This is my take on the traditional Beef Birria Taco recipe. Just as flavorful and a whole lot easier and with very little carbs!
Birria is a Mexican food that was traditionally made with goat meat. The meat is cooked in a mix of spices and chiles for many hours until it becomes very savory. In this recipe, the taco shell is filled with the meat and then the tacos come with a small bowl of sauce on the side to dip them into.
NOTE - the chilies can be hard to find in some locations. I can't get them here in North Florida very easy. You can substitute canned chipotle pepper in adobe sauce if you can't find peppers.
What kind of meat should you use in Birria Tacos?
Traditionally it is made with goat, lamb, or beef. You can use more cost effective cuts like chuck roast, shanks, or short ribs. I like to use short ribs. They are cheap and you get good flavor out of them but use what you can find. Pretty much any cut of beef will work.
What peppers can I substitute for Birria tacos?
While birria tacos are traditionally made with dried guajillo peppers, you can substitute them for other types of peppers if you prefer. Some other popular options include ancho peppers, pasilla peppers, and chipotle peppers. Whatever type of pepper you use, make sure to soak it in water before using it so that it is nice and soft.
What kind of tortilla do you use for a Birria taco?
Ideally you want to use a corn tortilla. If you are low carb or on Keto you can use low carb tortillas. You can use the Mr. Tortilla 2 net carb tortillas or Mission Carb Balance tortillas. You want thicker ones, not the thin ones like the Ole Xtreme Wellness tortillas. They are thin and soft and will get mushy when you fry them. If you use those - skip the frying process.
Easy Instant Pot Beef Birria Tacos **Low Carb / Keto**
- Dutch Oven Use this
- Instant Pot or this
- Frying Pan
- 2 lbs beef short ribs cut up
- 3 cups Beef Stock
- 2 roma tomatoes or small can of tomato paste
- 3 tablespoon avacado or olive oil
- 2 large Dried Chile peppers Pasilla, Guajillo, Ancho Chile (substitute chipotle pepper in adobe sauce canned if you can't find peppers)
- 1 small white Onion
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 teaspoon Black Pepper
- 1 teaspoon Coriander
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 2 tablespoon Salt
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- ½ teaspoon thyme
- 1 teaspoon oregano - Mexican if you can find it
- ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 Cinnamon Sticks
- 4 Bay Leaves
- 6 Low Carb Small Taco size Tortillas - or corn tortillas if not low carb
- 1 cups Shredded Cheese
- 1 Bunch Cilantro
- Cut the short ribs apart. Coat with olive oil and salt and pepper.
- Heat your dutch oven to high - or set your Instant Pot to Saute.
- Add the short ribs and brown on each side for a few minutes. Remove and set aside.
- Remove the stems and seeds from the chilies and add them and the tomatoes to a pan. Add stock to cover. Bring to a boil and cook for 15 minutes. You can just leave the Instant Pot running on Saute to accomplish this.
- If you like a lot of heat, scoop the the chilies and tomatoes out of the stock and add them to a blender and pulse until smooth. If not, just remove the peppers. Adding them to the sauce adds quite a bit more heat.
- To the blender, add spices, apple cider vinegar, ½ onion, chipotle pepper, garlic, and 1 cup of the cooking liquid. Pulse again until smooth to make the sauce. Add more of the cooking liquid to thin if necessary.
- In an Instant pot saute the meat on both sides. Add the sauce on top and stir to coat. Then add the cinnamon and bay leaves. Cook for 4-8 hours until tender. Adding beef stock as needed. You want it thick but not too thick.
- Scoop out the meat and use forks or claws to shred the meat. Discard the bones. Add sauce to the meat just enough to coat. You don't want it soupy.
- Preheat a frying pan on high. Scoop out one cup of the sauce and put it in a dish big enough for the tortilla to lay flat.
- Dip the tortilla in the sauce and let it drip. Fry the tortilla in the pan on both sides until browned. After the flip, add the meat and the cheese. Fold over and remove when the cheese is melted. Top with fresh chopped cilantro.
- Serve with a small bowl of the leftover sauce for dipping!