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Beef Shanks with Vietnamese Spiced Glaze (Gluten Free, Soy Free)

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  • Author: Jaime Hartman
  • Total Time: 14 hours
  • Yield: 4-6 1x


These paleo-friendly beef shanks with Vietnamese inspired spices are a great way to prepare a budget-friendly cut of grass fed meat.


  • 1 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder (for AIP substitution, see note)
  • 1 tablespoon sweet paprika (omit for AIP)
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon coconut sugar (optional)
  • Beef shanks (3-4 pounds)
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, pastured lard, tallow, or other paleo-friendly cooking fat
  • 2 medium onions, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced or crushed
  • 1 tablespoon ginger, minced
  • 3 cups beef bone broth (preferably homemade)
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon coconut aminos
  • 2 medjool dates, finely chopped
  • 1 whole star anise


  1. Mix five-spice powder, paprik, salt, black pepper, and optional coconut sugar. Rub all over surface of beef shanks, cover and refrigerate for 8-24 hours.
  2. In a dutch oven over medium heat, melt the cooking fat, then sear the shanks on all sides (about 3 minutes per side). Remove to a plate and set aside. Do not clean the pan.
  3. Add the onions to the pan and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and ginger and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  4. Add the bone broth, fish sauce, rice vinegar, coconut aminos, dates, and star anise. Bring to a boil.
  5. Return the beef shanks to the pan, reduce heat to low and cover.
  6. Allow to braise at a low simmer for 2-3 hours or until very tender and almost falling apart, checking every 30 minutes or so to make sure the pan has not boiled dry (add more broth or water if it has) and to turn the shanks over.
  7. Remove shanks from pan and set aside. Turn heat up to high and boil the sauce until very thick and reduced to a glaze.
  8. Meanwhile, remove meat from the bones (which you can save for making future bone broth). You may also wish to remove the connective tissue and save for broth making if it is not appealing to you or your dinner guests.
  9. Return the meat to the pan and turn to coat with glaze.
  10. Serve with rice or cauliflower rice.
  • Prep Time: 10 hours
  • Cook Time: 4 hours
  • Category: Entree
  • Cuisine: Vietnamese