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Carne Asada Tacos

These carne asada tacos are made with marinated and grilled flank steak pieces then served in corn tortillas topped with chopped onions, cilantro and a fresh squeeze of lime.

If you love Mexican-inspired street tacos, other favorites to try include my birria taco recipe, shrimp tacos, and carnitas tacos!

Close up of carne asada taco on a plate.
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Easy Carne Asada Tacos

One bite of these carne asada tacos and you’ll see why they are worth the time it takes to marinate the meat to juicy, flavorful, and tender levels of deliciousness. They are just as good as my flank steak tacos, another street style taco favorite!

This street steak tacos recipe is made with juicy strips of marinated carne asada wrapped in corn tortillas and then topped with onions, cilantro, avocado, and lime juice. It’s a food truck style taco made right at home!

Recipe Ingredients

Made with fresh ingredients that combine bold flavor with simple spices, these tacos are so tender and juicy!

Carne asada ingredients on marble counter.

Find the full printable recipe with specific measurements below.

  • Carne asada marinade: Olive oil, fresh lime juice, orange juice, white vinegar, minced jalapeno, crushed garlic, fresh cilantro, chili powder, cumin, salt, and pepper. You’ll need extra salt and pepper for seasoning just before grilling.
  • Flank steak: You’ll need to tenderize it and pound it first by placing it in between two pieces of plastic wrap or in a zip-loc bag. Then use a meat mallet or rolling pin to pound it to an even thickness. It’s inexpensive meat that cooks quickly, so it’s great for grilling.
  • Corn tortillas: These are traditional for carne asada tacos, so to make it as authentic as possible, I prefer corn tortillas. You can use flour tortillas if you would rather.
  • Toppings: Chopped onions, sliced limes, avocado slices, and cilantro.

How to Make Carne Asada Tacos

Grilled carne asada is piled high into a tortilla for a classic dish that is perfect for any Cinco de Mayo celebration!

Showing how to make carne asada tacos in a 4 step collage.
  • Marinate the flank steak. Combine beef with marinade ingredients in a large bowl or gallon-sized zip-top bag. Seal, then mix until everything is combined. Marinate for 1 hour at room temperature or up to 12 hours in the fridge.
  • Cook the steak. On the preheated grill over medium-high heat for 7-10 minutes, cook until the internal temperature reads a minimum of 130°F. Once done to your desired doneness, let it rest and allow the juices to redistribute and settle.
  • Slice the carne asada steak. Cut into thin strips against the grain. Shortening the fibers crosswise will help with getting the meat even more tender and easier to chew.
  • Assemble tacos. Add strips of carne asada meat to a corn tortilla and top with onions, cilantro, a squeeze of lime, avocado, and any other toppings you use. Repeat with remaining taco shells and enjoy!

Expert Tips

  • Marinate time. At least 1 hour but no more than 12 hours, otherwise the lime juice will start to “cook” the meat and break it down too much.
  • Let it rest. Flank steak is quite lean and needs juices to keep it moist. If you slice into it without letting it rest first, the juices will run out leaving the meat dry.
  • Slice against the grain. In this type of steak, the fibers are easily visible. They are the lines in the meat that run down in the same direction. Slicing against the grain means slicing across, shortening those fibers as you go.
  • Less is more. The flavorful grilled meat is really the star of the show. As much as we love to add toppings, it’s important not to overload it with ingredients that overpower the steak.
Sliced carne asada steak on wood platter.

Taco Topping Ideas

What’s great about Mexican recipes is that so many of the ingredients are interchangeable. Seasonings, toppings, fillings, you name it, here are a few favorites:

Three carne asada tacos on a plate.

Recipe FAQs

Can I make carne asada tacos in the oven?

If you’re not up to grilling today, use the broiler instead! Preheat the oven, place the steak on a baking sheet, and broil about 8 inches from the broiler for about 6-8 minutes per side, flipping halfway, for medium.

Find more tips for how to cook steak in the oven.

What can I use instead of flank steak?

Skirt steak is used for a carne asada street taco just as often, if not more often, than flank steak, although it’s usually harder to find than flank steak. Both are tender when cooked low and slow or tenderized properly and skirt steak has more marbling which makes it juicy. Either can be used or try making these skirt steak tacos!

How do I know what temperature I need?

Use this guideline! For accuracy, use a digital thermometer because you don’t want to cut into the meat too early to check it. This will dry it out.

(130°-140°F) – Medium Rare
(140°-150°F) – Medium
(150°-160°F) – Medium Well
(Over 160°F) – Well

How long can I keep leftovers?

Keep leftover steak in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.

Carne asada tacos on plate.

Looking for more Mexican-inspired recipes? Don’t miss fish tacos, taco salad, Mexican street corn, and Mexican wedding cookies for dessert!

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Carne asada tacos on a white plate.

Carne Asada Tacos

5 from 6 votes
↑ Click stars to rate now!
Author: Jamielyn Nye
These carne asada tacos are made with marinated and grilled flank steak pieces then served in corn tortillas topped with chopped onions, cilantro and a fresh squeeze of lime.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Marinate + Rest Time: 2 hours 5 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Servings: 8



  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 limes , juiced
  • ½ cup orange juice
  • 2 Tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1 jalapeno , minced and seeded (for less spice)
  • 4 cloves garlic , crushed
  • 1 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt , plus more for grilling
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper , plus more for grilling
  • 2 pounds flank steak
  • 12 corn tortillas , or flour tortillas


  • Chopped onions
  • Chopped cilantro
  • Sliced limes
  • Sliced avocado , optional


  • In a large bowl or a gallon-sized zip-top bag, add the olive oil, lime juice, orange juice, vinegar, jalapeno, garlic, cilantro, chili powder, cumin, salt, and pepper. Seal, if needed, and mix together until combined.
  • Add the steak and cover with plastic wrap or press out any excess air before sealing. Marinate at room temperature at least 1 hour or in the refrigerator up to 12 hours. If refrigerating, set out 30 minutes before grilling.
  • Remove the steak from the marinade and pat dry with paper towel. Season each side with salt and pepper.
  • Preheat the grill to medium-high heat. Place the steak on the grill and cook 7 to 10 minutes, or until a digital thermometer reads 140°F. You can also cook longer to your desired doneness. See notes for cooking temperatures.
  • Let rest 5 to 10 minutes. Slice the carne asada steak against the grain.
  • In a tortilla, add several slices carne asada, and top with onions, cilantro, a squeeze of lime juice, and avocado, if using. Repeat with remaining tortillas.


Pound the steak: To tenderize the meat, Place steak in between two pieces of plastic wrap or in a large zip-top bag. Using a mallet or a rolling pin, pound the steak to an even thickness. 
Steak temperature: 
  • Medium Rare (130°-140°F) 
  • Medium (140°-150°F) 
  • Medium Well (150°-160°F)
  • Well (Over 160°F)
Make-ahead: This marinade can be made up to 3 days in advance, however don’t add the meat longer than 12 hours, since the acid in the marinate can break down the meat too much. Typically I’ll add the meat in the morning and grill that evening. 
Cook steak in the oven: Preheat the broiler. Place steak on a baking sheet. Broil 8 inches away from broiler, turning once halfway through, until cooked to desired doneness (6 to 8 minutes per side for medium). See below for internal temperatures. 
Storing: You can store leftover meat in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 3 to 4 days. 


Calories: 318kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 27g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 68mg | Sodium: 375mg | Potassium: 538mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 272IU | Vitamin C: 16mg | Calcium: 71mg | Iron: 3mg

Nutrition provided is an estimate. It will vary based on specific ingredients used.

Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: Mexican
Diet: Gluten Free

Did you make this recipe? Don’t forget to give it a star rating below!

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