Beef Barbacoa

Whether you’re craving barbacoa tacos or a Chipotle barbacoa burrito bowl, we’ve got your covered.

Earlier this year we ventured back to Mexico City. A vibrant metropolis filled with amazing tacos.

We had our FILL of tacos, from campechana, to al pastor, to lots of barbacoa.

What is Barbacoa?

What most people don’t realize is that traditional barbacoa is actually lamb.

We visited El Hidalguense, a restaurant in Mexico City that drives in the roasted lamb, and all of their employees, in a bus from the Hidalgo region, where barbacoa was created.

The meat was served in a heap on banana leaves, with a side of broth, tortillas, white onions and cilantro.

We took our first bite expecting it to be beef, but we’re surprised to learn it was actually lamb! 

Traditional barbacoa is made by roasting a lamb slow and low in an underground earth oven.

While this recipe isn’t cooked in the ground, it’s still made slow and low.

Side note: we even have an instant pot option for those short on time and patience. 

We opted to use beef for our barbacoa recipe, which is a much more familiar flavor for Americans. 

You could basically call it one of the best Chipotle copycat recipes!  

We’re currently stuck at home, like most people around the world. 

This Chipotle barbacoa recipe brings you the flavors of a familiar restaurant and can be used in so many different ways. It’s a perfect comfort food recipe during these trying times.

We used this beef barbacoa recipe to prepare the meat and enjoyed amazing leftovers for the days that followed. 

Some of our favorites were making beef barbacoa burrito bowls, tacos de barbacoa, southwest salads, and even barbacoa sandwiches!

This comfort food recipe is definitely one that you’ll make again and again.

For this recipe we used a chuck roast that we had in our freezer from Omaha Steaks.

It’s always amazing to have a freezer stocked with their quality meats, we highly recommend ordering a combo pack while you’re stuck at home or to prepare for the summer.

Most grocery stores also carry chunk roasts so if you’re heading to HEB you can pick up the roast alongside the other slow cooker barbacoa beef ingredients. 

Slow Cooker Beef Barbacoa

We’ve tested this recipe two different ways: using an Instant Pot pressure cooker as well as using a Crock Pot slow cooker. 

We actually prefer this shredded beef barbacoa recipe when you whip out the good old fashioned slow cooker. 

It’s as easy as searing the meat in a skillet, then cooking on low heat for 6-8 hours with all the rest of the ingredients.

Once you remove the meat, use an immersion blender or food processor to blend up what’s left in the slow cooker for an incredible sauce.

Instant Pot Barbacoa Beef

If you’re tight on time, the instant pot is a great way to braise the beef in a shorter amount of time.

Another benefit of instant pot barbacoa is that you can sear it in the appliance as well. 

Three cheers for having one less dish to clean!

It’s important that you cut your beef into 3-4 pieces before putting it in the instant pot. That will ensure the meat is easily shredded throughout the whole roast (not just on the edges). 

In only 60 minutes of pressure cooking your meat will be done!

You can remove the beef to shred it and blend up the rest of the ingredients for the same delicious sauce. 

No matter which cooking method you use, we know you’ll love this copycat Chipotle barbacoa recipe!

Barbacoa Recipe 

Makes 6 cups of shredded beef 

  • 2-3 pound beef chuck roast 
  • 2 tablespoons of oil
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander 
  • 1 tablespoon dry oregano 
  • Salt and pepper 
  • 1 white onion, quartered 
  • 3 cloves of garlic 
  • Half of a can of chipotle peppers in adobo (7oz. can)
  • 2 bay leaves 
  • 1 ½ cups beef stock
  1. Mix together the cumin, coriander and oregano.
  2. Generous season your beef roast with salt and pepper and then coat with the dry rub.
  3. Heat up the oil in a large skillet to medium-high heat.
  4. Sear the beef on all sides.
  5. In a slow cooker (or instant pot) add the large pieces of onion, garlic cloves, chipotle peppers and adobo sauce, bay leaves, and beef stock. Stir to combine.
  6. Add the meat, cover and cook for 6-8 hours on low in a slow cooker, or 60 minutes in an instant pot on high pressure with manual release. 
  7. Remove the meat and shred using a fork.
  8. Use an immersion blender or food processor to blend the remaining ingredients that were roasting.
  9. Mix spoonfuls of the sauce into the meat. Serve with tacos, rice, or salad!
Beef Barbacoa Recipe

Beef Barbacoa Recipe

Yield: 6 cups
Prep Time: 7 minutes
Cook Time: 6 hours
Additional Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 6 hours 12 minutes

This copycat Chipotle barbacoa beef recipe is versatile for a number of dishes!

Ingredients

  • 2 pound beef chuck roast
  • 2 tablespoons of oil
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 1 tablespoon dry oregano
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 white onion, quartered
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • Half of a can of chipotles in adobo (7 oz. can)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 ½ cups beef stock

Instructions

Mix together the cumin, coriander and oregano.

Generous season your beef roast with salt and pepper and then coat with the dry rub.

Heat up the oil in a large skillet to medium-high heat.

Sear the beef on all sides.

In a slow cooker (or instant pot) add the large pieces of onion, garlic cloves, chipotle peppers and adobo sauce, bay leaves, and beef stock. Stir to combine.

Add the meat, cover and cook for 6-8 hours on low in a slow cooker, or 60 minutes in an instant pot on high pressure with manual release. 

Remove the meat and shred using a fork.

Use an immersion blender or food processor to blend the remaining ingredients that were roasting. (Be sure to remove the bay leaves first)!

Mix spoonfuls of the sauce into the meat. Serve with tacos, rice, or salad!

Click this link to pin this recipe on pinterest. Also, don’t forget to follow us on instagram and facebook for more recipes and recommendations, we love to see when you make our recipes!

If you’d like to automatically receive our posts in your email, register here.

No Comments

    Leave a Reply