Birria Tacos recipe

Birria Tacos is wonderful, cheesy, and juicy—truly a show-stopper. A birria de rez is first braised, followed by the preparation of a consomé and the cooking of tacos with Oaxacan (or mozzarella) cheese. There are directions for using an oven, an Instant Pot, and a slow cooker.

Birria Tacos

When I was browsing for small excursions to embark on during quarantine, I first came across these well-known Birria Tacos on Tiktok. What the heck is birria tacos, I wondered. I was certainly aware of what birria was.

So, I hastily googled “Birria tacos near me” after I spotted someone eating them from a taco truck on Tiktok, and fortunately, there were some hits! I got in my vehicle and drove to the valley. It was HEAVEN as I ate them with condensation streaming down my chin.

Birria Tacos Ingredients

Birria Tacos

Birria de rez:

  • 2 lbs. boneless chuck
  • 1 pound of short ribs or oxtail
  • 1 teaspoon unflavored oil (avocado or vegetable oil)

Birria Tacos Sauce:

Birria Tacos

  • 7 ancho peppers (ends trimmed and de-seeded)
  • seven guajillo peppers (ends trimmed and de-seeded)
  • 3 tree chile peppers (ends trimmed and de-seeded)
  • white onion, 1 (peeled and halved)
  • Garlic cloves, six (peeled)
  • Four roma tomatoes
  • Black peppercorns, 1 tablespoon
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano from Mexico
  • 1/4 cup cumin seeds
  • Coriander seeds, 1 teaspoon
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cloves, ground
  • 1/2 a cinnamon stick from Mexico (See note if not using Mexican cinnamon)
  • three bay leaves
  • a single teaspoon of apple cider vinegar
  • 3 cups of water or beef broth (divided)


  • 1/4 cup of cilantro, minced
  • 1/4 of an onion (minced)
  • lime juice from one
  • Halal salt
  • tacos made of corn
  • 3.0 ounces Mexico cheese (or mozzarella)


To sear the Birria Tacos Meat:

Birria Tacos

Birria Tacos

Birria Tacos

  1. After about 30 minutes at room temperature, generously sprinkle the meat with kosher salt on all sides. Add the neutral oil to a large Dutch oven or pot with an oven-safe lid over medium-high heat. Add the meat to the hot pan and sear it until browned on all sides. I enjoy performing a hard sear. You’ll need to do this in groups. Place in a bowl.

To make the sauce:

Birria Tacos

  1. Meanwhile, add the dried chiles, halved white onion, garlic, tomatoes, spices, and bay leaves to a medium-sized pot and cover with cold water until everything is covered. Place over medium intensity and stew tenderly for around 15 minutes. Blend everything, including the whole spices, after passing it through a strainer. This may need to be done in small batches if your blender is small.
  2. Blend for about 2 minutes, adding the apple cider vinegar and about 1 cup of beef broth or water. Adjust the salt to taste (I used kosher salt, about 1 tablespoon).
  3. Note: I used a powerful blender, and the sauce was silky smooth. If you have a poor blender, you might want to strain the sauce to get rid of any large pieces that the blender didn’t puree. Very flexible!

To braise the meat:

Birria Tacos

  1. To 300F, preheat the oven. Re-add the meat to the pot, then cover it with the sauce. Pour the remaining 2 cups of broth or water into the pot after swishing the blender to remove any sauce residue. Place in the preheated oven without delay after being immediately covered and brought to a moderate simmer over medium heat. Cook the beef until soft for around 3 hours.

To assemble the tacos:

  1. Combine the lime, salt, cilantro, and white onion in a bowl.
  2. Shred the meat with two forks after removing it from the sauce. Pour the broth into a bowl and add a handful of cilantro that has been diced.
  3. In a medium-sized skillet, add a nonstick coating. Add the tortilla to the skillet by dipping it in the fat-covered top of the broth. After about 30 seconds on one side, flip the pan over. Shred some of the cheese and some of the meat. Flip over and cook for about one minute until pan-fried on both sides. Place on a serving platter with the broth.


  • Meat cuts: You can substitute goat, lamb, or oxtail in place of short ribs.
  • To advance this: In fact, I think this is a great meal to make ahead of time. You can make the birria first, shred the meat and store the sauce in the refrigerator. On top, the fat will solidify. If you want, you can put that in the pan with the tortillas. Or, when you’re ready to serve, you can warm it up again.
  • Mexican oregano, dried chiles, and most of these ingredients can be found in a Latin supermarket.
  • When you have finished boiling all of the chiles, remove and discard the Mexican cinnamon if you are not using it. Mexican cinnamon is extremely brittle and blends easily. But if you’re coming from, say, Saigon or another place, it usually is very hard. I wouldn’t put that through your blender!
  • To Prepare in a Slow-Cooker: To prepare this dish in a slow cooker, combine the meat and sauce in a large pot. Add the stock and set it to high and allow it to braise for 6-7 hours.
  • Sear the meat in the Instant Pot to prepare it. Incorporate the broth and the sauce. Press the “Stew Meat” option, set the setting to “high pressure,” and close the seal. This ought to take about fifty minutes. Do a spontaneous release. And it ought to be flawless!