This is another “Food Paradise” favorite that I found on the Travel Channel. It comes from the Taco Guild Gastropub in Phoenix, AZ, ranked No. 2 on their countown. One of their signature tacos uses a rub that coats big chunks of beef with cocoa powder, espresso powder, Ancho chiles, plus a few more flavorful ingredients. Once the beef is saturated with the rub it goes straight onto a hot grill to sear. The beef is turned over each side to sear until it is a bit charred and dark in color. Next place the beef in a roasting pan and pour brewed coffee over it. Cover it with aluminum foil where it goes into a 300 degree oven for 5 – 6 hours. It is so tender and so flavorful when it comes out of the oven and virtually falls apart at the slightest touch. Taco Guild serves their tacos with a mango salsa topped with cotija cheese. I have to say they were spot on as the mango salsa added just the right amount of sweetness to balance the cocoa and coffee flavors. There was a lot of shredded beef to go around. I don’t know exactly how many tacos we ate but for several days we were in taco heaven.
First comes the rub. After several attempts on the amounts of each ingredients I finally came up with a good tasting rub. It’s about double what you need so I will scale it down for you. You will need cocoa powder, Ancho chile, Espresso powder, brown sugar, salt and pepper.
I have a 3 1/2 pound Chuck Tip beef roast cut into thirds.
Coat each piece until the rub covers every side.
Waiting on the grill to get hot, as close to 500 degrees as possible.
Let it sear a few minutes on each side.
They will appear dark in color.
Place the beef roast pieces into a baking pan.
Pour 2 – 3 cups of brewed coffee over the beef. You can’t go wrong with NM Pinon Coffee, it’s my favorite brew.
Cover with aluminum foil and place in a 300 degree oven for 5 – 6 hours. Turn the roast every hour so that each side simmers in the brewed coffee. As it gets closer to the 5 hour mark, test the beef with a fork. When it pulls apart easily or falls apart you will know it’s done.
Save at least a cup of the remaining coffee broth. Each time you heat up the beef, add some of the broth to rehydrate.
The beef will shred easily with 2 forks.
I prepared a mango salsa with mangos, jicama, fresno red peppers, green onion tops, cilantro and lime juice.
Mix everything together and spritz with lime juice. Refrigerate any leftover salsa.
Heat a cast iron comal and drizzle with olive oil. Heat corn tortilla for a few seconds on each side. Fill each tortilla with cocoa coffee braised beef and top with mango salsa and cotija cheese.
Cocoa Coffee Braised Beef with Mango Salsa
3 1/2 pound Beef Tip Chuck Roast, cut into thirds
Cocoa Coffee Rub, recipe follows
2 – 3 Cups Brewed Coffee
Mango Salsa, recipe follows
1/2 cup Cotija Cheese, crumbled
Cocoa Coffee Rub
2 Tablespoons Cocoa Powder
2 Tablespoons Ancho Chile
2 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
1/2 Tablespoon Espresso Powder
1 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
1 1/2 Teaspoon Pepper
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Store in air tight container.
2 medium sized Mango’s, peeled, cored and diced small
1/3 cup Jicama, cut into small matchstick pieces
2 small Red Fresno Peppers, diced small
2 Tablespoons Green Onion tops, sliced thin
2 Tablespoons Cilantro, roughly chopped
Drizzle of Olive Oil
Spritz of Lime juice
Combine prepared ingredients into a medium bowl and mix well. Refrigerate any unused salsa for later use.
Cut beef roast into 3 pieces. Prepare rub and coat beef over all sides. Heat a grill to high temperature, as close to 500 degrees as possible. Sear beef over all sides. The beef should be dark in color to almost charred. Place beef in a roasting pan and pour brewed coffee over top. Cover with aluminum foil and place in a 300 degree oven for 5 – 6 hours rotating the beef every hour or so. When the beef easily pulls apart with a fork it is ready. Shred beef with 2 forks, reserving some of the coffee broth (at least 1 cup) to rehydrate the beef.
Prepare corn tortillas on a cast iron comal with a drizzle of olive oil. Heat tortillas on each side for a few seconds. Blot dry with a paper towel.
Fill tortillas with cocoa coffee braised beef and top with mango salsa and cotija cheese.
Makes 24 – 30 tacos
9 thoughts on “Cocoa Coffee Braised Beef Tacos with Mango Salsa”
These look awesome! That beef rub is very unique and sounds delicious. Great looking tacos!!
Thank you MJ! The rub gives the beef a bold flavor which pairs well with the sweet mango salsa.
Brian Rich O'connor
I just saw these on travel channel. Thanks for sharing the recipe. These look so good!!!
That episode on the travel channel really got my attention. I just had to figure out how to make those tacos, they looked so good. I rewatched that episode so many times trying to figure out the ingredients and technique of how they made them. Even if they don’t taste exactly like the Taco Guild Gastropub, they were pretty spectacular. Enjoy!
I saw this on the Travel Channel. The tacos looked awesome. Should the cocoa powder be be sweetened or not. Thanks.
I tested the rub several times and used unsweetened cocoa powder. I watched the “Food Paradise” episode so many times trying to recapture that taste that they described. Whether my interpretation actually tastes like the original or not, I can’t say, but we did enjoy the tacos very much!
Hi – thank you very much. I’ve made it 3 times since my last post and my family and friends love it.
Thanks for taking the time to share how it turned out. That just made my day!