Slow Cooker Beef Barbacoa

Oh baby do I love me some Mexican food. Jared and I typically eat a Mexican inspired dinner at least twice a week, but a few weeks ago I started to feel like our usual sheet pan nachos/taco salad go-to meals weren’t cutting it and it was time to add something new to our repertoire.

I started with advising the almighty Pinterest to see what it had to offer and kept coming across recipes for a ‘Slow Cooker Beef Barbacoa’. Curiosity finally got the best of me and I read through 5-7 of them (yes, okay – I read recipes for fun) and came to the conclusion that I could not mess this up, it was too easy. So, I gathered all the ingredients that seemed to mesh together in my mind and got the fiesta going. What I came up with was a pretty dang good Beef Barbacoa – hope you enjoy!

One last tip – highly encourage the song below to enhance your fiesta cooking experience.

Alexa, play Mi Gente by J Balvin and Willy William.

Slow Cooker Beef Barbacoa

This is the perfect recipe to feed a crowd or to make if you want to have leftovers! Only a few prep steps required then place it in the slow cooker and let her go!


  • 3-5 pounds boneless chuck roast, cut into 2 inch cubes
  • 1-2 Tablespoons vegetable oil or canola oil
  • 1/3 cup or 6 chipotles in adobo with sauce
  • 1 large red or white onion (chef’s preference)
  • 2-3 Tablespoons of chopped garlic (plus a little extra if you are like me and like keeping vampires away)
  • 1 cup beef broth (or lager beer)
  • 1/3 cup of apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup of lime juice
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons cumin
  • 2 tablespoons oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon of ground cloves
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 bay leaves


  1. This step is optional but I highly recommend. Drizzle the oil into a skillet over medium to high heat. Brown the beef cubes on all sides in batches (queue Anne Burrell saying “Brown Food Tastes Good”)
  2. Add the beef (whether you browned it or not) to your crockpot
  3. Mix the chipotles on adobo, garlic, broth or beer, apple cider vinegar, lime and orange juice, cumin, oregano, ground cloves, salt and pepper until well combined
  4. Toss the chopped onions and bay leaves on top of the beef and add the well mixed concoction on top.
  5. Cook 8 hours on LOW or 4 hours on HIGH, or until the beef shreds easily with a fork (remove the bay leaves prior to shredding with two forks)
  6. Optional – once the beef is cooked and shredded, turn oven to broil and place meat on a sheet pan. Broil in the oven for 3-5 minutes, this allows the flavor to caramelize ever so slightly onto the meat and adds texture.

To Serve

Serve in corn tortillas, in a burrito, on top of nachos, in a soup or grab yourself a fork and knock yourself out. You can’t go wrong here!

We made a “build your own taco” platter and have rice, chips & guacamole and queso (duh)


XO, Ashton

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