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Mexican Shredded Beef

Mexican Shredded Beef for Tacos is easy to make and full of meaty flavor! This Mexican Shredded Beef recipe uses chuck roast or brisket and cooked on the stovetop in a Dutch oven or a stockpot.

Low angle shot of two plates of soft corn tortilla tacos filled with Mexican shredded beef

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Use this shredded beef to make shredded beef tacos, enchiladas, burritos, quesadillas (or quesabirria tacos!), tortas, tostadas, Salpicon de Res, and other delicious recipes !

This Mexican Shredded Beef is one of my favorite Mexican recipes. You can use the meat in so many different ways. I love to make a big batch so that I can keep it in the refrigerator or freezer for quick meals on busy weeknights.

My favorite way to use this flavorful meat is in shredded beef tacos. Heat some corn tortillas, add meat and your favorite taco toppings like salsa, cilantro, and diced onion. If you like, add lettuce and guacamole, sliced avocado, sliced radishes, or pickled jalapeno peppers. That’s all you need for a quick, easy, satisfying meal.

Overhead shot of Mexican shredded beef between two forks

What cut of beef is best for Mexican Shredded Beef?

To make this dish, the beef braises or slow cooks, which means that you can use an inexpensive cut of meat. I like to use chuck roast or brisket. The end result is fork-tender meat that is infused with flavor.

Suadero is a special cut of beef that you’ll mostly find only from Mexican butchers. It is a thin cut that comes from the place between the shoulder and breast bone of a cow. It is light in color and has a smooth texture.

If you’ve ever seen Suadero Tacos listed on a Mexican restaurant menu, they are most likely using this special cut of meat. You can make this shredded beef recipe using suadero meat if you can find it.

overhead shot of ingredients needed to make Mexican shredded beef

What ingredients do you need to make Mexican Shredded Beef?

This Mexican shredded beef starts with a large cut of beef like chuck roast or brisket (or suadero). It slow cooks, so you don’t need a more expensive, tender meat like flank steak or skirt steak. And there are only a handful of other ingredients.

  • Beef chuck, brisket, or suadero
  • Vegetable oil (or you can use rendered beef fat or lard)
  • Salt
  • Dried oregano
  • Lime

How do you make Mexican Shredded Beef for tacos?

  1. Rub oil all over the meat and place the meat and the remaining oil in a Dutch oven or stockpot. Add the salt, oregano, and the juice of the lime. Finally, add the water, cover the pot, and set over medium-high heat. Once the water comes to a boil, reduce the heat to low and cook for about 2 hours, until the meat is tender and easily shreds with a fork.
  2. Remove the meat from the pot and let stand for about 10 minutes before shredding it.
  3. Serve warm wrapped in corn tortillas for tacos.

Tips for Success

  • You can add additional seasonings if you like. Optional seasonings include chili powder, cayenne pepper, bay leaves, ground cumin, and paprika. Any of this will give the meat even more Mexican flavor.
  • Substitute 1 cup orange juice for one of the cups of water in the cooking liquid for even more flavor.
  • Refrigerate the shredded beef for up to 4 days in an airtight container. Or you can keep it in the freezer for up to 3 months and always have shredded beef available for future use.

What do you serve it with?

This Mexican shredded beef can be served in many different ways.

You can use your Mexican shredded beef as filling tacos, enchiladas, burritos, and tortas. Or use it as a topping for nachos or tostadas. Or toss it in a salad like Salpicon de Res!

To make Mexican Shredded Beef Tacos or Suadero Tacos, heat corn tortillas on a griddle or over an open flame. Fill each tortilla with some of the Mexican shredded beef.

Top your tacos with sliced radishes, shredded lettuce, fresh cilantro, salsa, pico de Gallo, sour cream, guacamole or sliced avocados, pickled jalapeno peppers, pickled onions, or any of your favorite toppings for tacos.

Make Mexican shredded beef nachos by layering tortilla chips, refried beans, salsa verde or salsa roja, pico de Gallo, shredded cheese, shredded meat, and pickled jalapenos or chopped green chiles. Bake it to heat it through and melt the cheese.

To make shredded beef enchiladas, roll corn tortillas around the flavorful beef and arrange them in a baking dish. Pour my Easy Enchilada Sauce (or store-bought enchilada sauce) over the top. Sprinkle on a layer of shredded cheese and bake until the whole thing heats through and the cheese melts.

Use this Mexican beef as a burrito filling or a torta filling, in burrito bowls, as a tostada or taco salad topping, or serve it on its own with cilantro rice and refried beans or Mexican black beans.

overhead shot of two tacos filled with Mexican shredded beef

More great Mexican recipes you’ll love

Yield: Serves 6 to 8

Mexican Shredded Beef

overhead shot of 3 Mexican shredded beef tacos

Mexican Shredded Beef for Tacos is easy to make and full of meaty flavor! This Mexican Shredded Beef recipe uses chuck roast or brisket and it can be made on the stovetop in a Dutch oven or in an Instant Pot. Use it to make shredded beef tacos, enchiladas, burritos, quesadillas (or quesabirria tacos!), tortas, tostadas, Salpicon de Res, and other delicious recipes !

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 5 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds beef chuck roast, brisket, or suadero (see note)
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil (or use rendered beef fat or lard)
  • 1 onion, cut into quarters
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 2 cups water

Instructions

  1. Rub the meat oil all over with the oil and season it on both sides with salt and pepper. Place the meat in a Dutch oven or stockpot and add the remaining oil, oregano, lime juice, and water.
  2. Cover the pot and set it over medium-high heat. Once the water comes to a boil, reduce the heat to low and cook for about 2 hours, until the meat is tender and easily shreds with a fork. If necessary, add more water to the pot to keep it from running dry.
  3. Remove the meat from the pot and let stand for about 10 minutes before shredding it.
  4. Serve warm.

Notes

Suadero is a special cut of beef that you’ll mostly find only from Mexican butchers. It is a thin cut that comes from the place between the shoulder and breast bone of a cow. It is light in color and has a smooth texture.



 



Nutrition Information

Yield

8

Serving Size

1

Amount Per Serving Calories 351Total Fat 24gSaturated Fat 8gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 14gCholesterol 105mgSodium 409mgCarbohydrates 2gFiber 0gSugar 1gProtein 31g

Nutrient values are estimates only. Variations may occur due to product availability and manner of food preparation. Nutrition may vary based on methods of preparation, origin, freshness of ingredients, and other factors.

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By on October 1st, 2021

About Robin Donovan


Hi, I’m Robin! I am a full-time food blogger, recipe developer, and cookbook author. I spend my days cooking, writing about, and photographing food.

I’m the author of more than 40 cookbooks, including Ramen for Beginners, 5 Ingredient Cooking for Two, Sushi at Home, The Baking Cookbook for Teens, and the bestselling Campfire Cuisine.

My food writing has also been featured in major print and online pubications including Cooking Light, Fitness, San Jose Mercury News, San Francisco Chronicle, and other popular publications.

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