Barbacoa Brisket Tacos

Enjoy this delicious Barbacoa Brisket Taco with habanero pickled red onions recipe from Chef Tim Hollingsworth.

Adobe Marinade: 

  • 1 white onion, cut into 1/8ths 
  • 2 Roma tomatoes, whole 
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil 
  • 10 garlic cloves 
  • 2 ounces Pasilla Ancho chile peppers 
  • 2 ounces Guajillo chile peppers 
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice 
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground clove 
  • 1 tablespoon Mexican oregano 
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar 
  • 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar 
  • 2 cups beef stock
Brisket Barbacoa: 

  • 3 pounds beef Brisket
  • 2 cups prepared adobo marinade
  • 2-3 bottles medium-bodied Lager beer
  • 3 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • 1/4 cilantro bunch, picked or chopped
  • 2 limes, cut into wedges
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Habanero Pickled Red Onions: 

  • 1 red onion, peeled and sliced thinly
  • 1-2 Habanero peppers (to heat preference) 
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 3 sprigs fresh oregano
  • 3 whole allspice berries
  • 3/4 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 3 limes, juiced

Adobo Marinade:

  1. In small non-stock pan, add onion, tomato, 1 tablespoon olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
  2. Broil on high for 15 minutes on middle shelf in oven. Add 10 cloves of garlic and broil for another 10 minutes until you get a little color development.
  3. Stem and de-seed Pasilla and Guajillo chiles and cut into 1-inch pieces.
  4. Toast peppers in a large nonstick pan, on stove top or in the oven, gently reducing the oil and aroma from peppers, frequently tossing. A little color development is ok.
  5. In a narrow pot, bring beef stock to a boil. Add peppers, bring back to a boil, then close the lid turn off heat and let it soak for 30 minutes.
  6. Add all ingredients to blender and blend on high.
Brisket Barbacoa: 

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F.
  2. Season Brisket with salt and pepper in a heavy bottom Dutch oven.
  3. Add oil and sear on medium-high heat for 3-5 minutes on each side. 
  4. Add 1 beer and the adobo marinade, whisk to incorporate.
  5. Add more beer as necessary to maintain moisture, allowing the brisket to steam.
  6. Cook in oven for approximately 5 hours, or until meat pulls apart and is fork tender.
  7. Rest for 30 minutes before serving.
  8. Serve with your choice of tortilla, add cilantro and pickled red onions (see below) on top with a squeeze of lime.

Habanero Pickled Red Onions: 

  1. Remove stem and seeds from Habanero and slice into thin rings.
  2. In a bowl, add onion and habanero with salt, oregano, allspice.
  3. Mix and let sit for one hour, stirring occasionally.
  4. Add vinegar, stir and let sit for 10 minutes.
  5. Add lime juice and let sit for 30 minutes.

Nutrition information per entire recipe: 462 Calories; 28.0 g Total Fat (8.9 g Saturated Fat; 0.3 g Trans Fat; 4.4 g Polyunsaturated Fat; 11 g Monounsaturated Fat); 102 mg Cholesterol; 376 mg Sodium; 13.2 g Total Carbohydrate; 2.1 g Dietary Fiber; 1.8 g Total Sugars; 0.6 g Added Sugars; 32 g Protein; 39.8 mg Calcium; 3.8 mg Iron; 491 mg Potassium; 0.3 mcg Vitamin D; 0.4 mg Riboflavin; 7.6 mg Niacin; 0.5 mg Vitamin B6; 2.7 mcg Vitamin B12; 268 mg Phosphorus; 6.7 mg Zinc; 26.4 mcg Selenium; 116 mg Choline.

chef's tip

Other cuts work great with this recipe like Chuck Roast or Beef Cheeks. This recipe also works great when made in a slow cooker for roughly 8 hours.