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Chile-Rubbed Braised Beef

Scott Phillips

Servings: 4 to 6

The Tex-Mex flavors of this fork-tender meat make it perfect for shredding and using in tacos, burritos, and even nachos. It’s also tasty on its own topped with the chunky slow-cooked sauce made right in the pot and served with rice. For best flavor, season the beef at least a day ahead.


For the spice rub

  • 1/4 cup chili powder
  • 4-1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 2 Tbs. light brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp. ground allspice
  • 1 3-1/2-lb. to 4-1/2-lb. beef chuck roast, preferably bone-in

For the braise

  • 1 28-oz. can diced tomatoes
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 6 large cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • Kosher salt

Nutritional Information

  • Calories (kcal) : 360
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 140
  • Fat (g): 16
  • Saturated Fat (g): 6
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 1
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 7
  • Cholesterol (mg): 115
  • Sodium (mg): 1380
  • Carbohydrates (g): 17
  • Fiber (g): 5
  • Sugar (g): 9
  • Protein (g): 36


Season the beef

  • Combine the chili powder, salt, sugar, cumin, oregano, and allspice in a small bowl.
  • Using a paring knife, trace the fat seams of the roast and around the bone, if there is one, to make a series of deep incisions on both sides, without completely separating the muscles. coat the meat all over with the rub, massaging it between the muscles and on all sides of the roast.
  • Put the meat in a Dutch oven or high-sided skillet that fits it snugly. Cover and refrigerate for at least 12 hours and up to 3 days.

Braise the beef

  • Remove the meat from the refrigerator and let sit at room temperature for 1 to 1-1/2 hours before cooking.
  • Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat to 300°F. Uncover the beef, and add the tomatoes, onion, garlic, and 1/2 cup water. cover tightly and cook until the meat is fork-tender, 3 to 3-1/2 hours.
  • Leaving the liquid and vegetables in the pot, transfer the meat to a rimmed baking sheet to cool slightly. Separate the meat into large chunks, and remove and discard any fat.
  • Skim the fat from the broth. Return the meat to the pot and arrange the pieces in a single layer. (The dish can be prepared up to this point and refrigerated for 1 to 2 days. Reheat the meat at 300°F, covered, for 30 minutes before proceeding with the recipe.)
  • Raise the oven temperature to 425°F. cook the beef, uncovered, until the exposed surface is deeply browned, flipping once, about 40 minutes. Serve with the vegetables and sauce, and season to taste with salt.


Rate or Review

Reviews (4 reviews)

  • kvelthaus | 03/09/2017

    Rave reviews from the family. I had used a 3 lb roast so now Ihave extra rb. Yaay. This was so tender and fkavorful. Made with orzo and green beans. Absolutely delicious.

  • awats99 | 03/09/2017

    This method worked well and the meat was nicely flavored and very tender. I seasoned my 4 lb boneless roast 3 days ahead. It makes a great taco, quesadilla, or as a sauce over cheesy grits.

  • KathyL | 01/26/2017

    Just made this for dinner, served over egg noodles, and it was fantastic! Extremely flavorful, and meat was very tender (used 3lb boneless chuck, as that was all I could find). As suggested in recipe, I started it yesterday, then cut up meat and finished remaining cooking today. It had excellent flavor even yesterday before the final browning step. Leftovers will be shredded for burritos- can't wait!

  • User avater
    TrendyCat | 01/18/2017

    Followed the recipe exactly and wasn't impressed with "backward" braising. We had the delicious looking tacos but won't be making this again.

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