Pernil (Puerto Rican Pork Shoulder)

Total Time
15hrs 30mins
Prep 9 hrs
Cook 6 hrs 30 mins

This is a delicious way to cook pork. I got this recipe from my boyfriend who is from Puerto Rico. This also makes excellent, moist meat for Cuban sandwiches.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Wash the pork shoulder.
  2. With a sharp knife, make 1 inch deep cuts into the pork.
  3. With mortar and pestle crush garlic, oregano and black pepper together. Add olive oil, vinegar and salt. Mix well.
  4. Spoon some of the garlic mixture inside the small cuts around the pork, and spread remaining mixture all over the pork.
  5. Place pork in an aluminum turkey pan (skin side up); cover with aluminum foil tightly. Refrigerate at least 8 hours. (I have marinated this for as long as two days.).
  6. Bake in pre-heated 325 degree Fahrenheit oven for about 5 to 6 hours.
  7. Remove aluminum foil and bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for another hour or until skin is crisp. Closely watch this so you don't burn the skin (chicharrone).
  8. Pork should be well-done and tender.


Most Helpful

This was incredibly delicious. I used a small, <3 lb. roast, and marinated it only 3 hours. I used 6 cloves of garlic instead of 12, but the rest of the ingredients were as written. I cooked it at 300 for 3 hours, covered and then at 350 for 45 min. uncovered. Very moist and tender.

MagsMeals October 04, 2009

Call it what you want (I know...technically it's Pernil. My boyfriend is Puerto Rican too!) - but I call it the "5 hours of torture roast". It fills the house with such a tantalizing aroma that you swear you will lose your mind obsessing over the timer! Thanks for posting this. Awesome!

ShayOliver December 07, 2010

This is just the best pork recipe I have ever tasted. I followed the directions exactly as stated. I am just not sure what cut of meat I had but it said picnic on it. Even a terrible cook like me could not ruin this roast. Thank you so much for posting.

Metritek May 21, 2010

Join the Conversation

  • all
  • reviews
  • tweaks
  • q & a