This is an authentic Beef Birria recipe for the most delicious birria you will ever have! The meat is slow-cooked in a fragrant broth made with a variety of herbs and spices like chili peppers, oregano, and cumin, which infuse it with a rich and savory flavor.
Hey there, my friend! I’m excited to tell you all about birria, a mouth-watering Mexican dish that’s sure to delight your taste buds!
Birria tacos are a traditional Mexican dish that has gained immense popularity in the United States in recent years. In Mexico is popular for any occasion and even served on weddings, quinceañeras, baptisms and birthday parties. This flavorful and spicy dish is made with tender, slow-cooked meat that is then shredded and served with warm tortillas, fresh cilantro, onions, and a squeeze of lime.
Birria is a traditional Mexican dish originating from the state of Jalisco but very popular throughout Mexico. It’s traditionally made with tender and juicy goat meat, but depending on the region you can also find it made with beef or lamb. In Sonora we use beef so that’s what I’ll show you today.
The best part? This recipe makes a big pot and it’s perfect to make for a gathering or as a meal prep. Freeze the leftovers and you’ll have it ready for whenever you’re craving this authentic Mexican recipe.
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Don’t let this list of ingredients intimidate you! There are a lot of spices but these are all ingredients required for authentic birria. The blend and layers of flavors is what makes this recipe delicious!
- The meat: For this beef birria we’ll use a combination of boneless chuck roast and short ribs.
Ingredients for the birria adobo:
- The chiles: Guajillo chiles, Chile pasilla (aka ancho chiles) and chiles de arbol.
- To saute the veggies: a little olive oil or your prefered oil.
- The veggies: white or yellow onion, roma tomatoes and garlic cloves.
- Dried herbs: thyme, ground cumin, Mexican oregano, coriander seeds or leave, cloves, ground ginger, whole peppercorns, salt and a cinnamon stick.
- To cook the broth, apple cider vinegar and 3 bay leaves to cook the broth
What cut of meat is used for birria?
Traditionally it was made with lamb or goat, but today, places called birrierias serve all kinds of variations made with chicken, beef, or other meats. You can even make it vegan by using shredded jackfruit!
The best cut for birria is chuck roast with a little fat in it to give the consome some flavor. I also like to add beef short ribs with bones to give that flavor that cannot be missed from in birria. I highly suggest you add them as well.
Does birria taste gamey? You may get the gamey flavor if making with lamb or goat. Since we’re using beef for this recipe, it will not taste gamey at all!
How To Make Beef Birria
This is a visual overview of the steps to make this recipe. See the detailed list of ingredients & instructions in the recipe card below.
- Prep the meat: cut in large chunks and season with a little salt. Set aside
- In a large stock pot, set to boil 12 cups of water (3 liters). (This is where we’ll cook the meat).
Let’s make the adobo
- Remove the stems and seeds from the chiles. Rinse under water to remove any dust. In a small pot, add the guajillos, pasilla and chiles de árbol with enough water to cover them. Boil for 5 minutes. Turn off the heat and let them rest in the water to hydrate.
- In a medium pot, add 1 tablespoon oil and heat over medium-high heat. Add the onion and saute for 1 minute. Then add the tomato. Saute for a few minutes 3 until the tomato starts soften.
- Add the garlic and the spices. Mix to integrate all ingredients
- Cook on low heat for about 3 minutes. Keep stirring to make sure it doesn’t burn.
- To a blender, add the chiles (no water) and the cooked veggies with all of its juices. Puree in two batches to make sure it blends well.
- Pour all of the adobo in the boiling water and the meat. Add the vinegar and the bay leaves.
- Cook on medium heat for 2.5 to 3 hours or until is fork tender. (Note, when everything comes to a boil, taste for salt and add more if needed). Keep covered so the liquid does not evaporate.
- Once it’s cooked, shred the beef in a bowl with two forks, transfer the meat back to the pot.
Serve birria with warm tortillas, cilantro, hot salsa, lime juice. Serve as tacos or in a bowl as a stew.
This recipe is easily made in the slow cooker. Follow the same steps and cook on high for at least 5 hours or low for 8 hours.
The Birria Consome
Basically, the consome it’s the broth from the birria which turns out so flavorful, rich and comforting. The consome is perfect for just sipping on it or as a dipping sauce for tacos or quesadillas. Add a squeeze of lime or some chopped onions and cilantro on top for extra flavor.
How To Serve Birria
Birria is typically served as a stew with warm tortillas, fresh cilantro, and lime wedges on the side, so you can create your own delicious tacos or simply enjoy the stew on its own. However, there are a few different ways to serve birria, depending on your personal preferences and the occasion. Here are a few ideas:
- Birria Tacos: One of the most popular ways to serve birria is in a taco. You can use corn tortillas or flour tortillas, and top them with your favorite garnishes like cilantro, onion, and lime. I love to dip the taco in the broth before taking a bite, for an extra burst of flavor!
- Soup bowl: If you want to enjoy the rich, flavorful broth of the birria, you can serve it in a soup bowl. Add some shredded meat, diced onion, and a squeeze of lime, and you have a hearty, satisfying meal.
- Quesadilla: Another fun way to serve birria is to make a quesabirria. Use a melting Mexican cheese like Oaxaca or even mozzarella. Look out for a new post soon on this!
- Burrito: If you want to make a heartier meal, you can wrap up some birria and your favorite garnishes in a flour tortilla for a delicious burrito.
- Nachos: For a fun party appetizer, you can layer some tortilla chips with shredded birria, queso fresco, and your favorite toppings like guacamole, salsa, and sour cream.
No matter how you choose to serve it, birria is a delicious and satisfying meal that is sure to impress your guests and satisfy your taste buds!
Do you eat birria like soup?
Many people enjoy beef birria as a comforting and flavorful caldo, often garnished with fresh cilantro, diced onions, and a squeeze of lime juice. Oh and hot salsa or sauce…. that’s a must! It’s a great dish to warm you up on a cold day, and it’s often served with warm tortillas to sop up all the delicious broth.
There are a few garnishes that I think pair perfectly with this delicious Mexican stew. Here are my top picks:
- Chopped cilantro: This is a classic garnish for many Mexican dishes and it adds a fresh, bright flavor to the rich, savory birria.
- Diced onion: I love the texture and sweetness of diced onion on top of my birria. It adds a nice crunch and a bit of bite.
- Lime wedges: A squeeze of lime juice adds a tangy acidity that balances out the richness of the stew. It’s a must!
- Sliced radish: The crisp, peppery flavor of sliced radish is a great contrast to the tender, slow-cooked meat in the birria.
- Shredded cabbage: This crispy veggie adds a nice crunch.
Of course, you can always add or subtract garnishes to suit your own taste preferences. But these five are my personal favorites and I think they really take birria to the next level!
How to Store & Reheat
- Fridge: To store birria, you’ll want to let it cool down to room temperature first. Then transfer it to an airtight container and place it in the fridge.
- In micro: To reheat the beef stew, you can do it in the microwave or on the stove. If using the microwave, transfer the desired amount to a microwave-safe dish and cover it with a microwave-safe lid or plastic wrap. Heat it for a minute or two, stir it, then heat it for another minute or until it’s hot all the way through.
- Stove: If you prefer to reheat it on the stove, transfer the desired amount to a saucepan and heat it on medium-low, stirring occasionally until it’s heated through.
So, my friend, next time you’re looking for a new and exciting meal to try, give birria a go! Trust me, your taste buds will thank you!
More Mexican Recipes
I hope you like this recipe! Share it, or leave a rating and comment below. For questions that need an answer right away, please contact me and I’ll get back to you asap. Gracias!!!! xx, Ana
Authentic Beef Birria
- Large pot
- 5 ½ lbs boneless chuck roast
- 1 lb beef ribs
- 12 cups water
- 10 chiles guajillos
- 2 Chile pasilla
- 5 to 6 chiles de arbol For a more spicy sauce, do not remove the seeds
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large white or yellow onion peeled and quarter
- 8 roma tomatoes cut into quarters
- 9 garlic cloves peeled
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon Mexican oregano
- ½ teaspoon coriander seeds or dried
- ½ teaspoon cloves
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 ½ Tablespoon whole pepper corns
- 1 Tablespoon allspice
- 1 small cinnamon stick
- 1 to 2 Tablespoon kosher or sea salt to taste. If using table salt, start with half a teaspoon.
- 2 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 3 bay leaves
- Prep the meat: cut in large chunks and season with a little salt. Set aside.5 ½ lbs boneless chuck roast, 1 lb beef ribs
- In a large stock pot, set to boil 12 cups of water (3 liters). (This is where we'll cook the meat).12 cups water
Make the adobo
- Remove the stems and seeds from the chiles. Rinse under water to remove any dust. In a small pot, add the chiles and enough water to cover. Boil for 5 minutes. Turn off the heat and let them rest in the water to hydrate.10 chiles guajillos, 5 to 6 chiles de arbol, 2 Chile pasilla
- In a medium pot, add 1 tablespoon oil and heat over medium high heat. Add the onion and saute for 1 minute. Then add the tomato. Saute for a few minutes 3 until the tomato starts soften.1 Tablespoon olive oil, 1 large white or yellow onion, 8 roma tomatoes
- Add the garlic and the spices. Mix to integrate all ingredients. Cook on low heat for about 3 minutes. Keep stirring to make sure it doesn't burn.9 garlic cloves, ½ teaspoon dried thyme, ½ teaspoon ground cumin, ½ teaspoon Mexican oregano, ½ teaspoon coriander seeds or dried, ½ teaspoon cloves, ¼ teaspoon ground ginger, 1 ½ Tablespoon whole pepper corns, 1 Tablespoon allspice, 1 small cinnamon stick, 1 to 2 Tablespoon kosher or sea salt to taste. If using table salt, start with half a teaspoon.
- To a blender, add the chiles (no water) and the cooked veggies with all of its juices. Puree in two batches to make sure it blends well. See note #1.
- Add all of the adobo in the boiling water and the meat. Add the vinegar and bay leaves.2 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar, 3 bay leaves
- Cook on medium heat for 2.5 to 3 hours. (Note, when everything comes to a boil, taste for salt and add more if needed). Keep covered so the liquid does not evaporate.
- Once it's cooked, shred the beef in a bowl with two forks, transfer the meat back to the pot.
- Serve birria with warm tortillas, cilantro, hot salsa, lime juice. Serve as tacos or in a bowl as a stew.
Muy Delish Notes:
- I do not strain the chile sauce to keep all the delicious texture and color. Just make sure it’s pureed very well.
Add Your Own Private Notes
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The nutritional information and US conversions are calculated automatically. I cannot guarantee the accuracy of this data. If this is important to you, please verify with your favourite nutrition calculator and/or unit conversion tool.