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Big Picture Beef Barbacoa

April 5, 2024 • 0 comments

Big Picture Beef Barbacoa
This Beef Barbacoa recipe was shared with us by Tracey at Big Picture Health, and we approve! "This traditional Mexican main dish is slow cooked using beef cheeks and brisket or goat meat. Try my version below using an electric pressure cooker to speed up the process and infuse Mexican flavors into every bite."
  • Prep Time:
  • Cook Time:
  • Servings: 10-12


  • (3-5 lbs) Beef Chuck Roast
  • (1/3 cup) Apple Cider Vinegar
  • (4-6) Garlic Cloves
  • (4 tsp) Ground Cumin
  • (1 tsp) Black Pepper
  • (1 tsp) Sea Salt
  • (3 tbls) Olive or Avocado Oil
  • (3/4 cup) Chicken Broth
  • Juice of 2 Limes
  • (4-5) Chipotle Chilies in Adobo Sauce
  • (4 leaves) Bay Leaves
  • (3 tsp) Mexican Oregano


  1. Prepare roast. Trim off an excess fat leaving about a 1/4-1/2-inch layer on the surface. Save the excess fat for rendering later. Place roast in an electric pressure cooker. *See optional directions below to use a slow cooker such as a crock pot.
  2. Prepare sauce by combining the apple cider vinegar, garlic cloves, cumin, oregano, black pepper, salt, oil, broth, limes and chipotle chilies in a blender and process until smooth and well combined. Pour sauce over roast. Place bay leaves around roast.
  3. Secure pressure cooker lid and set timer for 120 minutes.
  4. When cooking is complete let cooker cool. Remove meat and let rest for 20 minutes. Carefully remove and discard the bay leaves. Then shred meat with two forks. Use the leftover sauce to flavor and moisten the shredded beef as desired.

Serve meat over salad, as a filling for tacos or burritos or with a side of rice. I also like the meat served over a baked sweet potato. Package up any leftovers in glass storage containers, label and date and freeze for later use for a quick meal.

Crockpot or slow cooker option:

Place prepared roast, sauce and bay leaves in a slow cooker. Cook on high for 2 hours. Reduce temperature to low and slow cook for 5-6 more hours until meat is fork tender. Shred as described above.

Provided by Tracey Long, MPH, RDN at