This Venezuelan Shredded Beef (carne mechada) is ready in no time using the Instant Pot pressure cooker. The perfect quick weeknight dinner idea!
This post contains affiliate links. I received a complimentary Instant Pot to facilitate my review. However, all opinions are 100% mine and were not influenced in any way.
Venezuelan Shredded Beef
This Venezuelan Shredded Beef AKA Carne Mechada is delicious, easy to make, and loved by all the family (including picky kids). It’s a dish I grew up eating and it holds a special place in my heart. If you’ve ever tried Cuban Ropa Vieja, then you’ll definitely love this one.
Making Venezuelan Shredded Beef usually takes a few hours, since you first have to cook the meat, shred and then make the sauce. Cooking the meat takes about 1-2 hours depending on the cut you choose. That’s why it’s impossible to cook this at the last minute. Until I discovered the magic wonders of pressure cooking.
Serve this Venezuelan Shredded Beef with white rice, black beans, and fried plantain slices. That’s what we call “Pabellon Criollo” a typical dish we used to eat every week. My personal preference is to eat the with just rice or inside an Arepa or empanada! Yum. The possibilities are endless.
Now, I am going to show you how to make this dish using this amazing appliance. The Instant Pot is my new favorite machine in the kitchen, it replaces my slow cooker, rice cooker, stove, yogurt maker, etc. I made this entire meal using ONE POT.
No need to cook the beef in a pot, then frying it in a skillet. With this method, you’ll wash fewer dishes, spend less time in the kitchen, and create a meal with intense flavor and texture.
With the Instant Pot, you won’t get the mushy and muddled flavors of the slow cooker. When I first heard of this appliance, I thought.. “well another thing that will occupy space in my kitchen and how many times am I going to use it?
Then my blogging buddies were raving about it, so I wrote to the company and they were happy to send me one so I can give my honest opinion about the product.
I can now sincerely say that I am a huge fan. The Instant Pot has been in my house for a week and I’ve made more meals that I can imagine.
It’s easy to use and easy to clean. I have now given away my crock pot and I can’t wait to share all my recipes with you. PS: It makes the most delicious cheesecakes ever!
So, put on your apron and let’s start cooking this Venezuelan Shredded Beef using the Instant Pot.
I first season my meat with salt, pepper, and minced garlic. I slice it in 3-4 pieces and add it inside the Instant Pot. I also added 4 cups of beef (or chicken) stock and chopped the onions. Then I close the lid and pressure cook it for 20 minutes.
After 20 minutes I let the pressure out and open the lid. The meat will be cooked, juicy and super tender.
I remove the liquid from the pot and save it to use for the sauce. I also remove the beef and shred it using 2 forks. The meat is so tender that it takes less than 3 minutes to shred it all.
Meanwhile, I press the saute button on the IP and add 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
Now I throw in my sliced tomatoes, onions, and peppers. And saute until softened.
When the veggies have softened, I add the shredded beef.
I everything together and add a 1 – 1 1/2 cups of the previously used stock, 2 teaspoons of Worcestershire sauce, 1 tablespoon of tomato paste, 1 teaspoon of cumin and 1/4 cup of ketchup. We mix and let it cook for 2-3 minutes.
THAT’S IT… see! so easy! Made in ONE POT. Now I can have my Venezuelan Shredded Beef every week without having it plan hours in advance.
So.. who’s bringing the arepas??
I hope you can try this delicious Venezuelan Shredded Beef at home. If you do, please upload a pic on Instagram and tag me @Livingsweetmoments or use the hashtag #LivingSweet. I promise to repost it.
- 2 Lbs Flank or Skirt Steak cut into 4 pieces
- 2 cloves Garlic minced
- 2 Onions one chopped 4 wedges and the other one sliced
- 1 Red Pepper sliced
- 3 Tomatoes sliced
- 4 cups Beef or chicken Stock
- 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1/4 cup ketchup
- Salt + Pepper to taste
- 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
Season beef with salt, pepper and minced garlic
Chop 1 onion in 4 big wedges
Place in the beef pressure cooker with the 4 wedges of onion and the stock
Pressure cook for 20 minutes
Release the pressure and open the lid
Remove the beef and SAVE 2 cups of stock in another container
With 2 forks, shred the beef. Beef should be tender enough to so easily. If not, cook for another 10 minutes
Press the saute button of the Instant pot. Add the olive oil
When the machine beeps, add the sliced onion, pepper and tomatoes. Cook until tender
Add the shredded beef back in the pot and mix
Pour in 1 1/2 cups of the saved stock, the Worcestershire sauce, tomato paste, ketchup and cumin. Mix
If sauce seems to dry, add a tad more of stock
Season with salt and pepper
Do you keep or discard the onion wedges? Sorry, but I am cooking-ignorant and need very specific directions. ?
I do DDJ. I use them to flavor the broth. Then I toss them!
This was terrific! I did need the extra 10 minutes to be able to pull the steak apart, but it was delicious. I strained and froze the remaining broth for future use.
Awesome Sidney! Thanks so much for your feedback. Glad you liked it!
Terrible! Worst recipe I have ever cooked on the Instant pot. A waste of ingredients.
What was wrong with the recipe James? Can you elaborate more?
I suspect it’s because the directions don’t say to remove all of the liquid when you’re saving 2 cups. I ended up accidentally boiling the veggies instead of sauteeing because my husband and I were cooking together and looking only at the step-by-step directions. The step-by-step directions do not tell you to discard the rest of the liquid, so we were confused . . . but it’s our first time using the Instant Pot and followed the directions exactly in case there was something we didn’t know. 2 onions, 1 bell pepper, and 3 tomatoes gone . . .
The meat is great and we’re just going to finish the recipe without the veggies, but it is a bit disappointing.
New recipe and new device . . . Directions need to be VERY exact.
OH Brittany, I am so sorry that happened to you. I can imagine how overwhelming using the IP for the first time can be that’s why I put the pictures with the steps. I recommend reading that completely before scrolling down to the recipe card.
If you see the pictures on the post there’s a text on the top the place where the meat is shredded it says “I remove the liquid from the pot and save it to use for the sauce. I also remove the beef and shred it using 2 forks. The meat is so tender that it takes less than 3 minutes to shred it all”
If you have any other questions please let me know.
Currently living in South America and discovered this dish at a few Restaurants, the owners Venezualan. After asking for the recipe and being told it’s a secret. I am now smiling with delight. I can only recommend this dish with two thumbs up. Delicious.
hahaha Jimmy! the secret is out 😉 Glad you liked the recipe.
I just made the recipe, very well explained and the taste is so different in the instapot, delicious and everything was ready in 30 minutes !! Thanks
you’re welcome Nieves! glad you liked it!
Eric Nadler says
Does anyone know a good way to preheat the Instant Pot? That added 30 minutes to my prep time that I wasn’t expecting. Maybe you throw the beef stock in ahead of time and preheat it before adding the beef?
Hi Eric! just add warmer water next time. It’ll take less for the iP to come to pressure
I haven’t made this yet but love carne mechada. Do you think I could use canned diced tomatoes in place of fresh? Also, do you discard the red peppers?
Yes! those would work just fine. I do not discard the red peppers.
Daniela Weisz says
If I’d like to cut the recipe in half should any of the times change?
Hi Daniela, no, unfortunately, time will be the same since the beef needs to tenderize in the pressure cooker
This looks amazing! Will try it tomorrow. If I’m doing 4lb of meat, can I just double all the ingredients? Also, should I cook it longer on the instapot
Yes, you can double the ingredients! And there’s no need to add more time on the instant pot – it will just take longer to come to pressure
Maria A Fugere says
Excellente! I’m from Venezuela and I was looking for a way to make authentic Venezuelan Carne Mechada on my Insta Pot., This is it.! My family LOVED IT! I did some minor add ons. I added 1 beef bulleon cube (un cubito) and 1 table spoon of white vinegar,. that was my mom’s secret with her Carne Mechada. Gracias! <3