What Is Beef Caldillo? The Ultimate Guide

Are you looking for a hearty and flavorful dish to warm you up on a cold night?

Look no further than beef caldillo, a Mexican beef stew that is sure to satisfy your taste buds.

This slow-cooked recipe features tender chunks of beef, potatoes, and a variety of spices and salsas that give it a rich and spicy flavor.

While it may not be found on many restaurant menus, this Tex-Mex dish has been influenced by its southern origins and is a favorite among those who love bold and savory flavors.

Whether you make it on the stovetop or in an Instant Pot, this soul-warming soup is sure to become a family favorite.

So grab some warm tortillas and get ready to enjoy a delicious bowl of beef caldillo!

What Is Beef Caldillo?

Beef caldillo is a traditional Mexican beef stew that is known for its rich and spicy flavor. It typically features tender chunks of beef, potatoes, onions, tomatoes, and a variety of salsas and spices.

While it may not be as well-known as other Mexican dishes like tacos or enchiladas, beef caldillo is a favorite among those who love hearty and flavorful soups.

The dish is often slow-cooked to allow the flavors to meld together and create a delicious and satisfying meal. It can be made on the stovetop or in an Instant Pot, depending on your preference.

The History Of Beef Caldillo

Beef caldillo has a long and rich history in Mexico, particularly in the state of Durango. The dish is believed to have originated in this region, which is known for its deep-rooted traditions and cowboy culture.

Caldillo Durangueño, a variation of beef caldillo, is perhaps the most famous version of the dish. It is made with chile pasado, a roasted poblano pepper that is native to Durango and the neighboring state of Chihuahua. The chile pasado gives the dish its distinctive flavor and is often considered the star ingredient.

Despite its popularity in Durango, beef caldillo is not commonly found on restaurant menus outside of Mexico. Instead, it is often made at home by grandmothers or passed down through family recipes.

The dish has evolved over time, with different regions and families adding their own unique twists to the recipe. Some variations may include additional vegetables like carrots or celery, while others may use different cuts of beef or spices.

Ingredients You Need To Make Beef Caldillo

To make beef caldillo, you will need the following ingredients:

– 1 pound of boneless sirloin steak, cut into bite-sized pieces

– 3 medium potatoes, peeled and chopped into small pieces

– 1 onion, chopped

– 2 garlic cloves, minced

– 2 cups of beef broth

– 1 can of diced tomatoes

– 1 can of green chiles

– 1 tablespoon of olive oil

– 1 teaspoon of cumin

– 1 teaspoon of chili powder

– Salt and pepper to taste

These ingredients come together to create a hearty and flavorful soup that is perfect for cold weather or anytime you’re in the mood for a delicious and comforting meal. The beef provides protein and richness, while the potatoes add texture and substance. The spices and chiles give the soup a spicy kick that will warm you up from the inside out.

How To Make Beef Caldillo On The Stovetop

To make beef caldillo on the stovetop, start by spraying a 5-quart Dutch oven with cooking spray and heating it over high heat. Spray the beef with cooking spray and add it to the Dutch oven, cooking for 3 minutes and stirring frequently. Then, add the onion and cook for an additional 5 minutes until the liquid has evaporated and the beef and onion are browned.

Next, stir in water, tomatoes, and cumin, heating to boiling and then reducing the heat to medium. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Add cubed potatoes and cover again, simmering for an additional 10 minutes or until the potatoes are tender. Finally, remove from heat and stir in cilantro.

The heat level of your beef caldillo will depend on the products you use in the recipe. For a milder version, use plain canned diced tomatoes without chilis, mild tomato salsa, and mild salsa verde. If you prefer a spicier stew, opt for spicier Rotel options (such as Serrano), hot red salsa, and hot salsa verde plus a bit of chipotle in adobo.

This delicious and hearty stew is perfect for a cold winter day or when you’re craving something spicy and flavorful. Give it a try on your stovetop today!

How To Make Beef Caldillo In An Instant Pot

If you’re looking to make beef caldillo in an Instant Pot, follow these simple steps:

1. Start by combining flour, garlic powder, cumin, and pepper in a small mixing bowl. Mix well and set aside.

2. Slice your beef into small cubes and place them in a large mixing bowl. Pour vinegar over the beef and massage it in with your hands.

3. Sprinkle the flour-spice mixture onto the beef and toss with your hands until fully coated.

4. Turn on the Saute function on your Instant Pot and add olive oil to the pot. Brown the beef cubes on all sides for 5 to 8 minutes, then remove them from the pot and set them aside.

5. Add onions to the pot and cook until they are soft and translucent, about 5 minutes.

6. Turn off the Saute function and return the beef to the pot with onions. Mix in beef broth, potatoes, diced tomatoes, green chiles, oregano, garlic, cumin, chipotle chile powder, chili powder, and pepper.

7. Close and lock the lid of your Instant Pot. Select high pressure according to manufacturer’s instructions and set the timer for 45 minutes. Allow 10 to 15 minutes for pressure to build.

8. Release pressure using the natural-release method according to manufacturer’s instructions, which should take around 10 to 40 minutes.

9. Once the pressure has been released, open the lid of your Instant Pot and give your beef caldillo a quick stir before serving.

By following these steps, you’ll be able to make a delicious and authentic beef caldillo in no time using your Instant Pot.

Tips For Perfecting Your Beef Caldillo Recipe

If you want to make the perfect beef caldillo, there are a few tips that you should keep in mind. Here are some suggestions for getting the most out of your recipe:

1. Choose Your Ingredients Carefully: The heat level of your beef caldillo will depend largely on the ingredients that you use. If you want a milder version, opt for plain canned diced tomatoes without chilis, mild tomato salsa, and mild salsa verde. For a spicier version, choose from the spicier Rotel options, hot red salsa, and hot salsa verde, along with a bit of chipotle in adobo.

2. Use Canned Green Chilies: Using canned green chilies saves time and adds great flavor to your beef caldillo. The original recipe calls for using canned roasted whole green chilies, sliced lengthwise. However, diced mild green chilies can be used as a time-saving option that doesn’t require any preparation.

3. Brown Your Meat: To get the best flavor out of your beef caldillo, it’s important to brown the meat and onions before adding them to the stew. This helps to caramelize the meat and create a rich, savory flavor.

4. Slow-Cook Your Stew: While you can make beef caldillo on the stovetop or in an Instant Pot, slow-cooking it is often the best way to allow the flavors to meld together and create a delicious and satisfying meal. If using a slow cooker, add all of the ingredients except for the potatoes and cook on low for 8-12 hours, or on high for 4-6 hours. Add cubed potatoes about halfway through the cooking time.

5. Adjust Seasonings To Taste: Finally, be sure to taste your beef caldillo as it cooks and adjust the seasonings as needed. Add more salt or spices if necessary to achieve the perfect balance of flavors.

By following these tips, you can create a delicious and authentic beef caldillo that is sure to impress your family and friends.

Serving Suggestions For Beef Caldillo

Beef caldillo is a versatile dish that can be served in many different ways. Here are some serving suggestions to try:

1. Serve with tortillas: Warm up some tortillas and serve them on the side of your beef caldillo. You can use them to scoop up the stew or to make tacos.

2. Top with cheese: Sprinkle some shredded cheese on top of your beef caldillo for an extra burst of flavor. Cheddar, Monterey Jack, or queso fresco are all good options.

3. Add some avocado: Sliced or mashed avocado is a great addition to beef caldillo. It adds a creamy texture and a fresh flavor that complements the spicy stew.

4. Serve with rice: A scoop of rice on the side of your beef caldillo is a classic way to enjoy this dish. The rice helps soak up the flavorful broth and makes the meal more filling.

5. Garnish with cilantro: Chopped fresh cilantro is a great finishing touch for beef caldillo. It adds a bright, herbaceous flavor and makes the dish look more colorful and appetizing.

No matter how you choose to serve it, beef caldillo is sure to be a crowd-pleaser. Its bold flavors and hearty ingredients make it a perfect meal for cold winter nights or anytime you’re in the mood for something comforting and satisfying.