Carnitas lettuce wraps with cherry peach salsa

lettuce wraps

Well hey, September. Didn’t you come along quickly this year. I’m refusing to give in to your hoopla of pumpkin spice lattes, apples galore and everything else that comes along with you for one more day (including the fact that I’ll have been married for 6 years in 12 days). I do have an apple recipe (and it’s quite kick-ass if I do say so) for later this week but today, sweet carnitas lettuce wraps with peaches & cherries. Doesn’t get much more summer than that.

My love affair with this carnitas recipe is well documented on here. Last week as I went to grab all the ingredients to make it again, I opened the pantry to see only 1 can of pineapple juice on the shelf. I know I bought two when I was shopping for the ingredients weeks ago even though the other human I reside with refuses to admit drinking it. So I added in the only other sweet drink I had in the house, orange juice. Now, this carnitas recipe is like a 15 on a scale of 1-10 so when I say it didn’t come out as good as the first time, it was still a 12. The second can of pineapple juice is definitely not something you want to skip though as this time the sweet stickiness from the juice wasn’t nearly as prominent.


Make a cherry peach salsa to go with it.

I’ll give you a visual of what went down in my kitchen as this was being made.

Cherry juice everywhere. Squeezed limes strewn about. The last two CSA peaches being alternatively shoved in my mouth and cubed for the salsa. Warmed up leftover carnitas being picked at with my bare hands from the tupperware container.

How enough of this mixture made it into 4 lettuce wraps to be photographed is a miracle. I gorged myself so much on this for lunch that come 8pm, after a 23 minute intense crossfit wod, I still wasn’t hungry.

I was carnitas drunk.

It was the best hangover of my life. Thinking about it, even 5 days later makes me happy. Which is a good thing because when a quick little vacuuming of the house turned into a 2 hour pantry clean out from a saw tooth beetle infestation in my bulk bin grains yesterday, I could use some happy. Grossest.thing.ever.

Carnitas recipe

Carnitas lettuce wraps with cherry peach salsa
Prep time
Total time
Sweet beef carnitas with a summery fruit salsa stuffed into romaine lettuce wraps.
Author: Gina Matsoukas
Recipe type: lettuce wraps
Serves: 2
  • 1 cup leftover carnitas from recipe above (just follow recipe for carnitas portion, not the steps for pizza in the link)
  • 1 cup cherries, pitted & chopped
  • 1 peach, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
  • juice of 1 lime
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 6 romaine lettuce leaves
  1. Combine all ingredients except lettuce in a medium bowl and toss to coat.
  2. Arrange lettuce leaves and scoop enough of the mixture into each one to fill about half the leaf.
  3. Roll up and eat.


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  1. 1

    Now there’s a hangover I’d actually want!

  2. 2

    Sounds like a good food hangover…yay!

  3. 3

    Now thats a good hangover! Your salsa sounds amazing and I have to try your carnitas! Yummy!!! Oh and the beetle thing, gross!!!

  4. 4

    you and these carnitas! I need to attempt this seriously but other cuts of meat actually scare me to cook haha

    • 5
      Running to the Kitchen says:

      there is nothing scary about this! You literally rub spices all over it, sear it and throw it in the oven for 4 hours. Easy as pie. Except way better. ;)

  5. 6

    Carnitas…my favorite! Whenever I see carnitas tacos on a menu, I order it.

  6. 7

    Yum! I’m absolutely in love with peaches this summer. I just might have to whip this up for one last hurrah. Also, love the lettuce wrap idea; I’m sure with all of that flavor you don’t even miss the tortilla.

  7. 8

    Lettuce wraps are my JAM. Carnitas are too. and peaches. WEll shit. I need to make this!

  8. 10

    I love repurposing leftovers. I haven’t made the pizza yet but will have to put both recipes on the menu. mmmm!

  9. 12

    nom nom nom

  10. 13

    I want to be carnitas drunk!!

  11. 14

    This salsa is totally versatile. I would serve it with beef , chicken, pork, fish or even ice cream!

  12. 15

    peach season is almost over. I have a sad.

  13. 16

    What an awesome and unique use for leftover carnitas! Love the cherries in there.

  14. 17

    Yum! We are so into lettuce wraps right now. Tons of flavor but without the carbs. This looks like a delicious end of summer recipe. Thanks for sharing!

  15. 18

    Drooling over here – I want this noowwwww!!

  16. 19

    AHH, i know this tastes amazing and i’m so so jealous that you made it again. i seriously need to make it again, it’s just so phenomenal!!

  17. 20

    I’ll take anything made with peaches! I’m actually really wishing I was in your kitchen right now. I’ll take the cherry and pineapple juice mess, if it means I get to eat these carnitas!


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