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Pulled Beef Cheek Tacos

with Pickled Onion, Coriander & Spicy Mayo

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Whether you have leftover pulled beef or are in it for the long haul, these pulled beef cheek tacos are a tasty way to transform pulled beef cheek into a tasty meal or tapas platter. Easy to make and assemble, these tacos are an absolute crow pleaser and are perfect for when you have leftover meat and need a little bit of meal-time inspiration. Check out the recipe below.
Prep time
30 Minutes
Cook time
8 Hours
Heat Beads® 4kg Original BBQ Briquettes
Oak 7.5L Wood Chunks
Best cooked on
Bandit Drum Smoker

Beef Cheeks

Noel Hassapladakis’s Method

4 x Beef Cheeks
1 x Can of Beer
Rum & Que Bull Dust Rub


1 x Packet of Soft Shell Tacos
1 x Red Onion
1 x White Wine or Apple Cider Vinegar
1 x Handful of fresh Coriander (to serve)
1 x Lemon (to serve) 1 x Spicy Mayo or Sauce of your choice (to drizzle) Salt Sugar

  • Beef Cheek Tacos Recipe from Charmate NZ Smokers, BBQs & Cookers

    Beef Cheek Tacos Recipe from Charmate NZ Smokers, BBQs & Cookers

Prepare Beef Cheeks

  1. Prepare your Pit with Heat Beads Charcoal Briquettes and adjust vents for a target temperature of 275°F / 135°C.

  2. Using a sharp knife, trim the fat cap and silver skin from the beef cheeks to expose both sides. Rub generously with Rum & Que Bulldust before letting them sweat on the bench for 20 minutes

  3. Transfer beef cheeks to the Bandit Drum Smoker or pit of your choice and cook naked for 4 hours on the grates, spritzing with plenty of water at the 1.5 and 3-hour points.

  4. At 4 hours, transfer the beef cheeks to a foil tray adding 1/2 tablespoon of butter to the top of each cheek and pour in the beer until it is approximately 5mm deep

  5. Cover and seal the tray tightly with foil and cook for a further 4 hours, maintaining a temperature between 250-275° F / 121-135°C without opening the door.

  6. When the beef cheeks have reached the 8-hour point, open the foil gently and stick a fork into the middle of the biggest cheek and twist 180°. If there is little to no resistance and the meat fibres splinter, they are done.

  7. Transfer to the bench and leave it uncovered for 10 minutes to stop the cook. Follow by sealing up the tray again before transferring to a chilly bin. Place a few towels on top and rest for a minimum of 1 hour.


Beef Cheeks look small but don't be tempted to take them off early. The membrane in the centre needs every ounce of time to break down and be edible. Beef Cheeks that are underdone are not a good eating experience therefore they are always better overdone than under! – Noel Hassapladakis

Pickled Onion

  1. Slice the red onion as thin as possible before placing it into a bowl or jar.

  2. Add 1/2 cup of vinegar, 1 cup of boiling hot water and a pinch of sugar and salt. Ensure the liquid covers the onion completely.

  3. Leve to pickle in the fridge for at least an hour (ideally overnight) until the onion turns a bright pink colour.


  1. Pull cheeks with a fork until beef is completely shredded.

  2. Lightly toast the tacos on your grill, just enough to see grill marks.

  3. Fill with shredded beef cheek, pickled onion and chopped coriander. Finish with a squeeze of lemon juice and a drizzle of spicy mayo. Enjoy!