Spicy Slow Cooker Tex-Mex Shredded Beef Tacos

Cumin, Garlic, Cayenne… OH MY!

These  Spicy Slow Cooker Shredded Beef Tacos are inspired by my favorite street tacos and taco trucks, but they’re made in your slow cooker to make life easier, and make your house smell AH-may-ZING

slow cooker shredded beef tacos

Fall has arrived (okay, not really, but let’s pretend) and with it comes back to school, and the upswing in sports.  We have football practice, school cheer, competitive cheer, competitive cheer, jumps, tumbling, school… life

With all of this, and the still 100°F temps… slow cooker recipes are my favorite go-to recipes 

This is an incredibly easy slow cooker recipe; it is ready to go in the slow cooker in less than 10 minutes; and when it comes out of the slow cooker… oh my word, y’all.  The beef melts in your mouth like butter, while the flavor pops and explodes with heat, spice, depth, and deliciousness

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mexican street taco inspired slow cooker shredded beef


Late nights in college spent in Austin on 6th street, in San Marcos on the Square, and in College Station on Northgate; have given me an incredible appreciation for street tacos.  Being a pregnant restaurant manager in Austin, New Braunfels, and San Marcos deepened that appreciation, and gave me a unique perspective on flavor profiles and preparation. 

spicy slow cooker tacos


I’m an absolute fanatic about my slow cooker:  case in point: Slow Cooker Pot Roast with Balsamic Glaze, Slow Cooker {Roasted} Chicken, Slow Cooker Buffalo Chicken Sliders … to name a few; and I love tacos, and eating at home, and making my house smell mouthwateringly amazing… henceforth – tacos in the slow cooker.

Nathan and I like food with a kick.  Not a lip-numbing-tongue searing-tear inducing kick, but the kind of kick that wakes up your tastebuds, makes your tongue do a happy dance, and occasionally requires avocados, cheese, or milk to aid the cooling process.  

  I’ve actually tested this recipe 4 times;this time, however, this time, I hit it right on the head, choirs of angels sang, and I couldn’t stop my fork from continuously dipping in the slow cooker – over. and over. and over.  

Nathan actually stood in my office waiting for me to finish photographing this, and then proceeded to devour all 3 tacos, avocados, tomatoes and all – and ask for more.

ding ding ding!  We have a winner, folks

slow cooker shredded beef street tacos


If you like piña coladas, and getting caught in the rain…… 

oh wait.

That’s not right.

If you like a tantalizing smoky heat, savory, juicy, tender beef, and delicious tacos… this is the recipe for YOU!

Spicy Slow Cooker Shredded Beef Tacos

This slow cooker shredded beef taco recipe is a Tex-Mex/street taco inspired recipe
Print Recipe
Prep Time:10 mins
Cook Time:6 hrs
Total Time:6 hrs 10 mins


  • 3 lb. chuck roast
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne or chipotle pepper powder similar spice levels, but cpp is a smokier heat
  • 1 teaspoon comino cumin
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika trust me, smoked paprika is the way to go
  • 4 garlic cloves minced
  • 1/4 Cup organic vegetable broth
  • 2 Tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 large or 2 small, fresh jalapeños - diced (keep the seeds, if you like the spice)
  • 1/4 medium yellow onion roughly chopped
  • Juice of 1 Lime roughly 1/4 Cup of juice
  • *Condiments/Toppings/Add-Ons
  • 1 ripe medium avocado, sliced or diced
  • 1 medium tomato diced
  • 1/4 Cup cilantro roughly chopped
  • 1 jalapeno chopped
  • 1 lime sliced into wedges for squeezing


  • Heat a cast-iron skillet (my southern preference) to a medium high heat, place a pat of butter (roughly 1 Tablespoon) in the skillet and melt
  • Sear the roast in the skillet with the butter - place in the slow cooker
  • In a medium measuring bowl/cup combine the cayenne/chipotle pepper powder, comino, paprika, garlic cloves, vegetable broth, tomato paste, jalapeños, onions, and lime juice - whisk together and pour over the roast in the slow cooker
  • Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or high for 3 to 4 hours
  • When the roast is done, shred with a couple of forks and let the shredded beef sit in the juices in the slow cooker on warm for an additional 30 minutes to 2 hours
  • *Tacos
  • Serve in corn or flour tortillas topped with your favorite taco toppings - avocados, tomatoes, cilantro, diced jalapenos, salsa, sour cream, avocado cream....
Course: Slow Cooker
Cuisine: Mexican/Tex-Mex
Author: Rachel - A Southern Fairytale


If you make any of my recipes, I’d love for you to tag #asouthernfairytalerecipes and #asouthernfairytale on Instagram and Twitter so that I can see them and share them! 

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  1. So I had to write you. Your taco recipe had me missing home so bad. I could just taste tacos in Austin after a night out. Sadly the area of Japan I’m in doesn’t have everything I needed to make them. The meat wasn’t just right so I settled for something similar and the commissary was out of vegetable broth as well as cilantro and cumino (but I found a stash my mom had packed up for me so that was amazing) also no corn tortillas. I don’t usually cook much here because of the frustration of not having the items I need. Anyway! Long story longer ? I made as close as I could get to your tacos tonight and they were AMAZING! So thank you for getting me in the kitchen and cooking with your post. Even my littlest (who is picky picky) devoured them! Keep up the amazing blog work mama! You are awesome!

    1. Stephanie, You just made my day! You have no idea! I am SO excited that this brought you such joy, and got you back in the kitchen! Huge hugs to you and the kiddos all the way in Japan! <3

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