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This easy Instant Pot shredded beef barbacoa is perfect for shredded beef nachos and is a great quick dinner recipe! Grab a bag of chips and your favorite toppings for a fast family-friendly dinner.

instant pot barbacoa beef nachos
This instant pot shredded beef barbacoa is the perfect meat recipe that goes perfectly on top of nachos.
I love this beef in tacos, burritos, enchiladas or even on top of a taco salad. It’s full of delicious flavor and perfectly shreddable thanks to the Instant Pot.
The best thing is you can make a big batch and use it for multiple meals. It is also a great recipe to feed a crowd!
barbacoa beef feeds a crowd
This past weekend we celebrated my son’s birthday and I needed to serve a crowd. I had a full night of meetings and activities the day before and I knew I would need to make something that is quick and easy that didn’t take a lot of time to prep.
I utilized the Instant Pot, which is honestly one of my favorite kitchen tools these days and had dinner on the table for my family without the stress.
Originally I was going to put the meat in tacos but my pregnancy cravings kicked in and I really felt like nachos instead, so that is what we went with.

Can I Make This In The Crockpot:

If you don’t have an instant pot you can also use a crockpot, which works well too! Just sear your meat in a pan and then place in crockpot with ingredients for 8 hours on low.

Instant Pot Basics:

Many people are intimidated of the Instant Pot. Have no fear, I am going to share some basics with you. If you want to read everything you need to know about the Instant Pot check out this Instant Pot Basics Post.

  1. You always need to add some sort of liquid to the insert to avoid a burn notice.
  2. Make sure you move the valve to the sealing position if you are wanting to cook and then carefully move the valve to the venting position when you are ready to release pressure. Just keep in mind that steam will be coming out of the valve when releasing so be careful as it cal burn you.
  3. Refer to the Instant Pot Cheat sheet for cooking times.
  4. Utilize the saute button to sear meat before pressurized cooking or after to thicken sauces.

Barbacoa Beef Ingredients:

Here is everything you need to make barbacoa beef.
  • avocado oil
  • beef chuck roast
  • white onion
  • garlic
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • garlic salt
  • cumin
  • onion powder
  • chipotle in adobo
  • beef broth

How to serve Barbacoa beef:

I love to serve this on top of nachos as the recipe below states, but feel free to use it however you prefer.
You can serve this instant pot barbacoa beef in tacos, burritos, quesadillas, or on top of salad.
shreeded beef tacos with a plate of cilantro and onion and a plate of shredded beef

What kind of meat is barbacoa:

Traditional barbacoa in Mexico is made from the head of beef or goat meat. I use a meat that can be shredded while cooked and prefer a chuck roast. It is readily accessible and easy to find.

How to make Instant Pot Shredded Beef Barbacoa:

Beef nachos on a sheet pan
Yield: 6

Instant Pot Barbacoa Shredded Beef Nachos

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

These instant pot nachos are perfect for a quick family dinner!


  • 1 Tablespoon Avocado Oil
  • 2 Pounds Beef Chuck Roast
  • 1/2 Cup White Onion, Diced
  • 1 Tablespoon Garlic, Minced
  • 1 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 1/8 Teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 1 Teaspoon Garlic Salt
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Cumin
  • 1 Teaspoon Onion Powder
  • 1 Tablespoon Chipotle Chili in Adobo, Roughly Chopped
  • 1/2 Cup Beef Broth

For the Nachos:

  • 1 Bag Tortilla Chips
  • Cheddar Cheese, Shredded
  • Avocado, Diced
  • Pico De Gallo, Pre-Made
  • Hot Sauce (I like Cholula)
  • Green Onions, Sliced
  • Cotija Cheese, Crumbled


  1. Turn your Instant Pot on sauté mode. Season the chuck roast on both sides with salt and pepper. Sear the roast in the avocado oil in the Instant Pot until both sides are slightly browned.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients.
  3. Seal your Instant Pot lid, making sure your venting nozzle is turned to the seal position and cook on manual for 60 minutes.
  4. When meat is done, do the quick release method by (be careful of the steam, use a towel) manually turning your nozzle to the venting position.
  5. Shred the meat with two forks.
  6. Turn your oven on broil.
  7. Place tortilla chips on a lined baking sheet (spreading out evenly) and top with desired amount of cheese.
  8. Broil until cheese is melted (about 2 minutes).
  9. Top with shredded beef and your desired toppings.


*Cotija Cheese or Queso Fresca add an amazing flavor! Try it out and see if you like it!

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 744Total Fat: 46gSaturated Fat: 14gTrans Fat: 2gUnsaturated Fat: 27gCholesterol: 148mgSodium: 1207mgCarbohydrates: 38gFiber: 6gSugar: 4gProtein: 49g

Looking for more easy instant pot dinner recipes? A few of my favorites are Instant Pot Taco Pasta and Instant Pot Beef Stew in Puff Pastry Cups!

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