Slow Cooker Copycat Chipotle Barbacoa

This Slow Cooker Copycat Chipotle Barbacoa is loaded with bold flavors that explode in every bite. Tender chuck roast cooked to perfection comes together with citrus and bold spices. Yum!

copycat chipotle barbacoa tacos on a metal baking tray with a lime half

This Slow Cooker Copycat Chipotle Barbacoa is a delicious copycat of everyone’s favorite take out burrito place.  Tender, flavorful beef cooks all day in the slow cooker and is perfect for burrito bowls, burritos or tacos.

The barbacoa at Chipotle is one of our favorite dishes to order when we go. Until we went there, neither of us had ever had beef done quite like it. We loved it so much that we decided to make our own version so we don’t have to leave whenever we want that delicious flavor.

copycat chipotle barbacoa in a slow cooker topped with lime wedges

❤️ Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • It only uses a few simple ingredients.
  • It’s a slow cooker recipe, so it’s incredibly easy to make.
  • It’s loaded with the bold flavors of Chipotle barbacoa.


chuck roast, seasonings, sliced onions, bay leaves, limes, garlic, Chipotles in adobo liquid, and beef broth on a white background

For a recipe so packed full of flavor, there are surprisingly few ingredients, and you’ll find them all at your local grocery store. Be sure to check the recipe card for the exact amounts.

  • Chuck roast
  • Small onion – sliced
  • Garlic cloves – minced
  • Beef broth
  • Lime juice
  • Ground oregano
  • Cumin
  • Garlic salt
  • Black pepper
  • Cloves
  • Chipotles in adobo liquid
  • Bay leaves

🔪 How to Make Slow Cooker Copycat Chipotle Barbacoa

This flavorful beef dish is so easy to make. The hardest part is waiting for the slow cooker to finish doing its thing!

raw chuck roast, sliced onions, seasonings, bay leaves

Step 1: Add the Ingredients

Add the chuck roast, onion slices, garlic, broth, and lime juice to the slow cooker in that order. Then, sprinkle the seasonings over it all. Finally, pour the chipotle adobo sauce over the roast and add the bay leaves.

copycat chipotle barbacoa in a slow cooker topped with lime wedges

Step 2: Cook

Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or on high for 4 to 6 hours until the meat is tender and falls apart. Remove the beef from the slow cooker and shred, then return it to the slow cooker to keep warm. Enjoy!


Do you want to change up this recipe and make it your own? Here are some ways that you can do that!

  • Spicy – Add the chipotle juice and some of the chipotle to taste to a blender and blend.
  • Sear – While not necessary, searing the beef before cooking adds a bit more depth of flavor.
  • Lime juice – If you don’t have fresh limes, you can use Real Lime juice from the bottle.

If you like a zingy beef roast like this one, then you’ll love our Mississippi pot roast recipe.

🥄 Equipment

  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Crock pot
  • Shredding claws or two forks
bowl of white rice topped with barbacoa and diced onions and diced tomatoes

🥫 Storage

Refrigerate this copycat Chipotle barbacoa for up to 3 days in an air-tight container. For longer storage, you can freeze it for up to 3 months in an air-tight, freezer-safe container.

💭 Tips

  • If you find there’s too much liquid at the end of cooking, simply pour some off before adding the beef back to the slow cooker.
  • Shred your beef while it’s as hot as possible. Hot meat shreds much more easily.
  • Use this beef for tacos, burritos, or even Tex-Mex casseroles.

⁉️ FAQ

Do you have questions about this recipe? Here are the answers to the most commonly asked questions.

What is barbacoa?

Barbacoa is a dish typically made with beef or lamb. The meat is seasoned and cooked for hours until it falls apart. Then, it’s shredded and used as a filling in a variety of dishes.

Why won’t my barbacoa shred?

If your barbacoa won’t shred, then it’s not done yet. The meat should be falling apart before you ever try to shred it.

How do you know when barbacoa is done?

It’s easy to tell when your barbacoa is done. Simply push a fork into and pull, if the meat easily pulls apart, it’s done and ready to be shredded.

What can I use barbacoa for?

Use it as a filling for tacos and burritos, add it to quesadillas, make Mexican shredded beef sandwiches and sliders, or even add it to casseroles. It’s delicious in almost any way!

🍽 More Recipes

Do you enjoy beef? Then try these delicious recipes:

📌 PIN IT!!

copycat chipotle barbacoa tacos on a metal baking tray with a lime half

🧾Recipe Card

Want to make this recipe? Print the recipe card below, or pin this recipe, so you can find it later.

copycat chipotle barbacoa tacos on a metal baking tray with a lime half

Slow Cooker Copycat Chipotle Barbacoa

This slow cooker copycat Chipotle barbacoa is loaded with tender beef, and bold, fragrant spices – just like the Chipotle barbacoa we love.
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Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 6 hours
Total Time: 6 hours 5 minutes
Servings: 6 Servings
Calories: 424kcal


  • slow cooker
  • meat claw or forks


  • 3-4 pound chuck roast
  • 1 small onion sliced
  • 5 garlic cloves minced
  • ½ cup beef broth
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • ½ tablespoon ground oregano
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoons garlic salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon cloves
  • Liquid from 7 ounce can of chipotles in adobo
  • 2 bay leaves


  • To your slow cooker add the chuck roast.
  • Add in the slices onions and garlic.
  • Add the beef broth and lime juice to the slow cooker.
  • Sprinkle over all the spices and seasonings.
  • Pour the chipotle adobo sauce over the roast.
  • Add the 2 bay leaves.
  • Cook on low 6-8 hours or high 4-6 hours until the meat is tender and falls apart.
  • Remove the beef from the slow cooker and shred.
  • Return the beef to the slow cooker.
  • Serve this beef on burrito bowls or in a burrito or tacos.


Any nutritional data I provide is an approximation and actual dietary information can vary based on ingredients and proportion sizes.


Serving: 1Serving | Calories: 424kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 44g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 13g | Trans Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 156mg | Sodium: 1036mg | Potassium: 818mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 43IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 57mg | Iron: 5mg

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