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How to Make Caldo De Res: Mexican Beef Soup Recipe

Written by MasterClass

Last updated: Mar 2, 2020 • 1 min read

Whether it’s a persistent cold you just can’t kick, depressing and dreary weather, or good old-fashioned homesickness that’s bumming you out, make caldo de res, a brothy beef and vegetable soup—it’ll fix you right up.



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What Is Caldo De Res?

Caldo de res is a traditional Mexican beef soup with juicy, fall-apart pieces of succulent stew meat and satisfying hunks of flavorful veggies all jostling for space. The base of the soup is an à la minute beef broth, made by simmering the stew meat with aromatics until fork-tender and then allowing the vegetables to soak up the resulting flavor. Consider the vegetables listed in the recipe as suggestions—use what’s in season near you.

Caldo De Res Recipe

Prep Time
20 min
Total Time
2 hr 35 min
Cook Time
2 hr 15 min


  • 6–8 cups water
  • 1 ½ pounds beef shank, bone-in
  • 3–4 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Kosher salt and black pepper
  • 2 large carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 small head of cabbage (green), cut lengthwise into eighths
  • 2 small zucchini or chayote squash, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 2 Yukon Gold potatoes, large-diced
  • 1 ear of corn, shucked, cleaned and cut crosswise into fourths
  • Warm corn tortillas, for serving
  • Fresh cilantro, for serving
  • Lime wedges, for serving
  • Chopped white onion, for serving
  1. Season the meat well with salt and pepper on all sides and allow to come to room temperature.
  2. In a large pot over medium-high heat, drizzle a tablespoon of olive oil and sear beef shank until golden brown on each side. Remove, and add water, garlic, and bay leaves, scraping up the fond from the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon as you stir to combine. Season to taste.
  3. Bring to a boil, and return beef to the pot. (There should be enough water to cover the meat completely; add a little more if needed.)
  4. Cover, reduce heat and bring broth to a low rolling simmer. Cook for 2 hours, until meat is tender. Using a slotted spoon or spider skimmer, remove any foam that has accumulated on the surface and discard. Carefully remove the beef shank to a large bowl.
  5. Return to a boil and add the vegetables to the pot, adding more water if the broth has thickened too much to bring it back to your desired consistency. Cook for 10 minutes, until vegetables are equally tender, but not mushy.
  6. Meanwhile, remove the bone from the meat, as well as any bits of sinew. Cut or loosely shred into bite-sized pieces.
  7. Return the meat to the stew, and stir to incorporate. Season to taste.
  8. Ladle into large bowls and serve with garnishes on the side.

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