Easy Barbacoa

Traditionally, barbacoa can be made with goat, lamb, beef’s tongue, or cheeks. After a lengthy cooking process, the barbacoa is ready when the beef pulls off the bones and is beautiful and tender.  Ours is made with a more traditional cut of beef and in a very easy chipotle-based stock. The result is homemade succulent barbacoa ready to be enjoyed with corn tortillas and simple toppings. 


Easy Barbacoa

-500g chuck roast

-salt and pepper

-vegetable oil

-¾ beef broth

-4 Chipotles in Adobo

-3 garlic cloves

-1 ¼ tbsp ground cumin

-½ tbsp oregano

-2 bay leaves

-1 tbsp white vinegar

-½ onion, sliced

1 In a blender or food processor, add the beef broth, chipotles, garlic, cumin, oregano, bay leaves, and vinegar. Blend until smooth. Reserve. 

2 Cut the beef into even-sized chunks. Pat dry with a paper towel and season with salt and black pepper.

3 In a large pan add a drizzle of vegetable oil and set to medium-high, once hot, sear the beef chunks until brown on all sides. 

4 Once the beef has browned, add the onions and stir for a few seconds. Add the chipotle stock and bring to a boil. Lower the heat, cover with a lid and cook over low heat for at least one hour. 

5 Check the beef after one hour. If the meat is not easy to pull apart, cover it again and cook for further 20 minutes. 

Once the beef can be easily pulled apart, shred it with a fork and toss it around with the remaining juices. There shouldn't be a lot of liquid left, only a small amount of lush chipotle base that has thickened together with the onions that have now melted into the sauce. 


  • Traditional barbacoa is made with meat that requires a lot of time to be cooked, sometimes even a whole animal is used such as goat, lamb, or mutton. Other cuts that can be used to make barbacoa can be beef’s tongue or cheeks. After many hours, the beef becomes soft and pulls apart from the bones easily. 
  • Leave some of the fat that comes with the beef, if any. This will bring more flavour and a silky texture to the barbacoa. 
  • In Mexico, barbacoa can be made over an open fire or even buried in a hole in the ground and wrapped in banana leaves.
  • Our easy barbacoa version doesn’t require as much time and it can be made over the stovetop, oven, and even pressure cooker or crock pot.


Barbacoa Tacos

-corn tortillas

-diced onions



-lime wedges

-your favourite salsa! We highly recommend Salsa Verde and or Salsa Ranchera.

1 Warm the corn tortillas and add a good amount of barbacoa. Top with diced onions, coriander, radishes, and salsa. Drizzle fresh lime juice over and enjoy a super delicious taco!




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