Carne Asada Street Tacos

Prep Time 40 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Marinate 1 d
Total Time 1 d 55 mins
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These Carne Asada Street Tacos are flavorful and easy to make. The first step is marinating the steak in a delicious chipotle sauce and then building the perfect taco with hot sauce and fresh salsa.

grabbing a street taco with carne asada.

😋 Why this recipe works

These carne asada tacos are packed with a ton of flavor, tender, and simple. The key to making carne asada so tender is by salting first, then letting it marinate in a delicious marinade for up to 24 hours. This homemade street taco doesn’t need to be paired with our bell pepper salsa because the carne asada has tons of flavor already. We like to add it because it adds sweetness and a nice crunchy texture with each bite.

🍊 Ingredients

Before making tacos, the first step is making the carne asada marinade with some basic ingredients like fresh orange juice, lime juice, white onion, garlic, chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, and spices.

See the recipe card for full ingredient information and quantities.

carne asada street taco ingredients.

Here are some of our recommendations/tips with the ingredients for the recipe:

  • Skirt Steak or Flank Steak are two budget-friendly options for this recipe.
  • Swap the bell pepper salsa for chopped white onion and cilantro, or omit it altogether.
  • Use street taco tortillas. We like soft corn tortillas for this recipe for a traditional street taco, but flour tortillas work too.

🥣 How to Make

This street taco recipe is easy to make; the key is to salt the steak first and then marinate it overnight for a juicy and tender steak.

salting both sides of the flank steak with pinches of salt.

Salt the Steak. 

Pat the thin-cut steaks with a paper towel to remove any excess moisture. Then, season the surface of both sides of the steak with salt. Set aside to prepare the marinade.

chipotle marinade for carne asada.

Make the Flavorful Marinade. 

Add the orange juice, lime juice, white onion, garlic cloves, jalapeno (seeded or deseeded), the chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, and the spices to a blender, and blend until fully pureed.

marinating steak with chipotle sauce.

Marinate the Steak. 

Add the salted steak to a zip lock bag or an airtight container and pour the marinade over the steak, ensuring the steak is covered completely. Place in the refrigerator for 2 hours or up to 24 hours. The longer you marinate the steaks, the more flavor there will be.

cooked carne asada in a chipotle marinade.

Cook the Steak. 

Remove the steaks at least 30 minutes before cooking to bring them to room temperature. This allows the steaks to cook evenly. Bring a pan or cast iron skillet to medium-high heat. Once hot, remove any excess marinade from the steak and place it on the hot pan. Sear the steaks for 3-5 minutes, then flip to sear on the other sides. Reduce the heat to medium and continue cooking until the internal temperature reaches 145°F on an instant-read meat thermometer.

mixing the diced veggies with fresh lime juice.

Make the Bell Pepper Salsa.

Dice the bell peppers, red onion, and tomato flesh and add to a bowl. Mince the garlic, coarsely chop the cilantro, and add to the bowl.

Season with a pinch of salt and pepper and fresh lime juice and toss to combine.

a street taco with carne asada and fresh salsa.

Assemble the Street Tacos & Enjoy.

Warm up the corn tortillas, add cut carne asada pieces, and top with salsa, extra cilantro, lime juice, cotija cheese, and hot sauce, and enjoy.

📋 Recipe FAQs

Should I cut carne asada before or after cooking for tacos?

Carne Asada should be cut after cooking, and to ensure each piece is tender and not chewy, slice the steak against the grain. Once sliced against the grain, cut the carne asada into small bite-size pieces for tacos.

Why is Carne Asada chewy?


If your steak was chewy, a couple of factors could be causing this. It could be the type of steak you are using and how long you cooked it for. Skirt steak can be tougher than flank steak because of the muscle fibers, but it also can be richer in flavor and juicer. If Skirt steak is cooked longer and well done, it will be very tough, chewy, and not enjoyable in a taco or quesadilla.

We always salt our steak before we marinate it to ensure we don’t have a tough and chewy steak.
Salt draws out the moisture in the steak, where it’s dissolved, creating a brine that is then re-absorbed back into the steak. The meat’s lean muscle proteins are broken down and made juicier and more tender.

Always use an instant-read thermometer to ensure doneness. We recommend cooking carne asada to medium at 145°F. Anything hotter will be well done, and the steak could be chewy and tough. When removing the steak from the heat, let it rest for a few minutes and always cut against the grain first before cutting it into chunks.

What’s the difference between a street taco and a regular taco?

A street taco is a traditional authentic Mexican taco that is served on small corn tortillas with meat, onions, and cilantro. There typically is no cheese, tomatoes, or lettuce. We add fresh bell pepper salsa to our street tacos recipe, but you can easily omit it.

These Carne Asada Street Tacos are flavorful and easy to make. They have a delicious chipotle flavor and a clean and crunchy texture with the fresh salsa. Enjoy! ♡

four carne asada tacos with fresh salsa on top on a counter.

👩🏻‍🍳 Expert Tips

  • Salt the steak before you marinate it. Salt draws out the moisture in the steak, where it’s dissolved, creating a brine that is then re-absorbed back into the steak. The meat’s lean muscle proteins are broken down and made juicier and more tender.
  • Cut flank and skirt steak against the grain before cutting it into pieces.

Pairing Recipes

Looking to pair this recipe with something else? Check out our other recipes before you go.

These street tacos pair well with our Bell Pepper Salsa, Salsa Fresca, Cherry Tomato Pico De Gallo, Avocado Pico De Gallo, and our Homemade Refried Pinto Beans.

Did you try our Carne Asada Street Tacos recipe? Please leave a 🌟 star rating and let me know how it went in the comments below. I love hearing from you! ♡

Carne Asada Street Tacos

5 from 1 vote
These Carne Asada Street Tacos are flavorful and easy to make. They have a delicious chipotle flavor and a clean and crunchy texture with the fresh salsa.
four carne asada tacos with fresh salsa on top on a counter.
Prep Time 40 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Marinate 1 d
Total Time 1 d 55 mins
Yields 4
Ingredients
Carne Asada
  • 1 lb skirt steak or flank steak
  • pinch of salt for salting the steak
  • ½ cup orange juice about 2 oranges, we like cara cara oranges
  • ½ cup lime juice about 3 limes
  • 1-2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • 1 jalapeno deseeded
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • ½ white onion
  • 2 tsp oregano
  • 1 ½ tsp cumin
Tacos Assemble
Bell Pepper Salsa
  • 2 bell peppers yellow, orange or red variety; diced small
  • 1 large tomato juice and seeds discarded and flesh diced
  • ½ red onion diced small
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • ¼ cup cilantro coarsely chopped
  • pinch of salt and pepper plus more to taste
  • 2 tbsp lime juice  plus more to taste
Instructions
  • Salt the Steak. 
    Pat the thin-cut steaks with a paper towel to remove any excess moisture. Then, season the surface of both sides of the steak with salt. Set aside to prepare the marinade.
  • Make the Flavorful Marinade. 
    Add the orange juice, lime juice, white onion, garlic cloves, jalapeno (seeded or deseeded), the chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, and the spices to a blender, and blend until fully pureed.
  • Marinate the Steak. 
    Add the salted steak to a zip lock bag or an airtight container and pour the marinade over the steak, ensuring the steak is covered completely. Place in the refrigerator for 2 hours or up to 24 hours. The longer you marinate the steaks, the more flavor there will be.
  • Cook the Steak. 
    Remove the steaks at least 30 minutes before cooking to bring them to room temperature.
    Bring a pan or cast iron skillet to medium-high heat. Once hot, remove any excess marinade from the steak and place it on the hot pan. Sear the steaks for 3-5 minutes, then flip to sear on the other sides. Reduce the heat to medium and continue cooking until the internal temperature reaches 145°F on an instant-read meat thermometer.
    Cut the steaks against the grain and then into bite-size pieces. Add back to the pan to soak up any other sauce (optional)
  • Make the Bell Pepper Salsa.
    Dice the bell peppers, red onion, and tomato flesh and add to a bowl. Mince the garlic, coarsely chop the cilantro, and add to the bowl.
    Season with a pinch of salt and pepper and fresh lime juice and toss to combine.
  • Assemble the Street Tacos & Enjoy.
    Warm up the corn tortillas, add cut carne asada pieces, and top with salsa, extra cilantro, lime juice, cotija cheese, and hot sauce, and enjoy.
Notes
If you have leftover cooked carne asada, store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. We don’t recommend freezing thawed steak or cooked steak.
Tips:
  • Always use an instant-read thermometer to ensure doneness. We recommend cooking carne asada to medium at 145°F.
  • Cut flank and skirt steak against the grain before cutting it into pieces.
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Mexican-Inspired
Diet: Gluten Free
Nutrition Facts
Serving1gCalories298.98kcalCarbohydrates27.32gProtein27.67gFat9.85gSaturated Fat3.36gPolyunsaturated Fat1.06gMonounsaturated Fat4.04gTrans Fat0.39gCholesterol71.44mgSodium96.02mgPotassium567.85mgFiber3.91gSugar4.52gVitamin A151.98IUVitamin C30.76mgCalcium78mgIron3.61mg
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