Cheesy Birria Tacos (Quesabirria Tacos)

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
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These cheesy Birria tacos (aka quesabirria tacos) are the greatest Mexican street food to have ever existed. Smoky, tender braised beef and lots of melty cheese are wrapped in a corn tortilla coated in Birria grease and then pan-fried until crispy. Served alongside a warm bowl of Birria consommé for dunking, these tacos will be an instant favorite!

Why You Will Love This Cheesy Birria Tacos Recipe

No matter how large of a batch of Birria I make, it is always gone way too quick when these Quesabirria tacos are on the menu! Here’s why I know you will love this recipe:

  • Authentic Flavors: I was gifted this Birria taco recipe from a friend who is a Mexican chef. The combination of spices creates an authentic taste that transports you straight to Mexico!
  • Crispy, Fried Tortillas: Dipping the corn tortillas in the Birria grease and then frying them gives the tacos more flavor with an irresistible crunch. I never skip this step because it adds so much texture!
  • Cheesy & So Flavorful: Each taco is stuffed with lots of melted, gooey cheese and slow-cooked beef that is incredibly tender and infused with tons of flavor from Mexican spices and dried chiles.
  • Savory Consommé for Dipping: The rich Birria consommé, the broth from cooking the meat, is perfect for dipping your crispy quesabirria tacos into!
Crispy fried Birria Tacos on a plate topped with Mexican crema, cilantro, diced white onion and a lime wedge on the side.

What are Birria Tacos?

Birria tacos are a traditional Mexican street food originating from the state of Jalisco, Mexico. They consist of tender, slow-cooked meat, typically beef or goat, seasoned with a blend of chilies and spices. The meat is served in corn tortillas that are often dipped in the cooking broth and then fried until crispy.

The tacos are usually accompanied by a rich consommé, a flavorful broth made from the meat’s cooking liquid, for dipping. This recipe is for cheesy Birria tacos, also know as quesabirria tacos, where the only difference is the addition of lots of gooey, melted cheese!

Ingredients for Birria Tacos recipe arranged in bowls. From top to bottom: chihuahua cheese, cilantro, birria grease, birria meat, onion, corn tortillas, radishes and Mexican Crema.

What You Will Need

As long as you already have a pot of Birria ready to go, this Birria taco recipe is an easy, 20-minute meal! Scroll down to the recipe card for exact amounts.

  • Corn Tortillas: I always use corn tortillas as they stay crispy once dunked in the beef cooking grease and fried. You can also use flour tortillas, but know they can get soggy!
  • Birria: You will need a batch of stovetop Birria or crockpot Birria. You will use the cooked meat, the grease and the juice to dip your tacos in!
    • Birria Grease: I skim the grease off the top of the large pot of Birria stew as it cools for dipping the tortillas into. Please don’t substitute it for vegetable shortening or vegetable oil. They’re not Tacos de Birria without the Birria grease and it adds *so* much flavor!
    • Shredded Birria: Use the shredded beef, drained from the excess broth.
    • Birria Broth: Also referred to as “Birria consommé”, it is used as a dipping sauce when serving the tacos.
  • Shredded Cheese: Oaxaca is the most traditionally used, but I love using Chihuahua cheese. Monterey Jack, mozzarella, pepper Jack, and even Mexican cheese blends will all also work.
  • Optional Toppings: Diced red or white onion, chopped cilantro, avocado, fresh sliced radishes, Mexican Crema and a lime wedge on the side! If needed, thin out sour cream with a little water to make it similar in texture to Mexican Crema.

How to Make Birria Tacos

Ready in just 3 simple steps, these Birria Tacos will be done by the time you finish reading this post. Scroll to the recipe card at bottom of the post for full detailed instructions, or to watch the handy video showing you step by step how to make Birria Tacos!

  • Dip the Tortillas. Dip one or two corn tortillas in warm Birria grease. It needs to be warm so it can coat them like a liquid. Arrange them in a hot skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Stuff and Fold. Add cheese and meat to taste on half of each tortilla. Fold the tortillas in half, like quesadillas, and press down with a spatula as they cook to help them stay closed. Cook tacos for about 2 minutes on each side, until crispy.
  • Enjoy. Top the tacos with your desired toppings. Serve immediately with a bowl of warm consommé on the side for dipping!
Tacos de birria on a platter and one Birria Tacos being dunked in a bowl of warm birria consommé.

Chef’s Tips & Variations

  • Don’t add too much filling. Don’t go overboard with the cheese and meat. If your Birria tacos won’t stay closed when frying, then you’ve added too much filling. If the tacos are still popping open, I will add a little cheese on both sides of the tortilla to help seal them shut!
  • Remove excess moisture. If your birria meat still has a lot of consommé, squeeze some of the excess moisture out to make your tacos extra crispy. Don’t worry, you will still make them extra juicy when you dunk them in the consommé when serving!
  • Use a griddle. If you use a smaller skillet, you will need work in batches because the tortillas shouldn’t overlap. Use a large flat griddle to easily cook more tacos at once!
  • Make tacos al vapor. Don’t want to fry your tacos? Place the tacos de birria in a steamer basket and steam them for 3 to 4 minutes or until extremely soft. While different than crispy fried tacos, they will still delicious!
  • Don’t skip the consommé! I love dipping these crispy tacos into a small bowl of the rich, flavorful Birria broth. It’s an essential part of the Birria taco experience!
Tacos de birria on a plate topped with Mexican crema, cilantro, and radishes.

What To Serve with Quesabirria Tacos

Serve these crispy, cheesy beef tacos with a margarita and all your favorite Mexican sides! Here are a few of my favorite side pairings to get you started:

A crispy fried Birria taco stuffed with tender braised beef and lots of melty cheese being dunked in a bowl of warm Birria broth.

How to Store & Reheat Leftovers

These tacos are really best served fresh! I highly recommend storing the ingredients separately and frying up a fresh batch of tacos each time. They only take a few minutes to make and are so worth it!

However, you can refrigerate any cooled leftovers in an airtight container for up to 3 days. You can reheat them in a hot skillet over medium heat for about 3 minutes, until warm. However, I find the crispest results are achieved in the air fryer at 400°F, for 2 to 3 minutes.

Crispy Birria Tacos being dunked in a bowl of warm birria broth.
5 from 6 votes
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Yield: 12 tacos

Cheesy Birria Tacos (Quesabirria Tacos)

Cheesy Birria Tacos (also known as Quesabirria Tacos) are the best Mexican street food, ever! With smoky, tender braised beef and lots of melty cheese, these crispy tacos are served with consommé for dunking.
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time15 minutes
Total Time20 minutes

Ingredients

For the Tacos

  • 12 corn tortillas
  • 1 cup Birria grease, warmed
  • 2 cups Birria meat, shredded
  • 2 cups shredded Oaxaca, or Chihuahua cheese
  • 1 cup Birria broth, warmed, for serving

Optional Toppings

  • ½ cup diced white onion
  • 3 radishes, chopped or sliced
  • ¼ cup cilantro, chopped
  • ¼ cup Mexican crema, or sour cream

Instructions 

  • Heat a nonstick pan, then dip one or two tortillas in the birria grease, covering both sides. Add to the hot pan.
  • Add a couple tablespoons of cheese and birria meat to one side of each tortilla. Once the cheese is melted, fold the tortilla in half to form the taco. Cook on each side for about 2 to 3 minutes until good and crispy. Press down on the tacos as they fry with a spatula to help them stay together. Repeat till all the tacos are made.
  • Serve tacos topped with diced onion, radishes, cilantro, Mexican cream, and a bowl of warm Birria broth (Birria consommé) to dunk in, if desired!

Video

Notes

Storage: These tacos are really best served fresh! However, you can refrigerate any cooled leftovers in an airtight container for up to 3 days. You can reheat them in a hot skillet over medium heat for about 3 minutes, until warm. However, I find the crispest results are achieved in the air fryer at 400°F, for 2 to 3 minutes.
Don’t add too much filling. Don’t go overboard with the cheese and meat. If your Birria tacos won’t stay closed when frying, then you’ve added too much filling. If the tacos are still popping open, I will add a little cheese on both sides of the tortilla to help seal them shut!
Remove excess moisture. If your birria meat still has a lot of consommé, squeeze some of the excess moisture out to make your tacos extra crispy. Don’t worry, you will still make them extra juicy when you dunk them in the consommé when serving!
Use a griddle. If you use a smaller skillet, you will need work in batches because the tortillas shouldn’t overlap. Use a large flat griddle to easily cook more tacos at once!

Nutrition

Serving: 1 taco, Calories: 374kcal, Carbohydrates: 13g, Protein: 14g, Fat: 30g, Saturated Fat: 12g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g, Monounsaturated Fat: 13g, Trans Fat: 0.3g, Cholesterol: 63mg, Sodium: 286mg, Potassium: 218mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 177IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 133mg, Iron: 1mg

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Jessica
For the past 15 years, Jorge & Jessica have loved getting to share their families' favorite recipes with all of you. They live in Florida with their 3 kids.