Chipotle Shredded Beef Tacos

Chipotle Beef Tacos Once upon a time there was a Bronco team in the playoffs.


Photo courtesy of my friend Dan, taken sometime and somewhere in Colorado.

Last Saturday the Baltimore Ravens came to town to play the Denver Broncos in an AFC playoff game. The high temperature at game time registered 16 degrees and continued to fall during the afternoon. But the arctic air couldn’t freeze the charge that electrified this city.

The week leading up to the game, our town had turned into one big pep rally. We became a sea of orange. Everywhere you went, fans, fair weather fans and even people who hadn’t watched a game all season, were wearing Bronco T-shirts, jackets, hats. Even if they didn’t have an official garment, they wore some shade of orange found in their closet. Flags and banners decorated vehicles. Strangers asked strangers what they were doing for the game. Skyscrapers and government buildings were lit with team colors. Conversations had even taken a turn towards speculation of who we’d play the following week…would it be New England??? Houston???

One of the most legendary games in NFL history ended in double overtime and the Ravens claimed victory with a field goal. Stunned Bronco fans everywhere fell silent.

But when I woke up Sunday morning I was surprised to see the sun had come up so I started planning Sunday dinner.

I had a tri-tip roast in the freezer, a can of chipotle peppers in the pantry, thus shredded beef tacos were born. I kept the toppings simple, garnishing only with fresh rings of sweet onion and some romaine mixed with red vinegar and olive oil and squeeze of fresh lime. But I can see this recipe working with any of your favorite taco toppings. A meal built mostly on what I had on hand, let’s take a look.

4.5 from 2 reviews
Chipotle Shredded Beef Tacos
Recipe type: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
  • 1 2-3 pound tri-tip roast
  • 2 - 3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, seeded, veins removed and chopped
  • 1 heaping T. adobo sauce from the can of peppers
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 6 garlic cloves , chopped
  • 28 oz can chopped tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 T cumin
  • 1 T. brown sugar
  • salt and pepper
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Season the roast with salt and pepper.
  3. In a large dutch oven heat the oil over medium heat and brown the roast on all sides. Transfer the chuck roast to a plate and set aside. Add the onion to the pan and saute until tender. Add garlic and cook until fragrant. Season the onion and garlic with salt and pepper. Add tomatoes. Nestle the roast down into the tomatoes, onions and garlic mixture, then top with remaining ingredients.
  4. Spoon a little of the tomato mixture on top of roast.
  5. Cover the pan and cook 2.5 or 3 hours. Until meat is tender.
  6. Remove the meat from the pan and shred with a fork when cool enough to handle.
  7. Return the shredded meat back to the cooking liquid and stir to coat.
  8. Serve the meat into heated corn tortillas or purchased taco shell with all your favorite taco toppings.


Chipotle Shredded Beef Tacos … They’re What’s for Dinner. 

 From the Kitchen of Lea Ann Brown, Cooking On The Ranch

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  1. says

    I am a little disappointed that I will be unable to bash Elway this weekend.

    This recipe sounds great. I love chipotles. A quick question about the Tri-tip. You used tri-tip and later in the recipe it mentions chuck roast. With a three hour cook did your tri-tip become a little mushy?

    • says

      LOL. I’m very disappointed that you’ll be unable to bash Elway this weekend. No, the tri-tip did not become mushy. I’ve cooked them like a roast before and have never had issues. I buy these tri-tip roasts at Costco. They come in a two pack, and even though very lean, they seem to hold up with a long slow cook. I’ve even used them like a old-fashioned pot-roast with carrots, potatoes, etc. They seem very flexible. Any type of roast would work in this recipe.

  2. says

    I am not a football fan at all, but have to say that I was disappointed to see our team loose. I think they gave this one away, unfortunately.
    Luckily we always can fall back on delicious food, right?! I have made a similar roast and my husband loved it. This is right down his taste alley, especially with the addition of the chipotle peppers. They are a pantry staple at our house. Great recipe Lea Ann!

  3. says

    I have the football games on today but it is hard to stay interested without the Broncos playing…I was sure I’d be watching them today! Football game or not, I’d love this dinner. I always have trouble picking out which cut of beef to use so I am happy to learn from you that Costco sells something suitable. I’ll be there this week and will pick some up. Enjoy the weekend!

  4. says

    As a lifelong Texas Rangers fan, I feel your pain. Ordinarily, I turn to drinking when my team (annually) disappoints. But, I’m not recommending that. In fact, I think you’ve turned to the right thing — those wonderful looking tacos.

  5. says

    We are grieving also that the 49ers beat the Packers :( Thankfully, the 49ers are headed to the Superbowl so we are not feeling quite so sad.

    I love that Chipotle flavor in these tacos! Tri-tip has taken it’s good natured time to find its way to Wisconsin but I recently saw some at Costco!

  6. says

    Oh I was Mad at the sun for shining! Did he not know we had lost :(

    Falling back of delicious food was the only solace that day.. am glad you made these delicious tacos. Fiery goodness!

  7. says

    Well this recipe sure cheered me up Lea Ann. I can’t pretend that I am a big football lover but I was disappointed to see the Broncos lose. After a couple of tough years it was fun to see everyone excited about the home team again.

  8. says

    I was sad when the Broncos lost because I know just how huge a fan you are. I’m not a screaming football fan, but Dana is a rabid 49’r, so I was thankful his team won – it would have wrecked the dinner party / football party I threw for his birthday.

    The tacos sound fabulous. Roast beef is the perfect meat in my opinion. I don’t know why I’ve never tried it in tacos. Yum!

    • says

      And OMG those pictures! Love the food porn – you have got the best color sense! The beware of black birds sign cracked me up. Good grief, I’d be scared and picturing a scene from “The Birds.” 😀

      • says

        I asked Dan about the photo the other night. He had sent it to me last Summer. This was taken outside a dentist office where the walkway was close to a natural area where blackbirds were nesting. They were attacking people as they walked into the building. They were complaining, so the dentist put up the sign. Cracks me up.

    • says

      That roast beef seemed to really soak up all the Mexican flavors. We liked it. I hear ya about the food getting wrecked by a disappointing loss. These tacos really didn’t taste good until the next day. 😉

  9. says

    Having never been a Bronco’s fan myself, I can’t say I feel your pain of their loss.. BUT.. I do know what it’s like to watch your team go down in the big game.. so for that I can definitely sympathize :)
    At least you had these awesome tacos to take your mind off of it!!

  10. says

    What an exciting game that must have been–sorry your team wasn’t the winning team! :( But I’m sure those delicious-looking tacos must have made everyone feel a little better :)

    • says

      Not as sorry as I am Nancy, but you’re so sweet to share my sorrow. And you bet, those tacos were a little bit of a bandaid. As always thanks for stopping by and the comment.

  11. says

    Although our family had particular alliance they were lined up like ducks in the front of TV-caught up in the excitement too.

    Love, love your style of cooking. Love this dish.


    • says

      I’m sure all of America had wished they were lined up like ducks, if they realized what a really good football game they missed. Thanks Velva, nice compliment. And as always, thanks for stopping by. Always good to hear from you.

  12. says

    We also felt sad that the Broncos lost as it would have been so exciting to be here during home town Superbowl fever!

    I have to learn more about Mexican cooking. Your beef tacos look fabulous!

    • says

      We really liked these tacos Chris. I was surprised they were as flavorful as they were. But not as good as my Orange Spicy Pork tacos. Those get the “omg” .

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