Steam-Baked Birria Tacos

October 19, 2021
These birria tacos are made with short ribs cooked until fall-off-the-bone tender in a chile- and spice-filled sauce. The steam in the Anova Precision Oven helps to cook the ribs perfectly. After the ribs are cooked, the meat is shredded to make cheesy fried tacos.
Prep Time
Cook Time
Steam-Baked Birria Tacos
4.2 (5)
dried guajillo chiles
dried cascabel chiles
white onions, chopped, divided, plus more for garnish
22 cloves
garlic, peeled, divided
3 oz
chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
bay leaves, divided
3 Tbsp
white distilled vinegar
1 Tbsp
kosher salt, divided, plus more to taste
2 tsp
ground ginger
2 tsp
dried Mexican oregano
2 tsp
ground cumin
2 tsp
ground cinnamon
1 tsp
freshly ground black pepper
½ tsp
ground cloves
4 lb
English-cut bone-in short ribs
1 stick
Corn tortillas
Vegetable oil, for frying
Shredded Oaxaca or low-moisture mozzarella cheese
Chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish (optional)
Lime wedges, for garnish (optional)

1. Preheat the Oven

Sous Vide Mode: Off
Steam: 50%
Temp: 300°F
Heat: Rear

2. Prepare the Chiles

Cut off the stems and shake the seeds out of the guajillo and cascabel chiles. Transfer to a pot of hot water and let soak until softened, about 20 minutes.
Prepare the Chiles

3. Make Sauce

Drain the chiles and transfer to a blender. Add 1 cup water, 1 onion, 15 cloves garlic, chipotles, vinegar, 2 teaspoons salt, 3 bay leaves, ginger, oregano, cumin, cinnamon, pepper, and cloves. Blend until smooth.
Make Sauce

4. Season Short Ribs

Season the short ribs with the remaining teaspoon of salt. Transfer to a deep baking dish that will hold all of the ribs in a single layer.
Season Short Ribs

5. Add Sauce

Add half of the sauce to the baking dish, along with 1/2 cup water, remaining onion, remaining garlic, remaining bay leaf, and the cinnamon stick. Stir to combine, making sure the ribs are evenly coated with the sauce.
Add Sauce

6. Cook

Transfer to the oven and cook until the ribs are fall-off-the-bone tender, 2 1/2 hours. Remove from the oven and let rest until cool enough to handle.
Sous Vide Mode: Off
Steam: 50%
Temp: 300°F
Heat: Rear
02:30 Timer

7. Shred

Remove the meat from the bones and use two forks to shred into bite-size pieces. Transfer any drippings that remain in the baking dish to a shallow bowl.

8. Finish Sauce

Add the remaining chile sauce to the bowl with the drippings. Add additional water if the sauce is too thin for dipping tortillas. Season to taste with salt.
Finish Sauce

9. Coat Tortillas

Dip the tortillas one at a time into the sauce to coat on both sides.
Coat Tortillas

10. Assemble Tacos

Heat a thin layer of oil in a well-seasoned cast iron or nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add as many sauced tortillas as can fit. Top with the short ribs and cheese.
Assemble Tacos

11. Fry and Fold

Let cook for 1 minute. Fold over the tacos and continue to cook, flipping if needed, until the cheese is melted and the tortilla is crisp, about 1 more minute.
Fry and Fold

12. Serve

Transfer to a serving plate and garnish with chopped onion, cilantro, and lime wedges. Serve with the remaining sauce on the side.
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