Want the taste of street tacos without leaving the comfort of home? Instead of ground beef, try this grilled skirt steak covered in a Mexican carne asada marinade and wrapped in corn tortillas with fresh guacamole.
Carne Asada Tacos Recipe: Mexican Steak Marinade with Fresh Guacamole on Corn Tortillas
1 1/2 - 2 lbs skirt or flank steak
5 garlic cloves, peeled & minced
1 lime, juiced
1 orange, juiced
1 jalapeño, seeded and finely minced
1/2 c. finely chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 c. avocado oil or other cooking oil
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp dried oregano
Sea salt and black pepper, to taste
1 batch carne asada beef
12 to 16 corn or wheat tortillas
1 batch guacamole (see recipe below) or 2 avocados, pitted & sliced
White onion, peeled & chopped
Fresh cilantro, chopped
Red salsa, green salsa, or fresh pico de gallo
Queso fresco, crumbled
Fresh jalapenos, seeded and sliced
3 ripe avocados, pitted and peeled
1 jalapeño, seeded & finely diced
1/2 c. red onion, peeled & finely diced
1 Tbsp fresh lime juice
1/3 c. fresh cilantro, finely chopped
1/2 tsp fine sea salt
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1 Roma tomato, cored and chopped
Ingredients for Carne asada beef
Ingredients for Carne asada tacos
Ingredients for Toppings
Ingredients for Guacamole
Directions for Carne asada beef
First, build your carne asada marinade. Place your marinade ingredients into a medium-sized mixing bowl - garlic, lime juice, orange juice, jalapeno, cilantro, avocado oil, chili powder, cumin, and oregano. Whisk until thoroughly combined.
Place the skirt steak in a wide, shallow baking dish and evenly pour your marinade over it. Gently toss the steak with tongs until it is evenly coated in the marinade.
Cover the baking dish and let the steak marinate in the fridge for 2-4 hrs minimum.
Once marinated, pull the dish out of the refrigerator and transfer the steak to a clean plate. Season each side of the flank with ample salt and pepper, then let it warm to room temperature on the counter for ~30 mins.
Heat an outdoor BBQ or a cast-iron skillet on the stovetop to high heat. Once heated, place the steak and leave it for 5-7 mins to get a beautiful sear.
Flip the steak and cook for another 5-7 mins on the other side.
Once cooked to your liking, remove the asada steak from the grill or pan and transfer it to a clean plate.
Allow the steak to rest for 10 mins. *
Slice and serve.
Directions for Carne asada tacos
Marinate and cook your carne asada beef according to the recipe.
Clean and prepare your toppings. Prepare the guacamole (recipe below) as the skirt steak cooks, and chop your toppings. If you're making homemade tortillas, do that as your steak marinades.
Once the beef has rested for 10 mins, slice the steak into small, bite-sized chunks.
Fill your warmed tortillas with sliced steak, guacamole, and fresh toppings of your choice.
Serve and enjoy your Mexican carne asada tacos!
Directions for Guacamole
Place your peeled, pitted avocado in a medium-sized mixing bowl, and mash with a fork or potato masher.*
Stir in the chopped jalapeno, onion, cilantro, lime juice, cumin, and salt until thoroughly combined.
Once your ingredients are well-mixed, add the chopped Roma tomatoes and give a few more stirs.
Taste your guacamole and season with extra salt, lime, or cilantro as desired.
Serve and enjoy your creamy guacamole!
*This allows the savory juices to redistribute throughout the meat.
*You can make your guac's texture as chunky or as smooth as you like.
Steak taco recipe - FAQ
What is carne asada?
The term carne asada translates to "grilled meat," though it's usually more specifically grilled skirt or flank steak. This dish contains a relatively high-fat content, making the resulting meat tender and juicy. Once grilled and charred to perfection at a high temperature, the meat is sliced into small pieces.
You can enjoy carne asada on its own, on rice, or in one of our favorites - carne asada street tacos.
How do you cut carne asada for tacos?
Skirt steak is a leaner and firmer beef cut with plenty of flavor, so it's best grilled or seared and cut against the meat's grain to promote more tenderness. Cutting against the grain is simple! Take a look at your steak, find the direction the muscle fibers run, and cut across these fibers rather than in line with them.
Can I use another type of beef?
These authentic carne asada tacos contain skirt steak, but you can substitute for flank steak or another cut of beef instead. If you use a more tender cut, you may want to cut down on your marinating time, as the process breaks down the fibers of the meat - good for tougher cuts, not so good for tender ones.
Is this recipe gluten-free?
The only ingredient in this carne asada recipe that might contain gluten is your tortillas. We make our steak tacos with corn tortillas to taste more like authentic carne asada, and these usually don't have gluten.
You can also use certified gluten-free tortillas found in most grocery stores' freezer section or make your own at home with a gluten-free flour blend.
Can I use premade seasoning for carne asada tacos?
Plenty of brands offer premade carne asada seasoning, and while they're a convenient option, we recommend making your seasoning at home if possible. Packaged seasoning often contains MSG, preservatives, and high sodium levels.
What can I serve with carne asada tacos?
Carne asada tacos fill you up enough to serve all on their own, but we have a few favorite extra sides to serve with them if you so desire.
- Fresh green salad with spicy lime vinaigrette
- Black bean dip with tortilla chips
- Cilantro-lime steamed rice
- Red cabbage slaw with citrus dressing
- Grilled Mexican street corn
Do I need a BBQ or cast-iron skillet?
The BBQ is by far the easiest cooking method to make this seared carne asada, but a cast-iron skillet on the stovetop is your second best option. A cast-iron griddle could work as well, but we don't recommend stovetop cooking this carne asada in any other type of cookware.
Cast-iron cooks much differently than other pan materials, and it's the only way to get a comparable grill and sear to BBQ grilling.
Final notes & storage tips
These easy carne asada tacos are best served immediately after grilling or chilled leftovers the next day. Carne asada meat will last for up to 3 days in the fridge if kept separated from the tortillas and toppings.
We don't recommend freezing carne asada meat once cooked, as it loses its texture upon thawing.
Get your taco holder ready and enjoy these authentic Mexican steak tacos tonight!
Enjoyed this recipe? Check out our recipes for soft shell taco, birria tacos, and fried fish tacos!
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