This Easy Carne Asada requires no marinade and gets flavor from a good quality cut of steak and cast iron flat top over a hot grill.
Street tacos are an iconic dish in Mexico, and a popular one being Carne Asada Tacos. There are different versions of carne asada, and most of them incorporate a marinade to make the meat tender and flavorful.
However, the recipe I’m sharing today requires no marinade and instead were using a good quality cut of steak, dicing it small, and cooking on a cast iron flat top over a hot grill.
What is Carne Asada?
In Spanish ‘Carne’ translates to meat or beef, and ‘Asada’ translates to grilled or BBQ. So Meat that is Grilled.
Typically you’ll find Carne Asada served as a thin piece of steak and with rice, beans, salsa, and a side of tortillas.
Carne Asada Street Tacos are traditionally grilled steak that’s chopped up and served on corn tortillas and topped with salsa, diced onions, and cilantro.
As with any dish, you’ll find variations depending on the region of Mexico or in different parts of the US.
The majority of carne asada recipes call for flank or skirt steak, and the marinade helps to tenderize and flavor the meat. I think this method is great to pack in a lot of flavor and save money on a more affordable cut of beef.
How to make a No-Marinade Carne Asada
The key to making a delicious no marinade carne asada taco is to use a good piece of steak. I recommend a NY Strip or Sirloin steak, the excess fat trimmed, and then diced into small bite size pieces.
Another tip is to use a seasoned cast iron flat top like this one. You want the steak to get that flavor from a fire pit, so cooking it on the grill is a must. Be sure to get the flat top nice and hot before adding the meat.
After the steak has been diced into small even pieces, add 1 teaspoon of salt per 1 pound of meat, 1/2 tsp of black pepper, and 1 tablespoon of oil. That’s it for the steak, super easy!
Building your taco
Now for the toppings, they are essential!
Salsa Verde– This salsa pairs perfect with the carne asada, but you can also do a spicier red salsa. I also like to add diced avocado to make a chunky salsa.
Next up are, diced white onion, chopped cilantro, and sliced radishes. I also like to add whole beans to my taco and my husband likes to have carne asada tacos with grilled onion bulbs on the side.
To serve the carne asada, place tortillas on the flat top till they get soft and keep them warm in foil or a clean kitchen towel. Layer the carne asada, salsa verde with avocado, onions, cilantro, and sliced radishes. Enjoy!
To put your Carne Asada Tacos over the top, try them on Homemade Corn Tortillas.
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No Marinade Carne Asada Street Tacos
- 12 Corn tortillas See Notes for Recipe
- 2 lbs Steak NY Strip or Sirloin
- 2 Tbsp Oil High heat like Avocado, Canola, or Grape Seed
- 2 tsp Salt
- 1 tsp Black Pepper
- 1 cup Salsa Verde See Notes for Recipe
- 1 Avocado Diced and mixed in with salsa verde
- 1/4 cup White onion Chopped fine
- 1/4 cup Cilantro Chopped
- Sliced Radishes
- Optional: Whole Beans, grilled bulb onions, or grilled jalapenos.
- Trim excess fat from steak and cut into small bite size cubes. Season steak with oil, salt, and pepper. Set steak aside and Pre-heat cast iron flat top on grill over 400 degree heat.
- Prep Toppings and Heat Tortillas. Keep tortillas warm in foil or clean kitchen towel in a tortilla warmer.
- Add steak to hot flat top and move around till all sides have a little char and cooked to your liking. The steak is in small pieces so just under 5 minutes of cook time is what I do. Remove steak, place in a heat proof dish.
- Serve Carne Asada on warm tortillas with Salsa Verde, onions, cilantro, sliced radishes, and grilled bulb onions, or jalapenos.
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