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Crazy Delicious Beef Barbacoa
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4.75 from 16 votes

Beef Barbacoa Recipe

This crazy delicious beef barbacoa couldn't be easier to make! Season, braise, simmer and let your oven do the rest!
Prep Time20 minutes
Cook Time3 hours 30 minutes
Total Time3 hours 50 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 627kcal
Author: Andrea


  • 4-5 lb beef chuck-eye roast OR boneless short ribs
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 small yellow onion thinly sliced
  • 6 cloves garlic smashed
  • 1 tbsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 3 cup chicken broth
  • 3 chipotle chilies seeded and minced + 1 tbsp. adobo sauce
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 (10 oz. can) diced tomatoes with green chilies
  • 2 limes juiced
  • 2 bay leaves


  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Adjust oven rack to middle lower position (so that your pot fits).
  • Cut the beef into about 8 large chunks. You'll want the beef to remain marbled with fat, but if there are giant spots, it's ok to remove them.
  • In a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat, add the vegetable oil. When the oil is hot, add the beef and braise. When the meat is crispy and brown flip and continue to braise the other side (I let mine go for about 4 minutes on each side). Remove and set aside.
  • Add the onion, garlic and seasonings to the pan. Allow the onions to cook until translucent and the spices to become fragrant. Scrape up any browned bits while whisking in 1 c. of chicken broth, then add in the meat. Pour the remaining chicken broth over top, along with the minced chipotle chilies, adobo sauce, apple cider vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, tomatoes with green chilies, lime juice and bay leaves.
  • Bring the mixture to a boil over high heat, then place the lid on and transfer to the preheated oven. Let the beef cook for 3-4 hours, stirring twice during that time. The meat should fall apart and be extremely tender. Remove from the oven and if needed, place over medium-high heat to reduce the liquid (I only did this for a few minutes). Remove the meat and place on a large cutting board. Shred the meat with two forks, then return to the pot to absorb any of the leftover juices. Discard bay leaves and serve warm.


-If you don't own a Dutch oven, simply do everything in a large pot, then transfer to a 9X13 ceramic or glass dish. Cover with foil and bake according to the directions.
-You can find chipotle chilies in adobo sauce in the Latin isle of most grocery stores.


Serving: 6serving | Calories: 627kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 60g | Fat: 40g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Cholesterol: 209mg | Sodium: 1291mg | Potassium: 1198mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 189IU | Vitamin C: 17mg | Calcium: 92mg | Iron: 8mg