Slow Cooker Barbacoa with Jicama Tortillas

By: Cassy Joy
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This flavorful, healthy, easy slow cooker barbacoa wrapped up in a simple homemade paleo jicama tortilla is a meal I could eat over and over again! This sneak peek recipe from my ‘Fed & Fit‘ book is sure to be a hit in any home.

Slow Cooker Barbacoa with Jicama Tortillas

It's ‘Fed & Fit‘ book RELEASE WEEK!! I can hardly believe the time has come. Please know that every selfie of you with the book, comment, snap chat, email, and formal review you've left means the WORLD to me. Thank you!!

This book party is far from over and I want to celebrate release week by sharing a sneak peek from one of my MOST favorite recipes: this slow cooker barbacoa with jicama tortillas. Barbacoa is a prized protein in my family's history and was typically only enjoyed on Sundays. Though traditionally made from beef cheeks, my recipe calls for much more accessible cuts of meat – but with the use of the traditional spices and method. After a quick sear (to help maximize flavor) the slow cooker takes care of the rest of the work! You'll be left with tender, flavorful barbacoa ready for all kinds of fun kitchen creations.

Slow Cooker Barbacoa with Jicama Tortillas

How to enjoy barbacoa? You could use it (instead of the chicken) in my Chicken Taco Casserole, enjoy it with some scrambled eggs in the morning, use it to stuff a potato, add a scoop to a salad, or wrap it up in some of these wonderfully healthy jicama tortillas.

Don't be intimidated by the jicama tortillas! They're a breeze to whip up. All you need to do is create thin slices of jicama and then give them a quick steam. The steam helps to make the vegetable cells more malleable (i.e. flexible) so that they behave more like a true tortilla. I love these as tortillas because they add a bright, refreshing addition to the meal AND qualify as a vegetable side!

Slow Cooker Barbacoa with Jicama Tortillas

Remember that you can NOW grab a copy of my book at Barnes & Noble and on Amazon.


Slow Cooker Barbacoa with Jicama Tortillas

Slow Cooker Barbacoa with Jicama Tortillas
  • Author: Cassy
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 4 hours 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 4 hours 40 minutes
  • Yield: 6 to 8 servings


  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper (omit for AIP)
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin (omit for AIP)
  • 1 tablespoon chipotle chili powder (omit for AIP)
  • 1 tablespoon dried Mexican oregano leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 (3-pound) chuck roast, cut into 8 large chunks
  • 2 tablespoons salted butter (use EVOO for AIP)
  • 4 cloves garlic minced (omit for low-FODMAP)
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice (about 2 limes)
  • 1 lime, quartered, for garnish
  • Chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish

For the jicama tortillas:

  • 1 large jicama, peeled and sliced into thin discs (omit for low-FODMAP and GAPS)


  1. In a small bowl, mix together the salt, pepper, cumin, chipotle chili powder, oregano, and cloves. Dust the pieces of chuck roast with the spice mixture, making sure to coat all sides well.
  2. Melt the butter in a large frying pan or sauté pan over high heat. Once melted, add the beef in batches so that the pan isn’t overcrowded. Sear the beef for about 3 minutes per side, or until it develops a nice char. Transfer the cooked beef to a slow cooker and repeat with the remaining meat.
  3. Add the garlic and bay leaves to the cooked beef in the slow cooker. Pour in the vinegar and lime juice. Cover and cook for 4 hours on high, or until the beef falls apart when tested with a fork.
  4. Pull out and discard the bay leaves and then, working in the slow cooker, use two forks to shred the beef. Stir it in the juices.
  5. To make the jicama tortillas, either place the jicama discs in a steamer basket over boiling water for 3 minutes or place them in a microwave-safe bowl with 2 tablespoons water, cover, and microwave on high for 3 minutes. They’re finished when their texture goes from brittle to flexible. Let cool, then drain over paper towels. Serve the tortillas with the shredded beef, garnished with lime wedges and cilantro.


Instant Pot Version:

  1. Add 2 tbsps. oil to Instant Pot and press Sauce to heat.  Add seasoned pork and sear on all sides until light browned.
  2. Add garlic, bay leaves, vinegar, and lime juice and an additional 1/2 cup water, place the lid on the pot, cover, and make sure the valve is set to sealed. Press the “manual” button and set to cook for 90 minutes.
  3. After 90 minutes is up, let the pressure release naturally (about 20 minutes) and remove the lid from the pot.
  4. Once the barbacoa is done, follow the remaining instructions from Step 4 on.

Approximate Calories & Macro Breakdown (based on 1 of 8 servings)

Calories: 456; Protein: 40 g; Fat: 32 g; Carbohydrates: 9 g


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  1. Hi Cassy! I am wondering what you would recommend if using a Dutch oven to cook this in as far as oven temp and cook time? Thanks and can’t wait to try it!

    1. Cassy says:

      I recommend a temperature of 300 F for about 1 hour per pound of meat. I hope that helps!

  2. Elyse says:

    Hi! I want to try this in my instant pot! Any recommendations on the cooking time? And would I need extra fluid also? Thanks!

    1. Cassy says:

      You’d need to add 1 cup of water for the Instant Pot and press the “manual” button – high pressure for 75-90 minutes. Hope that helps!

  3. JAMIE ROBERTS says:

    I am curious if this would work with ground beef. I’m just trying to utilize what I have but want some tacos that are better than the average taco seasoning packet style. Was thinking of browning the meat and letting it simmer for a bit real low with all these spices. Think it would work?