American Beef Tamales

American Beef Tamales are a delightful fusion of traditional Mexican cuisine with an American twist. They consist of seasoned ground beef encased in a masa dough and wrapped in corn husks, steamed to perfection. These tamales are a popular dish in both Mexico and the United States, loved for their savory filling and unique texture.

Pairing with American Beef Tamales

The rich and flavorful American Beef Tamales pair wonderfully with a variety of sides and condiments. A classic choice is to serve them with a side of Spanish rice and refried beans. For a refreshing contrast, a tangy salsa verde or a spicy red chili sauce can elevate the dish. A dollop of sour cream or a sprinkle of cheese can also be added for extra richness. Don’t forget a cold beer or a zesty margarita to complete the meal.

Storing and Preserving

Proper storage is key to maintaining the quality of American Beef Tamales. In the refrigerator, they can last up to a week when kept in an airtight container. For longer storage, freeze them individually wrapped in plastic wrap and then placed in a freezer bag, lasting up to six months. To reheat, steam them until they are thoroughly warmed through, preserving their moisture and flavor.

Common Mistakes and Troubleshooting

A common mistake when making American Beef Tamales is overfilling them, which can lead to breakage during cooking. Ensure the masa dough is not too dry or too wet, as this affects the texture. If tamales come out too soggy, it could be due to excessive moisture in the masa or over-steaming. Conversely, if they are too dry, they may need more lard or broth in the masa mixture.

FAQs about American Beef Tamales

What is the origin of American Beef Tamales?

American Beef Tamales originated from traditional Mexican tamales, adapted with ingredients common in American cuisine.

Can I use other meats instead of beef?

Yes, chicken, pork, or even vegetarian fillings can be used as alternatives.

How long does it take to make tamales?

The process can take several hours, including preparation and steaming time.

Are tamales gluten-free?

Generally, yes, as the masa dough is made from corn.

Can tamales be made in advance?

Yes, they can be made in advance and stored in the refrigerator or freezer.

How do I know when tamales are done cooking?

Tamales are done when the masa is firm and pulls away from the husk easily.

Can I make tamales without a steamer?

Yes, alternative methods include using a colander over a pot of boiling water.

Are American Beef Tamales spicy?

This depends on the seasoning used; they can be adjusted to preferred spice levels.


American Beef Tamales are a versatile and delicious dish that brings together the best of Mexican and American cuisines. With the right preparation, pairing, and storage, they can be a delightful addition to any meal. Remember to avoid common mistakes and enjoy the process of making and savoring these savory treats.

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American Beef Tamales

American Beef Tamales

  • Author: admin


  • 2 cups masa harina (corn dough flour)
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil or lard
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 2 cups cooked, shredded beef
  • 1 cup red chili sauce
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • Corn husks, soaked in warm water


  1. In a large bowl, mix masa harina, chicken broth, vegetable oil or lard, baking powder, salt, and chili powder to form a dough. Set aside.
  2. In another bowl, combine the cooked shredded beef, red chili sauce, onions, garlic, and cumin. Mix well.
  3. Take a soaked corn husk and spread a thin layer of masa dough over it, leaving some space at the edges.
  4. Place a spoonful of the beef mixture in the center of the dough.
  5. Roll the husk so that the masa encloses the filling, and fold the bottom end up.
  6. Repeat with remaining husks, dough, and filling.
  7. Steam the tamales for about 60-90 minutes, or until the masa is firm and comes away easily from the husk.
  8. Serve hot, optionally with additional chili sauce or salsa.


  • Always soak the corn husks in warm water before using them to make them pliable.
  • Balance the flavors in the beef filling with spices like cumin, chili powder, and garlic.
  • Masa dough consistency is crucial; it should be spreadable but not runny.
  • Steaming is the best cooking method to keep the tamales moist.
  • Experiment with different fillings and flavors to suit your taste.

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