Newsflash! I have a new obsession.

Crockpot Short Rib Tacos with Salted Lime Cabbage and Queso Fresco I

Short ribs.

Lots and lots of short ribs.

Because… I made a lot of short ribs last week. I cooked most overnight in the crockpot to utilize nonworking hours as work time. Win.

I woke up and was eating short ribs right out of that crockpot at six in the morning with a fork.

Basically… I haven’t stopped since.

Crockpot Short Rib Tacos with Salted Lime Cabbage and Queso Fresco I

First, I made some beer-soaked short rib enchiladas and while they were OMGsofreakinggood… the whole shebang sort of overpowered the perfection that is the short rib. Does that make sense? It’s challenging to tell you how delicious something is but then say, hey, it just wasn’t good enough. I just find short ribs to be so incredibly tender and flavorful that too much of anything – even a good thing – can almost… what’s the word… RUIN them. Yeah I said it.

Probably the only time I will admit that copious amounts of cheese were not in my favor.

Crockpot Short Rib Tacos with Salted Lime Cabbage and Queso Fresco I

Round two touched upon tacos. Again, I found myself totally torn. We all know I like obnoxious amounts of makeshift fruit salsa and more than acceptable amounts of cheese on my tacos. Buuuut… I knew I couldn’t do it here. Had to let the short ribs shine!

I’m glad I talk about food like I do about beauty and personal values.

These tacos. Oye. I don’t even know what else to say considering I just professed my love for these little ribs that are short so it’s obvious that I will adore them. So in forcing myself to keep it simple, I warmed the flour tortillas, piled them high with the pulled short ribs that were slow-cooked in spices and beer, them topped them with some lime spritzed cabbage and crumbled queso fresco.

Crockpot Short Rib Tacos with Salted Lime Cabbage and Queso Fresco I

Hello perfection.

Short rib round three is going to include breakfast. I can’t even wait.

Crockpot Short Rib Tacos with Salted Lime Cabbage and Queso Fresco I


Crockpot Short Rib Tacos with Salted Lime Cabbage and Queso Fresco

Yield: serves about 4 (most likely, depending on how meaty your ribs are!)

Total Time: 8 hours


2.5 pounds beef short ribs
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
8 ounces of your favorite beer
8 fajita-sized flour or corn tortillas
1/2 small head of green cabbage, thinly sliced
1 lime, zested and juiced
4 ounces queso fresco cheese, crumbled


(Note: if you are unsure about how much meat may be on your short ribs, it may be worth asking your butcher how many pounds he/she thinks you need for the amount of people you are feeding, since they all differ.)

The night before or the morning of, heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, add short ribs and sear on all sides, just for about 1 minute, until golden and brown. Remove and place in the crockpot. In a small bowl, combine salt, pepper, paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, chili powder and cumin and mix. Sprinkle over short ribs, then pour beer in to the crockpot. Cook for about 8 hours on low, or until meat is falling off the bone. If able to, rotate short ribs once or twice during cooking.

Once finished cooking, remove with kitchen tongs and set on a large place. Let cool until you can touch them, then remove the meat from the bone.

In a large bowl, combine cabbage, lime zest and juice with a pinch of salt, tossing well with your hands to coat.

To serve, warm tortillas first, then assemble tacos with meat first, then cabbage, then crumbled cheese. Enjoy!

Crockpot Short Rib Tacos with Salted Lime Cabbage and Queso Fresco I

PS: I have a super cool margarita coming up in time for this celebration weekend… shocking, I know.

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106 Responses to “Crockpot Short Rib Tacos with Salted Lime Cabbage and Queso Fresco.”

  1. #
    Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Peppers — April 29, 2013 @ 6:56 am

    All of your taco recipes have me drooling, but I am sooooooooooo loving this recipe!! I recently made a carne asada in the crockpot, I tell ya, the crockpot makes the best shredded meat for tacos!! Now you have me craving tacos!!!


  2. #
    Brian @ A Thought For Food — April 29, 2013 @ 6:58 am

    I’ve been a bit taco obsessed recently. These look marvelous!


  3. #
    Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 29, 2013 @ 6:59 am

    Can’t wait for the margarita recipe since I don’t eat meat but always love your photos and ideas. I wonder if a beer marinade would be good on crockpot tofu! :)


  4. #
    leslie — April 29, 2013 @ 7:01 am

    Short Ribs……my weakness….my love.


  5. #
    Tracy | Peanut Butter And Onion — April 29, 2013 @ 7:02 am

    Short Ribs are so versatile…. I would totally eat them for breakfast… hand me a fork!


  6. #
    Marie @ Little Kitchie — April 29, 2013 @ 7:04 am

    Short ribs are the BEST! Totally agree that they are best in simple dishes because they are so super flavorful on their own!


  7. #
    ashley - baker by nature — April 29, 2013 @ 7:08 am

    I just made short ribs for the first time last month and fell HARD!


  8. #
    Belinda @themoonblushbaker — April 29, 2013 @ 7:15 am

    My family been cooking short ribs for ages! we often braise them in Asian spices and pull the meat off to freeze. fantastic cut right? so flavourful with no work!


  9. #
    Mandie @ Oh So Decadent — April 29, 2013 @ 7:30 am

    I am so absolutely enamored with short ribs so these tacos are right up my alley. Like as in my new favorite recipe. And anything made in the crockpot is a win in my book!


  10. #
    Aimee @ ShugarySweets — April 29, 2013 @ 7:32 am

    I’m obsessed with your obsession.


  11. #
    Kelly @ Life made Sweeter — April 29, 2013 @ 7:33 am

    These tacos look great! Need to try making these for my hubby since he loves short ribs too. Thank you Jessica!


  12. #
    Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat — April 29, 2013 @ 7:38 am

    These look so pretty! I don’t think I’ve ever actually cooked ribs but my mum looooooves them so I’m thinking this could be a potential Mother’s Day recipe! With those margaritas of course. ;)


  13. #
    Tieghan — April 29, 2013 @ 7:55 am

    Ha, I have been cooking with my crockpot overnight to! works awesome!

    These tacos sound and look amazing!! I am really starting to love this whole Cinco De Mayo holiday! Any excuse to make margarita themed food is a good one!


  14. #
    jennifer — April 29, 2013 @ 8:32 am

    holy crap i love short ribs. even better with less work. i can’t wait to try these.


  15. #
    Meg @ Peaches and Cake — April 29, 2013 @ 8:34 am

    YESSS I love it when you make MEAT! now you’re speaking my language


  16. #
    bridget {bake at 350} — April 29, 2013 @ 8:44 am

    I was making out my grocery list this morning and feeling uninspired. So, I thought, let’s see what Miss Jessica has going on. Ding! Ding! Ding!!! Adding this to my grocery list right this very second. CANNOT WAIT!!!


  17. #
    Rayna — April 29, 2013 @ 8:53 am

    Oh my god. This is exactly what I need after a long weekend, it’s for sure the way to start my week off right!


  18. #
    Carly @ Snack Therapy — April 29, 2013 @ 9:30 am

    You can sell these in your food truck (that you’re going to drive to California, please & thank you).


  19. #
    Alyssa — April 29, 2013 @ 9:31 am

    And now I want tacos for breakfast!! Yum!


  20. #
    carrian — April 29, 2013 @ 9:51 am

    Me too!! I stinking love short ribs!


  21. #
    Jessica — April 29, 2013 @ 9:59 am

    Oh yes – what is this you say about short ribs for breakfast? Consider me 100% in. But I’ll take a few of these tacos in the meantime. I love that you’re cooking short ribs overnight in the crockpot – your house must smell amazing in the morning!


  22. #
    Not Only Sugar — April 29, 2013 @ 10:12 am

    This tapas is so lovely!!!

    Not Only Sugar


  23. #
    Heather (Heather's Dish) — April 29, 2013 @ 10:35 am

    I think I could eat the salted lime cabbage by the pound – what am I saying? I could eat everything in this recipe by the pound!


  24. #
    Amanda @ Food, Fitness, Faith — April 29, 2013 @ 10:38 am

    I totally agree about the whole short ribs being over-powered by other flavors. I had a really tasty short rib and asian slaw + plum sauce wrap the other day and eventually just started picking out the short rib because that’s what I really wanted. And now I really want these tacos too!


  25. #
    allie@sweetpotatobites — April 29, 2013 @ 10:52 am

    I love short ribs! And this recipe is perfect for Cinco de Mayo this weekend.


  26. #
    Jet Pabst — April 29, 2013 @ 10:54 am

    Oh my! Sounds fresh and delicious, not to mention easy by cooking in crockpot!


  27. #
    Mr. & Mrs. P — April 29, 2013 @ 10:56 am

    Looks amazing!!! Love any type of tacos!


  28. #
    Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking — April 29, 2013 @ 11:00 am

    LOVE the idea of adding a cabbage slaw! Mmm!


  29. #
    Jill Melton — April 29, 2013 @ 11:04 am

    Jessica, love this recipe. I will so be making it this week. Thanks


  30. #
    jenny — April 29, 2013 @ 11:05 am

    this is probably sacrilege, but for those of us who are not beer aficionados and don’t tend to drink or cook with it, do you have any suggestions for a substitution? these look yummy!


    • Jessica — April 29th, 2013 @ 11:08 am

      of course! you could use a little beef stock or maybe some ginger ale??


      • jenny — April 30th, 2013 @ 9:34 am

        thank you so much! :)

  31. #
    Annie @ Annie's City Kitchen — April 29, 2013 @ 11:06 am

    I always associate warm weather with eating ridiculous amounts of tacos and I was JUST telling my sister that I wanted a decent taco. Well actually, I was just complaining to her about wanting a decent taco. These are basically my dream taco. Lime cabbage? duh.


  32. #
    joelle @ on a pink typewriter — April 29, 2013 @ 11:10 am

    Mmmm this is a great idea! Beef looks so tender!


  33. #
    Nicole @ Liberty Belles — April 29, 2013 @ 11:33 am

    bah making these this weekend! what beer to use…


  34. #
    cindy coniglio — April 29, 2013 @ 12:27 pm

    I have a complaint. Too much food lately. Where are alll the SWEETS????? lol


  35. #
    Michelle @ Brown Eyed Baker — April 29, 2013 @ 12:53 pm

    Gorgeous tacos! I have a serious Mexican craving!


  36. #
    Kylie @ immaeatthat — April 29, 2013 @ 12:57 pm

    Love taco anything! These look wonderful. I’m throwing my best friend a wedding shower this week and we’re having pulled pork tacos and I think I’m gonna make like all 12 of those fruit salsas to serve with them! I wish I was kidding…but they all just look SO good!


  37. #
    SaltySweetSour — April 29, 2013 @ 1:06 pm

    Short ribs are the best! Anytime they are on a menu, in any capacity, I have to order them. It may be more of a compulsion than obsession. Either way, they are delicious.


  38. #
    Ashley Bee (Quarter Life Crisis Cuisine) — April 29, 2013 @ 1:15 pm

    I really need to get my butt in gear and make a cinco de mayo recipe! These look amazing and so fresh and flavorful :) I need to find out where to get queso fresco!


  39. #
    Molly @Bakelette — April 29, 2013 @ 1:47 pm

    I have never had short ribs….but these pictures oi vey girl I want them!

    xo M


  40. #
    Sarah McBride — April 29, 2013 @ 2:03 pm

    Wow – this looks really delicious. Question: What type of cheese is queso fresco? Is it available at any grocery store. It sounds super tasty!


  41. #
    Melissa @ Treats With a Twist — April 29, 2013 @ 2:21 pm

    Lordy lordy! I’ve never had short ribs, but they look SO phenomenal! I can hardly stand the look of those tacos! :)


  42. #
    Holly @ EatGreatBEGreat — April 29, 2013 @ 2:58 pm

    Sounds awesome! My husband would totally be into this meal! Plus, I love the fact that you use the crock pot…makes like so easy!


  43. #
    Amanda — April 29, 2013 @ 3:22 pm

    Looks delicious and your photos are beautiful :)


  44. #
    Cynthia — April 29, 2013 @ 3:25 pm

    I have never cooked short ribs, so this recipe caught my eye and sound delicious! I would love to have your enchilada recipe also! Pretty please :) thanks


  45. #
    Julia Jolliff — April 29, 2013 @ 3:27 pm

    Tacos are my favorite–these look so yummy with the short ribs!


  46. #
    Julianne @ Beyond Frosting — April 29, 2013 @ 4:40 pm

    I am so afraid of cooking anything other than chicken in my crockpot, until a couple weeks ago, I made a pork shoulder for carnitas. It was so good! I am dying to try more. This has been pinned! I can’t wait to try it.


  47. #
    steph@stephsbitebybite — April 29, 2013 @ 5:49 pm

    All I need now is some refried beans, a margarita, and a sombrero and I’ll be all set for Cinco de Mayo!


  48. #
    LisaG — April 29, 2013 @ 6:02 pm

    Yum! I can never get enough Mexican food posts.


  49. #
    3girls1apple — April 29, 2013 @ 7:12 pm

    This looks delicious!!!!


  50. #
    Maria Tadic — April 29, 2013 @ 7:42 pm

    Short ribs are so full of flavor. Back in my meat-eating days I loved short ribs over a big pile of mashed potatoes. Can’t get any better than that!



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