Three slow cooker barbacoa tacos on a table with assorted toppings on the side.

Slow Cooker Barbacoa Beef Tacos

Make slow cooker barbacoa beef tacos to create an easy meal any day of the week! Easy to find ingredients and easy prep create these tacos de barbacoa in the slow cooker.

Three slow cooker barbacoa tacos on a table with assorted toppings on the side.

We love tacos any day of the week! Enjoy everything from basic chicken tacos to shrimp tacos with mango slaw and even butternut squash, black bean and kale tacos. We love tacos so much, we even turned them into a taco pizza! Slow cooker barbacoa beef tacos make a frequent appearance on our dinner menu. This recipe is loaded with flavor! After searing the beef, load up your slow cooker with the other ingredients. Let your slow cooker do all of the work to create a tasty meal for lunch or dinner.

Serve these barbacoa tacos with a side of Mexican Corn for a complete meal!

Homemade barbacoa tacos with assorted toppings.

Slow cooker barbacoa tacos

To make barbacoa beef in the slow cooker, first season a medium sized chunk roast (about 2 1/2 pounds) with salt and pepper. Preheat a large skillet over high heat and add oil. Sear the chunk roast on all sides, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer the roast to a slow cooker.

Add diced red onion, chipotle chiles in adobo, minced garlic, beef broth, lime juice, apple cider vinegar, bay leaves, ground cumin, dried oregano and ground cloves to the slow cooker. Add diced red pepper for additional spice and flavor. Toss the ingredients. Close the lid and cook on low for 8 to 10 hours or on high for 4 to 5 hours.

After the roast is cooked, shred with two forks and stir together in the sauce. Serve on corn or flour tortillas or lettuce wraps. Garnish with taco toppings. Find the full recipe ingredients and measurements below.

Barbacoa beef taco toppings

  • Red Onion: With a subtle sweetness and crunchy texture, red onions are the perfect topping for tacos. Try pickling red onions for even more flavor!
  • Queso fresco: When in doubt choose queso fresco for tacos! It’s a creamy mild cheese with a fresh texture and slightly salty flavor.
  • Cilantro: If you love it, then you know you shouldn’t miss it! Cilantro adds even more fresh flavor to these tacos and complements the fresh lemon juice.
  • Sliced jalapeños: For a little heat, add freshly sliced jalapeños.
  • Lime juice: Squeeze lime juice over the tacos for fresh citrus flavor.

Three corn taco shells with barbacoa beef filling.

Tips for making barbacoa tacos

  • You can skip the step where you sear the beef before adding it to the slow cooker, but we strongly recommend that you do not skip this step. Searing the beef enhances the flavor. Beef tastes so much better when seared before cooking in the slow cooker.
  • Add more diced chili peppers or chipotle chilis in adobo if you like spicier beef.
  • This recipe freezes well! To freeze, let the meat cool completely and transfer to freezer safe bags. Remove all of the air from the bag before sealing. To thaw, remove from the freezer and thaw overnight.

If you love easy taco recipes made in the slow cooker, try these Slow Cooker Chicken Tacos, Slow Cooker Carnitas Tacos or Slow Cooker Lentil Tacos! Make these easy tacos de barbacoa and let us know what you think.

Slow Cooker Barbacoa Beef Tacos

Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time:
15 mins
Cook Time:
5 hrs
Total Time:
5 hrs 15 mins
 
Make slow cooker barbacoa beef tacos to create an easy meal any day of the week! Easy to find ingredients and easy prep create these tacos de barbacoa in the slow cooker.
Three slow cooker barbacoa tacos on a table with assorted toppings on the side.
5 from 5 votes

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 pounds beef chunk roast
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Ground black pepper
  • 1 small red onion diced
  • 1 red chili pepper diced (optional)
  • 2 chipotle chilis in adobo
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 2/3 cup beef broth
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 12 small corn or flour tortillas for serving
  • 1/2 red onion thinly sliced, for serving
  • queso fresco for serving
  • cilantro for serving
  • sliced jalapeños for serving (optional)
  • lime wedges for serving

Instructions

  1. Coat the inside of the slow cooker with oil.

  2. Season the chunk roast with salt and pepper. Preheat a skillet over high heat and add oil. Sear the chunk roast on all sides, about 2 minutes per side. Place roast in crock.

  3. Pour the remaining ingredients for the barbacoa beef over the roast and turn to coat. Close the lid and cook on low for 8 to 10 hours or on high for 4 to 5 hours.

  4. When the roast is fully cooked, shred with two forks and toss in the sauce.

  5. Serve on corn or flour tortillas. Garnish with red onion, queso fresco, cilantro, jalapeños and lime wedges.

Notes

  • Serving size includes about 2 tacos. 
  • Nutritional information does not include taco toppings like queso fresco, cilantro, lime or jalapeños.
  • Barbacoa beef is a little spicy. If you want it more spicy, add additional diced chili peppers or chipotle peppers in adobo.
  • Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. 
  • This recipe freezes well. Let the meat cool completely and transfer to freezer safe bags. Remove all of the air from the bag before sealing. To thaw, remove from the freezer and thaw overnight. 

Nutrition Information

Calories: 522, Fat: 28g, Saturated Fat: 10g, Cholesterol: 130mg, Sodium: 330mg, Potassium: 846mg, Carbohydrates: 28g, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 4g, Protein: 39g, Vitamin A: 375%, Vitamin C: 15.5%, Calcium: 106%, Iron: 5.8%

*Nutritional information is an estimate. Please consult a doctor or nutritionist for the most accurate nutritional info.

Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: barbacoa beef, barbacoa tacos, slow cooker barbacoa, tacos de barbacoa
All images and text ©Spoonful of Flavor

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