Photo by Sedano's

Paleta de Cerdo

Cuisine: Cuban
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 5 hours
Servings: 12 people
Have leftovers from this recipe? Lucky you! You can use it to make delicious Cuban sandwiches.

This dish is a Cuban culinary tradition. It only has a few ingredients but it is tasty, and the slowly cooked meat is juicy and a bit tangy from the sauce. The pork is seasoned the night before in sour orange juice and a few other spices. Its slow cooking process makes it crunchy on the outside and juicy and succulent on the inside. It is typically served with rice and beans, an avocado salad, yuca with mojo sauce, and a nice, cold beer.

Find everything you need to make a traditional paleta de cerdo at Sedano's.



  1. Preheat oven to 350° F.
  2. Wash the pork shoulder with water and 1 cup of vinegar.
  3. Mix the lemon juice with the sour orange juice.
  4. Place the pork shoulder, skin down, in a non-metal container and pierce a few times with a knife. Pour the lemon and sour orange mix over the meat, making sure the sauce penetrates into the pierced holes. Repeat the process with the Worcestershire sauce.
  5. Rub the mashed garlic all over the pork shoulder, making sure some gets into the pierced areas. Cover with plastic wrap and let stand in the refrigerator for one hour.
  6. Remove the pork from the refrigerator. Reserve the marinade sauce. Rub salt all over the pork; it may seem like a lot of salt, but trust us!
  7. Cover the pork with aluminum foil. Cook in the oven for 4 hours, depending on the size of your pork. Every hour, pour some of the leftover marinade over the pork, cover again, and continue cooking. The last time you cover the pork with the sauce, continue cooking uncovered. The pork temperature should be 170 degrees.

Chef Notes

Pork shoulder is tastier and juicier than other parts of the pork.

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