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Pork with Bitter Orange and Garlic
(Cochiniti Pibil)

This tasty dish is from Cancun, Mexico. The original dish as served by Yucatec, a regional restaurant, involved 1/2-inch slices of pork from the leg, but you can use the marinade on any cut desired. If you do not use bitter oranges, eliminate the sugar.


  • 3 tablespoons (50 mL) oil
  • 6 tablespoons (100 mL) juice from a bitter orange such as Seville
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 pounds (900 g) boneless pork cut 1/2-inch thick
  • 1 large red onion
  • 1 bitter orange
  • 1 teaspoon (5 mL) granulated sugar

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  1. Combine the oil, juice and garlic in a large non-metallic dish. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  2. Add the pork meat, toss well to make sure it is completely coated with marinade, and refrigerate for one hour.
  3. Heat a barbecue (preferably one with real charcoal) to medium-low.
  4. Peel the onion and cut it into 1/2-inch thick slices. Brush the slices with a little of the pork marinade, and grill the onions about eight minutes a side.
  5. When the onions are half done, spread the pork slices on the grill as well, brushing them with marinade. They will only need about four minutes per side.
  6. Slice the bitter orange into 1/2-inch thick slices, leaving the peel on. Sprinkle with a little sugar.
  7. When the pork is done on one side and you turn it, arrange the orange slices on the grill and cook them, turning once, until just beginning to caramelize on the outside.
  8. If you've timed it right, everything is ready at the same moment.
  9. Serve the slices of pork topped with the grilled onions and orange slices.