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    Homemade Beef Birria Consomé Recipe

    Published April 23, 2024. This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.

    Learn how to make this classic beef birria consomé recipe simmered in a delicious chili broth and shredded to perfection. The rich, bold flavors in this traditional soup are incredible.

    We aren’t huge beef eaters, but when we eat it, we go all out!  If you get that meat craving like us, check out how to make my Meatloaf or Loco Moco.

    bowl of birria soup with chopped onions


     

    Birria Consomé

    Birria is slow-cooked meat in a zesty roasted pepper broth until it easily pulls apart and is shredded. It’s often served with lemon juice, diced yellow onions, and cilantro. Birria was founded and created in the state of Jalisco, on the west coast of Mexico. You may have heard of Puerto Vallarta, which is in Jalisco. 

    Classically, birria would be made with goat, sheep, or lamb.  However, if you were to try birria in more northern states of Mexico, it would most often be prepared with beef, which is also what you will see in the United States. 

    While this traditional delicious recipe has been around for generations, it has been trending in the last five years. In addition, birria is a common street food in Mexico, and it is nothing short of amazing.  

    Ingredients and Substitutions

    • Beef – I used a combination of chuck, bottom round, and shanks. Other great cuts are sirloin, short ribs, brisket, skirt, or flank.
    • Lamb – Shanks are best to use. However, you can also use chops, loins, or legs.
    • Onion – A red, white, yellow, or sweet onion can be used. You’ll also need some garlic cloves.
    • Tomatoes – Any fresh in-season tomato will work. However, you can also use 2 15-ounce canned tomatoes and juice.
    • Chilis – I used a combination of dried ancho and guajillo chilis, but you can use other dried chilis of your choosing.
    • Spices – I used a combination of allspice berries, cinnamon, and peppercorns. These spices are subjective, and you can use some or all.
    • Herbs – Dried thyme, bay leaves, and oregano are used. Dry herbs are best, as they need to be reconstituted, which can be done in the liquid as everything slowly cooks.
    • Liquid – I used beef stock and water. You can also use brodo.
    • Citrus – Lemon or lime juice can be used to finish the consomé.

    How to Make Birria Consomé

    Start by searing the seasoned protein in oil in a large pot or rondeau over medium-high heat until well browned on all sides.

    roasted beef shank in a pot

    Set the meat to the side. Add the onions to the pot and cook until caramelized, about 20-25 minutes.

    caramelized onions in a large pot

    Next, add garlic, tomatoes, seeded and stemmed peppers, spices, and herbs, and stew over medium-high heat for 10-15 minutes.

    dried herbs and spices with tomatoes and peppers in a pot

    Deglaze with water or beef stock and cook over medium heat until the amount of liquid is reduced by 1/2.

    birria braising liquid in a pot with tomatoes and peppers

    Transfer the mixture to a blender, remove the little middle cap to the top, and pulse on high speed until it is completely smooth. 

    blending the birria consome braising ingredients

    Pour the pepper mixture back into the large pot along with water or beef stock, the seared meat and cook on medium-to-medium high heat for about 2 hours or until it is easily shredded.

    adding seared beef to a pot with braising liquid

    Remove the meat, discard any bones, and roughly chop using a knife.

    chopping birria meat on a cutting board

    Quickly strain the leftover broth into another pot and add the beef back.

    straining birria consome through a chinois

    Pour the desired amount of birria consomé into a bowl, squeeze in some fresh lemon juice, and garnish with diced white or yellow onions, diced radishes, and chopped fresh cilantro.   

    serving soup with garnishes

    Make-Ahead and Storage

    Make-Ahead: You can make this up to 2 days ahead of time. 

    How to Store: Cover and keep it in the refrigerator for 6 days. This will freeze well, covered for up to 6 months. Thaw in the refrigerator for 1 day before reheating.

    How to Reheat: Place the desired amount into a medium-sized saucepot and heat over low heat until hot. 

    Chef Billy Parisi

    chef notes + tips

    • When searing the meat, you may need to do it in batches if your pot is not big enough. 
    • You may also add some cheese to the stew when serving it.
    • When blending the chili pepper mixture or any hot mixture, remove the center cap from the blender’s lid and place a kitchen towel over top with a small hole for the hot air to escape.

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    Homemade Beef Birria Consomé Recipe

    5 from 8 votes
    Learn how to make classic beef birria consomé that is simmered in a delicious pepper broth and shredded to perfection.
    Servings: 12
    Prep Time: 20 minutes
    Cook Time: 3 hours

    Ingredients 

    • 3 pounds of assorted beef cuts: chuck, bottom round, shanks
    • 2 pounds lamb shanks
    • 3 tablespoons oil
    • 3 peeled and roughly chopped white or yellow onions
    • 5 garlic cloves
    • 4 cored roughly chopped vine-ripe tomatoes
    • 4 seeded and stemmed dried guajillo chiles
    • 4 seeded and stemmed dried ancho chiles
    • 8-10 allspice berries
    • ½ cinnamon stick, broken up
    • 12-15 black peppercorns
    • 2 bay leaves
    • 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
    • 1 ½ tablespoons dried oregano
    • 1 ½ tablespoons dried thyme
    • 2 cups of water
    • 1 gallon of water or beef stock
    • sea salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste
    • juice of fresh lemons
    • diced yellow or white onions, diced radishes, and chopped fresh cilantro for garnish

    Instructions

    • Season both the beef and lamb well on all sides with sea salt and pepper. Set aside.
    • Next, add the oil to a large pot or rondeau over high heat. Once it begins to smoke add in the meat and lamb and sear until well browned on all sides, about 6-8 minutes per side.
    • Remove the beef from the pot and set it aside.
    • Now, place in the onions and cook over medium heat for about 20-25 minutes or until caramelized.
    • Place in the garlic and give it a quick sauté with the onions for about 4-5 minutes.
    • Next, pour in the tomatoes, chiles, allspice berries, cinnamon, peppercorns, bay leaves, cumin seeds, oregano, and thyme and stew on medium-high heat for 8-10 minutes to soften up the peppers and cook the tomatoes.
    • Deglaze with 2 cups of water and continue to cook on medium-high heat until the liquid is reduced by ½ or about 15 minutes.
    • Transfer the mixture to a blender and puree at high speed until smooth. See note on how to blend hot food.
    • Pour the mixture back into the pot along with water or beef stock. Season this mixture well with salt and pepper.
    • Place the seared meat back into the pot, cover, and cook on medium-medium-high for about 2 hours, or until the meat is easily shredded. The liquid should be at a rapid bubble or a very low boil the entire time.
    • Remove the meat, discard any bones, and roughly chop on a cutting board. Keep aside.
    • Next, strain the remaining liquid through a fine-mesh strainer or chinois and return it to the pot along with the chopped meat.
    • To serve: Place the desired amount of birria consomé into a bowl and garnish with fresh-squeezed lemon juice, onions, radishes, and cilantro.

    Notes

    Make-Ahead: You can make this up to 2 days ahead of time.
    How to Reheat: Place the desired amount into a medium-sized saucepot and heat over low heat until hot. You can also heat in the microwave until hot.
    How to Store: Cover and keep in the refrigerator for up to 6 days. This will freeze well covered for up to 6 months. Thaw in the refrigerator for 1 day before reheating.
    When searing the meat, you may need to do it in batches if your pot is not big enough.
    You may also add some cheese to the stew when serving it.
    When blending the chili pepper mixture, or any hot mixture, remove the center cap from the lid to the blender and place a kitchen towel over top with a little hole for the hot air to escape.

    Nutrition

    Calories: 381kcalCarbohydrates: 19gProtein: 37gFat: 19gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 100mgSodium: 759mgPotassium: 1439mgFiber: 5gSugar: 9gVitamin A: 3795IUVitamin C: 12mgCalcium: 94mgIron: 6mg
    Course: Soup
    Cuisine: Mexican