When the work can be done ahead of time, making dinner a quick assemble and 15-minute bake, it’s a winner. This is when that “4PM Panic” gets put in its place because you’re ahead with everything ready to go. For me, Chuck Roast Carnitas Pizza is just that kind of recipe.
Carnitas translates to small meats. This cracks me up because you start with a huge slab of chuck roast. For a long time I avoided various cuts of meat because I didn’t really understand how to prepare them. I stuck with good steaks, tenderloins and burgers. With 3 teenage boys in the house this selection can get pretty pricey. So I started to explore new ways to braise, roast and bbq different cuts of meat. Growing up, chuck roast was a flavorless meat that fell apart served with potatoes and carrots. Sorry Mom! I was never a big fan.
Now, I’m a huge fan of chuck roast … so much so that we made this dish two days in a row this week. It’s that good. I’m pretty sure my images here will not do justice to exactly how deliciously the flavors in this recipe mingle. You’ll have to trust me here and give this one a go!
This recipe was inspired by one of Ree Drummond’s recipes. If you don’t already have her book “The Pioneer Woman Cooks”, go get it. It is one of my all time favorites. The original recipe called for pizza dough. I prefer it with the croissant dough. Try it both ways to see what you like best.
Chuck Roast Carnitas Pizza
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- one 4-5 pound chuck roast
- 2 Tablespoons canola oil
- 2 12oz cans of juice (I used pineapple and mango)
- 2 rolls of square Pillsbury croissant dough
- 1 cup jarred salsa verde (green tomatillo salsa)plus more for serving
- 12 ounces of Fresh Mozzarella cheese thinly sliced
- 1 sweet onion thinly sliced and sautéed in low heat until caramelized (golden)
- 1 red bell pepper sliced and sautéed until tender
- 3 green onions, sliced
- sour cream for serving, optional
- avocado for serving, optional
- Preheat oven to 300°
- Mix the chili powder, cumin, oregano, basil and salt.
- Rub the spice mixture on both sides of the roast.
- Heat the canola oil in a large heavy pot on high heat then sear both sides of the roast until nicely browned (about 2 minutes per side)
- Pour the juice into the pot. Cover and roast for 4 hours or until meat is falling apart.
- Use 2 forks to shred the meat then return to the juices in the pot to keep warm.
- Place two squares of the croissant dough side by side on a baking sheet. Piece together and use your hands to spread out to the edges evenly.
- Pour the salsa verde over the dough and spread evenly.
- Lay the mozzarella cheese slices all over the dough. Top with onions and peppers.
- Bake the “pizza” for 12-15 minutes until golden brown and the cheese is all melted.
- Top the cooked pizza with the warm shredded meat and sliced green onions. Drizzle with some of the juice from the meat.
Top servings with fresh slices of avocado. Serve with extra salsa verde and sour cream.
NOTE: I said above that you can prepare this ahead of time then assemble and bake at dinner time. If you do, cool the meat and keep refrigerated. Add the meat to the pizza before you cook it. The meat will get darker and caramelized but because it is so tender it will just intensify the wonderful flavor. Then top cooked pizza with the green onion slices. I pictured it here with the meat baked on the pizza. Its great both ways!! I hope this becomes one of your family favorites. It is a huge favorite in our house.
Photographer Sally Roeckell specializes in contemporary lifestyle portraiture with an emphasis on food photography. She regularly shops at Heinen’s for the family dishes she features via Table and Dish on Instagram and on her website at TableAndDish.com.
Heinen’s Grocery is located at 500 N. Hough Street, between E. Main Street and Route 14 (next to Meathead’s) in Barrington, Illinois. They’re open 7 days a week from 8:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. For more information, visit Heinens.com.