Cinco de Mayo…what does it really mean to you? Parades, colorful decorations, music and dancing, delicious libations, costumes galore? Sure, but to me, it also means a day to celebrate Mexican food, a day to truly appreciate Mexican culture, and a day to enjoy time with friends and family.
Cinco de Mayo, celebrated on the fifth day of May, is often confused with Mexican Independence Day, which is actually a completely different holiday, celebrated on September 16.
My motto when it comes to this Mexican celebration is…if we can all drink Irish beer and eat corned beef on St. Patty’s Day, then why can’t we all enjoy cerveza Mexicana and fresh guacamole with crispy tortilla chips on Cinco de Mayo?
If you are hosting a Cinco de Mayo fiesta, serve something that will “wow” your guests, like these traditional flautas filled with tender, slow cooked meat. These flautas are filled with flavorful pulled pork called pork tinga made with pork shoulder, pork chorizo, and a spicy tomato chipotle mixture all slow cooked in a slow cooker.
Tinga is a traditional Mexican dish made with braised shredded pork, beef, or chicken that is simmered with onions, garlic, and spices. Chipotle peppers in adobo sauce and pork chorizo give this pork tinga a complex smoky flavor.
Tinga is a perfect party dish because it can feed a crowd and the best part is this filling practically cooks itself and can be made the day before. Traditionally, tinga is served on crisp tostadas like these chicken tinga tostadas, but I served the shredded pork tightly wrapped and fried in corn tortillas for the perfect finger food.
Very warming, hearty, and comforting… perfect as a weeknight dinner but impressive enough for a weekend Mexican fiesta.
Both family-friendly and freezer-friendly, these pork tinga flautas complement any type of party. Fry a few batches for your friends and family and see them disappear before your eyes.
Luckily for me all the ingredients I needed, including the Mexican beer and flowers were purchased at my local King Soopers.
Happy Cinco de Mayo!
Slow Cooker Pork Tinga Flautas
PORK TINGA AND FLAUTAS:
- 3 to 3 1/2 pounds pork shoulder, trimmed boneless pork shoulder, cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 9 ounces pork chorizo, casing removed
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- Kosher salt
- Ground black pepper
- 3 cups water
- 1 7-ounce can chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
- 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 14.5-ounce can fire roasted diced tomatoes
- 3 bay leaves
- 24 to 30 corn tortillas, depending on how much you fill each taco
PORK TINGA AND FLAUTAS:
- In a large skillet, heat the oil. Add the chorizo and stir over moderately low heat, breaking it up, until cooked through, 10 minutes; transfer to slow cooker.
- Add the onion to the skillet and cook over medium heat, stirring, until translucent, 2 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute; transfer to slow cooker.
- Season the pork generously with salt and pepper and place the pork on skillet and sear for 5 minutes on each side to form a nice brown crust; transfer to slow cooker.
- In a blender add water, chipotle peppers including adobo sauce, and oregano. Puree until smooth and pour over pork.
- Add diced tomatoes including sauce and bay leaves in slow cooker, and cook on low for 6 hours.
- Remove the pork and discard the bay leaves and shred the meat.
- Warm corn tortillas on a comal (griddle) so they are pliable. Add some shredded pork down the center of the tortillas. Roll the tortillas tightly and then add a toothpick to each to keep them rolled.
- In a deep pan or deep fryer heat the oil over high heat until it is very hot. Carefully drop the flautas into the hot oil. Fry just long enough for the tortillas to get crispy and a light golden color. Turn over at least once using tongs and then drain upright on paper towels to allow excess oil to drain.
- Garnish flautas with toppings of your choice.
Photography by Jenna Sparks
This post is in partnership with Kroger. As always, thank you for reading and for supporting companies I partner with, which allows me to create more unique content and recipes for you. All opinions are always my own.