I don't use WW or have a specific diet, but I love coming to this site for lower calorie and fat amazing tasting recipes. We've made multiple from here! (Chicken zucchini rollatini, jerk pork with mango avocado salsa, cabbage soup, chicken pot pie…) My hubby even bought me the cookbook!

  21. Avatar photo
    Determined Weight Watcher Momma

    I made this recipe a few weeks ago and it was delicious! My kids were very excited they were "eating" soda pop for dinner. 🙂

  22. Question about the overnight refrigeration. My crock pot manual says not to refrigerate the bowl because it will take too long to heat the bowl up before it starts cooking the food. Wondering the importance of marinating in the crock bowl – are those directions for convenience or purposeful instructions impacting the cook times of the recipe?

    1. I just put it in a glass dish and then dumped it in the crock pot. I did that mostly because I didnt have room for the whole crock pot in my fridge!

  23. Avatar photo
    Caitlin Hanich

    Has anyone tried skipping the marinade step and just cooked it the whole time in the sauce? This was just delicious but takes a bit too much time for the fix and forget crock pot cooking I like.

  24. Made this for my SUPER picky hubby 2 nights ago…he's so picky he hates french fries!! (ahhh!) HE ATE THIS UP!!! He and I both loved it and he even bragged about it to his fellow coworkers. Thanks for making me look good! 😀 My sisters and I are so buying your cookbook when it drops. 🙂

  25. where do you find the chipotle chile in adobo sauce? is there a good substitute for that if i cant find? thanks!

    1. I found the can of chipotle chile in adobo sauce in the international foods aisle at my grocery store.

  26. I'm not sure if I commented on this a couple years ago when I ran into this recipe, but I keep coming back to it. This is hands down my favorite recipe for sweet pork. And I have tried more than a few looking for the perfect balance of flavor. I am a stubborn cook that usually hates to follow recipes out of some sort of pride to make things "mine," but this is a recipe I follow to a T, and it comes out perfect, every time. We love to eat it salad style with a tomatillo cilantro ranch dressing. Thanks so much!

  27. I don't usual comment on recipes, but for this one, I HAD to – I made this recipe yesterday (with brown rice and your corn salsa), and according to my hubby, this is the BEST THING I HAVE EVER MADE. I have cooked a LOT in our 5.5 years of marriage, and he is a VERY hard to please eater. The only changes I made were out of necessity – I only had 1/4 cup tomato sauce (oops!), so I used 3/4 cup ketchup in place of it (whatever point change it made was worth it…YUM), and I only had a 4 oz can green chiles, and no chile in adobo sauce. But still, I was DELICIOUS. Even my toddler gobbled up the pork (and corn salsa…corn only of course, little goober), and she NEVER eats meat when I give it to her.

    Gina, I thank you for posting this recipe….and I look forward to making it again and again! To hear my husband say it's the best thing I've ever made…let's just say you have made my day…or really, my month! 🙂

  28. Just had this for dinner, absolutely delicious!!!! My fiance LOVED it! Thank you so much for the amazing recipes.


  29. Tasty, but this is NOT barbacoa. Barbacoa is the head of a cow or goat meat wrapped in maguey or banana leaves and steamed in a pit.

  30. I'm going to make this one night in January. Can you tell me if I can leave out the green chiles? I can't stand them, but I'm not sure if they're in for extra heat?

  31. This pork was sooooo good! My husband said it tasted like he was eating at a restaurant. I LOVE your blog and your recipes are so AWESOME!!!

  32. I can't believe I am admitting this but I added the whole can of chipole peppers….I was breathing fire and my husband said he may have 3rd degree burns in his mouth…lol…I had never used these peppers before and thought it meant 1 can. Thanks for all the time and energy u put into posting these recipes. Amy

  33. Hi Gina, I don't have a scale, do you have a guess to about how much 3 oz would be as a measurement (1/2 cup etc.)?

    BTW i made this today and it is delicious– threw in a few extra chipotles to spice it up. Thanks for another great recipe!

  34. Is there something besides Coke I can use in the marinade and while it cooks in the crock pot. My house is a soda free zone for me. I haven't drank it in going on 7 years.

  35. Excellent! I used regular coke instead of coke zero. We like bold flavors so I pretty much doubled everything except for the tomato sauce, brown sugar and coke. We made "chipotle" style bowls with lettuce, cilantro lime rice, cuban style black beans, cheese, avacado, lime, sour cream and hot sauce. This recipe has made pinterest worthwhile and I'm going to follow this blog. 3 recipes for 3 were all excellent!

  36. Very good. Made a version using Adobo I had picked up in Belize earlier this year which was deep deep red. Also added some cilantro and cut up a lime to toss in the crock pot. Very good and popular with everyone here. Keep up the excellent work!

  37. I've cooked this about 5 times now, a few times with 5lb roasts (in just a few months). It is my new FAVORITE pulled pork recipe. The thing is I've never gotten past Step 1. When the marinated pork loin comes out of the crock pot, it tastes so awesome as is, that I never get to make the final sauce. We gobble it up with just some of the pan juices. I save a small container of the cooking liquid to flavor the leftovers, and that's it.

    Someday I hope to get around to making the sauce (Step 2). I'm sure that is also delicious. Thank you very much for publishing this wonderful recipe. I've tried quite a few pulled pork recipes, and for my taste nothing comes close to this one – and it's so easy to throw together. I LOVE it!

  38. Hi! What is the 1 chipotle chile in adobo sauce and where do you get it? I would like to make this recipe. Thank you.

    1. Chipotle chiles in adobo sauce are available (canned) in most grocery stores. Not sure which aisle. Check Mexican/Spanish section or ask grocer. They usually come in a small can, several chiles per can.

      To see what it looks like (so you will know what to look for), use google images to search for 'chipotle chiles in adobo sauce'. Hope this helps.

  39. Love this recipe Gina! We are going to OBX with three other couples in a few weeks and this is going to be my meal when its our night to cook. We are feeding 8 adults and 10 children. I'm going to at least double the recipe. Question – will the cooking time be the same if I get a 6 or 7 lb piece of pork? Or would you suggest putting 2 or 3 tenderloins in the crock pot? Any suggestions would be great!

  40. Avatar photo

    I accidentally put this in on low for 2 hours and then tried to turn up the heat but it never turned out right (didn't shred well and was overcooked) 🙁 I did find the sauce a little sweet, but it was DELICIOUS over cilantro lime brown rice–helped temper the tart with some sweet. Have to read directions next time! LOL Thanks Gina.

  41. Avatar photo
    Granny Enchanted

    So Yummy I just highlighted it in one of my directories. Thank you.

  42. Like Bethany, so so glad I found you. Just made the sweet barbacoa for the family. I put in one chipotle pepper then took it out after half hour in the slow cooker. My kids cant handle too much heat. What a hit! My picky 7-year old asked for seconds. My husband was surprised it was WW friendly. In his words, "This is too freakin' delicious."

    Your website is gorgeous and well laid out. Can't wait to try other recipes. Thank you for all your hard work. It shows.

  43. I made this tonight with a pork tenderloin, PERFECTION!
    Thank you. You are turning me into a cook.
    You make everything so easy and tasty.
    So so glad I found you.

  44. Love this recipe. Almost like the one at Cafe Rio. I used diet Pepsi instead of coke, just like Pepsi's taste better.
    Thanks for posting this one!!!

  45. So, I'm reading this recipe and realizing that I may have royally screwed up dinner tonight! This is what I get for multi-tasking pre-coffee in the morning before work. I did the sauce components with the meat while it's cooking.

    I'll let you know if it turns out ok…

  46. GREAT recipe! added one extra chipotle pepper in adobo and seared the pork. also, for those interested, i used a pressure cooker, not my slow cooker, and it turned out perfect. i cooked the pork in the marinade on "low" for about 45 minutes and then shredded (large chunk) the pork and cooked it in the sauce for an additional 20 minutes, again on low. perfect texture and the sauce was awesome (i also let it simmer for an additional 10 minutes uncovered in the pot while our cilantro lime rice finished).
    will definitely make again! thanks gina!

  47. One of my family's favorite meals. They didn't believe me when I told them it was good for them. Thank you!

  48. I've made this in the past and it's wonderful. I'm now eliminating sugar from my diet, so I was wondering what I could use instead (honey and maple syrup are OK)? Thanks. Love all your recipes :o)

  49. I didn't have any type of soda in my apartment, so I just added a bit more brown sugar and water instead. It still turned out delicious.

  50. I have made this several times and it is fantastic. My whole family loves it!! Thanks so much for sharing this.

  51. Avatar photo
    Seana St. John Ceplo

    I made the slow cooker barbacoa pork for dinner last night. It was delicious. Served it in burritos with the cilantro lime rice and cuban black beans. Definitely going into the meal rotation.

  52. Avatar photo
    Shannon Quinn

    My family and I have been trying to eat healthier this year. I recently discovered your blog, and this was the first thing I made. It was so easy and SO GOOD! Everyone raved about it! We had PLENTY for two meals.

    This evening, we had "naked burritos." I made a dressing by blending fat free sour cream, salsa, and a couple of leftover chipotle peppers and adobo sauce in the food processor. It was incredible with the pork and sliced avocado.

    I am absolutely putting this recipe in my box. I've already sent the link to everyone!

  53. I've never really used the chipotle peppers…should they get put in whole or diced? I have this in the crockpot right now it smells great.

  54. I always have so much pork leftover that it goes bad, even after my husband and I eat this for 3 meals. I am wondering if you have any other ideas for this pork as it doesn't taste very good as a substitute in BBQ Pork recipes.

  55. Hi Gina,

    As I am not from US, I was just wondering what the canned chilies is like so I can make substitutions.

    Is it canned in brine or pickled?


  56. This is my favorite recipe on your website so far, and I've tried quite a few. I followed your recipe to a tee but I usually put in three chipotles, sometimes even four. I recommend that once your add in the chipotles and all of the ingredients that make up the sauce you taste it until it tastes good to you before adding in the shredded pork. I think I added in a little more diced green chilis, too, because they only had 4.5 oz cans and the recipe called for 6 oz. So I used about 1 1/2 cans. It is my FAVORITE, I've made it three times in the past month. I serve it over your Cuban black beans and cilantro lime rice and it tastes like a delicious sweet and spicy (extra chipotles, hehe) burrito… SO much flavor! Make sure you take the chipotles out of the pork before serving, my fiance bit down on a piece of one (it fell apart while cooking) and it was burning his mouth up!

  57. Just made this last night. I hate cola, so I was concerned that it might have some cola taste, but I worried for nothing. It was very tasty! I also just used some of the sauce from the can of chipotle peppers; that was plenty spicy for us.

  58. Do all your recipes get such a big interest? I pinned this on Pinterest 32 weeks ago and over 1,200 people have repinned it! I had to put pinterest in my spam folder because I get a notification for each pin. lol

    Great recipe. Thanks for all your wonderful recipes you share.

  59. Gina, you are a god send!!! I made this yesterday with every intention of it being last night's dinner, but it had to wait until today. I made the Fiesta Lime Rice (added some fresh orange pepper for some crunch) and had 1/2 an avocado (I still need to eat more points)… and I can't tell you how IN LOVE I am. This was sooooo fantastic… portion was perfect for me. I'm adding both to Pintrest and my FB wall… I hope more people will try this out! Thanks so much!… Shari

  60. Thank you Gina for sharing your wonderful recipes. I did the shrimp fried rice which was excellent and just did the whole shootin' match tonight. Lime Cilantro Rice, Cuban Black Beans and this wonderful Carnitas. UUUUUMMMMM!!! YUM!! It was so delicious and I am eating healthy. I can't wait to try the other Carnita recipe with a salad and avocado. Thanks again.

  61. Has anyone ever had their pork turn a a funny color after it was marinated? I decided I was going to marinate it and then freeze it for later. I made the marinade and put it and the pork in a big ziplock bag. I left it in the fridge for about 12 hours. When I went to put in the freezer the pork had turned a weird blue/green color! It was totally fresh meat and hadn't been left out at all! It still smelled fine and wasn't slimy or anything. Just a weird color! Any ideas?

    1. I think it was the chemicals from the plastic bag. I wouldn't eat it if to be safe. I marinated it overnight in a regular nonstick cooking pot. No problem. Hope this helps.

  62. I made this last night. Yums! I really enjoyed it, but my husband went "Cookoo for Cocoa Puffs" over it! 🙂 I didn't have the time (because I work all day) to split up the cooking, so I added all ingredients (after marinating the pork the night before) into the Crock Pot on low for 8hrs and it came out fine. Just FYI this is an option. 😉

  63. THIS IS AMAZING! I couldn't wait until I was finished eating to comment, so I have a mouthful as I type. This is one of the best dishes I've ever had. I made it over the cilantro lime rice. My boyfriend took one bite and fell in love! You are the best, Gina!!

  64. Was so excited to make this and I was not disappointed! Had to cook on high for 5 hrs or so since I started it late. I was worried it would be dry because of this but it turned out absolutely perfect. Love the addition of Adobo seasoning. I'll get great use out of this new spice for sure. Thanks for such an amazing recipe! Wish I would have doubled it so we could have even more leftovers.

  65. Absolutely delicious! We served it with cilantro rice, pineapple salsa (chopped fresh pineapple, jalepeno, onion, and red bell pepper), black beans, and lettuce. The next day I ate it as a salad too.
    I might add another chipotle pepper the next time for a little more heat.
    Thanks, Gina!

  66. Anyone have tips on how to convert this recipe from crock pot to dutch oven?? First time trying out a conversion and not entirely sure on cook times/temps! If anyone could help that would be great 🙂 If it helps I have a Le Creuset 7 1/4 dutch oven

  67. Absolutely delicious! We loved this recipe at our house. I served it with the Cilantro and Lime Rice and it was better than Chipotle. I have tried many of your recipes Gina and this was my favorite!

  68. So easy and delicious. I served it over cilantro lime rice and black beans but next time will serve it as quesadillas or burritos. YUMMY!!!!

  69. So delicious! I love Chipotle and this was even better – I made it with your cilantro rice and corn salsa and it smelled just like Chipotle's as it came together! I could eat this every week, thank you!!

  70. I changed up some of your recipe to make it spicier instead of sweet. Thanks so much for sharing and giving me a springboard to play with creatively! The cilantro lime rice is especially good with short grain brown rice and a little extra lime juice!!! It was a great dinner tonight! Thanks so much!!!

  71. Avatar photo

    I made this last night for dinner. We did the burrito bowl idea, OMG it was DELICIOUS! And it's even better re-heated for a burrito bowl for lunch. I <3 this recipe! I have been telling everyone about your site Gina in my blog on Weight Watchers and they are loving it too! I am soo grateful to you for doing this website, if you hadn't been doing this I would have failed by now at Weight Watchers! SO THANK YOU!!

  72. Avatar photo
    Coupon Chrissy

    I see others have asked, but I don't think there has been an answer yet (sorry if I missed the answer!) Is there a replacement for the chipotle chile in adobo sauce? I searched all over (Including the specialty Mexican food section of multiple grocery stores) and can't find it!
    If there is no substitute, do you recommend adding any additional spices or anything in place of it? I really want to make this dinner (It's been on my to-do list for months!) and I don't want to sacrifice the taste (or delicious heat!) by leaving out a potentially important ingredient. Thanks! 🙂

  73. Saw this on your top 20 of 2011 list and had to try it. I marinated it overnight but had accidentally added the water from the get go, so the marinate was a little weaker than your recipe. I cooked it on low for about 10 hours, then added all the step 2 ingredients and cooked on high for another hour. We used 2 chipotle chili peppers in adobo sauce because we like the spice and the flavor of them. This was really good! We don't have a Cafe Rio, so I can't compare it, but this was great and we'll definitely make it again.

  74. I made this last night (along with your cilantro lime rice and black beans–though I made them with dry beans) and it is so unbelievably yummy. I only got a couple of bites as I was making this for our lunches this week…I can't wait to eat my lunch.


  75. Tried this one last night with the cilantro lime rice and black beans. Another amazing recipe! I love the sweet/spicy combo.

  76. Made this for my family today. My mum wasn't a fan of it, but she's not a fan of soda and sweet-with-meat.

    I thought it was pretty delicious, and it's definitely something I'm gonna be making for myself when I move into my own place and don't have my mother to complain about "meat isn't supposed to be sweet!" *grin*

  77. I made this today for my family-delicious!! I am so happy to have discovered this site. So many delicious and healthy recipes for my fussy children and discerning husband;-) Awesome! Thanks Gina!

  78. I have Diet Coke or real Coke, no Coke Zero. Which could substitute? Just trying to avoid a run to the store (but could hold off to make if Coke Zero better than DC)

  79. Avatar photo
    Gina @ Skinnytaste

    I haven't tried this with pork chops or chicken, chicken doesn't need as much time to cook, I would cut the time in half. If you can't find chipotle chile powder use regular chili powder.

    You can dice the chipotle chiles if you want.

  80. I haven't seen this question answered, do you chop up the chili or just throw it in whole? This sounds wonderful, I am going to make it this weekend for the in-laws!

  81. I dont have chipotle chili powder. Is there anything I could use instead? Also, im using chicken instead of pork (my husband cant eat pork). Should I still cook and prepare the same as with pork?

  82. I LOVE this website! This is the 5th recipe I have made of yours and all have been delicious! I live overseas and couldn't find the chile in adobo sauce but it still came out great:)

  83. I have a question, it might sound odd, but I thought I should ask….
    Is it possible to use chops for this recipe instead of a roast?
    I ask because I am having people over for dinner and I took out chops & it turns out that one of the people is unable to chew them so it needs to be shredded. I would love to make this recipe, but I didn't want to just try it and not know if its a good idea or not. Please let me know as soon as you can because it is tomorrow. 🙂 Thanks

  84. This was the YUMMIEST Pork I've ever had!! FULL of flavor!! My husband raves every time I cook one of your recipes! You are AMAZING!!!

  85. Sorry to comment again 😉 I forgot to ask – what is the reasoning behind adding the Coke Zero? What does this do?

  86. My husband and I LOVED this recipe!! I created an entire month of menus using nothing but your recipes and OMG we have never ate this good 🙂
    Keep up the awesome work!!!

  87. I said it before and I will again : You ROCK !!
    Some of your recipes are amazing but this one is something else… Wow !!

  88. I have this in my crockpot on low today for dinner. Looking forward to trying it as so far I've loved everything from your site. Thank you Gina and please keep up the good work.

  89. This recipe was a huge hit at my house. I have my husband score my meals on a scale of 1-5 stars and he has NEVER GIVEN ME A 5/5 before I made the Barbacoa Pork with Lime Rice and Cuban Style Black Beans!!!

  90. Hi Gina

    Re my comments above – just back from another trip to the US and experienced my first Chipotle Burrito bowl and avoided 5 Guys this time. It is a long weekend here and I am just about to to print off some of your wonderful recipes. Thannks for this site.

  91. I made this for dinner tonight – delicious!!

    I LOVE your blog. Every recipe I've made so far has been a huge success, and is making Weight Watchers so, so much easier than I thought it would be. 🙂

  92. OHMAGOSH!!!!! This is, by far above, my FAVORITE recipe and my famly loves it too. I can't wait to try this on some beef tips or chicken breast's! Keep up the great work Gina!

  93. Made this with the chipotle lime rice and the cuban black beans and my family of Chipotle addicts all gave it a HUGE thumbs up!!

    In fact, I am making more of it as I write this post

  94. I have never really like pork dishes, but the combination of sweet and savory intrigued me. This was great!

  95. I work late and could not follow the recipe exactly so I marinated the pork overnight and then dumped all the rest of the ingredients in the crockpot on low for 8 hours (plus about 2 on warm). The meat was moist and flavorful, but this technique makes a "wetter" meal – but still very delicious! Even my toddlers enjoyed it. Perfect with the cilantro lime rice! Thank you!

  96. Hi Gina!
    This sounds delicious, except that I don't like pork… I would like to make it using chicken instead, do you know how long I would cook the chicken breasts in the crockpot if I used 2.5 pounds like the recipe calls for? And do you think chicken breasts would work?

    LOVE your blog!!

    1. I know this post is from a long time ago. I don't cook pork in my house and I would love to make this with chicken. If anyone has done it and been successful I would love to hear!

  97. Gina,
    Just found your site a couple weeks ago and have been LOVING it! I've already shared recipes with a friend a co-worker and my mom. I wanted to try this today and am wondering what's the minimum amount of time to marinate this and still get it right?
    Thanks for all the great recipes!

  98. Hi Gina,

    Do you have any recipes for bbq'd pulled pork? I'm dying for some and would love it if you could post a recipe!


  99. Hey Gina, I cooked the pork on high for about 3 hrs. and 45 minutes and it was too tough to shred. I'm off to class in a little while so I followed through w/ the rest of the recipe, but the pork isn't shredded and won't be shredded until I get back tonight. I changed the temp from high to low so it can just simmer all day. Will this change the outcome of the recipe in your opinion? Wow, sorry for the novel!

  100. Avatar photo
    Gina @ Skinnytaste

    Jayne, uh oh! : )

    Colleen, no not at all, there's so much juice! I even toss some!

    Mvarga – I bet it was!!

  101. I made this for dinner tonight…I didn't have tomato sauce so used diced tomatoes w/green chiles and two chipoltes. It was fantastic! I used 2.5 lbs of pork loin.

  102. Avatar photo
    Colleen Greene

    You don't find that putting a pork loin roast in to the slowcooker dries it out? Our butcher keeps warning us that it's too lean a cut of port to put into a crockpot — and I notice you carnitas use a lean shoulder blade roast.

  103. Thanks Gina. Have seen Chipotle but never been in one. Still recovering from discovering calorie count of all the 5 guys burgers I ate on my autumn trip to Florida!

  104. Avatar photo
    Gina @ Skinnytaste

    A burrito bowl is basically a burrito in a bowl, without the tortilla. Chipotle is a chain here in the states that I'm addicted to. It usually starts with cilantro lime rice, beans, choice of meat, some kind of salsa (I like the corn salsa) lettuce, cheese and some put guacamole. It's addicting and pretty simple to make yourself. I've recreated a lot of the dishes.

    This pork was inspired from Cafe Rio, the eat this over a salad with beans and the cilantro tomatillo dressing on my site.

  105. Hi Gina

    I live in the UK and have developed a love of south western food from my many visits to the US.

    I am not on WW but watch what I eat so I love your site and have made lots of lovely meals from your recipes. Thank you!

    Sorry to be thick but when you mention a burrito bowl – what exactly is this – does it actually contain a buritto or is it just the ingredients you list?

    Thanks again!

  106. I recently discovered your blog and tried this over the cilantro lime rice. Phenomenal doesn't begin to describe it! My husband and I agreed this is better than Chipotle and we quickly decided this would be a weekly menu item. Thank you so much for a light but amazingly delicious recipe! We can't wait to try more of your recipes.

  107. making this today, the first recipe I'm trying from your site. I'm excited but a little concerned because the pork didn't shred as easily as I've seen with previous recipes. I'm used to doing it on low for about 8 hours. Hope it still turns out.

  108. Avatar photo
    Miss Tiffy Lee

    could you use diet coke? i actually have it at home and wouldn't require a run to the store…

  109. NIce recipes. I don't know if you have tried sushi or have a sushi recipe here but if not I got a good one.

  110. So happy I found your blog! I'm excited to try this version of the Cafe Rio sweet pork! I love it but all the sugar in it makes it a rare thing for me. And yes, the cilantro lime dressing from Cafe Rio is fantastic! I have the recipe for it (non-light version of course) and my sister-in-law makes it light all the time with good results. I can email you the recipe I have if you want to try and make a lighter version!

  111. Avatar photo
    Gina @ Skinnytaste

    Yes, you can cook it on low for 8.

    Shauna, that's always my goal! Thanks.

    Pam, yes, you must have done something wrong with the beans! Nothing in the ingredients were spicy.

  112. i made this yesterday, and it was very good. my boyfriend liked it. i made it with the cilantro lime rice, which i ended up throwing out (should have known i wouldn't have liked it…not a big fan of lime/citrus flavors in my food). I also made your black beans, but I'm pretty sure I screwed up somewhere because they were extra spicy. my boyfriend liked them though.

    i brought leftovers for lunch today (subbed the rice with uncle ben's ready rice).

    to the person that asked about how long to put it in on low, i left this in the crockpot all day on low. it was in there for about 10 hours, before the additional hour and a half. it did not burn or anything, and was super easy to shred.

  113. I just saw that someone commented about how this doesn't taste like diet food, I agree with this SO much. I could feed my boyfriend all the low fat food in the world and he still swears it tastes "healthy". Your recipes are the only healthy recipes that I can make for him!

  114. This may be a super silly question, but I'm new to the crockpot…rather than cooking on high for 4 hours, could I cook it on low for 8? I would love to make this during the week, but with work, I need a recipe that can cook for a longer amount of time. Can't wait to try this one!! – Abby

  115. I must say – Cafe Rio is my absolute favorite Mexican Food place in the whole world!! You need to go there ASAP.

  116. Avatar photo
    Gina @ Skinnytaste

    Cathy, Trina, thank you! I really would love it for people not dieting to use my recipes. Huge compliment!

  117. "1 chipotle chile in adobo sauce" this is not available in ireland, what's adobo sauce? What would be a good substitute for it?

    (I can use fresh ordinary chilies instead of the chipotle chile)

    I've only just found your site, I'm loving it!


  118. Gina, We just finished up the leftovers in the burrito bowl. Our 23 yo son just happened to drop in, he said it was the best food ever, he is a top notch cook, so that was quiet the compliment! I second Cathy, thank you for your time and efforts, we love you!

  119. Made this for dinner tonight and both my husband and I loved it. I did serve over Cilantro Lime Rice. I just want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for this website which provides all of us. Your time and creativity is greatly appreciated. Also, this is the first time being on a diet (weight watchers) were the food is good enough to eat even when I am not. THANKS!

  120. LOL we could have used more!! Gina you are a life saver!! or should I say diet saver!! Thanks, I am using the left overs and making the black beans for the burrito bowl tonight!

  121. I made this on Monday…it was amazing! We don't like things very spicy, so there were no peppers involved, but I loved the sweet flavor! I have never made pulled pork. You are giving me so many fun things to try! Thanks so much!

  122. I made this and used the whole can as we love spicy, it was perfect for us!! Gina, You have saved my WW life. I have tried several of the recipes from their site and really did not care for them, I have made this and the Cilantro Lime Shrimp and we love both ALOT! Thank you so much!

  123. Oh, and to Anon, I used two small chili peppers, and diced them up and added to the mixture. It would be pretty darn spicy if you used the whole can.

  124. Gina, this was absolutely delicious! I made it with the cilantro lime rice and Cuban Black Beans as recommended, and it was to die for! My husband thinks I am the best cook ever now, thanks to your site! I literally make almost every dinner from your site. THANK YOU! This is a definite keeper, and I can't wait to make it for family and friends!

  125. Just curious about the one chipotle chili in adobo. The can must have about six. I wanted to be sure it wasn't one can?

  126. Avatar photo
    Gina @ Skinnytaste

    Someone ship me some cilantro dressing and I'll see what I can do!

    You could make this in a heavy pot and let it simmer on low a few hours if you don't have a crock pot.

    Virginia, I'm so glad you agree! I think it's a keeper too. I don't drink soda myself, so I understand about the sweetener.

  127. I don't live near a Cafe Rio, so don't know what this is suppose to taste like, but that being said, this was delicious! It was stated that this was a "keeper" recipe by my daughter's family! I did use regular coke, so the point value did go up, but I just don't use any of that artificial sweetener. It was worth the extra points! Thank your for all of your great recipes!

  128. Avatar photo
    Lauren @ Eat, Drink, and Be Hopeful

    Oh wow Gina-this looks amazing! I love pulled pork every way, but this look so yummy! I've never cooked it, but this looks so easy. I must give it a try!

  129. A Cafe Rio opened up recently and that has become a special place to treat ourselves at work. I always get the pork barbacoa (its awesome) and use up all my points so I'll be curious to hear what others think about this friendly version. I'll definately post as soon as I try it. Oh yea, I second the need for the cilantro dressing to be Ginasized. Thanks!!!

  130. I love pork…I cant wait to make this recipe!! My crock pot died a few days ago (after 8 years!), so I'll be making this on the stovetop. Should I follow the same cooking time?

  131. This looks delicious! But I don't own a crock pot of any sort – is there a way of cooking it in a normal way? What kind of pot could I use? In the oven or on the stove?

  132. Avatar photo
    Gina @ Skinnytaste

    You could use regular soda if you wish, all recipes are easily adaptable to your needs.

    Chum- I still calculate all the ingredients, even if they are 0 points, and yes, pork loin should work!

  133. Oh my gosh, that food looks incredible. Who needs restaurants when you can get great quality food like this at home?

  134. Sounds delicious. Would love to make this but hubby is allergic to the sugar substitute in diet soda's. .

  135. This looks amazing! Like a chipotle bowl which I miss dearly since we don't have those around here. Definitely will be making this ASAP 🙂

  136. Oooh. I love the sound of this! The last recipe of yours I tried was such a winner that I really want to try this now as well.

  137. Sounds great. The cafe rio pork is delicious – but oh so fattening, so a lightened up version is very welcomed in our house.

  138. Two questions, Gina: 1) You mentioned that you counted the cola — but I thought Coke Zero had 0 points. Was the zero part a typo and should we use regular Coke? 2) Does pork loin cook differently than pork tenderloin? I don't fix pork too often, and have never used a pork loin. What is the difference, other than size? Thanks for another delicious-sounding recipe.

  139. Avatar photo
    Kris @ WUHS and Eclipsed

    Oh, yeah. I'm totally making that next week…so could you do the black bean recipe soon because mine never turn out quite right. 😉 (And, by "quite right" I mean "tasting like Chili's.)

    1. When I worked at Chili's (a looong time ago) the black beans were rinsed and mixed with the store made salsa. I don't know if it changed since then, but hope this helps.

  140. Is there any non soda sub for the coke zero? My husband can't have caramel color or splenda. He's allergic to both. I can do natural sodas such as Hansen's if there is anything by them that would work.

  141. I joined WW almost 2 weeks ago and must say that I am THRILLED to have found your blog! You provide so many yummy food options proving that food can still be enjoyable! Last weekend I made your enchilada's, today I made your black bean soup (it was delicious), I have your breakfast stratta cooking in the oven for tomorrow and now I can't wait to try this pork recipe! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  142. I'm excited to try this… I grew up with Cafe Rio just around the corner.
    The best part of their Barbacoa Salad is the cilantro lime dressing… you'll have to lighten that one up next! 🙂

  143. I'm as excited about your rice as your pork recipe, the entire dish looks fabulous! Will be trying it this weekend!

  144. Hooray! We had your Barbacoa Beef last for dinner with Cilantro Lime Rice and Corn Salsa. So delish and we LOVE pork. Can't wait to give this a try SOON.

  145. This looks YUMMY!! Suggestion on calculating the marinade: How about weighing the marinade before and after and adjust accordingly? I have done this in the past w/success or at least gotten pretty close to the absorbed points. Thanks again for a great recipe, I love so many of the ones I’ve tried so far!!

  146. I made the pernil last night, it was SO good, everyone loved it, and tonight I'm making the cuban quesadillas. I will be using this recipe for a 2nd roast next week, it sounds so good. Thanks Gina for the great recipes, you really keep me on track and I don't have to make everyone else something different- that used to really frustrate me, now no one knows it's even WW 🙂