Pati Jinich Tacos al Pastor


Tacos al Pastor

Tacos al Pastor

Recipe Yield

12 to 14 tacos

Cooking time

15 minutes

Rate this recipe

3.72 from 7 votes


  • 3 pounds pork shoulder or butt sirloin cutlets or butterfly chops, cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • 3 cups achiote adobo marinade
  • Half of a pineapple peeled, cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil divided
  • To taste kosher or coarse sea salt
  • 12 to 14 corn tortillas (or flour tortillas to make them “gringas” style)
  • Shredded queso asadero, Mexican Oaxaca or Chihuahua or mozzarella, Monterey Jack, or any melty cheese of your choice (optional, for making them “gringas” style)
  • 1 cup cilantro roughly chopped, to garnish
  • 1 cup white onion roughly chopped, to garnish
  • 2 limes cut into quarters, to garnish
  • Serve with a salsa of your choice

To Prepare

  • Marinate the meat in the adobo marinade for at least 3 hours, or up to 48 hours, in the refrigerator. Reserve 3/4 cup of marinade to brush on the pineapple before grilling/cooking and to finish off meat.
  • When ready to make tacos, remove the meat from the refrigerator. Brush some of the reserved marinade on the pineapple slices. Reserve the remaining marinade.
  • Heat a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, add a tablespoon of oil. Place as many pineapple slices as will fit on the skillet and sear for about 3 minutes per side, until juicy and lightly charred on both sides. Remove from heat. When cool enough to handle, cut the pineapple into thin slices about 1 to 2-inches long and 1/4-inch wide, removing the core. Place in a bowl and cover.
  • Drizzle another tablespoon of oil onto the skillet. Lightly sprinkle the meat with salt to taste. Sear as many slices of meat as will fit in the pan, without over crowding, for about 2 minutes per side until browned on both sides. Cook in batches if necessary. Place the meat on a chopping board. Cut it crosswise into thin slices about 1/4-inch thick and 1-inch wide.
  • Once done with all the meat, reduce the heat to medium, place the meat back in the skillet and pour the rest of the unused marinade on top. Stir and cook for another minute. Cover and set on the table.
  • On a pre-heated cast iron skillet or comal set over medium heat, heat the corn tortillas 1 to 2 minutes per side until thoroughly cooked, lightly browned and crisp on the outside. Place them in a tortilla warmer and bring to the table along with the meat, pineapple, chopped cilantro, chopped onion, lime wedges, and salsa of your choice. Let everyone assemble their own tacos.
  • Note: If you want to offer some “gringas,” heat flour tortillas on the comal and, once hot, add the melty cheese, fold, and let it melt as if it were a quesadilla. Once melted, re-open the tortilla, add a generous tablespoon or two of the sliced meat, fold again and serve.


43comments inTacos al Pastor

  1. Nicole

    Mar 09

    I am a Culinary Arts teacher and my students get to make these each year and they love them! Thank-you fpr sharing such a delicious recipe!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Mar 09

      Yay, so happy to hear, my pleasure Nicole!

  2. John langer

    Aug 15

    Such a great recipe. Love pastor tacos.

    1. Pati Jinich

      Sep 04

      Glad you like it John 🙂

  3. Linda Hall

    Feb 17

    Made this tonight. I cut up a few nice pork chops, and marinated overnight. (Ordered Achiote paste from Amazon).
    THe grilled pineapple in the TACO was THE BOMB….added much needed sweetness to to spicy sauce. I did it burrito style. I will try it gringo style tomorrow! 😉

    For some reason my comments are not being submitted

    1. Pati Jinich

      Mar 08

      So glad you liked this recipe Linda, the pineapple in Tacos al Pastor is also my favorite!

  4. Melissa Lombardo

    Feb 14

    I made these for my bf today for valentine’s day (i made heart shaped tostadas too) and he LOVED it! Great recipe thank u so much! I always watch the show and wonder how everything tastes bcuz it looks so good and this did not disappoint!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Feb 16

      So glad you and your boyfriend enjoyed my take on Tacos al Pastor Melissa, yay!

  5. Jennifer Barnstien

    Jul 03

    Love this. I am going to use it in the slow cooker. I hope it works out!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Jul 04

      Let me know Jennifer 😉

  6. Veronica

    Dec 24

    These were amazing! You’re cookbook and blog recipes have saved me since my family loves authentic Mexican food and there’s no good options around me. Thank you!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Jan 06

      SO delighted to read this Veronica, thanks so much! Keep cooking and having fun 😉

  7. Maggie

    Nov 15

    Love tacos al pastor Pati. Can’t wait to make tacos bravos really soon. ❤

    1. Pati Jinich

      Nov 22

      Great Maggie, enjoy them!

  8. Elizabeth

    Oct 09

    Hi Pati!
    I have to tell you that I think you are absolutely gorgeous! I love your style, dishes, and decor! My family moved from California to Indiana, and unfortunately, I cannot find authentic Mexican food like I had in California. But, your show and your recipes give me the authentic Mexican dishes we are always searching for at home. Thank you for your show and recipes ❤️

    1. Pati Jinich

      Oct 27

      Thanks so much for your kindness Elizabeth, un abrazo a Indiana 😉

  9. Sally

    Aug 15

    Pati, you have revived my love of cooking. I’ve been pretty worn down by the pandemic and cooking every night. But now when it’s time to make supper I turn on your show and have some fun. I love Mexico and even though my husband says we don’t need to go again, I am going, no matter what. Anyway making your tacos AL Pastor tonight.

    1. Pati Jinich

      Aug 18

      Thanks for the sweet words Sally, so glad you are cooking more and enjoying it 😉 Stay strong, these are difficult times for all, but I know we will be OK. Big hug to you!

  10. Natalia Radicevich

    May 07

    Delicious…I love your show and i think your a phenomenal cook…. I’ve been in the Food world my whole life and my family has owned a restaurant since 1971 and I enjoy good food good cooking but especially enjoy your show because of your family orientation values principles and Your love of cooking is which I come from… However I am not Mexican I’m actually Serbian I enjoy the cooking Viva la Patti Jinich!

    1. Pati Jinich

      May 11

      Hi Natalia, thanks for your kind message! This is another thing I love about cooking, it brings us all together, right? It doesn’t matter where we come from, we all love to cook and eat 🙂

  11. Ed Naimon

    Mar 26

    Hola, Pati.

    I’m tempted to try a variation on this. I’m thinking of making the marinade per recipe, but I would then slow cook the pork shoulder (which as been cubed) at a low temperature for several hours. What do you think of this? Please advise. Gracias.

    1. Pati Jinich

      Mar 26

      This is a great idea Ed! If you try it, let me know how it comes out 😉

  12. Jane Garner

    Mar 14

    Where is the recipe for the cheese tomato topping? I saw you make it on your show last week, March 2019, ?(rerun). I want the amount of cheese to add to the one pound of Roma tomatoes.

    1. Pati Jinich

      Mar 28

      Hi Jane! You can find all of the recipes from my show here: Enjoy!

    2. Venus

      Jul 26

      Hi Jane, The recipe you are looking for is included in Tacos de Canasta – Season 4 Episode 3. Looks good!

  13. Pete cruz

    Mar 05

    How do you make the marinade, gracias

    1. Pati

      Mar 06

      Here’s the recipe for the marinade, Pete: Enjoy!

  14. Anonymous

    Jan 13

    Que grato encontrar por la tv. Una persona como tu. Con tanta facilidad hace toda clase de platillos, sopas , postres etc. Realmente una Maestra de la cocina. Muchas gracias. Vivo en Houston Tx .

    1. Pati

      Jan 18

      Mil gracias!

  15. Susan Peti-Bradley

    Oct 05

    This year at the Kansas State Fair the booth for Guadalupe made these and they were Fantastic

    1. Pati

      Oct 06

      Oh sounds like you had a great (and yummy) time at the Kansas State Fair, Susan!

  16. S. Perez

    Sep 01

    I’m not really using this recipe but I was inspired by some of your past recipes with pork and I made something similar with : pork shoulder, achiote paste, piña juice, garlic, soy sauce, vingar,salt,pepper,orgegano, cumin,marjoram. I hope it turns out well 🙂

    1. Pati

      Sep 10

      I’m glad you were inspired, S.!

  17. Irene G

    Jul 17

    Hello Pati,

    Could you freeze the Pork with the marinade?

    1. Pati

      Jul 20

      Yes you can, Irene! Freeze the pork and marinade uncooked.

  18. Gemma

    Jul 15

    Hola Pati, gracias por tu receta, nos han quedado unos tacos al pastor buenisimos
    Gemma, una espanola desde Seattle

    1. Pati

      Jul 16

      Super, Gemma!

  19. Susan

    Apr 16

    I made these this weekend for my fiance and all his co-workers on their last day of work at our local ski resort. They were a HIT!!! The flavors of the achiote paste with the citrus and guajillos were amaaazing. And it was so easy! Thanks Pati!

    1. Pati

      Apr 17

      So happy to hear they were a hit, Susan!

  20. Renee

    Apr 05

    Pati, I just love your style and am captivated by your shows.
    I just made the marinade after I finally found the achiote paste at a marvelous Mexican grocery nearby.
    I plan on taking the marinated meat to my son’s so he can barbecue it – have you ever done this before?

    1. Pati

      Apr 06

      I typically use a skillet but it will be great on the grill.

  21. Stephanie

    Jan 09

    Thank you! I saw this episode on Saturday and tried it today. So delicious! I made the tomatillo salsa too (and plan on making another batch to freeze tomorrow).

    1. Pati

      Jan 10


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