Slow Cooker Beef Barbacoa

Slow Cooker Beef Barbacoa

One easy recipe, three simple meals, all delicious.

This recipe is a household favorite around here. Not only does everyone love how it tastes, but it’s also an easy dinner for me to make.

I learned how to make this after my son’s fiance came to live with us. Their Mexican culture and heritage have definitely put some spice into our family kitchen. I love it!

First, I prep the meat and then throw my ingredients into my slow cooker in the morning. And then…I go do something else until dinner time. Talk about easy!

My favorite part about this recipe is how versatile it is. I can use this same recipe to create three different meals depending on what my tribe is craving or what other ingredients I have on hand.

Total Time: up to 9 hours & 10 minutes

Preparation Time: 10 minutes

Cooking Time: 6–9 hours

Slow Cooker Setting (Temperature): High for 6 hours or Low for 8–9 hours


  • 4 lbs. beef brisket (or beef chuck roast)
  • 2 Tbsp avocado oil
  • chipotle chilis in adobo (1 if you can’t handle spicy or 3–4 if you love spicy)
  • 1 1/4 cups beef broth
  • 4 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 Tbsp ground cumin
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice


  1. Cut the beef into large cubes/chunks. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, add the avocado oil and sear the beef on each side. Transfer to your slow cooker.
  2. In a food processor, add adobo chilis, beef broth, garlic, cumin, oregano, salt, pepper, cloves, and lime juice. Pulse until blended and pour on top of the meat in the slow cooker.
  3. Cook on low for 8–9 hours, or on high for 6 hours.
  4. Shred the meat with two forks and turn on warm to serve.

Now you’re ready to create multiple meals — all tasty!

  1. If you’re in the mood for a salad, grab your favorite greens and other fresh veggies to go with the barbacoa including, avocado, onions, and tomatoes or salsa.
  2. If you’re craving tacos, add the barbacoa to some tortillas and top with a mixture of onion, lime juice, tomatoes, shredded cheese or queso, and salt.
  3. You can also make a barbacoa taco bowl. Serve it with some rice, chopped avocado, tomatoes, corn, and black beans. Then top it off with a squeeze of lime and a sprinkle of cilantro.

Many times I have enough barbacoa left over to stow in my freezer until another time. Then we choose a different meal option.

Which meal will you create first? I’d love to hear how it goes.

If you’re interested in more delicious, easy food ideas and recipes, you can get more of that here.

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