Pulled Beef Tacos

I often find it funny on all of the posts for ‘Taco Tuesday’. Granted I love the name and the idea of it all, especially if you are planning out the weekly meals, but I feel that Monday (Meatless), Wednesday, Thursday, Friday (Fish Fry in Wisconsin), Saturday, and Sunday get left behind.  I’m sure those days are out there in terms of identifying food to a day but that is not how it goes down in our house. Sure, we try to get a meatless Monday in (and any day of the week for that matter), and hump day or Thursday results in (at least for me, ‘I’m tired of cooking) a let’s order something kind of night, but for tacos, heck, I could eat those every day of the week. So upon my wandering around the house looking for something to do or cook as I was bored, I came across a lonely poblano pepper.

Yep, one poblano pepper resulted in this Taco Thursday. The idea of the poblano made me think of the chicken poblano recipe that my wife loves, but I had just recently made that for her, hence the lonely poblano. So I came across a nice looking chuck roast that was calling my name, as was the pressure cooker for that matter.

These pulled beef tacos were super simple to make, and quick (due to the pressure cooker), and made everyone’s Thursday a very happy one.

Pulled Beef Tacos Recipe
Pulled Beef Tacos Recipe

Let’s get started.

  • 4 lb beef chuck roast
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • water (or beef stock) to cover beef
  • 1 onion, halved
  • 2 cloves of garlic, lightly smashed
  • 1 poblano chile, halved, seeds and stem removed
  • 4 tbsp canola oil, divided
  • 1 tbsp Berbere spice blend (or taco)
  • additional salt, to taste
  • Shredded cheese, to your liking
  • hard shell tacos
  • Taco fixings (chopped onion, avocado, cilantro, tomato, beans, etc)

I left this one pretty generic as the taco game is pretty diverse. The idea here is to get your shredded beef ready and you load however you want. This particular evening I went with hard shelled tacos with cheese, onion, and garden tomatoes, along with some hot sauce.

If you do not have a pressure cooker (I highly recommend that purchase) then feel free to use a slow cooker with less water, and cooking that on low for 6-8 hours. The pressure cooker however will get you done and ready within 45 minutes if that.

To the pressure cooker, heat 2 tablespoons of the canola oil on medium-high heat. Season both sides of the chuck roast with salt and pepper. Once the oil begins to shimmer, add the chuck roast and sear it on both sides, about 4 minutes per side. You want some good browning so let it sit there, do not disturb it, then flip until both sides are seared.

Once seared, add in the garlic, onion, and poblano pepper. Cover the roast with water or beef stock, cover, and cook for about 45 minutes. Let your pressure come down before taking off the lid (follow your pressure cooker instructions). The roast should be fork tender and should easily shred with a couple of forks.

Pulled Beef Tacos Recipe
Pulled Beef Tacos Recipe

Discard the onion, garlic, and pepper.

Remove the roast onto a cutting board, and reserve a couple of cups of the liquid.

Using two forks, shred the beef and discard any of the weird fat that may still be intact. No one likes that stuff, trust me.

Next, heat a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add in the oil, and once shimmers, add in the beef. Season with a pinch of salt, then the berbere spice. Give that a good toss, and sear the shredded beef. Something about those slightly crispy strands of beef get me every time.

Once the beef is slightly seared to your liking, add in just a bit of remaining liquid, to your liking, to moisten the beef.

Once your remaining taco ingredients are ready, it’s taco time!

Load in the beef into your desired shell whether that be hard, or soft, and load in your fillings.

The result is super tender shredded beef with awesome flavors from that berbere spice, and just all of those goodies from your taco fillings. This shredded beef taco is not only easy to make, loaded with flavor, and perfect for any day of the week, but it also is a nice change to that classic American ground beef mixture that we grew up to love. Hope you enjoy!

Other Ideas:

Pulled Beef Tacos
Author: 
Recipe type: Tacos
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
Ingredients
  • 4 lb beef chuck roast
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • water (or beef stock) to cover beef
  • 1 onion, halved
  • 2 cloves of garlic, lightly smashed
  • 1 poblano chile, halved, seeds and stem removed
  • 4 tbsp canola oil, divided
  • 1 tbsp Berbere spice blend (or taco)
  • additional salt, to taste
  • Shredded cheese, to your liking
  • hard shell tacos
  • Taco fixings (chopped onion, avocado, cilantro, tomato, beans, etc)
Instructions
  1. I left this one pretty generic as the taco game is pretty diverse. The idea here is to get your shredded beef ready and you load however you want. This particular evening I went with hard shelled tacos with cheese, onion, and garden tomatoes, along with some hot sauce.
  2. If you do not have a pressure cooker (I highly recommend that purchase) then feel free to use a slow cooker with less water, and cooking that on low for 6-8 hours. The pressure cooker however will get you done and ready within 45 minutes if that.
  3. To the pressure cooker, heat 2 tablespoons of the canola oil on medium-high heat. Season both sides of the chuck roast with salt and pepper. Once the oil begins to shimmer, add the chuck roast and sear it on both sides, about 4 minutes per side. You want some good browning so let it sit there, do not disturb it, then flip until both sides are seared.
  4. Once seared, add in the garlic, onion, and poblano pepper. Cover the roast with water or beef stock, cover, and cook for about 45 minutes. Let your pressure come down before taking off the lid (follow your pressure cooker instructions). The roast should be fork tender and should easily shred with a couple of forks.
  5. Discard the onion, garlic, and pepper.
  6. Remove the roast onto a cutting board, and reserve a couple of cups of the liquid.
  7. Using two forks, shred the beef and discard any of the weird fat that may still be intact. No one likes that stuff, trust me.
  8. Next, heat a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add in the oil, and once shimmers, add in the beef. Season with a pinch of salt, then the berbere spice. Give that a good toss, and sear the shredded beef. Something about those slightly crispy strands of beef get me every time.
  9. Once the beef is slightly seared to your liking, add in just a bit of remaining liquid, to your liking, to moisten the beef.
  10. Once your remaining taco ingredients are ready, it’s taco time!
  11. Load in the beef into your desired shell whether that be hard, or soft, and load in your fillings.

 

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Party Dip

It was not too long ago where our families got together for an early summertime barbecue, or cookout if you will. I tend not to be a snob when it comes to the terms barbecue and grill out (or cookout), but when I hear a barbecue I think of meat smoked low and slow, then served while grilling is typically done over charcoal or wood, or for those that use gas, cooking at a faster pace. Regardless, any get together is always a fun time in our book, and we always like to bring something to the get together. When I ask the question to my wife if we can bring anything to the party, when I hear the word ‘Dessert’ I often panic in a sense. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t freak out or anything, but dessert is typically not my cup of tea and I typically only make dessert for my wife and kids. I am more into the savory, not the sweet.

So when I heard a dessert, I immediately thought of taking this one on myself and making something very simple, sweet, and something I knew adults and children would love. That’s when I came up with the Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Party Dip.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Party Dip Recipe
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Party Dip Recipe

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 8 oz package of cream cheese, softened at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup mini chocolate chips
  • 1 cup salted caramel (or caramel chips)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • Graham crackers or sliced apples

Again, this dip is way too easy to make and everyone crushed it. I think there was about 1/2 tablespoon left when we gathered the kids to leave the party. Yes, it’s that good, and a bit addicting.

Start by adding the cream cheese, butter, sugars, salt, and vanilla extract to a mixing bowl. Turn on your mixer and mix until all of the ingredients are well combined.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Party Dip Ingredients
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Party Dip Ingredients

Next add in both of your chocolate and caramel chips. Mix again to make sure all of the chips are combined.

Now get your silicone baking spatula out and get all of those goods scraped out and placed into your serving bowl.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Party Dip
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Party Dip

When you are ready to serve, place your serving bowl next to a plate lined with graham crackers and sliced apples. Spread onto either one and get to town. These are sweet, creamy, and have a great little texture from those mini chips.

This is a quicker winner of a dessert. Hope you enjoy!

Thai Curry Asparagus

I love coming up with new recipes, and this past weekend was one of those times. I particularly enjoy family dinners on Sundays. There is something about that day when we can all come together and enjoy a meal together. Granted it is extremely important for me to have everyone come together every day for dinner, but I realize that is not always possible with work schedules.  So as I have been trying to eat more healthy throughout the week, meaning for vegetables, I decided to come up with this lightly sauteed Thai curry asparagus.

I recently fell in love with this curry paste when I made Khao Poon and there was something about the sweetness that I fell in love with.

Thai Curry Asparagus Recipe
Thai Curry Asparagus Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 4 oz can sweet Thai Noodle paste
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • 1 bundle of asparagus, washed and trimmed
  • 3 kaffir lime leaves, optional
  • 1 Thai chili, lightly bruised, optional
  • salt to taste

Start by heating a large skillet on medium heat. Add in the Thai noodle paste and give that a good stir, cooking for a couple of minutes to waken all of the paste.

Next add in the water, kaffir lime leaves, salt, and chili. Give another good stir. Add in the asparagus, and cook for about 4-5 minutes or until your desired tenderness. I still like my asparagus with just a slight crunch. Next, just plate and serve.

The end result is a perfect vegetable dish with that sweet curry flavor. Serve alongside with some rice for a perfect side dish. I hope you enjoy!

Loaded Baked Potato Skin Nachos

The Super Bowl has passed, and to be honest I do not think that any one of us in my family actually cared. Sure, the boys said ‘I want the Patriots to go down!’ a few times that day, but the only thing I really cared about was what we were going to snack on. I am done asking, for the most part, what everyone would like to eat, and just lay things out. My menu was simple. Slow baked ribs that would be later fried and glazed, and loaded potato skins that would also be fried.

One of my top recipes is the loaded potato skins, and as I have made so many awesome variations of potato skins, there is one thing I have never done and that is to actually fry the skins. It’s a total game changer. Why? Well because you get a whole shell of that awesome crispy and crunchy texture, not just on the edges, but the entire shell. It’s almost chip like in texture, but with a bit, and just a bit of that creaminess from the potato.

Loaded Potato Skin Nachos
Loaded Potato Skin Nachos

As with any nacho, you load this as you darn well please, but for me, there was one ingredient that made this shine and that was crispy, Nueske’s smoked duck breast lardons.

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 4 lbs of russet potatos, cleaned
  • 4 cups of shredded cheddar cheese
  • Nueske’s smoked duck breast, cubed (or substitute bacon), and fried until slightly crisp
  • 1 shallot, thinly sliced
  • 2 oz can of black olives, drained
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • sour cream, optional
  • avocado, sliced, optional
  • Your favorite hot sauce
  • cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 1 serrano chili, thinly sliced, optional
  • shredded lettuce, optional
  • salt, to taste
  • 3 cups of canola oil, 350 degrees

Again, you can build your nachos however you want. Add beans and tomatoes if you desire. Load these suckers up!

Start by preheating your oven to 400 degrees. Add the whole potatoes to a baking sheet. Use a fork and poke a few holes into each potato to allow steam to release while baking. Bake the potatoes for 50 minutes to 1 hour. Remove from the oven, and let them completely cool.

Once the potatoes have cooled, sliced them in half, lengthwise. Use a spoon and gently scoop out all of the potato into a bowl. I use all of the potato, add a bit of butter, salt, and milk and whip them up to mashed potatoes for another meal.

Once you have all of your skins ready, heat up a pot with the canola oil. Get the oil to 350 degrees on medium-high heat, and once you have your temperature, drop in about 7-8, or whatever can easily fit into the pot without crowding, and cook the skins for about 5-10 minutes or until you begin to see the interior of the skins get golden and nicely crisp. Using a slotted spoon, remove the potato skins and place them on a paper towel lined plate to release any excess oil. Immediately season by showering the skins with salt. Taters need salt.

Ingredients for making Loaded Potato Skin Nachos
Ingredients for making Loaded Potato Skin Nachos

Repeat with the potato skins.

Add the skins to a oven safe baking pan, and begin adding cheese into each skin.

When all of the skins have finished cooking and the excess oil is removed and they are nicely salted, layer the potato skins onto the baking pan and continue to add cheese into each shell.

Keep the oil on the stove, and take the cubed Nueske’s smoked duck breast and add them to the oil. Get them lightly crisp, then the same process with the slotted spoon and place onto the paper lined plate.

Take those Nueske duck lardons and place a couple into each shell. If you are using bacon, cook until slightly crisp, then crumble and add that into each shell. Add the shallots into each shell, then place back into a 400 degree oven for about 10 minutes or until the cheese is nicely melted.

Remove the potato skins from the oven (do not devour), then decorate them with green onions, avocado, cilantro, serrano chilies, olives, hot sauce, and sour cream (or whatever you desire).

Loaded Potato Skin Nachos Recipe
Loaded Potato Skin Nachos Recipe

Plate and serve. You want to talk about an ultimate game day snack, this is the one! As much as we all love nachos, this loaded potato skin nacho recipe is really, really hard to beat. It’s everything you love about a nacho but in a crispy potato skin boat! Hope you enjoy!