Recipes & Tips

Grass-fed Lamb Birria Recipe

  • Servings: 6
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 hours

Inspired by the traditional Mexican dish, this easy, flavorful Grass-fed Lamb Birria recipe from Foodness Gracious is slow cooked for hours in a rich, homemade chili sauce made with dried chilis and spices, ensuring the lamb shoulder melts in your mouth with every bite.

Tip: When trimming your lamb shoulder, be sure to leave a little fat on to keep the meat moist as it renders.


  • 3 1/2-4 lb. New Zealand grass-fed boneless lamb shoulder (Tip: look for the Taste Pure Nature Logo)
  • 4 dried chile de arbol
  • 3 dried ancho chilis
  • 2 dried guajillo chilis
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, divided and sliced
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 14 oz can fire roasted tomatoes, including juice
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons cumin
  • 2 tablespoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon all-spice
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • Salt
  • Black pepper

To serve:

  • Prepared rice
  • Fresh cilantro


  • 1. In a large pan, heat olive oil. Sear lamb for 3-4 minutes on each side. Transfer lamb to a slow cooker.
  • 2. In a pot, combine the dried chilis and beef broth. Bring to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes, or until soft. Remove the chilis and save the broth.
  • 3. Cut the tops from the chilis and remove the seeds. Transfer the de-seeded chilis into a blender with the broth.
  • 4. To the same pot used for the chilis, add half the sliced onion and garlic. Cook for 3-4 minutes, or until soft. Transfer to the blender.
  • 5. Add tomato paste, tomatoes, cumin, all-spice, oregano, cinnamon, coriander, paprika, salt, and black pepper to the blender. Blend on medium until smooth.
  • 6. Pour the chili sauce over the lamb in the slow cooker, turning the lamb to make sure the meat is well coated. Add the remaining half of sliced onion to the slow cooker.
  • 7. Cook on high for 4-5 hours, or on low for 8 hours. The meat is done when you can shred it easily with two forks or when it falls apart when picked up with tongs.
  • 8. Transfer meat to cutting board and shred using 2 forks, discarding of any large chunks of fat. Return to chili sauce in slow cooker.
  • 9. Serve with rice and fresh cilantro.
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