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My Birria Tacos recipe will blow your mind with flavor. The birria stew is deeply flavorful, while the quesatacos are crisp, cheesy, and totally mouthwatering. Sweet, mildly spicy, and filled with fall-apart tender chuck roast and Mexican cheese, you will savor every bite and want to share them with everyone!
Whether you call them birria tacos, quesabirria tacos, or quesatacos, this recipe is amazing. One bite into the crispy shell dipped in delicious beef birria sauce, and you will be completely hooked on these tacos.
It all begins with my homemade birria. Beef consomme is one of my favorite dishes to make, and I promise, it's easier to make than it might seem. Even if you've never made a dish like this before, I promise you will be able to make the most amazing birria on the first try following this recipe!
"Just made this tonight for my family and everyone loved it!! My first time making birria, might i add . Amazing recipe!"@lookatmarie
Birria Recipe Ingredients
- boneless chuck roast cut into large chunks
- olive oil
- guajillo chiles
- ancho chiles
- tomatoes quartered
- onion halved
- cinnamon stick up to 2-inch
- bay leaf
- dried oregano
- cumin seeds
- dried thyme
- black peppercorns
- beef broth
- Birria meat: I use chuck roast, but you can also use beef shank, short ribs, or sirloin roast.
- Dried guajillo chiles: Dried Mexican peppers offer mild heat and a fruity, smoky, sweet flavor. You can generally find these peppers in the international aisle of your local grocery store, near Mexican foods. New Mexico, Pasilla, and California peppers can be used instead if necessary.
- Dried ancho chiles: Ancho chiles are dried poblano peppers. They have a smoky, fruity flavor and offer a mild spice level. You can find them in the same place as the dried guajillo chiles.
I was craving a good Birria Taco and glad I found this! Absolutely delicious.Krystal on Pinterest
Birria Tacos Ingredients
- corn tortillas
- diced onion
- chopped cilantro
- Mexican melting cheese such as oaxaca
- lime cut into wedges
Mexican melting cheese: Look for Oaxaca cheese to use in your quesabirria tacos. If you can't find oaxaca, try mozzarella or Monterey Jack.
The best part about using corn tortillas for quesatacos is that they are gluten-free!
The trick to making these incredible birria tacos is dipping your tortillas in the consome fat, then frying them in a pan! Crisp fried taco shells are a life-changer.
I tried it! It came out perfect and delicious. So easy and fun to make!!Danelle on Pinterest
How to Make Birria
- Place a large pot or dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add olive oil. When hot, season beef with salt and pepper and add to pot. Sear on all sides. Add half of the onion to the pot and cook for two minutes more. Remove the dutch oven from heat and set aside while you make the sauce.
- Remove the stems and seeds from the dried chile peppers.
- In a medium pot, add the chiles, tomatoes, half onion, garlic cloves, cinnamon stick, and bay leaf. Pour in enough water to cover all ingredients. Place on stove over medium-high heat and bring to boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to low and simmer uncovered for 10 minutes.
- Add remaining seasonings to the saucepot: dried oregano, cumin seeds, dried thyme, and salt and peppercorns. Give it a stir and simmer for 10 minutes more. Remove from heat and allow to cool for a couple of minutes.
- Strain the contents of the saucepot into a large wire-mesh strainer over a large bowl. Remove the bay leaf and cinnamon stick and discard. Place the remaining solids into a blender.
- Add the broth from the sauce into the blender, plus the beef broth. Whirl until well blended. Taste and add more salt if needed and blend just until mixed in.
- Place the pot with the beef and onion back on the stove at medium heat. Pour the contents of the blender over the beef. If the sauce is not enough liquid to cover the beef, pour in enough beef broth to cover. Bring to a simmer, then cover and lower the heat. Simmer until meat is tender and shreds easily about 2½ to 3 hours.
Was so good! Boyfriend did a happy dance lolBriana on Pinterest
How to Make Birria Tacos
- Turn off the heat, remove the beef from the sauce, and shred.
- Heat a large skillet or griddle over medium heat. Using tongs, dip a tortilla into the top of the stew (where the fat floats), then place it in the hot skillet. Top with some shredded beef, cheese, and cilantro.
- Fold tortilla over and fry for about one minute on each side, until crispy. Remove taco to plate or baking sheet and keep warm. Repeat the above steps with the remaining tortillas.
- Serve warm with a small bowl of the birria stew for dipping. This is key! Serve with lime wedges and sliced jalapenos if desired. Top tacos with diced onion, more cilantro, and more cheese if desired.
If you have yet to try these famous tacos, you've probably heard about them or seen them on a menu. They're all the rage right now on social media and are popping up in food trucks and restaurants everywhere. Quesabirria tacos are especially popular in North America, and if you've ever had them, you know why. You'll never want tacos any other way!
These were so delicious! So good that I am now growing the peppers so I have them on hand. Seriously worth the effort.Kimberly on Pinterest
Tacos de Birria Tips
- You can also make these with chicken. Chicken Birria Tacos are equally just as amazing. Also, you are definitely going to love my beef empanadas!
- For more heat, try adding dried chiles de árbol. These hot peppers add a sharp flavor to the stew that's just perfect for matching the earthy flavors of the rest of the dish.
- Use your largest pot to make this dish.
- Prep all your ingredients, like the peppers and stew base, ahead of time the day before you make the dish to make it even easier to get started.
- Use a nice melting cheese for quesabirria tacos.
- Fry the tacos in the leftover grease that rises to the top of the stew for the most amazing flavor.
What are Birria Tacos?
Birria is an amazingly sweet, spicy, and savory Mexican stew. It is simmered to tender, fall-apart juicy beef, that melts in your mouth.
This saucy goodness is then stuffed into a tortilla and then dipped into the stew and pan-fried until crispy. This results in the most amazing taco you will ever taste!
Birria Tacos Recipes FAQs
It is a popular Mexican recipe from the state of Jalisco, originally made with lamb meat. Beef birria recipes, or birria de res, are common now - I use chuck roast in my Mexican stew.
Birria tacos are made of delicious Mexican Stew and Mexican cheese such as oaxaca. The secret to what makes birria tacos so incredible is dipping the tortillas in the fat from the stew to fry them in a pan. You then dip the tacos in the birria consome.
The traditional Mexican stew used goat meat. But these tacos have evolved over the years and now it is common to also use beef. I use chuck roast to make my birria stew, then remove it from the stew to shred and use in tacos. You can use any kind of stew meat you prefer, but I like chuck roast for its affordability and how easy it is to shred with a fork.
Mexican cheese, like oaxaca, works best. You can also use another melty cheese like Monterey Jack or Mozzarella.
How Many Birria Tacos Per Person
If you're allowing your guests to fill their own tacos, account for 2 tacos per person - people tend to over-fill their own tacos!
|Number of Guests||Amount of Birria Consomme to Make||Amount of Tacos|
|4-8||Prepare 50% more (2.5 to 3 lbs. roast)||8-16|
|8-12||Double the recipe (4 to 4.5 lbs. roast)||16-24|
|12-15||Prepare 150% more (4.5 to 5 lbs. roast)||24-30|
|15-20||Triple the recipe (6 to 6.5 lbs. roast)||30-40|
Tip: Use the slide bar next to the recipe yield in the recipe card to automatically calculate how much of each ingredient you will need.
Best Tacos Recipes
Make more of my favorite Mexican Beef Recipes!
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Birria Tacos Recipe
- Blender or food processor
- Kitchen scissors
- Medium pot
- 2 to 2 ½ pounds boneless chuck roast cut into large chunks
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 dried guajillo chiles
- 2 dried ancho chiles
- 2 roma tomatoes quartered
- 1 medium onion halved
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 ½ inch cinnamon stick up to 2-inch
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds or ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon salt plus more to taste
- ½ teaspoon black peppercorns
- 1 to 2 cups beef broth
- 12-15 corn tortillas
- 1 cup diced onion
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- ½ cup Mexican melting cheese such as oaxaca
- 1 lime cut into wedges
See our Beef Temperature Chart for helpful tips on cooking any cut of beef!
- Place a large pot or dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add olive oil. When hot, season beef with salt and pepper and add to pot. Sear on all sides. Add half of the onion to the pot and cook two minutes more. Remove dutch oven from heat and set aside while you make the sauce.2 to 2 ½ pounds boneless chuck roast, 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon black peppercorns, 1 medium onion
- Remove the stems and seeds from the dried chile peppers.3 dried guajillo chiles, 2 dried ancho chiles
- In a medium pot, add the chiles, tomatoes, half onion, garlic cloves, cinnamon stick, and bay leaf. Pour in enough water to cover all ingredients, about 4 to 5 cups. Place on stove over medium-high heat and bring to boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to low and simmer uncovered for 10 minutes.3 dried guajillo chiles, 2 dried ancho chiles, 2 roma tomatoes, 1 medium onion, 1 ½ inch cinnamon stick, 1 bay leaf, 3 cloves garlic
- Add remaining seasonings to the sauce pot: dried oregano, cumin seeds, dried thyme, and salt and peppercorns. Give it a stir and simmer for 10 minutes more. Remove from heat and allow to cool for a couple minutes.1 teaspoon dried oregano, ½ teaspoon cumin seeds, 1 teaspoon dried thyme, ½ teaspoon black peppercorns, 1 teaspoon salt
- Strain the contents of the sauce pot into a large wire-mesh strainer over a large bowl. Remove the bay leaf and cinnamon stick and discard. Place remaining solids into a blender.
- Add 2 cups of the broth from the sauce into the blender, plus 1 cup of beef broth. Whirl until well blended. Taste and add more salt if needed and blend just until mixed in.
- Place the pot with the beef and onion back on the stove at medium heat. Pour the contents of the blender over the beef. If the sauce is not enough liquid to cover the beef, pour in enough beef broth to cover. Bring to a simmer, then cover and lower heat. Simmer until meat is tender and shreds easily, about 2½ to 3 hours.1 to 2 cups beef broth
Making the tacos
- Turn off heat, remove beef from the sauce, and shred.
- Heat a large skillet or griddle over medium heat. Using tongs, dip a tortilla into the top of the stew (where the fat floats), then place in the hot skillet. Top with some shredded beef, cheese, and cilantro.12-15 corn tortillas
- Fold tortilla over and fry for about one minute on each side, until crispy. Remove taco to plate or baking sheet and keep warm. Repeat above steps with remaining tortillas.
- Serve warm with a small bowl of the birria stew for dipping. Serve with lime wedges and sliced jalapenos if desired. Top tacos with diced onion, more cilantro and more cheese if desired.1 cup diced onion, ¼ cup chopped cilantro, ½ cup Mexican melting cheese, 1 lime
Amanda Anderson says
This was SO GOOD. I'm going to make it again soon, I need to add more dried chiles de árbol to make it more spicy!! 🥵
Em Beitel says
Amanda, we're so glad you enjoyed it! Adding more chile peppers sounds incredible. We do love the spice!
Can you make this in a crockpot?
Em Beitel says
Hi Gloriann! If you make this in the crockpot, I recommend cooking on low for 8 to 10 hours. Thank you for your question!
Love this recipe! Added chile de Arbol for heat. Making a bigger batch next time!
Em Beitel says
Thanks so much, Kathy! We're so glad you enjoyed it!
Bill Harod says
They were delicious! I'm a big onion fan, so I doubled the amount; the consomme came out thicker and slightly chunky (small fine bits, but nonetheless, not a thin consomme texture). So I added beef broth and strain it through a fine sieve, kept the flavor, lost the chunks and it turned out beautiful.
Em Beitel says
Thank you for sharing, Bill! We're so glad you enjoyed it! Your adjustments sound delicious.
I’ve been obsessed with these tacos lately so when I found a recipe, I was so excited! And Omg I’m in love with these! Made them for dinner last night and I cried happy tears cause they were so good! Made elotes as my side dish and oooh best thing ever! Definitely going to have these on the dinner table more often, thank you for your recipe!
Em Beitel says
That is so awesome, Aja! We're so glad you enjoyed them - thank you for sharing!
Jana R says
I've made these twice in two weeks! they are amazing and my husband has requested them once a week now. Thank you for this awesome recipe.
Em Beitel says
Thank you so much, Jana! We are so glad you and your husband both enjoyed them!
Excellent recipe! My family loves it. Second time making this, but I doubled it to freeze for another meal. It’s a saver!
Making it for a second time and doubling, so good! My blender is a little on the fritz but hopeful that my immersion blender will suffice. I’m sure I won’t get a response before I’m done, but anyone else try doing the sauce with an immersion blender.
Em Beitel says
Hi Emily! I've never tried making the sauce with an immersion blender myself, but am positive it will work just fine. I hope you enjoy it!
For the most part went great and are delicious. Only question is advice for keeping the tortillas from sticking to pan. I had to break out a nonstick which I don’t like using if at all avoidable.
Em Beitel says
Hi Pat! Hmm, if you're seeing an issue with the tortillas sticking to the pan even after dipping them in the fat from the stew, I'd maybe add some of the fat from the stew to the skillet first to grease it, then dip and fry as normal.
I made these, they turned out great. Here are my comments…
- I seared the meat in a cast iron and then put it in a slow cooker for 8 hours. I made the sauce as directed and added it to the slow cooker for that time.
- I had to kind of destroy my dried chilis to get most of the seeds out, but that’s okay. They don’t need to be whole.
- You will have some leftover broth that you’ll toss after step 6, you won’t blend all of it into your sauce (unless I misunderstood the directions).
- I used a tortilla warmer to heat up the tortillas before dipping them in the sauce, otherwise they broke.
Em Beitel says
These are awesome notes, Meredith. Thanks so much for trying the recipe, and we're glad you enjoyed it!
Mike Y says
Just made these, tasted great. Will add some extra spice next time but made these as instructed as my wife is not a spicy food fan. Two complaints. The photo caption notes a full onion (Step 3), so I scrambled to add another 1/2 although instructions didn't state such. Not a biggie, but dislike inconsistencies. Second, Corn tortillas were a disaster (fell apart becoming something closer to a stir fry than a taco). I switched to flour which held together better, but they never got crisp as I expected. Next time (yes there will be!) I'll add a little oil to the fry pan to help crisp up the finished tacos (looks like this was a problem for you as in the video it appears you have added a second tortilla, I'm guessing to keep them together.
Em Beitel says
Hi Mike! We're so glad you enjoyed it! The ingredients automatically populate under each step to make it easier to track which you're using - but this does mean it will show 1 whole onion instead of just a half, since you need a whole one for the full recipe (which is why the step itself says half, but that section does not). As for the corn tortillas, they surely can be finicky... but I'm happy to hear there will be a next time and that you enjoyed it! Take care!
Jana R says
I love this recipe! I literally make these about once a week. My husband has said it's better than a few restaurants he's been too. So just wanted to thank you for this recipe.
Em Beitel says
Thank you so much, Jana! We're so glad you and your husband enjoyed it! That is awesome!