Cooking beef tongue is easy to prepare once you know what you are doing! This is one of my favorite beef tongue recipes that tastes incredible and can be made entirely on the stovetop.
Let me go right out and say it; the beef tongue is definitely an odd food to eat. And while it is defined as an organ muscle, don’t let that scare you from trying this surprisingly delectable piece of meat.
There are several ways to cook beef tongue, but the easiest method is probably braising. This involves boiling, then simmering the meat in liquid until it becomes tender.
Why you will love this recipe
- It’s easily customizable. This recipe can easily be transformed into beef tongue tacos fajitas or a Philly steak-style sandwich.
- One-pot recipe. This whole meal is cooked using one dutch oven, which makes for a quick and easy clean-up!
- Spicy southern flavor. Beef tongue, or lengua as it is referred to in Mexico, is a popular taco dish and shares many similar flavors with this recipe.
- Beef tongue nutrition. Beef tongue has many benefits, including a good source of B vitamins, iron, zinc, and of course, protein.
This post contains affiliate links, which means I make a small commission at no extra cost to you. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Get my full disclosure here.
How to cook beef tongue
Tongue benefits best by slow cooking first, tenderizing it, then finishing it using your preferred method.
What you will need:
Helpful cooking tools:
Rinse the cow tongue with cool water and place it in a dutch oven.
Add enough water to completely cover the meat and season with salt.
Bring the water to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer and cover.
Cook for 2 1/2 – 3 hours. (depending on the size)
Transfer the meat to a wooden cutting board to remove the skin. Cut into 1/2″ medallions.
Next, drain the water from the pot, add in some cooking oil, and heat over medium-high heat.
While the dutch oven is heating up, combine salt, pepper, cumin garlic and onion powder and paprika in a small bowl and coat each medallion.
Once the oil is hot, sear the meat on both sides for approximately 4 minutes, rotating every minute.
Remove the meat from the heat to rest.
Dice, then saute the vegetables in the same dutch oven until soft.
- Defrost meat ahead of time to ensure it cooks through evenly
- Pat dry the meat before pan searing it in order to achieve the crispy crust.
- The vegetables can easily be substituted for in-season veggies.
- Store leftovers in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
What does beef tongue taste like?
Beef tongue is very tender (if prepared properly) and tastes very much like any other beef muscle cut with a very mild flavor.
Different cooking methods
Boiling is almost always recommended to soften the meat. It can then be fried, pan-seared, or brushed with a bit of oil and grilled.
It is also delicious cooked like a beef roast. Just don’t forget to remove the skin after it’s cooked!
I hope there is no question or doubt in your mind that you can eat beef tongue. And while it’s a little out of the ordinary, I firmly believe we should not be letting any edible meat go to waste.
If you enjoy trying new recipes, be sure and check out some of these favorites below!
- 1 beef tongue
- 1/2 teaspoon of salt (plus 1 tsp for boiling)
- 1/4 teaspooon of pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon each of paprika, garlic powder onion powder and cumin
- 2 bell peppers, sliced
- 1 diced onion
- 1 clove of minced garlic
- Rinse the cow tongue with cool water and place it in a dutch oven.
- Add enough water to fully cover the meat and add a teaspoon of salt.
- Bring the water to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer and cover.
- Cook for 2 ½ hours.
- Transfer the meat to a wooden cutting board to remove the skin and slice into ½" or so medallions.
- Next, drain the water from the pot, add in some cooking oil, and heat over medium-high heat.
- While the dutch oven is heating up, combine the seasonings in a small bowl and coat each medallion.
- Once the oil is hot, sear the meat on both sides for approximately 4 minutes, rotating every minute.
- Remove the meat from the heat to rest.
- Dice, then saute the vegetables in the same dutch oven until soft.
Serve this recipe fajita style with your favorite toppings.