carnitas

plural noun
car·​ni·​tas | \ kär-ˈnē-təz How to pronounce carnitas (audio) , -ˈnē-täs \

Definition of carnitas

: small chunks or strips of meat and especially pork that are fried or roasted until crisp and are sometimes served in a burrito or taco John picked up two six-packs of Michelob and cooked carnitas on his back porch.— Dagoberto Gilb … I had made carnitas—that irresistible Mexican pork shoulder braised for hours with spices, then fried in its own fat until crisp …— Mark Bittman

First Known Use of carnitas

1949, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for carnitas

borrowed from Mexican Spanish, plural of carnita, diminutive of Spanish carne "meat," going back to Latin carn, carō "flesh, meat" — more at carnal

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About carnitas

Time Traveler for carnitas

Time Traveler

The first known use of carnitas was in 1949

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near carnitas

Carniolan bee

carnitas

carnitine

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for carnitas

Last Updated

4 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Carnitas.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/carnitas. Accessed 20 Oct. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon
Seen & Heard
People are talking about

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Spelling Words Quiz

  • alphabet pasta spelling help
  • Which is the correct spelling?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!