I picked up a chuck roast this week on sale. I put it in the shopping cart, tapped my finger on top of it and said to my husband, “I have a plan for that (dramatic pause), and it’s not pot roast.” He looked at me intrigued and smirked. As we made our way around the store, I picked up a few of my favorite ingredients for spicing up this Mexican style meal. The flavors of the braising sauce are smoky and rich and totally taco worthy. I’m so happy to be able to share this Mexican Shredded Beef with you today, it’s sure to please. This makes a good bit of meat so I always plan for leftovers. This time, I’m thinking Burrito Bowls. 😉
I started with spices similar to our competition chili (minus the cumin & chili powder) that has a similar rich and deeply, smoky flavor as the base. I was quite pleased with the results. The Chile in Adobo can be spicy if you use a lot so if you are not a spicy food lover, start with the basic amount used in the recipe, if you like yours good and hot, feel free to scale up. And up. And UP.
My only warning is that chile in Adobo has a tendency to not seem as hot while your cooking the sauce and can sneak up on you at the end after the flavors have had time to meld.
That being said, this Mexican Shredded Beef is just the thing to jazz up your weeknight tacos and the smoky, slightly spicy sauce is just amazing. I add corn starch to really thicken up the sauce and then I dunk the meat right back in, coating it with that delicious sauce in every nook and cranny. If you don’t like your tacos as saucy, you can shred the beef and they just add your sauce over the top or at the table.
While you could braise this on the stove, we’ve chosen the slow cooker today to get the job done without the fuss. I’m featuring this today in soft tacos but this Mexican Shredded Beef is also great in a burrito bowls with black beans and steamed rice. I top mine with pico de gallo, avocado or guacamole, a dab of sour cream, fresh cilantro, a squeeze of fresh lime and crumbled queso fresco. Queso fresco is a crumbling cheese like feta with a nice saltiness to it that goes great on tacos.
I am already looking forward to leftovers.
This Mexican Shredded Beef is:
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Mexican Shredded Beef
For the Beef
- 3lb chuck roast
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- salt and pepper
For the Sauce
- 2 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1 - 14oz can diced tomatoes
- 2 tbsp chili in Adobo, or more to increase spice/heat level
- 2 tbsp minced garlic
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 tbsp smoked paprika
- 1 tbsp dried Mexican oregano
- 1 tsp coriander powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 2 cups beef or chicken stock
To Thicken the Sauce
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 tbsp corn starch
- Pico de Gallo/Fresh Salsa
- Black beans
- Sour cream
- Queso Fresco
- fresh lime
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Generously season the beef with salt and pepper. Add it to the skillet and sear it so it is brown on all sides. Add it to the base of your crock-pot. If the meat is too big for the bottom of the crock, you may choose to cut it into 3-5 pieces before you sear it.
- Into the oil, add the garlic and onion and cook for 2 to 3 minutes until soft. Add that into the crock pot on top of the meat.
- Next, add the vinegar and tomatoes to deglaze the pan. Make sure to scrape the bottom of the pan to get all those flavor bits off the bottom and into the braising liquid. Then add the remaining spices and beef or chicken stock and stir well to combine. Pour this over the top of the beef inside the crock pot.
- Cover and cook on LOW for 6 hours or until the beef is tender enough to shred.
- Remove the beef and shred it with 2 forks. Place the meat onto a serving dish.
- Transfer the broth to a sauce pan (or your crock-pot insert the stovetop - if it's able) and bring to a boil.
- Mix the cornstarch and 1/4 cup of cold water stir until smooth. Pour into the sauce and whisk while boiling until the sauce is thickened. Adjust salt and pepper to taste.
- I toss the beef in the sauce to get it fully covered. You may like to serve the sauce on the side.
Recipe adapted from Tyler Florence