Crispy Chipotle Shredded Beef Tacos

Tender chipotle seasoned beef is slow cooked with garlic & onions then stuffed inside corn tortillas with lots of cheese & baked until crispy! These chipotle shredded beef tacos are a must for your next taco night!

Crispy chipotle shredded beef tacos sitting on baking sheet next to a small bowl of avocado cilantro sauce

I’m having a moment with crispy tacos this summer and holy moly – this shredded beef version is SOO GOOD!😍 Large chunks of beef roast are seasoned with warm chipotle spices then slow cooked with garlic and onions until tender and falling apart. We’re then stuffing it inside fresh corn tortillas with lots of cheese and cilantro & baking them until perfectly golden & crispy! They’re hearty, cheesy, full of flavor and perfect for an easy weeknight meal! These are the best chipotle shredded beef tacos!

Ingredients used to make chipotle shredded beef tacos in the oven

Ingredients for Chipotle Shredded Beef Tacos

  • Beef chuck roast: Chuck roast works the best for most shredded beef recipes! (It’s higher in fat and falls apart so easily after being cooked.)
  • Beef broth: We prefer using low sodium beef broth. (The beef itself can be pretty salty after seasoning it with your spices.)
  • Oranges & limes: You’ll need at least 1 orange and 2-3 limes for this recipe. (Look for citrus that has smooth skin and gives in slightly when you give it a gentle squeeze. This means they’re extra juicy!)
  • Chipotle peppers in adobo: You’ll only need 1 pepper for this recipe! It can be as small or as large as you want (The larger the pepper, the more spicy your beef will be.)
  • White onions: White onion work the best for this recipe and “caramelizes” in the bottom of crockpot while the beef cooks. (Leave your onions large slices for the best results.)
  • Cilantro: A little goes on top of the beef while it cooks in the crockpot. (Always use the leaves and stems for maximum flavor!)
  • Garlic: An essential ingredient for any shredded beef recipe!
  • Monterrey jack cheese: We’ll usually buy a block of Monterrey jack and shred it ourselves (I personally think block cheese tastes better). Pre-shredded Monterrey jack works too!
  • Spices: Chipotle powder, chili powder, paprika, dried oregano, garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, salt and black pepper all go into your beef seasoning. (It looks like a lot but it’s so easy to mix together!)
  • Corn tortillas: Always a must for crispy tacos!

I know it looks like a lot of ingredients but it’s actually so easy to put together! Just leave the meat in big chunks, roughly chop the rest of your ingredients and let your crockpot do it’s thing!

A crockpot filled with beef chuck roast seasoned in Mexican spices and topped with chopped cilantro
A metal sheet pan with 3 tortillas on it showing the process of filling your tacos to make chipotle shredded beef tacos

How to make Chipotle Shredded Beef Tacos

  1. Prepare the crockpot. Cut your onion into large slices and place them in the bottom of your crockpot. Then add your garlic, beef broth, water, orange juice, lime juice and chopped chipotle pepper to the pot.
  2. Season and cook your chuck roast. Cut your roast into large chunks (about 3-4 inches) and mix your spices together. Then season the beef with your spices and place the pieces on top of your onions in the crockpot. Next sprinkle your chopped cilantro over the top, cover the cook on low for 6-8 hours. Once done, shred the beef using 2 large forks and set it aside.
  3. Assemble your tacos. Next turn your oven on to 425 degrees and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Lay your tortillas out on the pan and spray them with cooking spray. Then flip them over and bake them for 2-3 minutes. (We need them just soft enough to fold over your filling.) Then take the pan out of the oven and layer each tortilla on one side with cheese, your shredded beef, cilantro and a little more cheese on top. Fold the other side of the tortilla over your filling and press down gently to make it “stick.”
  4. Bake! Once all of your tacos are made, place the pan back in the oven and bake for 15-17 minutes or until the cheese has melted and your tortillas are crispy.
  5. Serve! Serve immediately with your favorite toppings and enjoy!

Not into crispy tacos? No problem! Just cook your beef in the crockpot and serve as regular tacos instead!

A person's hand dipping a crispy shredded beef taco into a small bowl of guacamole

Let’s Get Saucy!

We love serving these crispy tacos with a version of my avocado cilantro lime sauce! It’s quick and easy, only requires a handful of ingredients and can easily be tailored to your personal taste and preference! Feeling adventurous? Try them with my zesty avocado chimichurri sauce! Beef and chimichurri just go together and the addition of avocado takes it over the top! Here are a few other topping ideas we love too:

  • Sour cream
  • Your favorite salsa!
  • Pico de gallo
  • Chopped onions, tomatoes & thinly sliced lettuce
  • Hot sauce
  • Mashed avocado or guacamole
Close up photo of a baked chipotle shredded beef taco topped with avocado cilantro lime sauce and shredded lettuce

FAQ’s

  • Can I prep any ingredients in advance? Absolutely! You can cook and shred your beef at least 1-2 days in advance and make your sauce the night before too.
  • Can I use flour tortillas instead? No, flour tortillas won’t crisp up the same as corn tortillas in the oven.
  • Are these chipotle shredded beef tacos spicy? The beef has a little heat to it but the tacos themselves aren’t overly spicy. (The avocado cilantro sauce helps to cool them down a bit too!)
  • I don’t have a chuck roast. Is there another cut of beef I can use? Beef shoulder roast will also work for this recipe. (It’s a little leaner than chuck roast so it will definitely need to cook the full 8 hours.) I’d still strongly suggest using a chuck roast if you can find it.
  • Can I use a different type of cheese? Shredded cheddar cheese would be the best replacement for Monterrey jack.

Why you’ll love this shredded beef taco recipe!

  • Crockpot does all the work! Just season the meat & chop a few ingredients & let your slow cooker take it from there!
  • Baked instead of fried! Most crispy tacos recipes require frying your tortillas in oil. Not this one! By baking these tacos we still get the same crispy taco shell without all the oil!
  • Perfect for a large group! This chipotle beef recipe makes A LOT of food so it’s perfect for parties or family gatherings!

Need it gluten free? Great news, it already is!

More taco recipes you might like:

[Made one of my recipes? Make sure to tag my Instagram @kalefornia_kravings & leave a review in the comments. I love seeing what you create!]

Crispy Chipotle Shredded Beef Tacos

Tender chipotle seasoned beef is slow cooked with garlic & onions then stuffed inside corn tortillas with lots of cheese & baked until crispy! These chipotle shredded beef tacos are quick & easy and a must-have for your next taco night!
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time8 hrs 15 mins
Total Time8 hrs 35 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: avocado cilantro sauce, baked tacos, crispy chipotle shredded beef tacos, shredded beef tacos
Servings: 6 servings
Author: Caitlin

Ingredients

For the chipotle shredded beef tacos:

  • 2.5 – 3 lbs. beef chuck roast
  • 1 Tbsp chipotle powder
  • 1 Tbsp paprika
  • ½ Tbsp dried oregano
  • ½ Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 5 garlic cloves, peeled & left whole
  • 1 white onion, sliced
  • 1 cup beef broth (reduced sodium)
  • ¼ cup cilantro, chopped (leaves & stems are ok)
  • ¼ cup water
  • ¼ cup fresh orange juice
  • 2 Tbsp lime juice
  • 1 chipotle pepper in adobo, chopped
  • Monterrey jack cheese, shredded
  • Cilantro, chopped (for assembling the tacos)
  • Corn tortillas

For the avocado cilantro lime sauce:

  • 2 medium avocados
  • 1 garlic clove
  • cup cilantro, roughly chopped (leaves & stems are ok)
  • ¼ cup lime juice
  • ¼ tsp garlic salt

Instructions

To make your avocado cilantro lime sauce:

  • Add all your sauce ingredients to a food processor and blend until smooth. Then keep your sauce stored in the refrigerator until your ready to serve.

To make the shredded beef:

  • Cut your onion into large slices and place them in the bottom of your crockpot. Then add your garlic, beef broth, water, orange juice, lime juice and chopped chipotle pepper to the pot.
  • Next cut your chuck roast into large chunks (about 3-4 inches) and mix your spices together. Then season the pieces with your spices and place them on top of the onions in the crockpot. Sprinkle ¼ cup of cilantro over the top then cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours. Once done, shred the beef using 2 large forks and set it aside.

To make your crispy tacos:

  • Preheat your oven to 425 degrees and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Then lay your tortillas out on the pan and spray them with cooking spray. Flip them over and bake them for 2-3 minutes. (We need them just soft enough to fold over your filling.) Then take the pan out of the oven and layer each tortilla on one side with cheese, your shredded beef, cilantro and a little more cheese on top. Fold the other side of the tortilla over your filling and press down gently to make it “stick.”
  • Once all of your tacos are made, place the pan back in the oven and bake for 15-17 minutes or until the cheese has melted and your tortillas are crispy.
  • Serve immediately with your sauce and favorite taco toppings!

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