Carne Asada

Carne asada, which translates as “roast meat,” is a festive and flavorful dish of thinly sliced marinated beef. The key to making amazing carne asada is a marinade that strikes the right balance of spicy, sweet and savory flavors.

Any cook who loves carne asada is likely to have their own secret blend of herbs, spices and marinating liquid and we’re thrilled Darlene has shared hers for the Primal Blueprint Cookbook Contest. (Enter your own Primal recipes for a chance to win a Primal prize package and to be included in the reader-created Primal Blueprint Cookbook. View all the details and the current theme here.)

When the ingredients for this marinade are all chopped and mixed together, take a long, deep whiff. The aroma of the marinade hints at the flavor to come. Warm spices, refreshing lime, the sweet scent of oranges and the malty aroma of beer will have you salivating and counting the minutes until the meat goes on the grill. The marinade doesn’t just add flavor; the acidity in the citrus fruits and beer helps tenderize the meat, too. The alcohol will burn off as the steak cooks but the flavor of the beer will subtly enhance the carne asada. Choose a darker beer for a richer, more intense flavor.

Serve carne asada over shredded lettuce with slices of avocado or guacamole and a garnish of pico de gallo or salsa.

Darlene’s Mexican Carne Asada


  • 1 1/2 pounds (grass fed) flank steak
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • Pinch cayenne pepper
  • 2  limes, juiced
  • 1 orange, juiced
  • 8 to 12 ounces beer (or beef broth)


Slice the flank steak on the diagonal into thin strips.

Combine all ingredients in a large Ziploc bag or in a shallow dish (meat should be completely covered in liquid).

Marinate in the refrigerator at least 3 hours. Take out and drain off the marinade. Lightly salt the steak. The meat can be cooked in a skillet with coconut oil or grilled.

Cook 3-6 minutes on each side for medium-rare.

Pico de Gallo


  • 1 white onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, finely chopped (optional)
  • Juice from half a lime


Mix together ingredients. Add salt to taste.

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