A taqueria classic, Carne Asada on the grill takes the humble flank steak to a whole new level of greatness. A bold marinade adds flavor, moisturizes and tenderizes the meat for a marinated Mexican steak recipe that will become one of your Summertime favorites.
This simple grilled Mexican steak has become our most beloved Summer recipes.
Have you ever grilled marinated Mexican steak, alongside whole jalapeno peppers (tops trimmed for serving) and rolled it all up in a warm fresh flour tortilla?
If not, you don’t know what you’re missing. A good solid carne asada marinade for flank steak is a must have recipe for your data base.
Where Did I Learn To Make This Recipe?
This is recipe I learned from our next door neighbor Miguel. Born in Mexico Miguel knows his grilled Carne Asada. And whenever he was making it, he’d climb up on the privacy fence and offer us a grilled flour tortilla topped with a chunk of the most tender and flavorful grilled meat with a grilled jalapeno..
That’s all – and it was simple, fresh with flavor and totally delicious. After some intensive interrogation sessions with Miguel, I’m thrilled to have the recipe and to share it with you.
This is where my Carne Asada addiction sprouted, grew and bloomed into a full time obsession. It’s just simply a bob WOW with flavor.
The whole process is quick and easy, you just need to plan ahead for an over-night, then an all day marinade. After a few minutes on the grill you’ll be standing on your back patio with rolled carne asada tortillas in hands, just like enjoying street food in Mexico.
What is Carne Asada?
Carne asada literally means grilled meat. The meat is marinated, sliced thin and used in tacos, burritos, or quesadillas. Carne asada is often served with fresh guacamole, grilled onions, black beans or frijoles charros, and fresh salsa. And actually, When describing an event in Mexico and the American Southwest, the phrase “carne asada” is the equivalent of describing the backyard barbeque. (Thank you Wikipedia.)
Ingredients You’ll Need
- Flank Steak
- Limes: You’ll need one limes for juicing for the marinade and several more for serving.
- Olive Oil
- Soy Sauce
- Cider Vinegar
- Mexican Oregano
- New Mexico Red Chile Powder
- Steak for Carne Asada: Flank Steak is our choice for Carne Asada, but you can also use skirt steak or flat-iron steak.
- Soy Sauce: To make this a gluten free carne asada marinade, substitute Tamari for the Soy Sauce.
- Vinegar: We prefer the fruity nature of cider vinegar, but you can also use white vinegar or even red wine vinegar.
- Mexican Oregano: Mexican oregano is preferred for this recipe, it’s peppery, grassy, earthy flavor is a good compliment for Mexican Food. If you don’t have Mexican Oregano, substitute Marjoram. Known for its aroma and delicate flavor, its related to oregano and will bring a sweet undertone to any recipe.
- Chile Powder: A New Mexico Chile Powder is recommended for this recipe. If you don’t have it, substitute Ancho Chile Powder.
- Garlic: Substitute two cloves fresh chopped garlic for granulated or garlic powder.
Step by Step Instructions – It’s Easy
Be sure to see the recipe card below for complete ingredients and instructions.
- Step 1: Place the flank steak in a gallon sized sealable plastic bag. Add all of the marinade ingredients. Seal the bag, pressing out the air and then squish and turn the bag in all directions to mix the ingredients well. Place in the refrigerator over night and all day the next day.
- Step 2: Heat a grill to 500 degrees to get those grates nice and hot. Reduce heat to 350 – 400 degrees. Grill the flank steak for about 6 minutes per side, basting frequently with reserved marinade.
Tip: I like to use my grill pan to grill vegetables along side the steak. For this meal, I’ve par-boiled new Yukon gold potatoes. They’ll brown and cook through in the amount of time it takes for the steak to cook. I’m also grilling knob onions and jalapeno peppers.
How To Serve Carne Asada
Pro Tip: Always slice the grilled flank steak against the grain. Slicing the steak this way will cut through the tough fibers, shortening them, so you’ll have a tender bite sized piece of meat.
- Warm flour tortillas are used for wrapping your favorite carne asada ingredients into a street-style carne asada taco. This is even better if you purchase fresh made flour tortillas from your local Mexican Market. Can you spell d-i-v-i-n-e? Or better yet, make your own flour tortillas.
- In my books, grilled jalapeno peppers are a must when serving carne asada. Just chop the tops off and place a piece of the grilled steak and grilled jalapenos on a warm tortilla. Scrape out the seeds and veins if you want to remove some of the heat.
- Guacamole is always a good choice as is a Simple Homemade Salsa.
- Pico de Gallo is a wonderful compliment or try Pickled Red Onions.
- Sliced Avocado for a creamy touch.
- Cilantro. Rough chopped.
- Lime Wedges: A squeeze of lime will brighten any Mexican main course protein.
For A Quick Carne Asada Marinade
I’ve also discovered a great little bottle of spice mix called, Don Sazon Meat Seasoning. A quick carne asada marinade ready in about 30 minutes. It’s a dry spice mix that you add to orange juice and you’ve got a great seasoned piece of meat to throw on the grill for Carne Asada. Directions are on the bottle.
Recipe for Carne Asada on the Grill (Marinated Mexican Steak)
With all that said, I’m hoping you’re a purist and want a reliable and tasty recipe for Authentic Carne Asada.
More Grilled Flank Steak Recipes
And don’t forget to check out my Beef category. Lots of great ideas for any red-meat lover. Including the most popular beef post on my site for Crockpot BBQ Brisket. And don’t miss my recipe lineup of Favorite Burger Recipes for Father’s Day.
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Carne Asada On The Grill
- 1 1/2 pounds flank or skirt steak
- Olive oil
- salt and fresh ground pepper
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 2 limes juiced (about 2 Tbsp)
- 2 Tablespoons cider vinegar
- 2 Tablespoons sugar or processed granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder or 2 cloves garlic pressed through a garlic press, or fine minced
- 1 teaspoon New Mexico Red Chile Powder or Ancho
- 1 teaspoon Mexican Oregano
- Serve With
- avocado sliced or chopped
- Lime wedges
- Corn or flour tortillas
- radishes thin sliced
- Pico de gallo salsa
- Place the flank steak in a gallon sized sealable plastic bag. Add all of the marinade ingredients. Seal the bag, pressing out the air and then squish and turn the bag in all directions to mix the ingredients well. Place in the refrigerator over night and all day the next day. I repeat the squish and turn step every time I open the refrigerator door.
- Preheat your gas grill by turning the heat up to 550. Turn heat down to 400.
- Remove steak from marinade. Pour the marinade into a small bowl and use for basting. Turn the middle burner off and add the flank steak to the hotter part of the grill.
- Use a grill pan to grill any vegetables you'd like to serve with the steak. Jalapeno peppers are a must, knob onions are also nice here.
- Grill the steak for 6 minutes, basting with the sauce every 2 minutes. The steak should be well seared before turning.
- Move steak to middle and continue basting and searing. Cook for only about 3 – 4 minutes more. Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature to read 120 – 125 degrees.
- Remove the steak from the grill, place on a cutting board and tent with foil. Let rest for 10 minutes.
- Slice the flank steak across the grain and slice it as thin as you can.
- Serving suggestions: grilled jalapenos, warmed tortillas, avocados, pico de gallo, chopped cilantro, grilled onions, or wedges of lime.
If you want, before adding the steak to the marinade, reserve a couple tablespoons of the marinade to drizzle over the finished carne asada to serve. Pro Tip: Always slice the grilled flank steak against the grain. Slicing the steak this way will cut through the tough fibers, shortening them, so you’ll have a tender bite sized piece of meat.
Carne Asada On The Grill … It’s What’s For Dinner
Why Trust These Recipes? Lea Ann Brown has lived, worked and played in Colorado for 45 years. She has immersed herself in the Colorado Culinary space, is a Culinary School Graduate and publishes her Colorado food Blog, Cooking On The Ranch.