Instant Pot Barbacoa recipe

Tried a copycat chipotle barbacoa instant pot recipe but subbed diced chicken breast instead of beef and it turned out okay. A few notes of improvement:

Too spicy and acidic: possibly because there wasn’t enough fat content from the chicken breast substitution to balance out the acidity, but it was way too spicy and acidic. Would cut down on the apple cider vinegar and remove the chili powder all together. The chipotle peppers in adobo sauce is really spicy already.

Perhaps add some sweetness to balance out the acidity and spice as well? Did some test batches with honey or molasses to taste and the molasses tasted better. Other potential sweeteners: maple syrup or brown sugar.

The sauce after cooking was watery, I had to add a couple teaspoons of tapioca starch dissolved in cold water then added to the pot of sauce to thicken it up.

(Noob) Tip!! Do not add tapioca starch to the boiling sauce directly, it will turn into a glob and won’t dissolve into the sauce. Dissolve in cold water first, mix thoroughly, then add to pot.

  • 6 to 8 lbs chuck roast, boneless , trimmed of excess fat and cut into 2 inch cubes — used one gallon plastic bag of diced chicken breast instead
  • 1 tablespoon avocado or other high heat oil — did not sear the chicken so did not use oil. Dumped it straight into pot frozen.
  • 6 chipotles in adobo with sauce — there was a lot of peppers in the can so I used like 15 lol. Maybe too much?
  • 1 onion, peeled and roughly chopped — I used 2 small ones
  • 10 cloves garlic, peeled and roughly chopped — I used one large chunk of frozen garlic paste.
  • 1 cup beef broth — I used chicken broth with the fat collected from the surface.
  • 2/3 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup lime juice — I used the juice from about 10 key limes
  • 2 tablespoons cumin
  • 2 tablespoons dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 6 Tortillas — skipped
  • Shredded cheese, sour cream, salsa (optional toppings) — skipped…
  1. In ninja food processer, add adobo, onion, garlic, beef broth, vinegar, lime juice, cumin, oregano, chili powder, salt, and cloves.
  2. Blend until smooth. 
  3. INSTANT POT: In an instant pot, heat oil on high sauté and brown meat in small batches. — I skipped this step since I was adding frozen chicken
  4. When meat is browned, add sauce from blender. 
  5. Set valve to seal and cook on high pressure for 50 minutes. — since chicken normally cooks faster than beef, I did 40 minutes.
  6. Force release, shred, and add to burritos!
Idea for usage:

burrito bowls with rice, beans, and this (with toppings like green onion, cilantro, salsa, shredded cheese, sour cream?). Maybe fajita veggies so it’s not too devoid of vegetables. Or add veggies after thawing as veggies don’t freeze very well.

Recipe for stovetop beans (still working on ratio of ingredients for best results):
  1. Heat oil in sauce pan and sauté diced onions, minced garlic, jalapeños (optional), cumin, oregano (optional), smoked paprika (optional).
  2. Add drained canned beans. Add chicken broth to desired thickness.
  3. Finish with cilantro.
For next time:
  • Try a cut of beef. I feel like the chicken substitution was not the best decision?
  • Use less vinegar.

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