Barbacoa Burrito Bowls

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Better than Chipotle for sure! These beef Barbacoa Burrito Bowls are easy to make, and pack in so much flavor you’re going to want to make them often. There’s lots of extra tips and recipes provided to make these dairy free and paleo as well if you’d like. We love making the different parts of this burrito bowl for meal prep. That way you have everything ready to go in the fridge, and can make burrito bowls all week long. Or you can serve this right away for family style dinner where everyone can ‘build their bowl’!

A straight down view of a small container of salsa near it. the burrito bowl on a metal tray with a

Tender juicy beef piled over my Cilantro Lime Rice with Fajita Veggies and all the toppings. Yes please, and can I have these every single week?! My beef Barbacoa is extra easy to make thanks to the Instant Pot, and all of the components to this bowl can be made ahead of time too.

In fact, I never make all the things you need for these burrito bowl at one time. It’s nice to make a large pot full of Barbacoa and then portion it out to freeze. That way you’re most of the way towards these burrito bowls. The tough cuts of meat take a bit cooking time, even in the Instant Pot. So having that already done is a huge bonus.

From there you can concentrate on making fresh Pico de Gallo and the Best Guacamole. Both of these are at their best made the day you’re going to eat them. And what would a burrito bowl be without extra guacamole anyways?! (Don’t tell, but sometimes when I’m in a hurry I just dice up an avocado for these bowls!)

A close side view of the burrito bowl on a metal tray with a blue and white striped linen behind it.

Let’s get started by talking about what makes up this Barbacoa Burrito Bowls!

  • Beef Barbacoa slightly tangy, super savory, and full of herby flavor, Beef Barbacoa will become a household favorite in no time! It’s also another great way to use up tough cuts of meat like chuck roast. By the time it’s done cooking in the Instant Pot, you just have tender shreds of beef. It’s similar in texture to a good pot roast, but with lots of Mexican flavor.
  • Cilantro Lime Rice is worth trying for sure if you’re used to plain rice in burrito bowls. The cilantro lime combo is so good, you’ll want to eat spoonfuls of rice all by itself.
  • Fajita Veggies are a simple combination of onion and peppers with just a touch of extra flavor added with oregano and cumin.
  • Black beans, cheese, sour cream – are all standard in a burrito bowl, but definitely optional. Pick and choose any or all toppings here, or leave them out and there’s still more than enough flavor to go around.
  • Pico de Gallo is fresh salsa traditional at different ‘build your bowl’ Mexican restaurants like Chipotle. You can also use my Easy Fire Roasted Blender Salsa in this recipe when tomatoes aren’t in season.
  • The Best Guacamole is an absolute must in a burrito bowl as I mentioned. And for us, extra guacamole is always a thing with Mexican inspired bowls. But you can also serve these bowls with sliced/diced avocado when you’re pressed for time.
  • Lettuce or greens – We like piling all the works on top of greens. Everything from crunchy romaine, to spring mix works here. The firmer the lettuce the more it will stand up to the heat. When we start getting local spring mix from Farmer’s Market, I pile it on top because it’s so delicate. You can also use either red or green leaf lettuce.

Now let’s make this recipe step by step!

The rice, beans, beef barbacoa, Pico de Gallo, fajita veggies, and guacamole in serving dishes on a wooden cutting board.

Step 1:

Start by making each of the recipes that make up this burrito bowl. I don’t always make everything listed. Instead you can pick and choose what you/your family would like and build a bowl from there.

Assembling the burrito bowl on a wooden cutting board with lettuce and rice being added to the bowl.

Step 2:

Next serve everything family style! We like to pile lettuce and rice into a bowl as pictured above.

A large black bowl filled with all the ingredients for the Barbacoa Burrito Bowl, (Cilantro Lime Rice, Barbacoa Beef, Fajita Veggies, Pico de Gallo, & Guacamole) on a metal tray.

Step 3:

Then add beef, fajita veggies, and as many toppings as we can fit on top.

Serve this Barbacoa Bowl with:

More Pico de Gallo or Blender Salsa and Guacamole along with extra grated cheese too if you’re using it.

Meal Prep & Storage Tips:

These recipes are great for make ahead for meal prep, except the guacamole which is always best fresh. We like to prep the different components on the weekend, and then just reheat to make bowls during the work week. These recipes that make up the burrito bowl keep well for 4-5 days in the fridge.

You’ll find that the rice will get hard and dry over a few days in the fridge, but it’s still delicious when reheated. What I like to do is heat the beef and rice together in a small skillet until warmed through. This allows the rice to soften and be a great texture again. You can also use a microwave to reheat as well.

Barbacoa Burrito Bowl on a metal tray with a blue and white linen behind it.

Make this bowl paleo with these recipes:

Also you can mix things up here by using my Mango Salsa or my Caramelized Pineapple Salsa. This gives you a wonderful sweet and savory combo that never gets old!

This burrito bowl ‘recipe’ is really just measurements or a ratio of ingredients to get you started. From there you can use any of these recipes to create as many variations as you’d like.

I really hope you enjoy this restaurant style Barbacoa Burrito Bowl! And if you do get a chance to make it, I hope you’ll leave me a comment/rating below. I always love hearing from you here! Also for lots more Mexican inspired recipes, head over to the recipe index.

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A large black bowl filled with all the ingredients for the Barbacoa Burrito Bowl, (Cilantro Lime Rice, Barbacoa Beef, Fajita Veggies, Pico de Gallo, & Guacamole) on a metal tray.

Barbacoa Burrito Bowls


  • Author: Kari
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Description

Better than Chipotle for sure! These beef Barbacoa Burrito Bowls are easy to make and pack in so much flavor you’re going to want to make them often. We love making the different parts of this burrito bowl for meal prep. That way you have everything ready to go in the fridge and can make burrito bowls all week long. Or you can serve them for family style dinner where everyone can ‘build their bowl’!


Ingredients

6 cups shredded romaine or green leaf lettuce

3 cups, or 1 recipe Cilantro Lime Rice

1/2 recipe Instant Pot Beef Barbacoa or 6 – 1/2 cup servings Mexican meat of your choice

1 1/2 cups Pico de Gallo, or salsa of your choice

1 recipe The Best  Guacamole, (or 2 avocados, sliced/diced)

4 cups Fajita Veggies, from 1 recipe, (2/3 cup per serving)

Toppings of your choice:

Black beans, corn, sour cream, grated cheese etc.


Instructions

Start by making each of the different recipes that make up this burrito bowl.

Serve everything separately family style so each person can choose how to build their bowl.

Or to assemble a burrito bowl, place the lettuce and Cilantro Lime Rice into a bowl.

Then top with the shredded Beef Barbacoa, Fajita Veggies, and your choice of black beans, corn, cheese, and sour cream.

Serve with Pico de Gallo and Best Guacamole.

Notes

For the Beef Barbacoa I always make a full recipe as it’s written and freeze the extra I don’t need in this burrito bowl recipe for an extra quick and easy meal the 2nd time around.

The prep time listed below is about how long it takes to assemble a few burrito bowls. It takes me about 1 hour to cook the individual recipes listed here. Both the beef and the rice are made in the Instant Pot. So if you have 1 Instant Pot make the beef ahead of time, or steam the rice on the stove top.

The nutritional facts were calculated without the toppings of choice.

  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Instant Pot
  • Cuisine: Mexican

Keywords: Barbacoa Bowl Chipotle, Chipotle Barbacoa Bowl Recipe, Barbacoa Recipe

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