Barbacoa Beef Tacos

Barbacoa Tacos

As I told you in my last post, ice cream is my favorite dessert, but tacos are my favorite savory food.  That is always how I judge whether I like a Mexican food restaurant.  I start with the tacos, and if they are good, I’ll be back. The meat inside the taco has to be extremely flavorful and very tender. Recently I found a recipe for barbacoa tacos where that describes them perfectly.

Barbacoa Tacos

I don’t think you can ever have too many taco recipes.  Each one has just a little different slant to them.  I have shared my restaurant style shredded beef tacos here before, as well as spicy pork carnitas, and I love those tacos, too, but I wanted to also have a go to recipe for beef barbacoa, similar to Chipotle.  This is such an easy recipe, as it is made in the slow cooker so is perfect for busy school nights. The meat has a smoky flavor due to the chipotle chilies and the taste of lime really comes through as well.  There is a bit of spice, but not a lot.  You could always add more chilies if you like it spicier or less if you want less smokiness, but I loved it just the way it was.  Actually our whole family did.

Barbacoa Tacos

This is a great way to get your Mexican food quota for the day.  Did you know Mexican food is a daily requirement for our diet or is that just in Arizona? 🙂  I think maybe if everyone could eat a little Mexican food each day, there would probably be more happiness and fewer wars and crime in the world.  I don’t know if anyone has done a study, but just an observation I’ve made over the years. Or it might be based on how I feel after I’ve eaten a taco, I’m not sure.  I will have to let you know after I do copious amounts of research on the matter (by eating as many tacos as I can get my hands on).  I’ve always been the studious type.  If you love Chipotle restaurant or are a fan of tacos or just want to do your own research, I hope you will give this recipe a try! 🙂

Barbacoa Tacos

Slow Cooker Barbacoa Beef Tacos

  • Servings: 8-10
  • Time: 20 minutes plus cook time
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

  • 3 lb beef chuck roast (important to have this size in order to get good flavor for the juices)
  • 1 ¼ c beef broth, divided
  • 4 chipotle chilies in adobo sauce
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • 1 ½ Tbsp. ground cumin
  • 1 Tbsp. dried oregano
  • 3/4 tsp salt, then more to taste
  • 1/2 tsp coarse ground black pepper
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1/4 c fresh lime juice
  • desired toppings such as shredded Monterey Jack  cheese, diced onions, chopped cilantro, avocados, sour cream, and salsa
  1. Spray slow cooker with cooking spray.  Turn on low heat setting.
  2. Place chuck roast in slow cooker.
  3. In a food processor or heavy-duty blender, pulse together chipotle chilies, garlic, and 1/4 c beef broth until well pureed.
  4. In a 2 c liquid measuring cup or bowl, whisk together remaining beef broth with chipotle mixture, cumin,  oregano, salt, and pepper.
  5. Pour mixture over beef in slow cooker, then nestle bay leaves in the liquid around the beef.  Cover and cook for 8-9 hours until tender and shreds easily with a fork.
  6. Remove beef from slow cooker (leave broth) and shred, discarding fat.
  7. Stir lime juice into broth.
  8. Return shredded beef to broth in slow cooker for 20-30 minutes longer.
  9. Pour beef and some of the juices into bowl.
  10. Serve with warmed corn tortillas (either warm them individually in microwave for 15 seconds or heat however many you need in foil in the oven set at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes) and desired toppings.
  11. Refrigerate any leftovers.

Recipe by Cook AZ I Do, slightly adapted from Cooking Classy

It’s only appropriate that I take these tacos to Fiesta Friday so everyone there can get their Mexican food quota for the day!

Categories: Main Dishes, Mexican Recipes, Recipes, Weeknight Meals

My name is Shari, and I am an Arizona native and married mother of 3 who loves to cook and bake and figure out how to garden successfully in our suburban home in the desert. On this blog you will find a combination of savory and sweet recipes that have been tested by me, along with many tips to help you be successful. I hope you enjoy them!


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