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What To Serve With Barbacoa Beef – 13 Tasty Side Dishes

If you’re wondering what to serve with your barbacoa beef, you’ve come to the right place.

In this article, I list 13 of the most popular side dishes for barbacoa beef.

In a rush? Here’s the short answer.

The best side dishes to serve with barbacoa beef are corn tortillas, cilantro lime rice, pickled red onions, and esquites. Pico de gallo, frijoles de olla, or dill pickle coleslaw are also great options. Give sheet pan nachos, yaki udon noodles, or huevos rancheros a try for more unique choices. 

Ready? Let’s jump right in.

Corn tortillas

Barbacoa beef is best served wrapped inside a warm corn tortilla with some sour cream and refried beans. 

You can easily buy corn tortillas at your nearest grocery store, but nothing beats the taste and softness of the homemade version. 

And they’re a breeze to make – you only need two ingredients!

Try your hand at making these with Inspired Taste’s recipe.

Cilantro lime rice

Looking for something easy but tasty?

Serve your barbacoa beef over a bed of cilantro lime rice.

The finely chopped cilantro and lime juice infuse the white rice with a zesty flavor that helps brighten your savory, slightly spicy beef. 

Give your white rice an instant upgrade with this cilantro lime rice.

Quick pickled red onions

Spruce up your barbacoa beef tacos by topping them with these pickled red onions. 

The vibrant onions bring a refreshing pop of color to your tacos.

And they have a sharp tang that will cut right through your rich beef.

Simply put your onion slices in your pickling mixture.

And 30 minutes later, you’ll have some pickled red onions ready to serve.


Love elotes, but want something less messy?

Try this corn dish, also known as Mexican street corn cups. 

It’s everything you love about elotes in a handy, convenient cup. 

Enjoy these esquites with a serving of barbacoa beef and your favorite dark beer.

Dill pickle coleslaw

This creamy coleslaw is a superb accompaniment to your barbacoa beef. 

It’s made with fresh, crisp vegetables that perfectly contrast your beef’s tender, melt-in-your-mouth texture. 

Plus, the sweet-tangy notes from the pickle goes well with the smoky flavors of your beef. 

This dill pickle coleslaw is best-enjoyed fridge-cold, so prepare it at least two hours before serving.

Sheet pan nachos

Hosting a game day party?

Satisfy your guests with these fun sheet pan nachos – but instead of using ground beef, swap it for your barbacoa beef. 

Be generous with the cheese, and the jalapenos if you like spice.

Get the recipe here.

Pineapple pico de gallo

Jazz up your barbacoa beef with a serving of this pineapple pico de gallo.

Adding pineapples to the usual mix of tomato and onion adds a sweet, fruity note to your side dish. 

But don’t worry – this sweetness is balanced out by the fresh lime juice.

Want a taste?

Evolving Table has a fantastic pineapple pico de gallo recipe.

Black bean taco salad

Not the biggest fan of salads? 

This might change your mind. 

After all, when your chopped lettuce is mixed with cheese, corn, black beans, and juicy tomatoes, how could you say no?

Take it up a notch and toss in a generous helping of your barbacoa beef – yum! 

Make taco Tuesdays healthier with this black bean taco salad.

Frijoles de la olla 

Also known as Mexican pinto beans, this dish is pure comfort in a bowl. 

And you won’t believe how easy this one-pot wonder is to make. 

The recipe calls for seven ingredients, with the ham bone being optional – I usually leave it out… especially when I’m planning to serve the beans with meat.

Try it out with A Spicy Perspective’s detailed recipe.

Baked potato

If you’ve got some leftover barbacoa beef – try it with baked potatoes for lunch.

A popular hack to get these spuds done in just 15 minutes is to zap them in the microwave.

But baking them in the oven will always be superior – it’ll give you soft, fluffy potatoes with deliciously crisp skin.

Top your baked potato with your barbacoa beef and sour cream for a satisfying meal.

Huevos rancheros 

Planning to have your leftover barbacoa beef for breakfast?

Stuff it inside huevos rancheros – a breakfast dish featuring salsa-covered sunny-side-up eggs over a tortilla.

It’s simple but has everything you need to start your day right. 

Want to make this? Check out Isabel Eats’ easy huevos rancheros recipe. 

Psst… it also includes a tasty spicy tomato jalapeno salsa.

Yaki udon noodles

Go on a fusion adventure and add an Asian touch to your barbacoa beef by serving up some yaki udon noodles.

The thick and chewy noodles are drenched in a sticky, umami-filled sauce.

And Jess’ recipe incorporates some crisp bok choy and some shitake mushrooms for their earthy flavor.

Top the noodle bowl with a spoonful of pulled beef for a really tasty dinner.

Mexican pasta salad

Craving some pasta to go with your barbacoa beef?

Give this Mexican pasta salad a try. 

It’s packed to the brim with cucumber, red peppers, avocados, cojita cheese, cilantro, and jalapenos. 

Then everything’s tied together with a creamy greek yogurt dressing.

But the best thing about this dish is how customizable it is. 

Carlsbad Cravings’ recipe details all the ways you can personalize your pasta salad.

The best side dishes to serve with barbacoa beef

  • Corn tortillas
  • Cilantro lime rice
  • Quick pickled red onions
  • Esquites
  • Dill pickle coleslaw
  • Sheet pan nachos
  • Pineapple pico de gallo
  • Black bean taco salad
  • Frijoles de la olla
  • Baked potato
  • Huevos rancheros
  • Yaki udon noodles
  • Mexican pasta salad

What To Serve With Barbacoa Beef

In this short recipe, I show you exactly what to serve with your barbacoa beef.
5 from 1 vote
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Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: barbacoa beef side dishes, what to serve with barbacoa beef
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 1 person
Calories: 160kcal


  • 1 portion barbacoa beef


  • Prepare your barbacoa beef according to your favorite recipe.
  • In the meantime, choose one of the following sides to serve alongside it.
  • Side dishes include: corn tortillas, cilantro lime rice, quick pickled red onions, esquites, dill pickle coleslaw, sheet pan nachos, pineapple pico de gallo, black bean taco salad, frijoles de la olla, baked potato, huevos rancheros, yaki udon noodles, and Mexican pasta salad.
  • Serve immediately and enjoy!


Serving: 100g | Calories: 160kcal

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