Instant Pot® Brisket Barbacoa with Poblano Peppers and Onions


Mexican-inspired barbacoa using beef brisket in the Instant Pot® is so tender and delicious. Use the meat for tacos or a burrito bowl and top with sautéed poblano pepper and onion along with your favorite toppings to complete the meal. This recipe is a great for make ahead/meal prep too. Serving options: corn tortillas, warmed; or your favorite Mexican rice, or cilantro-lime rice. Garnish with chopped cilantro, limes, salsa, sliced and diced avocado, and queso fresco.

Prep Time:
15 mins
Cook Time:
1 hrs 25 mins
Additional Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs
8 servings


  • 1 (3 pound) beef brisket, trimmed and cut in half

  • 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt

  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper

  • ½ medium red onion, quartered

  • 3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce

  • cup chopped fresh cilantro

  • ¼ cup orange juice

  • ¼ cup lime juice

  • 2 tablespoons adobo sauce from chipotle peppers

  • 8 cloves garlic

  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin

  • 2 teaspoons dried Mexican oregano

  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 3 tablespoons avocado oil, divided

  • 1 ¾ cups low-sodium beef broth, divided

  • 3 bay leaves

  • 2 large poblano peppers

  • 1 large white onion, thinly sliced


  1. Season both sides of the brisket with salt and pepper.

  2. Combine red onion, chipotle peppers, cilantro, orange juice, lime juice, adobo sauce, garlic, cumin, oregano, and cinnamon in a blender. Blend until chipotle sauce is smooth.

  3. Turn on a multi-functional pressure cooker (such as Instant Pot®) and select Saute function. When display shows Hot, add 2 tablespoons avocado oil. Using tongs, place a brisket half into the pot and sear, about 5 minutes per side. Transfer meat to a plate and set aside. Repeat with remaining brisket half.

  4. Add 1/4 cup beef broth to Instant Pot® and deglaze using a wooden spoon to scrape up any brown bits. Select Cancel to turn it off. Return brisket pieces to the pot. Pour chipotle sauce mixture over the brisket. Pour remaining beef broth on top and add bay leaves. Place lid on the Instant Pot® and set valve to Sealing. Select Meat/Stew setting on and set timer for 1 hour.

  5. Release pressure using the natural-release method according to manufacturer's instructions, 20 to 30 minutes. Unlock and remove the lid.

  6. Remove meat to a platter and shred the meat with 2 forks. Remove bay leaves from Instant Pot®. Remove 2 cups of liquid from the pot and set aside; discard remaining liquid. Add reserved liquid to the pot and return shredded meat. Leave on Warm setting until ready to serve.

  7. Meanwhile, heat remaining avocado oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add poblano peppers and white onion and saute until tender, 7 to 10 minutes. Serve meat with poblano peppers and onion on top.

Cook's Note:

If you like more heat, add more chipotle peppers and adobo sauce, one at a time, tasting as you blend the sauce mixture.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

187 Calories
9g Fat
9g Carbs
17g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 8
Calories 187
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 9g 12%
Saturated Fat 2g 11%
Cholesterol 34mg 11%
Sodium 1348mg 59%
Total Carbohydrate 9g 3%
Dietary Fiber 2g 6%
Total Sugars 3g
Protein 17g
Vitamin C 25mg 126%
Calcium 37mg 3%
Iron 3mg 17%
Potassium 468mg 10%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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