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Chipotle’s Barbacoa Beef

September 21, 2011

If there were one restaurant establishment in Evanston that I go to without fail every week, it would be Chipotle. It’s actually the only place I go out to eat on a regular basis with the exclusion of Starbucks.

When I moved to Evanston I was saddened to see that there were no quality California Tex-Mex restaurants readily available. No La Vics, Tlaquepaque, or Burrito Factory to satisfy my love for Mexican food! Chipotle was the next best thing. McDonald’s might own Chipotle, but in my opinion, it is one of the freshest fast food restaurants out there. I’ve grown to love it, maybe even more than La Vic’s special orange sauce… And that is saying something!

My only qualm with Chipotle is not being able to make it myself. But all that changed when I found a recipe so strikingly similar to Chipotle’s famous “Barbacoa,” on Skinny Taste. Plus, the blog is called Skinny Taste—I could eat the same meal from Chipotle without the calories and the price-tag!

I used the same frozen organic brown rice I used in my Teriyaki Salmon Wrap to make a healthier version of Chipotle’s Cilantro-Lime Rice. It cuts out a lot of prep time and adds a nutty flavor to the meal. I also took a short-cut for the corn salsa and simply steamed frozen corn and mixed it with chopped cilantro, red onion, and jalapeno.

I used a slow-cooker for the Barbacoa because I don’t own a pressure cooker and cooked it on low for five hours. I prepped the meat in the afternoon and then came home to a delicious-smelling kitchen for dinner! The leftovers can be easily stored in the freezer and reheated for future use.

Barbacoa Beef recipe by Skinny Taste:

3 pounds beef eye of round or bottom round roast, all fat trimmed

5 cloves garlic

½ medium onion

½ lime, juice

2-4 chiptoles in adobo sauce (to taste)

1 tablespoon ground cumin

1 tablespoon ground oregano

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

Salt and pepper

3 bay leaves

1 teaspoon oil

1 cup water

  1. Place garlic, onion, lime juice, cumin, oregano, chiptoles, cloves in a blender.
  2. Trim all fat off meat, cut into 4-inch chunks. Season with salt and pepper and brown on high heat in 1 teaspoon oil. Add liquefied spices, water, bay leaves and simmer on low two hours in a pressure cooker. (If you are making this in a regular pot, you will have to double the cooking time to at least 4 hours or more, covered on low flame and add more water from time to time to make sure it doesn’t dry out.)
  3. Once cooked and the meat is tender, remove the meat and place in a dish. Shred it with two forks, and reserve the liquid for later (discard the bay leaf). Return the shredded meat to the pot, adjust salt and cumin (you may need to add more) to taste and add some of the reserved liquid back. Simmer uncovered for about 10 minutes to let the flavors penetrate.
5 Comments leave one →
  1. September 21, 2011 1:18 pm

    Claire bear, I’m sort of upset you would leave out Senor Taco and Taco Burrito King

  2. September 21, 2011 6:42 pm

    Senor Taco has really gone down the drain.. ANd TBK isn’t in California!!

  3. Kerri permalink
    January 21, 2015 11:03 am

    Hey Claire – made this today for Chipotles number one fan (Paul) and it was awesome! I have tried other Barbacoa recipes and they didn’t quite cut it but this was perfect! X

    • January 24, 2015 2:42 am

      Hi Kerry! I’m glad Paul approved! Now I just need to make a Golden Coral copycat recipe haha! 😉


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