How to Marinate Carne Asada

Carne asada is a Mexican dish of marinated, grilled beef and literally means "roasted meat" in Spanish. It is the key ingredient in dishes like burritos and tacos. The term "carne asada" also describes a party where the dish is prepared and served. The primary ingredient for a carne asada marinade is lime, which not only provides delicious flavor, but also tenderizes the beef with its citric acid.

Things You'll Need

  • 1 lb. beef skirt steak trimmed of excess fat
  • 6 to 8 limes
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Large, glass bowl


    • 1

      Cut limes in half cross-wise.

    • 2

      Squeeze the lime juice into a large, glass bowl.

    • 3

      Cut the meat into pieces approximately 4 inches long.

    • 4

      Place the cut meat pieces into the bowl with the lime juice.

    • 5

      Let the meat marinate in the refrigerator for a minimum of one hour and a maximum of four. Turn the meat every twenty minutes, if possible.

    • 6

      Remove the meat from the bowl. Pat it dry with paper towels.

    • 7

      Liberally sprinkle the meat with salt and pepper to taste.

Tips & Warnings

  • For additional flavor, try adding a handful of fresh cilantro, 4 garlic cloves, 1 tsp. of ground cumin and 1/2 cup of olive oil to the marinade.
  • Roll the uncut limes beneath your hand on a countertop using firm pressure. This will soften them making the juices release more easily.
  • Do not use a metal bowl to marinate the beef. The citric acid in the limes could react with the metal and impart a bad taste in the finished dish.
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