Carne Asada Recipe - Traditional Mexican Flank Steak Dish

Carne Asada

Carne Asada Recipe - Traditional Mexican Flank Steak Dish
Region / culture: Mexico | Preparation time: 1 hour | Cooking time: 15 minutes | Servings: 4


Carne Asada
Carne Asada

Carne Asada is a popular Mexican dish that consists of marinated and grilled steak. It is a flavorful and versatile dish that can be enjoyed on its own or used as a filling for tacos, burritos, or tostadas.


Carne Asada has its roots in Mexican cuisine, where it is traditionally made with thinly sliced beef that is marinated in a mixture of citrus juices, oil, and spices. The dish is believed to have originated in the northern regions of Mexico, where grilling meat over an open flame is a common cooking technique.


How to prepare

  1. In a large stainless steel or glass bowl, combine the meat, oil, onions, orange juice, salt, and pepper.
  2. Cover and let the mixture marinate for 1 hour or overnight.
  3. Start a fire in your grill, preferably using mesquite charcoal.
  4. Remove the meat from the marinade and grill over a hot flame until the first side is well browned, approximately 5-7 minutes.
  5. Flip the meat over and continue grilling on the other side until it reaches the desired level of doneness.
  6. Remove the meat from the grill.
  7. Slice the meat into thin strips across the grain and serve as a topping for tostadas or as a filling for tacos or burritos.


  • Add lime juice to the marinade along with the orange juice.
  • You can also include cumin, chili powder, and chopped cilantro as additional ingredients. Each person may have their own preferred combination.
  • Use different cuts of meat such as ribeye or sirloin for a different flavor and texture.
  • Add additional spices such as cumin, chili powder, or garlic to the marinade for extra flavor.
  • Serve the Carne Asada with grilled vegetables or a side salad for a lighter meal.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

Marinate the meat for at least 1 hour, but preferably overnight, to allow the flavors to fully penetrate the meat.

- Use a hot grill to sear the meat and lock in the juices.

- Slice the meat thinly across the grain to ensure tenderness.

- Serve the carne asada with fresh salsa, guacamole, and warm tortillas for a complete meal.

Serving Suggestions

Serve the Carne Asada with warm tortillas, fresh salsa, guacamole, and Mexican rice for a complete meal.

Cooking Techniques

Grilling is the traditional cooking technique for Carne Asada, but you can also broil or pan-sear the meat for similar results.

Ingredient Substitutions

If you don't have flank or skirt steak, you can use another cut of beef such as ribeye or sirloin.

- You can substitute lemon or lime juice for the orange juice in the marinade.

Make Ahead Tips

You can marinate the meat in advance and store it in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours before grilling.

Presentation Ideas

Serve the Carne Asada on a platter with fresh cilantro and lime wedges for garnish.

Pairing Recommendations

Carne Asada pairs well with Mexican beer, margaritas, or a refreshing agua fresca.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Store any leftover Carne Asada in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in a skillet or microwave until warmed through.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

A serving of Carne Asada typically contains around 300-400 calories, depending on the size of the portion and the cut of meat used.


Carne Asada is a low-carb dish, with minimal carbohydrates coming from the marinade ingredients such as onions and citrus juices.


The main source of fat in Carne Asada comes from the oil used in the marinade. However, grilling the meat over an open flame allows excess fat to drip off, making it a relatively lean dish.


Carne Asada is a high-protein dish, with the steak providing a good amount of protein per serving.

Vitamins and minerals

The citrus juices used in the marinade provide a good dose of vitamin C, while the steak is a good source of iron and zinc.


Carne Asada may contain allergens such as soy (if using soy sauce in the marinade) and gluten (if served with flour tortillas).


Carne Asada is a nutritious dish that is high in protein and low in carbohydrates. It is a flavorful and satisfying meal that can be enjoyed as part of a balanced diet.


Carne Asada is a delicious and versatile dish that is perfect for a casual weeknight dinner or a festive gathering. With a few simple ingredients and some basic cooking techniques, you can enjoy this classic Mexican dish in the comfort of your own home.

How did I get this recipe?

I have a clear memory of the first time I discovered this recipe for Carne Asada. It was many years ago, when I was just a young girl living in Mexico with my family. My grandmother, who was an amazing cook, would often spend hours in the kitchen preparing delicious meals for us to enjoy.

One day, she invited me to help her with dinner. I eagerly joined her in the kitchen, excited to learn some of her culinary secrets. As we worked side by side, she began to tell me the story of how she learned to make Carne Asada.

She explained that Carne Asada is a traditional Mexican dish that is typically made with thinly sliced beef that is marinated in a mixture of lime juice, garlic, and spices before being grilled or broiled. The result is a flavorful and tender piece of meat that is perfect for tacos, burritos, or just eaten on its own.

My grandmother told me that she first learned to make Carne Asada from her own grandmother, who had passed down the recipe through the generations. She had fond memories of watching her grandmother prepare the marinade, carefully choosing the spices and herbs to create the perfect balance of flavors.

I listened intently as my grandmother shared her memories with me, feeling a deep sense of connection to my family's culinary heritage. I could sense the love and pride she felt in passing down this recipe to me, just as it had been passed down to her.

As we worked together in the kitchen, I watched as my grandmother expertly seasoned the beef and grilled it to perfection. The aroma of the sizzling meat filled the air, and my mouth watered in anticipation of tasting the final dish.

When the Carne Asada was finally ready, my grandmother served it up with warm tortillas, fresh salsa, and a side of guacamole. We all gathered around the table and dug in, savoring every bite of the tender and flavorful meat.

From that moment on, Carne Asada became a staple in our household. My grandmother would make it for special occasions, family gatherings, or just as a simple weeknight meal. And each time she prepared it, I would be right by her side, eager to learn more about the art of cooking.

Over the years, I have continued to make Carne Asada for my own family, passing down the recipe and the tradition to the next generation. It has become a beloved dish in our home, reminding us of the importance of family, tradition, and of course, good food.

As I look back on that day in the kitchen with my grandmother, I am grateful for the memories we shared and the lessons she taught me about the power of food to bring us together. And every time I make Carne Asada, I am reminded of her love, her passion, and her incredible talent in the kitchen.

So now, whenever I prepare this dish, I do so with a smile on my face and a heart full of gratitude for the woman who taught me how to cook with love and dedication. And I hope that one day, my own grandchildren will look back on these moments with as much fondness and appreciation as I do now.


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