Beef Barbacoa

A standard Mexican dish that is great over rice or even on a roll.


prep 1:30       total 2 days 3:00


6 to 10 servings



The Marinade

10 guajillo chiles, stemmed and seeded
10 ancho chiles, stemmed and seeded
5 cups water
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1 md. tomato, rough chop
1 md. white onion coarsely chopped
3 md. cloves garlic
1 tbsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground allspice
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
5 whole clove, stems removed
2-1/2 tsp. kosher salt
3 tbsp. vegetable oil

The meat

4 lbs. beef round or
beef brisket, cut into 4-inch chunks.
12 oz. light beer.


Heat a large pan over medium heat. Add the dried chiles and toast them for 30 seconds per side. DO NOT BURN THEM! Transfer the now toasted chiles to a medium saucepan and addthe water, place over medium heat and cook for 15 minutes, until the chiles have softened and rehydrated.
Transfer the chile to a blender and add 2 cups of the cooking liquid. You can discard the rest. Add the vinegar, tomato, onion, garlic, oregano, cinnamon, allspice, black pepper, cloves and the salt. Puree until smooth.
Wipe out the medium saucepan and add the oil. Put over medium heat for 1 to 2 minutes. Then add the pureed chile mixture. Try not to let it splatter. Partially cover the saucepan and cook for about 12 minutes. Stirring once or twice until the color darkens and the mixture thickens to a paste like consistency.
Place the beef in a large bowl and cover with the chile marinade. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for up to 48 hours to let the flavors blend.
Preheat the oven to 350. Place the beef chunks in a French oven or a casserole dish with a lid. Discard the marinade. Pour the beer over and cover with the lid and place in preheated oven for 3 hours, until meat pulls apart with a fork. Take out of the oven and let rest for 15 minutes before serving.

Author's Comments

I have made this recipe many times and have even made it in a crock pot that takes 8 hours on high. Yes it takes some time but it is well worth it! Even the leftovers are great.
I serve it with Mexican rice or I have even made sliders by putting it on slider rolls with pickled jalapenos and a little salsa.

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