Just 10 minutes and a pressure cooker is all you need to make this SERIOUSLY DELICIOUS Barbacoa Chicken! It’s the perfect meal for weekly meal prep and when you want a killer nacho topping!
So remember my sharing with you a few weeks ago my experience with the mother of all nachos I had at this one restaurant? They were this ridiculously massive piling of beef barbacoa nachos that we ate for 4 days that resulted in a slight obsession in my house. Yeah so I had to do it, I had to make barbacoa. But I couldn’t just stop at beef (don’t worry, that recipe will be coming up soon!). Oh no, I had to also go with chicken because um, chicken rocks and it’s super high in protein. Plus when you do weekly meal prep, chicken is almost always a must-have.
Now this recipe is crazy easy. I’d say the hardest part was lugging out my blender from the one cabinet and then putting it away. I’m not one that keeps ‘stuff’ on her counters. Even my stand mixer that I use almost every day I put away. Yeah, I know… “but if you use it every day, save the effort and leave it out.” I hear ya and I used to be like that but Mr. Fantabulous hates ‘clutter’ and likes clean lines. Honestly, once I saw how my kitchen looked with those clean lines I was sold.
So as you read above this dish takes 10 minutes in the pressure cooker once it comes up to pressure. If you wanted you could most definitely make this in the crockpot – go with about 4 hours on high but you’ll need more liquid for sure. And if you wanted to make this in the oven you can do so as well. I would go with 300F for maybe 4-5 hours (though check it after 3).
But for this girl, I’m all about the Pressure Cooker. My life is CRAY-CRAY busy right now with the huge project, this damn house, and life that I don’t have time to “cook” over the stove or oven. I mean I still cook every day but when you can make the same deliciousness in a bajillion percent less time, why wouldn’t you?
This recipe is a mixture of thighs and breasts. You can use all of one type if you want but normally when I make my pulled chicken I use both types of meats as I like the richness the dark meat brings plus dark meat has more iron in it, which is something I need in my life.
So dark meat is relatively ‘new’ in my house (maybe the past 2 years or so). I just never ate it and Mr. Fantabulous was so Mr. Fit that the man would never dare eat a meat so high in fat. But the one day I was at the butcher’s shop and they had some ridiculous price on boneless thighs. I just had to get them. I brought them home and made these amazing Pressure Cooker Honey BBQ Boneless thighs and OMG we both fell in love.
This recipe is one that as I was saying early definitely needs to become one of your go-to meals as it’s truly so versatile.
This is awesome on nachos, tacos, burritos, over quinoa, in a wrap, on a bun, on a spoon…
And.. OMG this, in a Barbacoa Bowl!
Once the chicken was done I lugged out my stand mixer as the chicken was super hot and I was tired. Okay fine, I was lazy and didn’t feel like hand/fork shredding chicken. Into the mixer went the chicken and a few spins with the paddle attachment and my chicken was shredded.
As you can see I left some larger sizes. I like meats like this where I can have chunks (which is odd as I have this aversion to chunks in foods – chunky tomato sauce, chunky onions… gag). But with this type of meat, I want to see it. And plus when you have the beef barbacoa, you get those charred ends. OMG people!
So when you make this, and you will tell me how you used the barbacoa. What type of creative recipes will you use this in?
10 Minute Pressure Cooker Chicken Barbacoa
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- 4lbs boneless/skinless chicken (mixture of breasts and thighs)
- 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
- 4 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
- 4 teaspoon cumin
- 2 teaspoon oregano
- 1/8 teaspoon cloves
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 tablespoon lime juice
- 2 chipotle peppers
- 1–2 teaspoon adobo sauce (more means it’s hotter)
- 2 teaspoon sugar
- 1 cup chicken stock (or water)
- 3 bay leaves
- 3–4 tablespoon chopped cilantro
- In a blender, combine the vinegar, tomato paste, garlic, cumin, oregano, cloves, pepper, salt, lime juice, chipotle peppers, adobo sauce, sugar and stock. Blend to combine.
- To at least a 6qrt pressure cooker, add the chicken, bay leaves and the liquid from the blender. Lock the lid, set the timer for 10 minutes on high. When the timer is done, do a quick release on the pressure.
- Remove the lid and shut off the pressure cooker. Using tongs, take out the chicken pieces placing them either into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or on a plate. If using the mixer, turn it on and mix just until the chicken is shredded (leave some chunks). If doing it by hand, use 2 forks and shred the chicken. Remember you want some bigger pieces.
- With the liquid still in the pressure cooker, remove the bay leaves (discarding them) and place the shredded chicken back into the liquid. Add in the cilantro, stir and let it rest in the liquid for 10 minutes.
- Using a slotted spoon, scoop out the chicken and serve or place in a lidded container.
- With regards for the liquid, you can discard or, after straining the fat out, freeze it for later uses. It’s great as a liquid for dirty rice, pasta dishes and quinoa.
– Barbacoa Bowls
– Pizza toppings
Keywords: instant pot chicken, cinco de mayo, barbacoa, meal prep, healthy eating, mexican cuisine
Recipe Reviews & Comments
Zack Bourandas says
Just finished taking my chicken out and the center of the breasts were raw…. Wasn’t a HUGE deal since you can still easily shred it and cook it over stove to even get it finished off with some nice golden pieces of the chicken, but I would highly suggest if you are just using chicken breasts and didn’t butterfly them to probably have the pressure cooker timer set just a couple minutes past 20. Otherwise smells just like the beef barbacoa i usually make.
Michele Webb says
This was ABSOLUTELY FANTASTIC!! OMG!! The smells!!! The taste!!! OMG it was so perfect!!! I made it exactly as written – but we had it on corn tortilla’s with homemade guacamole, lettuce and cheese! HUBBY SAID IT’S OK FOR ME TO MAKE IT AGAIN – ANYTIME!! And my dear son “You really out did yourself this time, Mom!”…Oh WOW!! Way to make momma tear up!! I of course said that it was your recipe – his response – “I don’t know what she is whispering about, she should yell this recipe real loud!” Thanks for another WINNER!!!