Last week (and the week before that, actually), Mark had to work in Nebraska all week. One night, during our nightly phone call, he said, “Oh, hey, I ate at your favorite restaurant.”

How is that even possible, you might wonder. Because a) it’s not like I spend a lot of time in Nebraska, and b) what are the odds my favorite restaurant would be located in middle-of-nowhere Nebraska over Kansas City?

Well, he was joking, but he wasn’t completely wrong, either. Two years ago when he had to work up there for a couple weeks, Annalyn and I took a road trip to visit him over the weekend. While we were there, we ate at a Mexican restaurant that changed my life.

What? Exaggerate? Me? NO.

You know I love the Mexican food, but my go-to meal had long been a burrito. That day, though, I ventured out to a shredded beef taco – and I’ve never looked back. Shredded beef tacos are now my favorite Mexican meal to fix, to serve to guests and to eat.

And it is the easiest thing to fix. Ever. I promise, you can do it, too. (Well, a frozen pizza is the easiest thing to fix ever. But this is way better!)
 

How to Make Shredded Beef Tacos:

Buy or thaw a roast (approximately 3 lbs is a good size). Cover it in a couple packets of taco seasoning (or, even better, the equivalent of two packets in homemade taco seasoning). Stick it in your crock pot, fill it with enough water to come to the top of the meat, and cook it for a few hours. You can cook it on high for 4-6 hours; that should do the trick.

Then, grab two forks and shred away. I like serving it with soft flour shells, shredded monterey jack, homemade pico de gallo and sour cream.

Mmmmmm . . .

Shredded beef tacos – and my love of them – illustrate my feelings about beef well, and the Beef Checkoff Program agrees. I took its My Plate, My Way personality quiz (Fine, assessment, but you know how I love a good personality test. ) and it determined that my eating style is Cost Slicer. Of course, when I read the other personality eating style descriptions, I realized that I’m just as much a Family Chef, Time Tackler and Health Seeker as I am a Cost Slicer. Lucky for me, beef in general and shredded beef tacos in particular work for all those eating styles.

How so? Well, shredded beef tacos can be made with several different cuts of meat, so you can pick the healthiest one and/or the one that fits best in your budget. They’re fast and easy to make, and everyone in my family loves them!

But, the tacos – much as I love them, and good grief, I’ve done everything here but write a love song for them – isn’t the only beef recipe on my menu. See, when it comes to beef, I’m spoiled. My father-in-law is a former cattle farmer and generously fills our freezer with meat once a year. Therefore, the majority of the recipes in our regular rotation feature some kind of beef.

Homemade pizza is super easy (and cheap if you make your own dough), and chili is perfect for a crowd or freezing. Lasagna and other pasta dishes are my husband’s favorites, and these garlic mustard beef skewers were crazy good!

The fact is, I do love red meat and in our house, more often than not, beef IS what’s for dinner.

What’s your favorite recipe that uses beef?

I was compensated for this post, but the ode to shredded beef tacos and all other opinions are definitely my own. If you like beef, too, check out KansasBeef.org for tons of great recipes and more information about lean beef and its role in a healthy diet.

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