Birria Grilled Cheese is slow-cooked, shredded beef smothered in red enchilada sauce topped with onions, queso fresco, mozzarella cheese, and cilantro grilled between two slices of Texas toast. It’s a sandwich that is as messy as it is delicious! In fact, it’s pretty much the sandwich version of my Slow Cooker Shredded Beef Tacos that we could not get enough of!

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What is Birria?

To put it simply, birria is a meat stew bathed in a blend of chiles and spices, giving it a deep, red hue. Traditionally, it is made with goat meat and is served on corn tortillas. Although this birria grilled cheese recipe is not authentic birria, the beef is still super juicy and tender after being cooked in a slow cooker for 10 hours.

Steps for Making a Birria Grilled Cheese. Dinner, Supper. Grilled Cheese, Best Grilled Cheese, Birria Grilled Cheese Sandwich, Shredded Beef Grilled Cheese, Superbowl Food, Game Day Food, Football Recipes, i am homesteader, iamhomesteader

Ingredients

Beef: Choose a cut of beef like a chuck roast for this recipe. While it slowly stews in the enchilada sauce, it will become nice and tender.

Enchilada Sauce: The beef will cook with the enchilada sauce, which makes the beef super tender and flavorful. Make your own, homemade enchilada sauce to use. It’s better than anything you can get in a can!

Bread: I love the thick slices of Texas Toast, but you can use your favorite kind of bread. But, it should be hearty enough to hold all of the goodness between the slices.

Queso Fresco: Queso Fresco is a white cheese that is soft and crumbly with a mild flavor. I recommend making your own!

Cilantro: We tested this recipe with and without cilantro. When the votes were in, it was clear that the sandwich with cilantro was the winner! However, if you really dislike cilantro, the sandwich is still amazing!

Halved Shredded Beef Birria Grilled Cheese Sandwiches in a Pan from OVerhead. Dinner, Supper. Grilled Cheese, Best Grilled Cheese, Birria Grilled Cheese Sandwich, Shredded Beef Grilled Cheese, Superbowl Food, Game Day Food, Football Recipes, i am homesteader, iamhomesteader

Do I Have to Sear the Beef?

This is a question that comes up quite a bit. Of course, you don’t have to sear the beef, but it does make a difference. Searing it before adding it to the slow cooker will give the meat more flavor.

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Can I Make the Birria Grilled Cheese Spicier?

Yes! If you want more of a kick to the birria grilled cheese, simply add cayenne pepper or chipotle peppers to the slow cooker as you are cooking the chuck roast.

Can I Make Birria Grilled Cheese Ahead of Time?

You can certainly get the beef made in advance. The cooked beef will last in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 4-5 days. Or, if you need to store it longer, freeze it. Be sure to let out as much air as possible after storing the beef in a freezer-safe container. Label and date the packaging; it will last up to 3 months in the freezer.

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Can I Buy Birria?

Yes, this is commonly found in the refrigerator section of grocery stores. While homemade is often best, you can certainly get an excellent grilled cheese with pre-made Birria. That also takes your cook time down to just a few minutes!

More Grilled Cheese Recipes

Shredded Beef Birria Grilled Cheese Sanwich Cut in Half and Inside Showing on Cutting Board. Dinner, Supper. Grilled Cheese, Best Grilled Cheese, Birria Grilled Cheese Sandwich, Shredded Beef Grilled Cheese, Superbowl Food, Game Day Food, Football Recipes, i am homesteader, iamhomesteader
5 from 2 votes

Birria Grilled Cheese

Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 10 hrs
Total Time 10 hrs 15 mins
Birria Grilled Cheese is slow-cooked, shredded beef smothered in red enchilada sauce, onions, queso fresco, mozzarella cheese, and cilantro grilled between two slices of Texas toast.

Ingredients

Shredded Beef*

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 pounds chuck roast
  • 1 tablespoon beef bouillon powder, or 1 bouillon cube
  • 1 can (28 ounces) enchilada sauce, red

Grilled Cheese

  • ½ cup (1 stick / 113 g) unsalted butter, divided
  • 20 slices Texas toast
  • 1 medium white onion, finely diced, divided
  • cups (305 g) queso fresco, divided
  • cups (282.5 g) mozzarella cheese, shredded, divided
  • 2 teaspoons chopped cilantro, divided

Instructions

  • To a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat, add oil.
  • Once the oil is hot, add the chuck roast to the skillet and sear on each side, just enough to brown (3-5 minutes per side).
  • Add the seared beef to a crockpot. Top with bouillon powder and the enchilada sauce.
  • Cover and slow cook on low for 10 hours, or until the meat is tender and easily pulls apart.
  • When ready, remove the chuck roast from the slow cooker and use two forks to shred. Add the shredded roast back to the juices in the slow cooker.

Grilled Cheese

  • Preheat a skillet to medium-high heat.
  • Butter one side of each slice of bread.
  • Working one or two at a time, add bread, buttered side down into the skillet. While it is cooking, top with ½ cup shredded beef, about 1 tablespoon of white onions, ¼ cup queso fresco, ¼ cup mozzarella, cilantro, and another slice of bread, buttered side up.
  • Cook over medium-low heat for 5-7 minutes; then, flip over the sandwich and cook another 5-7 minutes, or until golden brown. (If it seems like the bread is taking a long time to brown, be patient, as the cheese inside needs time to melt.) Use a spatula to remove from the skillet.
  • Serve with leftover juices from the slow cooker for dipping.

Notes

*If using store-bought or premade shredded beef (Birria) the time to make this sandwich is about 20 minutes. 

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Reader Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I made this and it was amazing. I make my own enchilada sauce from Mexican peppers and its nice to have another recipe to make with the sauce. My best friend who is Mexican told me to try it with pork too. I served it with Spanish rice and refried beans! I also spiced my sons up by adding jalapeño bacon and I sautéed some jalapeños in the bacon grease and added those too. On my sandwich I added sliced tomatoes and my husband’s was as the recipe was written. All were so good. The cilantro is a must as the recipe stated. Thanks so much for such a great recipe. My family says this is a top 5 which is huge in my family. We were all discussing which recipe would be bumped from the top 5 list! Lol

  2. Patricia Pignataro, I too am without a gb. You can eat anything you want without one. It just may take longer for the healing process. I love this recipe. I’ve made it many times.

  3. 5 stars
    This recipe looks so delicious but for health reasons I recently gave up eating beef and pork (and my body likes me a lot better!). Can this be adapted for chicken?? Because I no longer have a gall bladder I find fatty meats too difficult to digest so I am now trying to adapt to life without them. Thanks Amanda, I love your recipes!

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