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Our zesty, flavorful Mexican Shredded Beef is the delicious basis for so many different recipes! Cook up a batch tonight!
This Mexican Shredded Beef is an adapted version of the one that my husband Jack made many years ago, when he worked at the popular Edgewater Café, in Magnolia, Massachusetts. At the restaurant, they used large, commercial pressure cookers to cook the beef, but our version is cooked low-and-slow in the oven, making it a recipe that anyone can prepare at home.
I’ve got to say – the aromas that fill our house when this Mexican Shredded Beef is cooking in the oven are pretty amazing!
How do you make Mexican Shredded Beef?
First, place a layer of sliced onions and peppers in the bottom of a baking dish or Dutch oven – this serves as a bed for the beef as it cooks.
Then, a wet rub made with tomato paste, honey, spices, chili sauce and our popular Rocket Fuel (or your favorite hot sauce) is slathered over the beef before it is cooked.
Roast in the oven for about 3 to 3 ½ hours* and your Mexican Shredded Beef will be fork tender and ready to shred for sandwiches or other recipes!
What kind of beef should I use?
We have made this recipe a number of times over the years with different grades of chuck roast – ranging from a really nice Angus beef to a less expensive, lower grade of beef known as “select”.
*The cooking times varied greatly as a result. The select grade of beef, for example, took almost five hours to become fall-apart tender, while the Angus beef was tender in a little over two hours. Depending on your cut of beef, you’ll need to check to make sure your beef is tender. (It may even be easier to make this a day ahead of serving, or start it early in the day to make sure the meat is ready for your meal.)
What recipes can I make with this Mexican Shredded Beef?
Here are a few delicious options:
- Beef and Bean Enchiladas
- Beef Chimichangas
- Beef Tostadas
- And our newest recipe: Baked Shredded Beef Taquitos!
Can I make this in a Slow Cooker or Instant Pot?
Lots of readers have asked this question – and the answer is yes, although we do think the best caramelized flavor will come from roasting the beef in the oven as written in our recipe below.
Can I freeze the leftovers?
Yes – in fact, we often cook up a batch of this Mexican Shredded Beef, then freeze half for a recipe another day. Just seal the portions of beef in an air-tight bag to avoid freezer burn (a food saver bag sealing system like this works especially well.)
This Mexican Shredded Beef recipe originally appeared on A Family Feast in September 2013. We’ve updated the photos and post text.
You may enjoy these other Mexican dishes:
- Mexican Pulled Chicken
- Chile Colorado Burritos
- Slow Cooker Beef Barbacoa
- Pickled Taco Vegetables
1/2 large onion, peeled and cut into large slices
1/2 large red bell pepper, seeded and cut into large slices
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon agave nectar or honey
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon dried cumin
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 teaspoon Rocket Fuel, or your favorite hot sauce
1/2 teaspoon Sriracha chili sauce
2 1/2 pounds chuck roast
1 cup beef stock
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
- In a 9×13-inch glass baking dish or Dutch oven with cover, lay sliced onions and peppers on bottom.
- Mix tomato paste, agave or honey, all the dried spices, Rocket Fuel and the chili sauce. Smear all over the beef, then set beef over peppers and onions. Pour the beef stock around the sides of the beef.
- Cover with parchment paper and then foil, sealing tight. (Or place the cover on the Dutch oven.)
- Roast in oven for three hours or until fork tender. Check after three hours and cook for another 30 minutes if not falling apart tender. Depending on the size, grade, quality and cut of the chuck, this cooking time could be much longer, see notes. *
- With two forks, shred meat and mix with all liquid, cooked onions and cooked peppers.
- Use as a filling for a variety of Mexican or Southwestern-inspired dishes.
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* We have made this a few times with different grades of chuck from a really nice Angus beef to a really low grade of beef known as “select”. The cooking times varied greatly as a result. The low grade of beef for example took almost five hours to become fall apart tender, where the Angus was tender in a little over two hours. Depending on all of the variables, you need to keep checking and cooking until tender. It might be easiest to make this a day ahead, or start cooking early in the day to ensure that your beef is ready for your meal.