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Salvadoran Carne Asada Tacos

Let’s kick off Sabor Sábado with one of my favorite recipes: Authentic Salvadoran Carne Asada Tacos.

Tacos are so simple to make and so delicious to eat. Add in different ingredients with each taco, and you will never get bored!

A little background: Before I met my partner-in-crime, Chef Carlos, I was delighted to find a taco truck and indulge in some street-style tacos. 

There is just something about the combination of cilantro, onion, and crispy meat that makes my fat-girl soul soar. 

Well, after ten years of living with a chef, I’ve ditched the taco trucks because he has taught me all of the secrets of his too-good-to-be-true carne asada tacos.

I have been begging him for a few months now to let me start a series of his Salvadoran delicacies, and he is finally giving me the green light.

You might be asking yourself why he wouldn’t let me share his recipes before. 

It’s not because his recipes suck, but quite the opposite. His Central American humbleness has never allowed him to credit himself with an internet-worthy recipe.

Well, I’m cracking that humble egg because his tricks of the trade are just TOO GOOD, NOT TO SHARE.

I leave you to be the judge after you try these delicious Salvadoran carne asada tacos!

Please feel free to let us know your honest opinion at the end of the post!

¡Buen provecho!

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Salvadoran Carne Asada

What is carne asada:

Carne Asada is a Latin American dish made with flank or skirt steak. What makes carne asada unique is its marinade.

Having the right marinade will take your steak to the next level.

I have tried PLENTY of different carne asadas over my years, and I have come across very few that I LOVE as much as Carlos’ marinade recipe. My suegra’s recipe comes in close behind, but then again, Carlos learned her recipe by watching over the years!

During the warm weather, carne asada is a weekly occurrence in our house, and it is the platter of choice when we host birthday parties or celebrations! It pairs nicely with various sides, such as rice, beans, and pico de gallo. 

BUT, we aren’t talking about carne asada platters in this post. That will be saved for a future post! 

Today, we are talking about carne asada tacos. Salvadoran-style marinated tacos that make your palate do things you never thought possible!

Keep reading for the recipe and how-tos!

How to Make Carne Asada Tacos

6 Servings | Prep Time: 20 Minutes + time meat is marinating | Cook Time: 15 minutes 

Ingredients required to make carne asada tacos

Side ingredients that you can add to the taco to taste

  • One diced medium yellow onion- The yellow onion will be placed in a separate bowl and added directly onto the taco.
  • Two limes cut into wedges to add extra flavor to your tacos.
  • Diced Tomatoes (optional)
  • Sour Cream (optional)
  • Hot sauce
  • Jalapeños, fresh or pickled
  • Sea Salt to taste

Salvadoran Carne Asada Tacos

How to make carne asada tacos

  • Prepare your carne asada marinade
    • You can either mix the marinade ingredients or blend them, as Carlos does with tacos.
  • Prepare your meat
    • Stovetop instructions: If you are cooking on the stovetop, it is best to cut your meat into small pieces. Remember to cut against the grain!
    • Grill Instructions: Leave your steak in larger pieces to keep it from falling in the grill.
  • Place meat in a large ziplock back and add the carne asada marinade.
    • Let your meat marinate. You can let your meat marinate for as long as you like. We usually only marinate our meat during the duration it takes us to prepare the additional ingredients and it still turns out super flavorful!
  • While your meat is marinating, prepare your additional sides.
    • Our setup usually includes lime wedges, diced onions, chopped fresh cilantro, sour cream, a variety of hot sauces, diced tomato, and fresh or pickled jalapeños.
  • Cook your carne
  • If you cook your steak on the stovetop, heat a skillet on medium-high heat. Add a tablespoon of oil. The oil will make the meat more crispy and prevent it from sticking to the pan.
    • Once your oil is hot (you can test this out by running your hand underwater and spritzing the skillet with water droplets, if the oil hisses, it is hot enough!), use a slotted spoon or tongs to remove the carne from the bag and onto the skillet.
    • Let the carne cook to the temperature of your liking.

      *When eating red meat, I usually prefer a medium-rare temperature, but for carne asada, it is best cooked all the way and then some more for a crispy and flavorful texture!

    • Take your carne out and place it in a bowl or plate.
  • When cooked on the grill, let your grill heat up completely. With tongs place your meat on this grill. Let it cook thoroughly on both sides. Again, the crispier, the better.
    • Once you take it off the grill, use a cutting board to cut your meat into smaller pieces.
  • Warm up the tortilla.

    Sometimes we use homemade tortillas for our tacos. I will go into how to make homemade tortillas in a future post, but most of the time, we use store-bought corn tortillas

  • We warm them up by one of two options.
    • Wrap a stack of tortillas in paper towels and put them in the microwave for 30 seconds or
    • Heat the tortillas on a griddle for 30 seconds on each side of the tortilla.
  • Now that the prepping and the cooking is done, you get to enjoy your Salvadoran carne asada tacos!

Here is how I prepare my carne asada taco!!

I take TWO store-bought tortillas or ONE homemade tortilla, and directly on the tortilla, I spread sour cream. SORRY. I am a GRINGA and I love my sour cream! I know, call the taco police!!!

Next, I add the hot sauce. My first choice is usually Cholula, or Sriracha.

Then, I add my meat, followed by freshly chopped cilantro, diced onions, and sometimes, I add diced tomatoes.

Lastly, I squeeze a lime wedge on top.

Then I stuff my face. Literally. 

Lastly, I remind myself to breathe in between bites ;-D.

Salvadoran Carne Asada Tacos

Well I think I covered most of the basics!

I hope you enjoy this dish. Let me know how you enjoyed this recipe in the comments below!!!!

¡Buen provecho y hasta la próxima!

Check out some of Carlos’ other recipes here:

Instructions on making the most mouth-watering, delicious, Salvadoran-style Carne Asada Tacos. The perfect recipe for summer, or any season!