Chef Michelle Lainez Aussie lamb carnitas tacos with pickled cranberries

  • Prep time 30Min
  • Cook time 4Hr
  • Technique Roast, Grill
  • Meat Lamb
  • Cut Leg
  • Serves 6

Making Lamb Carnitas is a two step process, first you will braised the lamb & let cool. Then you will crisp it up on the plancha to make your tacos.


For the lamb: 

  • 1 leg of Aussie grassfed Lamb
  • 1 head of garlic – cut in half horizontally
  • 2 yellow onions – quartered
  • 3 carrots – cut into three parts
  • 2 ribs celery – cut into three parts
  • 2 gallons chicken stock
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 Tsp Cumin Powder
  • 2 Tbsp Aleppo pepper or tajin spice
  • 1 Tbs Black Peppercorns

For the vegetable puree: 

  • Carrots – from braising
  • Onions – from braising
  • Garlic – from braising
  • Celery – from braising
  • Salt – to taste
  • Chili flakes – to taste

For the cranberries:

  • 8 dried sweetened cranberries
  • 1cup applecider vinegar
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 tsp Salt


For the lamb:

  • In a deep roasting pan large enough to fit the lamb leg place the whole leg, and it's ok if it's netted. You can leave the net on or off nothing is going to happen to it. add all the spices, and veggies. Add enough stock to cover the leg at least ¾ of the way up. If you need more liquid add more stock or water.
  • Cover the top of the roasting pan with plastic wrap then with foil. The plastic wrap will melt onto the foil creating a seal for perfect braising.
  • Place in a preheated oven at 300 degrees. Let it cook in the oven for at least 4 hours.
  • After the 4-hour mark, pull it out of the oven and check it. If it's netted take scissors and cut the net. Take a fork and check for tenderness, it should come right off. If it still firm, then cover it up and place it back in the oven for an hour longer.
  • Let it sit in it's juice for a until it cools down a little. Remove the lamb gently onto a sheet pan or cookie sheet and remove any excess fat. You can now shred it or let it cool and then cut it into cubes.
  • Note: you can strain the vegetables from the liquid and use the liquid for your next braise or use it to reheat the lamb.

For the puree:

  • Take the carrots, onions, garlic and celery and place it in a vitamix or blender and puree together if it's to thick to puree add the braising liquid as needed.
  • You want to puree it all together until its smooth and season it up with salt & chili flakes for a kick.

For the pickled cranberries:

  • Bring the apple cider vinegar, water and salt to a boil
  • Once boiled pour over the dried cranberries and let them pickle until they come to room temperature, then store in the refridgerator

To assemble:

  • Warm up a 5" tortilla
  • Take a dollop of vegetable puree and place on tortilla
  • Add 2 to 3 ounces of Lamb Carnitas
  • Finish the taco with pickled cranberries
  • Eat your fantastic taco