Carne Asada – Flank steak marinated with flavorful and fresh ingredients, then grilled to perfection. Try it served in tacos with your favorite toppings! Restaurant quality in the comfort of your own home.
Today’s recipe is Carne Asada which I’m in love with, because I’m on a taco kick lately and I’m in the mood to wrap everything in a tortilla and eat it. Luckily for me (and for all of you) this recipe is so easy to throw together. We’re achieving some big bold, look at me flavors today – so let’s get into it!
If you’ve never experimented with a recipe like this in your kitchen before, then brace yourself. It’s about to become your latest and greatest culinary creation. Guaranteed.
What Is Carne Asada?
Carne Asada is of Latin American origin and is usually made with flank steak or skirt steak which is grilled and then served as slices. Carne Asada actually means grilled beef. This recipe is fairly simple, I marinated the flank steak in an easy marinade but bursting with delicious flavors.
You can even do this the night before then next day when you come back from work just grill the steak, and serve it on corn tortillas with your favorite toppings. So easy and just superb flavors.
Keep scrolling down to the recipe card for full ingredient amounts and instructions, or click the Jump To Recipe button at the top.
- Olive oil – We want a nice neutral tasting oil to build the base of our marinade
- Lemon and Orange juice – Do yourself a favor and make sure these ingredients are fresh!
- Soy Sauce – I prefer the low sodium one.
- Garlic – Use as much or little as you like.
- Jalapeno – To give this spice a little bit of heat. Be sure to remove the seeds and ribs from the pepper.
- Herbs – Cilantro, fresh and chopped up finely.
- Spices – Cumin and chili powder are all we need today.
- Salt and pepper – Season to taste.
- Flank steak – You can also use skirt or flat iron steak.
To Make Carne Asada Tacos
- Tortillas – Corn tortillas are what I used today but if flour is what you prefer feel free to swap them out!
- Topping(s) – I made my own fresh pico de gallo and cilantro.
How to make Carne Asada
- Marinate the steak: In a large ziploc bag combine together the olive oil, lemon juice, honey, red onion, garlic, jalapeno, cumin, paprika, chili powder, cilantro, salt and pepper. Reserve 1/4 cup of the marinate and set aside. Add the flank steak to the bag, close the ziploc bag and shake the bag around a bit, making sure the steak is coated. Place it in the fridge and let it marinate for 2 to 4 hours.
- Grill the carne asada: Preheat the grill to 400F. Grill the steak for about 5 to 7 minutes per side or until done to your likeness. Transfer it to a plate and cover with foil for 5-10 minutes to rest. Slice thin, against-the-grain, into strips, drizzle with reserved marinade and serve.
Cooking your steak to the right temperature
Not super familiar cooking with steak? Well I have an easy test to determine which temperature your carne asada is at without having to cut it open no matter the cut. It’s called the hand test:
- First make the “okay” sign with your pointer finger and thumb. Now poke the fleshy part right under your thumb with your other pointer finger, that is how rare steak feels.
- Next press your thumb and middle finger in the okay sign and feel that same fleshy part, that is how medium rare steak feels.
- Press your ring finger and thumb in the “okay” sign and feel that fleshy part, that is how medium steak feels.
- Now press your pinky and thumb together and feel the fleshy part, that is how well done steak feels.
- Poke holes with a fork in your steak before introducing it to the marinade to really ensure we get full flavor penetration.
- Looking for a flavor bomb? Then let that steak marinate for 4 – 8 hours, believe me it’ll make all the difference in the world.
- If you can’t find flank steak, give skirt or flat iron steak a try. They’re both nice and tender alternatives.
- Let the carne asada rest after cooking! If you see liquid on your cutting board once you’ve cut into your meat, abandon ship, all hope is lost. Well that’s not exactly true but for supple, moist meat you need to give it some alone time after coming off the heat.
- Slice it up thinly against the grain. This makes a big difference! If you slice with the grain, your steak will be much more tough and chewy rather than soft.
How to serve
You can make this a meal all in its own stacked in a soft tortilla and topped with your favorite veggies and sauces. Check out these ideas that you can serve on top of your tacos or on the side!
- Homemade Salsa
- Pico de Gallo Recipe
- Mexican Street Corn Slaw
- Street Corn Salad
- Mexican Chicken And Rice Salad
It’s not always grilling season and if you don’t have an indoor grill, not to worry. You can cook a perfect flank steak on the stovetop in a skillet. You will want to use a cast iron skillet for best results. Here’s how:
- Follow the instructions for making the marinade and marinating the steak.
- Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a large skillet over high heat. The high heat is important. Add the steak to the skillet and cook for 2 to 3 minutes until well browned.
- Using a pair of tongs, check the steak to see if it’s browned on the bottom and flip on to the other side. If it’s not browned continue cooking for another minute until well browned. Cook on the other side for another 2 to 3 minutes.
- Transfer the steak to a cutting board and let it rest for 10 to 15 minutes before slicing.
The cooked carne asada stored in airtight containers will keep for up to 3 days in the fridge. The reserved marinade will last about a week.
You can freeze the marinated steak in an airtight container or in freezer bags for 3 – 4 months, but keep in mind that you don’t want to refreeze beef after it’s thawed, so prepare wisely! Allow the beef to thaw at room temperature before carrying on with the recipe.
More delicious meat recipes to try:
- Prime Rib Roast
- Mongolian Beef
- Instant Pot Beef Brisket
- Beef Rouladen
- Beef Tenderloin
- Slow Cooker Corned Beef
- Easy Pot Roast
- Easy Meatloaf Recipe
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- In a large ziploc bag combine together the olive oil, lime juice, orange juice, soy sauce, garlic, jalapeno, cumin, chili powder, cilantro, salt and pepper. Reserve 1/4 cup in a bowl and set aside in the fridge. Add the flank steak to the bag, close the ziploc bag and shake the bag around a bit, making sure the steak is covered in the marinade. Place it in the fridge and let it marinate for 2 to 4 hours.
- Heat your grill till it gets to about 400 F degrees.
- Grill the steak for about 5 to 7 minutes per side or until done to your likeness. Transfer it to a plate and cover it with aluminum foil. Let it rest for about 5 minutes before slicing it into thin strips. If you slice it right away all the juices will come out and you’ll end up with a dry steak.
- Thinly slice the steak against the grain and serve with remaining reserved marinade.
- Serve immediately.
- Storing leftovers: The cooked carne asada stored in airtight containers will keep for up to 3 days in the fridge. The reserved marinade will last about a week.
- Freezing: You can freeze the marinated steak in an airtight container or in freezer bags for 3 – 4 months, but keep in mind that you don’t want to refreeze beef after it’s thawed, so prepare wisely! Allow the beef to thaw at room temperature before carrying on with the recipe.