This juicy and flavorful crockpot method makes having Birria tacos at home even easier! Cook the beef birria slow and low all day, then blend the cooking liquid into a rich and delicious consome! Fry up some Quesabirria tacos with shredded cheese, diced onion and fresh cilantro for the ultimate Taco Tuesday!JUMP TO RECIPE
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My Birria Taco Story
My first encounter with the internet-famous Birra tacos was on an impromptu weekend trip with friends to check out the Mi Pueblito Tacos truck in Philly. When I said yes to heading downtown for some tacos, I never expected to wait in line for OVER 2 HOURS. But there was hype behind these tacos, and I was committed (and hungry) so I stuck it out.
As I dove head first into my crispy, beefy Quesabirria tacos while hunched over a Toyota Camry on a random street corner, it was love at first bite.
Birria Tacos are a part of Mexican cuisine to 100% try and treasure. And while they are certainly a labor of love, they are worth the time and effort, or a 2+ hour line wait.
What is Birria, anyway?
Birria (aka birria de res) tacos are in a class of their own. Made with juicy slow braised beef or goat meat, Birria is a rich and meaty dish.
To make the tacos, tortillas are dipped into the sauce the Birria meat cooks in, then filled with tender meat, cilantro and diced onions. The dipped tacos are then fried until crisp.
Adding cheese makes it a Quesabirria, which is my favorite way to enjoy the tacos. Cheese is life.
If you don't know how to make Birria tacos yet, this recipe is super easy to follow, and low key, thanks to the crockpot and blender.
An easy and flavorful Birria Tacos recipe you can make in the slow cooker!
For my version of this classic dish, you'll sear off your seasoned beef, then let it cook low and slow in your Crock Pot. Once the beef is cooked, take it out and shred it, and take blend what's left in the Crock Pot (with the exception of a few tough items we will discard).
Slow Cooker Birria: Cast of Characters
- Boneless beef chuck roast. A tried and true cut, with great marbling, it's one of the perfect cuts of meat for slow cooking. If you prefer another cut of beef, short ribs are a great option as well.
- Avocado oil, or another neutral oil.
- Salt and pepper, always. I fresh coarse ground for this recipe.
- Dried guajillo chiles. These flavorful (but not particularly spicy) dried chilis can be found at most grocery stores! If you can't find them in your local grocery store, you can also purchase them on Amazon. If you want to amp up the flavor of the chilies, you can dry toast them in a hot skillet for a few minutes prior to adding to the crockpot. There is no need to soak the chili peppers, since they will soften in the pot.
- A can of chipotle chilis in adobo sauce. You won't need the whole can, so save what's left in your freezer for later! They will keep in a freezer safe container or bag for up to 3 months.
- A red onion, a bunch of fresh garlic cloves, and some fresh grated ginger.
- Beef stock or broth.
- Tomato paste. Same rule applied here for freezing as does for the chipotles!
- A can of fire roasted diced tomatoes.
- Organic apple cider vinegar. Organic is better tasting, and better for you. I store mine in the fridge.
- Dried spices: Cumin, Oregano (regular, or Mexican oregano), a Cinnamon stick, dried bay leaves, smoked paprika, and ground coriander.
- Corn tortillas, oaxaca cheese, fresh cilantro, and diced white onion, for the tacos.
- A bit of vegetable oil, to fry the tacos.
What goes into the Birria Tacos recipe?
The only real "Prep" prior to cooking the beef and sauce is searing the chuck roast. You'll season it well with coarse salt and fresh ground black pepper, and sear it on both sides until it's nice and crusty. This helps impart a depth of flavor to the consome (sauce).
After the meat is well browned, add it to the crockpot with the other ingredients, and cook the meat covered on low for 8 hours.
Making the Birria Consome
Once the meat is cooked and falling apart, remove it to a lipped baking sheet and shred it once its cool enough to handle.
Find and remove the cinnamon stick and bay leaves from the slow cooker. Transfer the remaining ingredients and liquid to a high powered blender, and blend until smooth. Alternatively, if you've got an immersion blender, you can blend the sauce right in the crockpot!
Once the sauce is well blender, add some ladle by ladle to the meat until it is well coated in sauce. Reserve some consome for making the tacos/dipping!
How to make Birria Tacos
To make the beef birria tacos, you'll first dip the tortillas into the consome. Add the a non-stick skillet or griddle over medium-high heat, and layer sauced beef birria, cilantro and diced onion on one side.
If doing a Quesabirria (birria queso tacos), add oaxaca cheese prior to the shredded meat. I also find that doubling up the tortillas helps with Quesabirria if using corn tortillas to make them more sturdy. Fry the tacos in a hot skillet until golden brown.
Serve hot with plenty of consome (dipping sauce) and limes.
What tortillas should I use for the beef birria?
You can use any tortillas you like for this Birria tacos recipe! I personally prefer white or yellow corn tortillas. The have more flavor, and also crisp up better than flour tortillas.
Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days, or freeze for up to 2 months. The leftovers from this recipe make for great Quesadillas and Empanadas!
Looking for more great Mexican-inspired dinner recipes?
Crock Pot Birria Tacos Recipe
- blender or immersion blender
- 2-3 lbs boneless chuck roast
- 1 tablespoon avocado oil or neutral oil , (plus more for taco frying)
- coarse ground salt and fresh ground pepper
- 4 dried Guajillo chiles
- 5-6 Chipotle chilis in adobo (from a can)
- 1 small red onion, thinly sliced
- 8 whole cloves garlic, smashed
- 32 oz beef stock
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 14.5 oz can Fire roasted diced tomatoes
- ¼ cup organic Apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 3 dry bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ tablespoon fresh grated ginger
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- corn or flour tortillas
- lime wedges
- fresh cilantro leaves
- diced white onion
- shredded Oaxacan cheese (or Italian cheese)
- Cooking the Beef/Consome: 1. Heat avocado oil in a cast iron skillet over high heat for 4-5 minutes. 2. Liberally salt and pepper beef, add to hot skillet, and sear on both sides, 5-6 minutes a side. 3. Add beef to crockpot with remaining ingredients, and stir. Cook on low heat, covered, for 8 hours. 4. After 8 hours, remove beef to a rimmed baking sheet, and shred with 2 forks. 5. Remove bay leaves and cinnamon stick from crock pot and discard. 6. Using a high powered blender or immersion blender, blend everything until a smooth sauce forms. 7. Transfer sauce back to crockpot to keep warm. 8. Add 1 ½ to 2 cups of sauce to shredded beef and toss to coat. Tacos: 1. Dip doubled up tortilla into consome, and lay flat in frying pan with a bit of avocado oil or neutral oil over medium heat. 2. To one half of the tortilla, add cheese, then meat, and top with diced onions and cilantro leaves. 3. Fry 2-3 minutes over medium heat, then flip other side to make a half moon. 4. Add a small ladle of consume to the top of the tortilla. 5. Flip over, and fry 2-3 minutes more. **If not using cheese, 1 tortilla is fine.
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