slow cooker barbacoa

For years I have wondered how in the world to cook a London broil.  The cut seems to be a little too tough for grilling or broiling, and not quite right as a roast.  But I’ve recently found that slow cooking a London broil, then shredding it and combining with some sort of sauce makes a great sandwich filler!

*By the way, did you know that “London broil” actually refers to a meat dish rather than a cut of meat?  The cut that many American butchers label “London broil” is actually flank steak or top round.  Thanks Wikipedia for enlightening me!*

I decided to try using my last London broil purchase to make barbacoa, or Mexican barbecue.  (I really was just wanting Chipotle and this was the closest I could get! )

Slow Cooker Barbacoa (adapted from 3 different recipes I found online)

Combine in crockpot and add water almost to cover:

  • 2-3 pound London broil
  • 4 chopped garlic cloves
  • 3 T. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 2 Tablespoons whole black pepper

Cook on low for at least 6 hours.  Remove meat and broth from pot.  Shred meat and return to pot.



  • 1 small can tomato sauce
  • 3 T. chili powder
  • 1/4 c. green chile or salsa
  • 2 T. jalapeno juice

Add back enough broth to keep moist.

Cook one more hour on low.


Serve wrapped in tortillas with your choice of additional fillings.  We had slow cooker beans, salsa verde, cheese, and plain yogurt (in place of sour cream).  SO. GOOD.


This totally satisfied my Chipotle craving, and we had enough for two more meals.  An affordable cut of meat can go a long way when prepared like this!

Do you have any other ideas for how to cook a London broil? Please do share!


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10 Responses to slow cooker barbacoa

  1. Ruth says:

    Yea! I needed a jump-start to my slow cooked bbq rut. This looks fantastic. Wow–Eric’s okay with plain yogurt instead of sour cream, huh?

  2. Debbie says:

    Oh, wow, that sounds so good! I have been wondering what to cook in my new large-ish crockpot…may just have to hunt down some London broil. 🙂

  3. Kerry says:

    Oh that looks yummy! I’m going to have to try it.

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  5. Joy says:

    YUUUMMMM! Making this soon! I will use REAL sour cream and enjoy every bite 😉

    • Abby says:

      Ha, Joy, it doesn’t really matter to me…I don’t like sour cream OR plain yogurt. (That’s Eric’s burrito in the picture.) I know, I’m weird.

  6. Michele says:

    Great idea for London Broil. I’m putting mine in the crockpot right after I hit “send”. Thanks for a great recipe suggestion!

  7. Heather says:

    Thank you, thank you for a slow cooker beef recipe without “cream of something soup” or packaged dry ingredients! Sounds delicious and I can’t wait to make it!

  8. Karen says:

    Hello, I found this recipe on pinterest and have it in my crockpot right now. You may not get this in time for tonight but here goes…Is that 3 Tablespoons of chili powder? Also what is Jalapeno juice? Thank you so much – looking forward to it :).

    • Abby says:

      Hi Karen,
      Yes, 3 tablespoons! You might want to start with half that amount, and increase according to taste. I was referring to the liquid in jarred jalapeños, but I often use the liquid from whatever pickles or hot peppers I have on hand in the fridge. Hope you enjoy!

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