Taco time! These tacos are seriously awesome and unexpected so grab your Instant Pot and let’s make some lamb tacos!!
For the BBQ Lamb Taco Meat:
1 lb lamb shoulder (bone in)
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1/4 onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, crushed
1 small green pepper, chopped
2 tbsp pimento peppers, chopped
1/2 cup sugar free bbq sauce
1 cup chicken stock
1 tbsp. butter
Taco Ingredient Suggestions:
Avocado or Guacamole
Hot sauce or salsa
Kale or Iceberg lettuce, chopped
First, pat dry the lamb with paper towels. This will help with the searing process. Season the lamb with the salt, pepper and paprika. I love lamb but I know not everyone is a fan so you can follow this recipe using beef short ribs or pork butt or even chicken. So don’t worry if lamb isn’t your thing.
I’m using my Instant Pot because I don’t have the whole day to braise meat but you can also make this in a slow cooker. Just use a heavy bottom pan or cast iron skillet to sear the meat and cook the veggies and throw it all into a slow cooker for 8 hours. It will be divine.
Set your instant pot to the highest Sauté setting. Add the oil. Place lamb into pot and sear for 3 minutes until golden brown. Flip and repeat. Remove the lamb from the pot.
Add butter to pot and onions and green peppers. I am using a white onion and a cubanelle pepper. I like the spiciness of this pepper but if you want a milder taste, use a regular bell pepper. Allow the veggies to soften for a few minutes, stirring often.
Add the pimento peppers and garlic. Squeeze the lime juice on the veggies and throw in the squeezed limes. Sauté for three more minutes, scraping the carmelized brown bits from the bottom of the pan with a flat wooden spatula. The acidity from the lime juice will help with this process. Then add the chicken stock and stir together, making sure you have gotten all that amazing stuff off the bottom of the pan. You could also use beef stock or even veggie stock. Whatever you have in your pantry.
Replace the lamb back into the pan along with any resting juices. Top with half of the sugar free bbq sauce. I like to use G Hughes Hickory BBQ sauce. It has only 2g carbs in 2 tbsp. and zero sugar which is fantastic since most bbq sauces have tons of carbs and sugar. And really, if you want to cut way down on your carbs, skip this step. I just like the added flavor and smokiness. Turn off the sauté function. Place the Instant Pot lid and secure. Make sure the vent is set to closed. Set the pressure cooker to 45 minutes.
Allow the pressure cooker to naturally release the pressure for at least 15 mintues. You can then carefully move the vent to quick release until all the pressure is gone. Remove the lid, again carefully. Can you see all that yumminess that has happened?
If you are making this in a slow cooker, after the 8 hours is complete, carefully remove the lid.
Using a slotted spoon, take out the lamb or whatever meat you are using. Now, this meat will be super, super tender by now. That is why we are using a slotted spoon because if you try to do this with tongs, the meat will fall apart. Shred the meat with two forks. This took almost no effort because it was so tender, I could have done this with a spoon!
Place the lamb back into the Instant Pot and set to highest sauté setting. Oh boy, we are almost done! Add in the remaining BBQ sauce and stir well. There should still be quite a bit of liquid left over from the cooking process and we want to reduce this way down. Cook for about 5-10 minutes until most of the liquid has been absorbed, stirring often. Do not walk away during this process because you don’t want all of the liquid to evaporate and burn your beautiful braised meat. This should make enough for about 6 tacos.
Turn off the heat. Your taco meat is done!
If you used a slow cooker, put the shredded meat and contents of the slow cooker into a pan and sauté over medium heat until the liquid is mostly absorbed.
Now you can serve it up as you like. I love using raw cabbage for taco shells. They hold everything really well and have a crunch to them that is very satisfying if you miss hard taco shells. My tacos are also layered with chopped kale, a few chopped heirloom cherry tomatoes, radishes, white and yellow cheddar cheese, sliced avocado and a squeeze of lime juice. For some added kick, top with hot sauce.
You go and and enjoy those tacos immediately!