These birria tacos are EVERYTHING!! They start with two corn tortillas dipped in consomé, then stuffed with cheese, and fried (Quesadilla!!). Next comes succulent, flavorful beef topped with onions, cilantro, and fresh lime juice. Served with a side of consomé for dipping.
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Let me introduce you to the holy grail of tacos 🙌
I hope you caught my recipe for beef birria (Mexican stew), because it’s the BEST (in my opinion anyhow). In case you didn’t, let me begin by telling you a little bit about it.
Birria is a Mexican stew originating from the state of Jalisco. Traditionally it was made with goat, however, this recipe calls for beef as it is more accessible. Alternately it can be made with chicken, veal, lamb, or pork.
The incredible depth of flavor and richness of this dish is the result of the plethora of spices and aromatics that were originally incorporated in an attempt to mask the gaminess of the goat meat.
Since it is slow-cooked at a low temperature the beef is super tender and infused with flavor. The broth is hearty, uber flavorful, and contains just the right amount of fat. The flavors of this dish are so complex and enticing.
That all sounds absolutely wonderful, right???
Now let’s take that one step further. Imagine this…..
Two corn tortillas dipped in the rich and fatty birria broth (consomé), filled with cheese, and fried. You may be conjuring up images of quesadillas at this point; if you are you’re on the right track. Let’s keep going.
Imagine filling the quesadilla shell with the juicy beef pulled directly out of the birria consomé 🤤 and then topping it off with cilantro, diced onion, and a squeeze or two of fresh lime juice.
Sounds like heaven, right?!? And it is! BUT we’re not finished yet, so I hope your imaginative juices are still flowing.
Next we are going to take that mouthwateringly delicious taco and dip it in the consomé. *drip, drip, drip*
Ok, I’m done teasing you now. Go on and make them for yourself. Your mind is about to be blown!! For realz!!!!
Seriously, two out of my four kids said these babies are the BEST tacos they have ever had. And my two-year-old, who can’t really speak much yet, chowed his down in no time, so I’m pretty sure it’s safe to say he enjoyed them as well. Definitely warmed this mama’s heart 💗.
So what do you need to make these tacos? (+ substitutions)
- Beef chuck roast: You may also make this dish with chicken, veal, goat, lamb, or pork. Aside from beef, I have only tried pork thus far. If you opt to sub pork, I recommend a pork butt roast. The recipe calls for three pounds, however, it does not need to be exact. I’ve used the same ratio of ingredients for a 3 1/3 pound roast.
- Salt and pepper
- Chile de árbols and guajillo chile peppers: My local supermarket carries both varieties, but if yours does not they are also available at Mexican markets or online.
- White onion: For the birria and to top the tacos.
- Spices: Paprika, cumin, oregano, ground clove, bay leaves, and a cinnamon stick.
- Soft corn tortillas: White or yellow.
- Queso quesadilla cheese: Could sub for Monterey jack or really any other melty cheese.
- Non-stick cooking spray
- Lime wedges
- Optional toppings: Guacamole, salsa, sour cream, etc.
How do you make beef birria tacos w/ consomé? (+ tips)
Birria is actually very simple to make. It requires little prep, but does need to cook for a significant amount of time. However, since it’s kept at a simmer, it requires little monitoring.
The first step is to sprinkle the meat liberally with salt and pepper. Make sure you cover both sides, then rub it in and set it aside.
Next you will need to remove the stems and seeds from the chiles and place them in a pot along with the onion and garlic. Cover with water and bring to a boil. Continue boiling for 15 minutes.
Transfer one cup of the cooking liquid, the chiles, onion, and garlic to a blender. Add the paprika, cumin, oregano, ground clove, salt, and black pepper and pulse until smooth.
Transfer one cup of the cooking liquid, the chiles, onion, and garlic to a blender. Add the paprika, cumin, oregano, ground clove, salt, and black pepper. Pulse until smooth.
Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer, and cook for four to six hours. The longer the better as the meat will be much more tender and flavorful.
Remove the meat and shred it using to forks.
Then return it to the pot/dutch oven and simmer for an additional one to two hours.
Finally, to prepare the tacos, preheat a skillet to medium heat.
Dip a tortilla in the consomé (birria broth).
Shake off the excess liquid, transfer to a plate or cutting board, and sprinkle with cheese (approximately 1-2 tablespoons). Dip a second tortilla in consume, shake off excess liquid, and place atop the cheese.
Spray the skillet with non-stick cooking oil and fry the quesadilla for approximately 30 seconds or until slightly browned, then flip and fry an additional 30 seconds or until slightly browned and cheese is melted. Repeat with remaining tortillas/cheese.
Fill each quesadilla/taco shell with approximately 1/4 cup of the beef from the birria. It works really well to use tongs and is advised to shake off some of the excess liquid. Top the tacos with onion, cilantro, and your choice of toppings. Serve with lime wedges and a side of consomé for dipping.
How to store
Refrigerate beef birria in an airtight container or up to four days.
If you make this beef birria tacos w/ consomé I’d love your feedback. Please leave a comment and/or a rating below as I greatly value your opinion. Or snap a pic and tag me on Instragram @taoofspiceblog. Love, light and happy cooking ya’ll ♥
- 3 pound beef chuck roast (see notes)
- 2 teaspoons salt + more to taste
- 1 teaspoon Ground black pepper + more to taste
- 10 dried chile de árbol peppers, destemmed and deseeded (see notes)
- 6 dried guajillo chile peppers, destemmed and deseeded
- 6 cloves garlic, peeled
- 1 large white onion, quartered
- 2 tablespoons paprika
- 1 tablespoon cumin powder
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 1/2 tablespoon ground clove (see notes)
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 cinnamon stick
For the Tacos
- 48 corn tortillas, white or yellow
- 10 ounces Oaxaca cheese, queso quesadilla cheese or Monterey jack, shredded
- Non-stick cooking spray
- Chopped cilantro
- Diced white onion
- Lime wedges
- Liberally sprinkle beef chuck roast with salt and pepper, rub into roast, and set aside.
- Place the chile de árbols, guajillo chiles, garlic, and onions in a pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil and cook for 15 minutes.
- Remove from stove. Transfer one cup of the cooking liquid, the chiles, garlic, and onion to a blender. Add the paprika, cumin, oregano, clove, two teaspoons salt, and one teaspoon pepper. Pulse until smooth. *If you wish to remove any chunks from the sauce you can run it through a fine sieve.
- Cut the beef chuck roast into large pieces. Place in a dutch oven or stockpot, slow cooker, or Instant Pot. Add the sauce from step three and enough water to cover the beef by no more than one inch. Add the bay leaves and cinnamon stick.
- For stovetop: Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 4-6 hours; shred meat and return to stove to simmer for an additional 1-2 hours. For slow cooker: Cook on low heat for 8-10 hours or high for 5-6 hours; shred meat and return to pot. Go ahead and serve or allow to cook an additional 1-2 hours. For Instant Pot: Close the lid and pressure valve and pressure cook on high for 45 minutes. Allow pressure to release naturally, then do a quick release. Shred the meat and return to pot.
- Discard the bay leaves and cinnamon stick.
For the Tacos
- Heat a skillet to medium heat and spray with non-stick cooking spray.
- Lightly dip a tortilla in consomé (birria broth), shake off excess liquid, and place in the skillet. Sprinkle with cheese (approximately 1-2 tablespoons), then dip a second tortilla in consomé, shake off excess liquid, and place atop the cheese.
- Fry for approximately 30 seconds or until slightly browned, then flip and fry an additional 30 seconds or until slightly browned and cheese is melted. Repeat with remaining tortillas/cheese.
- Fill each shell with approximately 1/4 cup shredded beef and top with onion and cilantro. Serve with lime wedges and side of consomé for dipping.
Storage: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to four days or freeze for up to three months.
- You may sub the beef for chicken, veal, goat, lamb, or pork. I have personally only tried pork. If you opt to sub pork, I recommend a pork butt roast. Additionally, this recipe calls for three pounds of meat however, it does not need to be exact. I have used all the way up to a 3 1/3 pound roast.
- To cut some of the heat, I recommend either cutting down the chile de arbol or leaving them out completely and instead adding 2-3 extra guajilo chiles.
- For some people, the taste of clove can be overpowering. If you are not a big fan of clove, feel free to leave it out or add just a pinch.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 3 tacos
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 1058Total Fat: 51gSaturated Fat: 23gTrans Fat: 2gUnsaturated Fat: 24gCholesterol: 198mgSodium: 1233mgCarbohydrates: 88gFiber: 13gSugar: 9gProtein: 67g
The nutritional information provided is computer generated. It is only an estimate and intended for informational purposes only. Nutrition details may vary depending on various factors such as origin, freshness of ingredients, etc