Spiced beef taco recipe | The Ethical Butcher

Spiced beef taco recipe | The Ethical Butcher

This series of recipes was produced for us by chef Nick Sandler and shows how to cook simple dishes outside in a pizza-style wood-fired oven.


Spiced beef taco recipe

Serves 4


The carnitas

500g minced beef
4 spring onions, finely sliced
1 tablespoon tomato puree
1 teaspoon ground cumin
A small bunch of oregano, chopped
1/2 a tablespoon of ancho powder. If you can’t get hold of this, used smoked paprika or any other chilli powder, but adjust the amount. Chipotle powder, for example, is extremely hot, so you will need to halve or even quarter the amount
1 teaspoon Maldon Sea Salt
3 cloves of garlic, chopped
1/2 a red pepper, finely chopped


The salsa

2 tomatoes, chopped
1 fresh red chilli, chopped
1/2 a small can of black beans (approx 150g)
1/2 a red onion, finely chopped
1 avocado, peeled, stoned, chopped into small chunks
1/4 of a cucumber, cut into dainty cubes
Juice of a lime
Salt and ground black pepper

The rest

Soft corn tortillas
Chopped coriander
Queso fresco or another salty, crumbly white cheese like feta
Sliced red chillies
Chunks of fresh lime


For best results cook in a domestic fan oven.



Make sure your oven is nice and hot. If you are roasting this recipe in the kitchen, 220-240ºC is good. If you are firing up the brick oven go as hot as you like, but keep an eye on the roast as the flames lick up the bricks. 

Mix the ingredients for the carnitas together in a large bowl with your hands.

Shape into small torpedos, about 4 inches long.

Place in a single layer on a medium-sized baking tray and bake aggressively in the oven for 10-12 mins.

Toss up the salsa ingredients in a small bowl while the carnitas are cooking, or make in advance.

Warm the tortillas by the mouth of the oven.

To make a taco, take a sort tortilla and arm it with a beef carnitas torpedo. Top with salsa, coriander, queso fresco, sliced chillies and lime juice.