Are you a fan of Mexican food? If so, you’ve probably come across a pastor before. This dish is commonly found in Mexican restaurants and street food vendors. It’s also referred to as shawarma or gyros; these are all local variations of the same dish. Regardless of what you call it, al pastor is a delicious meal with many benefits for your health. But there are some risks associated with this dish as well. Keep reading to learn more about al pastor and its impact on your diet.
Is Al Pastor Healthy?
No, al pastor is not really healthy, it is way too high in calories to be considered healthy. A typical serving of al pastor has almost 1000 calories and 80 grams of fat.
why Is Not Al Pastor Healthy?
1. The Meat is High in Fat
The meat used for this dish is typically pork. Pork fat has a high concentration of saturated fats, which is what most people find to be harmful. Saturated fats clog arteries and affect the body’s ability to function correctly.
2. Bread on Top
Toppings are important to all pastors and can make or break their healthiness status. The typical topping for this dish includes corn tortillas (which are high in calories) and melted cheese (which is high in fat).
3. Guacamole and Sour Cream
Guacamole and sour cream are also common toppings for al pastor, but they’re not as healthy as you might think. Guacamole has more calories than you might expect, with almost 200 calories per serving! Sour cream is also high in fat, with close to 10 grams of fat per serving!
4. Extra Cheese
The cheese used on top of al pastor is typically melted cheese. This cheese is high in calories, so it’s not good for your diet either.
5. Pork Fat
Pork fat is unhealthy because it contains more saturated fats than any other kind of fat. Saturated fats increase the risk of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. That’s why pork fat should be avoided!
6. Al Pastor is High in Sodium
Al pastor is high in sodium, which can cause inflammation to your arteries. Inflammation in your arteries can lead to heart disease, stroke, and diabetes.
7. Al Pastor Contains Trans Fats
Trans fats are unhealthy because they increase the risk of heart disease and stroke. The trans fats used for al pastor are partially hydrogenated oils, which means they contain trans fats. These trans fats should also be avoided!
How To Make Al Pastor?
The first step is to make your shredded pork.
Cooking time: 1 hour and 30 minutes There are many ways to make pork for al pastor tacos, such as roasting the pork shoulder and shredding it, or using a pressure cooker to make shredded pork. If you use a pressure cooker, you’ll only need about an hour to make the meat. We recommend using a slow-roasting technique because it gives the meat more flavor, especially if you make it with a boneless pork shoulder. Both methods work fine, but if you use a pressure cooker, you will need to make sure that the pork is fully cooked before shredding it. You can use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature and make sure it’s at 160F.
The second step is to make the al pastor spice mix.
Cooking time: 5 minutes The al pastor spice mix is a simple spice blend that is used generously in the tacos. You can use the al pastor spice mix to make a lot of different recipes and dishes, so it’s great to have on hand. It goes well with chicken, steak, and fish, and you can use it for making tacos as well. We’ve included the recipe for the spice mix below. If you have a mortar and pestle, that’s the best method for making the spices, but if you don’t have one, you can use a spice or coffee grinder.
The third step is sautéing the vegetables.
Cooking time: 10 minutes The vegetables that go into a traditional al pastor taco are onion and garlic, which are sautéed until they are soft and aromatic. You can add other vegetables like bell peppers, jalapeños, or cilantro if you’d like. We’ve listed the ingredients for the sautéed vegetables below
The fourth step is toasting the cumin and coriander seeds.
Cooking time: 5 minutes The cumin and coriander seeds that go into the al pastor tacos are toasted until fragrant. You can use a frying pan or a griddle to do this, but make sure you do it carefully because the seeds can burn quickly. You can toast the seeds while the vegetables are sautéing.
The fifth step is roasting and crushing the chilis.
Cooking time: 20 minutes The roasted chilis are made into a simple sauce that is mixed with the al pastor spices. You can use any chilis you like, but we recommend using a combination of some of the hottest varieties, such as habanero, serrano, and jalapeño. Make sure to wear gloves while handling the chilis so you don’t burn your hands. Also, make sure to wash your hands thoroughly after handling the chilis. We’ve listed the ingredients for the chili sauce below.
The sixth step is making al pastor tacos.
Cooking time: 10 minutes After all of the components for the tacos are ready, you can assemble them and cook them. We’ve listed the ingredients for the tacos below. You can use corn or flour tortillas. If you use corn tortillas, make sure to warm them up before serving them. Any of the al pastor tacos can also be served with rice and beans.
The seventh step is topping the tacos with shredded lettuce and serrano salsa.
Cooking time: 5 minutes The shredded lettuce and serrano salsa are optional toppings, but they are important parts of the al pastor tacos. You can make the serrano salsa by combining diced serrano chilies, fresh diced tomatoes, freshly chopped cilantro, and lime juice. You can also add salt to taste. The serrano salsa adds a bright, fresh taste to the tacos, and the lettuce adds a nice crunch.
The eighth step is slicing the fresh pineapple.
Cooking time: 5 minutes The fresh pineapple slices are optional toppings, but many people love them on their tacos. The pineapple adds a nice sweetness to the tacos, so it’s a good option if you want to add some dessert-like elements to your tacos.
The ninth step is serving all pastor tacos.
Cooking time: 5 minutes Once the tacos are assembled, all you have to do is serve them. We recommend serving the tacos with some lime wedges and cilantro leaves. You can also make some Mexican-style iced tea or horchata to go with the tacos.
The final step is to eat the finished al pastor tacos!
Cooking time: 10 minutes Once the tacos are assembled, all you have to do is eat them! We recommend eating the tacos right away because the roasted chili sauce and fresh pineapple slices will lose their crispness if left out for too long. Now that you’ve learned how to make all pastor tacos, you can invite friends over to try them. Or you can invite your friends to come over while you make them. Either way, you’ll have a great time enjoying these delicious tacos with friends.
Al pastor is a great dish to enjoy from time to time. It’s high in protein and iron, which are two essential nutrients for your health. It’s also rich in B vitamins, which help with brain health and energy metabolism.
Q. What is the difference between al pastor and carne asada?
A. Al pastor is a Mexican dish that is made with marinated pork and served on a large vertical spit, while carne asada is grilled meat in a flat metal pan
Q. What kind of meat can I use to make al pastor?
A. Al pastor is usually made with pork, but you can also use beef, chicken, or goat meat to make it.
Q. How do I make the al pastor sauce?
A. The al pastor sauce is a simple mixture of chilies, salt, and lime juice that’s mixed with water and then cooked in a skillet until thickened.