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Recipes|Featured Main

Barbacoa Lamb

Barbacoa Lamb

Difficulty Level: Intermediate
  • Prep Time:
    20 Minutes
  • Cook Time:
    PT2H50M
    2 Hr 30 Min
  • Yield:
    4-6 Servings
A traditional Mexican dish, the tender and flavorful shredded meat can be served in a variety of ways (see below). Instructions included for oven, slow cooker or Instant Pot®.
Ingredients
  • 6 lamb shanks or 2 1/2 pounds cubed lamb shoulder or leg
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 2 cups broth or water
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons ancho chile powder
  • 1 tablespoon guajillo chile powder or mild chile powder
  • 1 chipotle chile in adobo, chopped; or 1/2 teaspoon chipotle powder
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 ½ tablespoons dried Mexican oregano
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar, lime, lemon or orange juice
  • 1 cinnamon stick or 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 (12-oz.) bottle Mexican beer (or broth)
  • 6 lamb shanks or 2 1/2 pounds cubed lamb shoulder or leg
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 25.56g oil
  • 473.18ml broth or water
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 25.56g ancho chile powder
  • 12.78g guajillo chile powder or mild chile powder
  • 1 chipotle chile in adobo, chopped; or 1/2 teaspoon chipotle powder
  • 12.78g brown sugar
  • 19.17g dried Mexican oregano
  • 25.56g apple cider vinegar, lime, lemon or orange juice
  • 1 cinnamon stick or 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 (12-oz.) bottle Mexican beer (or broth)

A traditional Mexican dish, the tender and flavorful shredded meat can be served in a variety of ways (see below). Instructions included for oven, slow cooker or Instant Pot®.

Preparation
STEP 1

Preheat oven to 300°F, if using. Instructions below for cooking in an Instant Pot® or slow cooker.

STEP 2

Season lamb liberally with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pot or Dutch oven. Sear lamb in oil until well browned on all sides.

STEP 3

Pour broth or water into pot and stir to deglaze. Then add the garlic, ancho chile powder, guajillo or mild chile powder, chopped chipotle chile or powder, brown sugar, Mexican oregano, apple cider vinegar, cinnamon, bay leaves and beer.

STEP 4

Oven: Cover, place pot in oven and cook for 3 hours. When lamb is tender and falling off the bone, uncover and increase heat to 400°F. Cook 20 minutes more until juices reduce slightly and top of meat is browned.

Slow cooker: Transfer all to slow cooker, cover and cook on high 6-8 hours.

Instant Pot®: Transfer all to Instant Pot®, cook on high for 40 minutes. Allow 15 minutes natural release.

STEP 5

Remove meat from pot and shred onto a warm plate. Skim the fat from the juices in the pot and discard. Drizzle remaining juices over meat.

Options

Use it for tacos or tostadas (garnish with chopped white onion and fresh cilantro and salsa), burritos, enchiladas, soups or tamales.

Make this dish your own by adding seasonings such as cumin, coriander, cloves, other chile powders or whole chiles, chopped fresh or canned tomatoes, or even a splash of Mezcal instead of the beer.

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