Al Pastor Marinade Recipe

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This is our simple, yet flavorful recipe for al pastor. The traditional trompo is fantastic but if you don’t have one handy, you can grill, roast or pan fry for that same sweet, tangy, smoky goodness that you’d expect from al pastor tacos.

al pastor marinade

With that in mind, I replaced the traditional orange juice for pineapple juice, since you won’t get caramelizing juices dripping down the trompo. However, you can change the citrus, type of vinegar and even bump up that garlic. Use this recipe as guide to your personal ultimate al pastor marinade.

This marinade is great for roasting vegetables, like cauliflower and eggplant, so don’t hold back!

Al Pastor

Al Pastor
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Additional Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes


  • 4 dried guajillo chilies
  • 2 tablespoons achiote paste
  • ¼ cup pineapple juice
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon Mexican oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 whole cloves


    1. Add the guajillo peppers to a 3-4 qt pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil over high heat. Once the water boils, remove from heat and cover for 10 minutes to soften.
    2. Remove the stems from the softened guajillo peppers and place into the blender along with the rest of the ingredient: achiote paste, pineapple juice, apple cider vinegar, garlic, salt, Mexican oregano, cumin, black pepper and cloves.
    3. Blend on high until pureed. (Add the water you used to soften the ancho chilies, 1 tablespoon at a time to thin out as needed.) Use immediately to marinate or pan fry, otherwise cover and refrigerate. Use within a week.
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