Monday, May 17, 2010

Britt's Crock Pot Barbacoa Chicken

Do you have to cook for a crowd? Does that crowd like chipotle?

Faced with the plan to cook for my chipotle-obsessed family and boyfriend, I thought I would try my hand at making some barbocoa beef. It was during the ingredient-acquiring stage of this meal that I realized how I could not afford to purchase the beef I so desired to cook. Seeing at boneless, skinless chicken breasts were on sale, I decided to be practical (versus broke) and make Barbocoa chicken.

The result? Pure deliciousness.

The ultimate result? A versatile recipe that can accomodate what happens to be cheaper: chicken breasts or 4 lbs chuck roast.

And the ultimate, final, most satisfying result? I fed my family and friends a healthful dish that they enjoyed.

I doubled this recipe to serve a party of 7. It was more than enough!

The Stuff:
  • blender or food processor
  • crock pot
The Edibles:
  • 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • 3 chipotle peppers, canned in sauce (you'l just need a small can for this, and I think I only added 4 peppers for a double recipe, but I'm weak when it comes to spicy things)
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 4 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoons dried Mexican oregano
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried ground clove
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 3/4 cup chicken broth
  • 3 bay leaves
The Making:
  1. Combine cider vinegar through clove in a blender or food processor and puree on high speed until smooth. This is your adobo sauce.
  2. Into your crockpot pour 1/3 of the adobo sauce, or enough to thinly cover the bottom of your cooker.  Add oil, broth, and bay leaves. Give it a stir. Lay chicken breasts flat on top of sauce. Pour remaining sauce over the chicken, flipping to make sure the pieces are completely covered. Cook on low for 6 - 7 hours.
  3. Remove the chicken from cooker and shred. Remove bay leaves. Place chicken back into adobo sauce-ful cooker and stir until fully covered. Serve in a burrito, on top of a salad, or smothering a bed of rice. Top with anything you like: fresh tomatoes, salsa, cheese, beans, sour cream, and/or guacamole. For salads, I recommend a dressing made by combining 1 to 2 tablespoons of ranch dressing with a couple spoonfuls of fresh salsa.


  1. This is a really awesome recipe. I've adapted it for using an oven. I cook frozen chicken on high at about 500 degrees for 30 minutes, then drop the temp down to 350 for another 30 minutes, and then things cook at a gentle 200 for 4-6 hours. I just put the chicken in an 8 by 8 glass dish and cover with aluminum foil. Works great and it's super delicious.

    1. Great to know! Thanks for sharing and enjoying!

  2. I have all the ingredients to make this but a little confused by the directions. Directions give steps up to the cloves, but doesn't give direction for the veg. oil, broth, & bay leaves. I am going to assume that they all go straight into the pot as well, & I don't need to sear the chicken. Can you assist with this? Thanks!

    1. I typically skip the bay leaf, since this recipe has tons of flavor anyway. I leave the clove out as well. I make up the marinade with everything up to the salt, put the chicken in a glass dish, cover with a little bit of broth, and pour the marinade on top. Cook at 350 for about 45 minutes, and then reduce to 200 for 4 hours or so. This is such an awesome recipe!

  3. Sorry about that... the oil, broth and bay leaves go right in the crock pot with a little stir. Be sure to remove the bay leaves before shredding. Enjoy!