Deeply flavorful and super tender, this carne asada recipe is sure to be a winner at the dinner table! In this recipe, I show you how to make your own carne asada at home, along with some fresh Pico de Gallo and spiced taco dressing. Consider your Taco Tuesday worries solved!

Carne Asada at Home

Though our family has Asian roots, at home we like to eat international! And one of the cuisines I really love making at home is Mexican food. Though the flavor profiles are quite different, the use of herbs, spices, and produce such as onions and limes (to bring a refreshing flavor and tang) is something Vietnamese and Mexican food have in common, so I naturally gravitated toward many of their dishes.

This carne asada recipe is inspired by my lovely and beautiful friend Marie from San Diego. San Diego has some of the best Mexican food in the United States and I wanted to honor her and all of my beautiful San Diegan friends with this classic Mexican staple. I hope you can enjoy it as well!

What Cut of Meat is Carne Asada?

Though you can use other cuts of steak like sirloin, tenderloin, or even rib-eye if you’re feeling fancy, carne asada is most commonly made with skirt steak or flank steak. Both cuts of meat are packed with beefy flavor but are a little less tender because they have less fat. If you’re in a rush, you can use a fattier steak to ensure the tenderness of the meat. But I like to take my time marinating it to get the full flavor for my carne asada.

How to Make Carne Asada Meat Tender

The secret to perfectly tender meat for your carne asada is in the marinade. The acidity from the vinegar and orange juice will break down the muscle fibers as well as help the other flavors permeate. This way, you can turn the somewhat tough cuts of steak into juicy, fall-apart carne asada.

You can marinate your steak for 1-4 hours before cooking or even in the fridge overnight. I personally like marinating my meat for 24 hours for ultra-tender beef, but if you want a little more chew to your meat, you can do less.

I usually marinate 6-9 lbs. of beef at once and freeze them up in multiple portions – you can try this too so you can have delicious carne asada on hand whenever you need it!

What to Eat With Carne Asada

Of course, the best way to enjoy your carne asada is over some warmed tortillas – whether you choose to go soft or crunchy.

For this recipe, I’ve also included my recipe for Pico de Gallo and a very flavorful taco dressing. Pile these on top of the carne asada or in small bowls on the side and sprinkle sliced red onions, cabbage, and cilantro on the meat. Simple, fresh, and delicious!

Some other ways you can have this carne asada is over fries or on top of beans and rice to make a burrito bowl! Happy cooking!

Carne Asada

Carne Asada, Pico De Gallo and Taco Dressing – what more can you ask for? This recipe was inspired by my lovely and beautiful friend Marie from San Diego. San Diego has about the best Mexican food you can ask for. This recipe is for you Marie and all of my beautiful San Diegan friends.
Prep Time 2 hours
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 10 minutes
Course Main Course
Calories 152 kcal


  • 3 lbs skirt or flank stead
  • 1 cup chopped cilantro
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • 1 jalapeno
  • 3 limes
  • 3 green onions stems, white part only (We Asians always use the white part of the green onion for marinate 😊 – it adds so much flavor to any meat)
  • ½ tbsp pepper
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1/3 cup oil
  • 3 tbsp vinegar
  • 2-3 oranges



Tip: I usually marinate 6-9 lbs. of meat at the same time. Once the meat has marinated overnight, I freeze up multiple portions. This way, we can have Carne Asada anytime we want to. The recipe uses simple and super fresh ingredients. It is not difficult but does take some time so by marinating a few portions at the same time, I can have a delicious and healthy meal any day of the week.
Note: Beef Skirt or Flank can be a little tough at times, so the vinegar and the acidity of the limes and oranges are key in tenderizing the meat. The longer you marinate the meat, the more tender it will be. I find it best to marinate for 24 hours if you have time.
Keyword carne asada recipe, carne asado, recipes with carne asada

Taco Dressing


  • 2 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • ¼ tbsp salt
  • ½ cup yogurt
  • ¼ tbsp chipotle seasoning
  • ½ tbsp onion powder
  • ½ tbsp garlic powder
  • ¼ paprika powder
  • ¼ cumin powder

Pico De Gallo


  • 1 lbs tomato
  • 1 jalapeno
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 cup cilantro
  • 1 lime
  • 1 tbsp cumin powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste


In addition, thinly shredded cabbage and red onions.

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