Feb 5, 2017

Barbacoa Beef (pressure Cooker)

This a quick Gluten free delicious, versatile dish that can be made so many different ways that it would be perfect for Superbowl Sunday!! Barbacoa (barba'koa) refers to meat cooked or rather steamed very slowly until tender. This form of cooking originated in the Caribbean with the Taino people, from which the term "barbecue" derives. Back in the those days the meat was cooked over an open fire or in a whole dug in the ground covered with maguey leaves. There are many different versions today and it is typically found in Mexican kitchens and in restaurants like Chipotle. I know, I know it is supposed to be slow cooked for 6-8 hours, but who has time for that? I know I don't.  There are many cuts of beef you can use but I happen to have Flank so that's what I used.        


I made Tacos out of this recipe and topped it with pickled Red onions and avocados and I was in heaven. Honestly speaking this was 100X better then Chipotles beef, but of course that's my opinion. This is my first recipe in quite awhile and I figured what better day to start then Super bowl Sunday!! 

When my son came home he told me he was in the mood for Nachos, I made my own Nachos with this Barbacoa and the results were Fabulous!!!  I would've probably added black olives if I had some but I didn't. Just put your tortillas on a dish, add the meat and scallions and top with cheddar cheese or pepper jack for a little spice!
This dish makes 6 loaded cups in an hour!! Ok so I hope its an hour, let me explain. I got a new pressure cooker and used the wrong setting initially, so the meat cooked a bit before I realized that I had not set it right. So pressure cook for 1 hour but if its not fork tender and easily pulled apart, put it back for another 30 minutes. I didn't do the calorie count on the nachos but figure if you had the nachos as an appetizer 11 corn tortilla chips would be 4 points and 1/2oz of cheddar cheese would be another 2 points. This with just 2oz of Barbacoa is 8 points. However, 2 loaded Tacos is only 7 points.            



This is what a dried Guajillo pepper looks like, in case you weren't sure.  You can probably make this dish without it but it will not give it the same depth of smokey flavor.



  • 2 dried guajillo peppers
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tsp Extra Virgen Olive Oil
  • 1 small onion
  • 4 roasted garlic cloves
  • 2 tsp toasted cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp Chipotle pepper
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (zesty mild green chili's)
  • 1/3 cup Goya tomato sauce
  • 1/2 jalapeno pepper (diced)
  • 1.5 tsp salt
  • 2.3 pounds Flank Steak (fat trimmed)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 lime, juice
  • 24 corn tortillas
  • pickled red onions optional
  • avocados optional


Boil the dried Guajillo peppers in 1/2 cup water and when they are soft, remove stems and seeds and throw the peppers and water in the blender. Set aside   

In a pressure cooker, In sauté (browning) mode, add the oil and sauté onions for 2-3 minutes. Add diced garlic, cumin, and chipotle powder.  I first toast the cumin seeds and then grind them in a mortar and pestle or a spice grinder. sauté another minute till fragrant

Add the rest of the ingredients, including the guajillo pepper puree. 

Cover and set your pressure cooker to Meat and pressure cook for 1 hour.  release the heat and check to see if meat separates with a fork easily. If it doesn't pressure cook for another 30 min.  On second thought, it's probably better if you just cook it for 90 min total.  I intend to make this again to fix the timing but I wanted to post this today.

Heat your tortillas on a cast iron pan with no oil, or do it right over the fire. plate 2 tortillas, top with 2oz each of Barbacoa, Pickled Red Onions and avocado.   

Enjoy! and Happy Super bowl Sunday!!  



Yields: 12 servings,  Serving size: 2 Tacos, Smart Points: 7, Calories: 272.6,  Total Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 2.9g,  Cholesterol: 43.5mg, Sodium: 530.8mg,  Carbs: 26.7g,  Fiber: 4g,  Sugar: 3.3g,  Protein: 20.4g

I did not add the calorie count on the avocados but adding one oz of avocados is just 1 additional point and totally worth it!! The pickled onions are free!!









  1. i liked the above model pressure cooker, i need to purchase it
    pressure cooker price

    1. Sorry for the late response, I'm just seeing this. I wanna say it was about 100 bucks or so