Birria Tacos


For the Stewed Meat

  • dried Guajillo chiles stemmed and deseeded
  • dried Ancho chiles stemmed and deseeded
  • 3 pounds chuck roast cut into 4 chunks
  • Kosher salt to taste
  • Ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil divided
  • 3 vine tomatoes quartered
  • 1 white onion quartered
  • 8 cloves garlic peeled and smashed
  • 4 cups low sodium beef broth
  • 1 ½ pounds bone-in short ribs
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • ½ cup orange juice
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar

For the Tacos

  • 15 corn tortillas
  • 2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1 cup chopped yellow onion
  • ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • Fresh limes wedges for serving

Recommended Equipment


For the Stewed Meat

  • Place the Guajillo and Ancho chiles in a bowl full of near-boiling water. Allow the peppers to soak for at least 30 minutes.

    6 dried Guajillo chiles,4 dried Ancho chiles

    chiles in water in a glass bowl.

  • While the peppers soak, season the chuck roast chunks with salt and pepper to taste.

    3 pounds chuck roast,Kosher salt,Ground black pepper

  • Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large Dutch oven set over medium-high heat. In 2 batches, sear the roast on all sides, using more oil as needed. Transfer the seared chuck roast to a plate and set aside.

    2 tablespoons vegetable oil

    braised meat in a blue and white dutch oven.

  • Add the remaining oil, tomatoes, onion, and garlic to the pot. Cook for 2-3 minutes.

    3 vine tomatoes,1 white onion,8 cloves garlic

    tomato, garlic, and onion in a blue and white dutch oven.

  • Pour in the beef broth to deglaze the pot.

    4 cups low sodium beef broth

  • Transfer the hydrated chiles from the bowl of water to the pot. Add the short ribs, spices, and cinnamon stick. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce the heat, and maintain a gentle simmer for 30 minutes.

    1 ½ pounds bone-in short ribs,1 tablespoon ground coriander,2 teaspoons ground cumin,2 teaspoons dried oregano,1 teaspoon chili powder,1 cinnamon stick

    short ribs added to birria in a blue and white dutch oven.

  • Remove the short ribs and add to the plate with the seared roast. Skim the top of the pot to remove any impurities from the bone cooking out. Remove the cinnamon stick and discard. Transfer about 1 ½ – 2 cups of the braising liquid to a bowl. Cover the bowl and refrigerate.

  • Use an immersion blender to blend the remaining pepper and tomato mixture until smooth.

  • Return the short ribs, seared beef, and any juices back to the Dutch oven. Add the orange juice, apple cider vinegar, salt, and pepper to taste. Bring to a simmer, cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook for at least 3-4 hours.

    ½ cup orange juice,¼ cup apple cider vinegar

    cooked birria taco meat in a blue and white dutch oven.

  • When the beef is cooked through, remove the short rib bones. Shred the meat with 2 forks.

    shredded birria taco meat in a blue and white dutch oven.

For the Tacos

  • Remove the reserved braising liquid from the refrigerator. Working 1 tortilla at a time, dip the tortilla in the reserved liquid. Place the tortilla on a large skillet set over medium heat.

    15 corn tortillas

  • Top half of the tortilla with 1-2 tablespoons of shredded cheese, 2-3 tablespoons of shredded beef, and a sprinkle of onion and cilantro. Fold the tortilla in half to close.

    2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese,1 cup chopped yellow onion,½ cup chopped fresh cilantro

    a flattened tortilla with birria taco meat and cheese on half of it.

  • Cook the tacos for 30-45 seconds on each side until crisp. Transfer to a serving platter and squeeze fresh lime juice over the top.

    Fresh limes wedges

  • Repeat with the remaining tortillas and serve with any remaining braising liquid on the side for dipping.




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