This Moroccan Spiced Pork Butt with Citrus Mint Yogurt is an explosion of complex flavors. Each bite has you coming back for more. Bold and slightly sweet flavors, crispy pork bits and cooling citrus mint yogurt is enough to keep that fork full. Say goodby to boring meals!
The grocery list.
- olive oil
- ButcherBox pork butt
- black pepper
- ground ginger
- ground clove
- chicken stock
- red onion
- dried apricots
- fresh mint
- plain greek yogurt
- orange juice
- orange zest
Moroccan flavors for a newbie.
This recipe came to be after reading countless articles on Moroccan cooking and flavors. I have a very elementary understanding of the vast flavor combinations and creation options. The dishes are often heavily spiced and prepared with a sweet element for balance. You’ll often find ingredients such as dates, raisins, prunes, apricots, almonds and preserved lemons in Moroccan dishes. Ras El Hanout is a famous Moroccan spice blend of 27 spices– the famous spice mix includes cinnamon, cumin, turmeric, ginger, paprika, coriander, saffron, mace, cloves, fennel, anise, nutmeg, cayenne pepper, fenugreek, caraway, black pepper and sesame seeds.
When thinking about what else to pair this with, I thought to the uncommon, yet delightful, combination of flavors with Greek Meatballs and Tatziki Sauce. The greek meatballs have some similar warm spices like cinnamon which give the meat a layer of warmth and complexity. The cooling yogurt highlights and contrasts the warm spices in the meat. The complex, sweet and warm flavors in this pork that are complimented by the citrus mint yogurt.
Don’t skimp on these simples steps.
Do not overlook these two very important steps. The first, searing the pork BEFORE pressure cooking. The second, crisping the shredded pork in a cast iron or non-stick skillet. Each of these steps may seem harmless enough to skip but I promise they can make a world of difference to the final dish!
Searing the meat is the first step to developing flavor and texture in your meat. Adding the cooked and shredded pork to a hot cast iron turns up the flavors as well as takes soft shredded pork to a new crispy level.
Pressure cook or slow cook?
I’ve been diving in head first on putting the pressure cooker to use, it’s the best way to LEARN how to use it… by using it! The slow cooker can absolutely handle this dish. My go-to slow cooker recipe conversions are 3-4 hours on high and 6-8 hours on low. For a recipe like this, I would suggest 6-8 hours on low. The pork needs a lot of time to properly breakdown. The meat should easily shred. In short, if the pork does not shred easily it’s likely because the proteins and the fats have not properly broken down. If you’re moving this recipe to the slow cooker, take my advice from above and do not skimp on the simple steps. Most importantly, sear the meat first and crisp the meat just before serving.
How to serve Moroccan Spiced Pork with Citrus Mint Yogurt.
At first, after filling the house with all the amazing smells, I served this crispy pork over a bed of rice and drizzled with the citrus mint yogurt. The next day, we were out of rice. After a moment of searching, I realized we had some amazing fresh Dutch Oven Loaf bread. With that, I toasted up a slice, smeared the yogurt on the bottom and topped the toasted with reheated crispy pork. It was a slap-together meal to help curb the afternoon hunger but it was also very enjoyable! Another great option would be to serve the pork with cuscus, a traditional Moroccan side dish.
Looking for more pressure cooker meals?
Here are a few to try:
Lastly, if you make this Moroccan Spiced Pork Butt with Citrus Mint Yogurt recipe, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a comment! Above all, I love to hear from ya’ll and do my best to respond to every comment. In addition, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to snap a pic and tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of your dayyyummm good recreations is my favorite!
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- 1 tablespoons olive oil
- 3-4 pound ButcherBox pork butt
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 2 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon cardamom
- 1/4 teaspoon ground clove
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 1 red onion quartered
- 1/4 cup dried apricots, rough chopped
- 2 lemons, quartered
- 1/4 fresh mint, chopped and separated
- 1 cup plain greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 1 teaspoon orange zest
- Set the pressure cooker to high sauté. Heat the olive oil until it shimmers.
- Salt the pork butt and add it to the heated pot. Sear on each side for 3-4 minutes to develop a crust.
- In a small bowl combine the spices (ground pepper - nutmeg), set aside.
- Once the pork has seared, sprinkle the spices over the pork, flipping in the pot to coat on all sides. Add the chicken stock, red onion, apricots, lemons and 2 tablespoons chopped mint.
- Place the pressure cook lid on the pot and ensure the valve is set to SEAL. Set the pressure cooker to high for 50 minutes. When the pressure cooker time has finished, let it naturally release pressure (aka, do nothing) for 20 minutes. Release the additional steam by turning the pressure nozzle to VENT.
- Remove the pork and place on a a large platter. Rest for 5 minutes before shredding with two forks.
- Heat a cast iron skillet over high heat. Crisp the shredded pork in the cast iron for 3-5 minutes. Move to a platter and garnish with fresh mint.
- While the pork is crisping, combine the remaining chopped mint with the yogurt and orange juice and zest in a small bowl.
- Serve the crispy pork with a dollop of citrus yogurt.
You can also use this recipe for the slow cooker. Sear the pork in a cast iron skillet and place all ingredients into a slow cooker. Cook for 3-4 hours on high or 6-8 hours on low until the pork is fork tender. Crisp in cast iron as directed.