Carne Asada Tacos

Carne Asada Tacos take your classic beef taco flavors to the next level and it takes just five minutes of prep work with a spicy citrus marinade.

We just posted our Easy Carne Asada recipe that is the base for these tacos that you can serve with Mexican RiceEasy Refried Beans, and Chipotle Guacamole (Copycat).

Carne Asada Tacos Carne Asada Tacos

When the post for Carne Asada went live yesterday I immediately started getting emails for tacos! So lets take an easy Friday break and discuss some tacos.

Easy Carne Asada Tacos

Carne Asada Tacos can be served in either corn tortillas or flour tortillas but they’re best served in thin corn tortillas (I personally double them up).

Best Way to Heat Tortillas

There are two schools of thought for heating tortillas, direct heat and indirect heat.

  • Direct Heat: Add your tortillas directly to a flame, a grill or a grill pan. This will result in a crispier tortilla that may even have some char marks.
  • Indirect Heat: Place your tortillas in a piece of foil and wrap the foil tightly then add the foil to a heating surface. The foil pack allows your tortillas to heat gently, maintain their moisture and avoid getting a crispy texture.

We find for the purposes of tacos, using indirect heat is the best method for heating tortillas.

Why heat tortillas?

If you try to use a room temperature or cold tortilla in making a taco you’re going to find that your tortillas are less pliable (bendy) than they would be when warmed. If you’re in a time crunch, you can wrap your tortillas in a moistened wet paper towel and microwave them for 5-10 seconds to warm them.

Want a quick and easy taco serving idea? Serve this in corn tortillas topped with some cotija cheese, cilantro, salsa and avocado for the perfect easy taco!

Carne asada marinade

Don’t skip the time for the marinade to do its job! If your cut of meat will fit in a heavy duty freezer bag, put the meat in the bag then pour the marinade on top, setting aside one cup of the marinade to use as a sauce later on. Tightly seal the bag and massage the marinade into the meat.

If your cut of flank steak is too large for a Ziploc bag, use a 9 by 13 dish or disposable pan. Pour all but one cup of the marinade over the meat. Use tongs to turn the meat a few times to generously coat the entire flank steak. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator to let the marinade work its magic.

What is the meaning of Carne Asada?

Carne asada translates to “grilled meat”.  Beef is the traditional choice of meat although you could also make pollo asado which is “grilled chicken” or pork asada using the same cooking technique. The best carne asada is grilled and is often offered as street tacos in Mexico.

Carne Asada Recipe

What cut of beef is used for an Authentic Carne Asada Recipe?

If you refer to the recipe for Carne Asada I discuss this in much further detail but the shorter answer here is that flank steak is the best option for Carne Asada Tacos.

Flank Steak is easy to cook, it’s lean, tender and can hold up to the high heat cooking better than a skirt steak which is too thin to allow for a good sear before it overcooks.

If you find you are cooking for 1-2 people and want a smaller cut I highly recommend a flat iron cut because it’s similar to a flank steak but more tender.

Toppings for Carne Asada Tacos:

  • Cheese: Cotija, Cheddar, Queso
  • Creamy: Crema (recipe below and I also use it on my Crispy Fish Tacos!), Sour Cream, avocado, guacamole
  • Citrus: Lime wedges, lime juice, sour orange, lemon wedges
  • Spice: Jalapenos, adobo sauce, hot sauce,
  • Crunchy: radish, jicama, pico de gallo, cilantro, white onion


  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  1. Mix ingredients well and refrigerate for at least one hour.

How to cut steak for Tacos:

  • When cutting steak for tacos you have to remember to cut against the grain of your meat.
  • You should cut them into small bite sized pieces, no more than 1/2″ cubes.
  • Allow the meat to rest ten minutes before slicing, if you don’t the meat will lose all moisture.

How do you cook carne asada?

  • Grilled: On an outdoor grill on medium heat, gas or charcoal for 5-7 minutes on each side.
  • Stove top: Using a heavy cast iron skillet on medium high heat for 4-6 minutes per side.
  • Oven Roasted: 400 degrees until it reaches 130 degrees internal temperature.
  • Broiled: 8 inches away from the broiler 5-6 minutes on each side.

Do you love Mexican food? You will also enjoy our recipes that will turn your Mexican buffet into a fiesta!

Carne Asada Taco Recipe with Flank Steak

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Carne Asada Tacos

Carne Asada Tacos take your classic beef taco flavors to the next level and it takes just five minutes of prep work with a spicy citrus marinade.
Yield 8 servings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup lime juice
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 4 cloves garlic , minced
  • 1 canned adobo chipotle pepper
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 4 pounds flank steak
  • 24 small corn tortillas
  • 1 white onion , chopped finely
  • 1/4 cup cilantro , chopped


  • Add all the ingredients except for the steak into a blender and blend until emulsified, then keep 1 cup of it reserved in the fridge for serving when cooked.
  • Add the rest to a resealable container and place your steak on a cutting board and poke with a meat tenderizer then place in bag and marinate for 48 hours.
  • Grill on medium heat for 5-6 minutes on each side for medium doneness, let sit for 10 minutes then chop into ½ inch cubes, serve in warmed corn tortillas with onions, cilantro, and remaining marinade.


Calories: 472kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 51g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 136mg | Sodium: 974mg | Potassium: 957mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 905IU | Vitamin C: 19.8mg | Calcium: 80mg | Iron: 5.1mg
Keyword: Carne Asada Tacos

Tacos with Carne Asada

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the upcoming cookbook: Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients which is being published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.


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  1. We had the Carne Asada last night for dinner, and the marinade is SO good! I missed all the hints about this being a spicy dish, and we were pleasantly surprised by the heat (thankfully)! Adding to the rotation. Fantastic!

      1. Sabrina,

        Quick question – how long does the marinade last, if I just want to make it and use it as a condiment, sometimes? I really enjoyed the sauce.

  2. These Tacos are yummy and delicious. Such amazing stuff into making these. Surely great Dinner option.

  3. You’re carne asada looks positively mouthwatering! I really wish you lived next door. Great tips on how to cut the beef for these tacos too — nothing worse than trying to get your teeth through a big cut of meat on a taco and have all the filling come out on your first bite (yes, it’s happened to me).

  4. I’ve been so into tacos lately, and that steak looks absolutely perfect. The weather is warming up and I’m going to get out the grill for these babies!

  5. This marinade is so easy and delicious! Our family loves mexican food and this was better than when we go out, thanks!