flank steak tacos with cilantro lime marinade

by jenna on April 13, 2011

Hi guys! I’m Laurie from Simply Scratch! My passion is to make easy and tasty recipes with simple and delicious ingredients. I also love sharing the recipes I come up with and come across, and Simply Scratch is the place where I can share them with you along with step-by-step photos showing just how those recipes are made! So if you like flour, bacon fat and a little elbow grease then I’m your girl!

But before I start talking about my recipe, I want to thank Jenna {whose Old Fashioned Banana Pudding makes me weak in the knees} for asking me here today, I’m honored and beyond excited! Thank you Jenna! Xo

There is something about the smell of grilled food that just makes me happy. And nothing says spring like busting out the grill to make some yummy grilled food. Today I’m sharing with you one of my all-time favorite spring and summertime recipes… Cilantro Lime Flank Steak… which eventually leads you to the most delicious Steak Tacos you’ll ever have! This recipe is flavorful, juicy and surprisingly easy to throw together!

Here is what you’ll need: 2 lb. flank steak or skirt steak, one lime, olive oil, cilantro, garlic, red pepper flakes, honey, ancho-chili pepper, cumin, salt and pepper.

Here are the spices… 😉

In a mini food processor toss in the cilantro leaves, then one peeled and smashed garlic clove.

Add the juice of a whole lime.

Now just pulse it quickly to get everything roughly chopped.

Next goes in the seasonings…

Then some honey… Now if you don’t have any honey on hand, you can substitute it with sugar.

…And the olive oil.

Process until combined.

Now you can place your flank steak in a gallon size re-sealable bag or shallow dish that has a tight fitting lid.

Pour the marinade over the steak; squish the bag to evenly coat and cover all of the steak.

Let it hang out on the counter for 30 minutes; bringing the meat up to room temperature so it’s ready for the grill.

Grill over medium-high heat for 6-10 minutes per side, depending on how well you want it done.

Once it has reached your desired doneness; remove from grill onto a cutting board then cover with tin foil. Now for the hard part; let it rest for 5-7 minutes before slicing, so the meat can relax and the juices can redistribute.

Slice across the grain and at a slight angle; a sharp knife can be really helpful here! Now here comes the best steak tacos ever… ya ready?!

Warm up some flour tortillas and lay some thinly slice steak in the center.

Here are all the toppings you will need for the best steak tacos… EVER!

Top the steak with the lettuce, Pico and freshly shredded Monterey jack cheese, and there you have it!

I’m a huge fan of grilled food. Put a plate of nicely charred anything in front of me and I’m a happy girl. Enjoy!

Flank Steak Tacos with Cilantro Lime Marinade

Serves 4 very hungry people


For the marinade:

1 {2 lb} Flank Steak or Skirt Steak

1/3 cup Olive Oil

Juice of 1 Lime

1 Garlic Clove, smashed

A handful of Cilantro

2 teaspoons of Honey

1/2 teaspoon of Cumin

1/2 teaspoon of Ancho-Chili Pepper

1/2 teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes

Kosher Salt and Fresh Black Pepper, to taste

For the Steak Tacos:

2 lbs. prepared Cilantro-Lime Marinated Flank Steak, sliced thin

10-12 Soft Flour Tortillas

Iceberg Lettuce, shredded or sliced

Pico de Gallo {see my recipes}

Monterey Jack Cheese, freshly grated


In a mini food processor; place the cilantro, garlic and lime juice and pulse quickly until chopped. Toss the remaining ingredients in with the cilantro/garlic and pulse until combined.

Marinate flank steak for 30 minutes on the counter top, bringing the meat up to temp before grilling it.

Grill the flank steak 6-10 minutes per side on medium-high heat. I found that on my grill, on medium-high heat, 6 minutes per side is good for a medium-well done steak.

To assemble tacos, heat up some warm soft flour tortillas, layer with thinly sliced strips of the cilantro-lime steak, shredded ice berg lettuce, pico de gallo {see my recipes} and top with shredded Monterey Jack cheese!

{CLICK HERE} to print this yummy recipe!!

Thanks for checking out my recipe! I hope you love it as much as I do!!

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{ 59 comments… read them below or add one }

Heather (Heather's Dish) April 13, 2011 at 5:02 am

it’s all about using a great flavorful marinade! thanks for the fabulous recipe…we’re reading for grilling season already in Colorado!


Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat April 13, 2011 at 5:03 am

I love the sounds of this marinade! I have a ton of cilantro in my fridge that I need to find a use for so I think I’ll try it out!


Molly April 13, 2011 at 5:03 am

This is such a refreshing warm-weather dish!


Beth @ Beth's Journey to Thin April 13, 2011 at 5:16 am

That marinade screams spring to me too! Looks and sounds delicious. Yum!


Estela @ Weekly Bite April 13, 2011 at 5:20 am

What a great marinade!!! I’m definitely bookmarking this :)


Ruth April 13, 2011 at 5:21 am

Ooh! Jenna’s post from yesterday about steak was giving me serious cravings as it was, but this is sending me over the edge! The lime in this sounds fantastic. Thanks for sharing!


Julie (Food & Other Things) April 13, 2011 at 5:27 am

I love tacos but I’ve never made them with steak before, I’m definitely trying this recipe….the marinade sounds great!


megan @ whatmegansmaking April 13, 2011 at 5:30 am

I love new marinade ideas! This looks awesome :)


Amy April 13, 2011 at 5:30 am

Laurie – these look incredible! Thanks so much for sharing :) I’m totally with ya: I believe grilling makes everything taste better… so glad it’s finally getting warm enough again… Let the grilling season begin!


Sarah (Running To Slow Things Down) April 13, 2011 at 5:42 am

This looks and sounds spectacular! Finding the right marinade is KEY for flank steak, and I can’t wait to give this one a try. Yummy! 😀


Jessica @ How Sweet April 13, 2011 at 5:47 am

This is going on the menu for the week! We love flank steak and eat a lot of it but I am always looking for ways to spice it up. It looks delicious Laurie!


Holly @ The Runny Egg April 13, 2011 at 5:50 am

That marinade looks delicious! Tacos are the best!


Justeeen @ Blissful Baking April 13, 2011 at 5:51 am

These tacos look SO flavorful and delicious!


Nichole April 13, 2011 at 6:06 am

Yumm! Looks so good and the weather has finally turned sunny and a bit warmer, can’t wait to make it!


Carpensm @ A Life Without Ice Cream April 13, 2011 at 6:12 am

OMG that steak looks amazing! Drooling and its only breakfast 😛


amy walters, aDESIGNdock April 13, 2011 at 6:20 am

Wow…my mouth is watering (and I just finished a hearty breakfast so that’s a huge compliment)! Great post!


Stephanie Rose April 13, 2011 at 6:28 am

holy moly! these look delish! makes me taste summer time


Hannah (Culture Connoisseur) April 13, 2011 at 6:33 am

I am not joking when I say that when I got to the part about pouring the marinade in the bag I ACTUALLY smelled it. It smelled delicious. :)

Thanks for the recipe, Laurie. Love it, and the pictures!


Krystina (Organically Me) April 13, 2011 at 6:36 am

I could bathe in that marinade.


Samantha Ullrich April 13, 2011 at 6:48 am

What beautiful photos!! And I love the way you labeled the ingredients on the pictures, a great way to show what’s involved! I’m loving this post and definitely bookmarking it


The Teenage Taste April 13, 2011 at 6:49 am

Those tacos look totally droolworthy! Thanks for sharing the recipe Laurie! 😀


Lucy @ The Sweet Touch April 13, 2011 at 6:50 am

These look fantastic! I love tacos!!!


Jessica @ Dishin' About Nutrition April 13, 2011 at 6:52 am

My favorite ingredient is cilantro, no joke! It is so amazing, the smell, the powerful taste, yummm! We have made flank steaks with chimichuri sauce before but this looks like something I will definitely have to try!


Jenny @ Fitness Health and Food April 13, 2011 at 7:08 am

mmm mmm they look awesome!

I heart tacos, steak, cilantro, and lime in all forms! Thanks so much for sharing! :)


Chelsea @ Sprinkles of Parsley April 13, 2011 at 7:10 am

Is it normal to crave flank steak at 10:00am??? Thanks Laurie! haha. This looks absolutely incredible. I had tacos this week too… now I’m wishing I had this recipe a few days ago!


Eunice April 13, 2011 at 7:13 am

This is like all of my favorite things in one place! Thanks for the recipe. I have some flank steak in the fridge and I am totally making these!


Maria April 13, 2011 at 7:38 am

I love the cilantro lime marinade! Good stuff!


Michelle | GOLD-HEARTED GIRL April 13, 2011 at 8:14 am

Now I REALLY want to make some fish tacos. It’s one of my favorite summer foods. With lime and a beer…yes.



Mary (what's cookin' with mary) April 13, 2011 at 8:37 am

This recipe sounds great Laurie! …and you have a beautiful website!! Such beautiful step by step photos. Love it :)


Bianca @ Confessions of a Chocoholic April 13, 2011 at 8:46 am

Love steak tacos! Awesome pictures. I always add some guacamole and lots of hot sauce in my tacos – yum!


Dee April 13, 2011 at 8:49 am

omg! this looks unbelievable Laurie!


Brenna [fabuleuxdestin] April 13, 2011 at 9:53 am



Natalia - a side of simple April 13, 2011 at 10:17 am

Laurie, the fact that you emphasized a “little” elbow grease and not a “little” bacon fat totally won my heart over :) Thanks for sharing your recipe!


a farmer in the dell April 13, 2011 at 10:57 am

Thanks for the great recipe!!! Yum!


Sonia (the Mexigarian) April 13, 2011 at 11:09 am

Love the photos and the tacos look delish. I know a few people in my family that would love it!


Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) April 13, 2011 at 12:15 pm

I love the flavors you used in the marinade and the photography geek in me is digging that you “wrote” on the pictures using an editing program. I am still trying to figure out how to do that in Lightroom.

Beautiful photos, Jenna!


The Food Hound April 13, 2011 at 12:26 pm

Jenna, I’m new to your blog and I love it!! Can’t wait to follow with you and see what you cook up next! I’m a lover of food and writing trapped in the job of a dietitian (help!). These tacos look awesome- I’m a huge fan of Laurie at Simply Scratch!


Amanda Molnar April 13, 2011 at 12:27 pm

Just happened to stumble upon your site (reference intended, but it is a phrase I would use anyway) and I am in love.

Your blog is absolutely fabulous. I’ve added it to my list of regulars for the day (my job is not particularly exciting and has nothing to do with food, so I need to fill the void).

Peanut butter bread and banana pudding are coming up in my kitchen soon!

Keep the posts coming, great work!


Heather @ Get Healthy with Heather April 13, 2011 at 12:44 pm

I love grilled foods! I cannot wait for the rain to stop and the charcoal grill to be pulled out.

The marinade sounds just perfect!


Tessa April 13, 2011 at 1:00 pm

We’re in the process of finishing our backyard, and this may be the “break-it-int” recipe. I’m with you. I love anything grilled! These look great!


GinaB April 13, 2011 at 2:21 pm

the marinade looks ah-mazing! forgive my cooking incompetence, but how easily can i use this recipe for fish tacos (don’t eat red meat)? pretty transferable, right?


Laurie @SimplyScratch April 13, 2011 at 8:21 pm

I wouldn’t marinate fish in this marinade for long at all. I would brush it over top, or do a quick dunk before placing it on a grill pan or in the oven, because the lime juice would actually start cooking the fish! But I bet this would be yummy brushed over shrimp skewers! YUM!


GinaB April 14, 2011 at 4:30 pm

great, thanks so much for the advice!


Haley @ The Girly Girl Cooks April 13, 2011 at 2:35 pm

Oh my gosh! Laurie, you out-did yourself! I want to make this so bad!!!


shelby April 13, 2011 at 5:23 pm

We made these for dinner tonight. My fiance can’t stop raving! Thanks for the great recipe Laurie!


Lisa April 13, 2011 at 5:49 pm

Oh, have mercy!! I had planned something else for dinner tonight but when I saw this recipe I changed my plans immediately. This was ridiculously delicious and soooo easy…my new favorite fajita marinade. Thank you so much for sharing the recipe.


Laurie @SimplyScratch April 13, 2011 at 7:02 pm

@Gina B. I wouldn’t marinate fish in this marinade for long at all. I would brush it over top, or do a quick dunk before placing it on a grill pan or in the oven, because the lime juice would actually start cooking the fish! But I bet this would be yummy brushed over shrimp skewers! YUM! :)


Steph@321delish April 13, 2011 at 8:14 pm

cilantro + lime is one of my fave combos! Thanks for this awesome recipe!


Kerru April 13, 2011 at 9:02 pm

This. looks. DELICIOUS.

I am making these this week.

You’re an inspiration.

I’m drooling.


Kelsey Taylor April 14, 2011 at 3:20 pm

OMG!!! Those look so amazing….i was trying to decide what to have for dinner, but I think I figure it out!!


cindy harris April 14, 2011 at 4:48 pm

To late for dinner tonight but it is on the menu tomorrow. I get excited when I see beautiful food like this. Call me crazy!


Muriel {cook bake and decorate} April 15, 2011 at 1:42 pm

Oh my, heaven all wrapped up into one yummy lookin taco! I can’t wait to give this recipe a try! YUM!!!


Kelsey Taylor May 6, 2011 at 9:00 pm

Oh my gosh…those tacos look soooooooo good! I may have to convince my mom to make them for me!! :)


Dave Beaulieu October 4, 2011 at 1:50 pm

These look awesome. I love making tacos…and of course the toppings for them. Also great with your choice of Flank for the cut. That is skirt steak are my favorites. I just put a video up for an Adobo steak taco that you may like: http://tiny.cc/9v2xp


OliveandBranch November 5, 2011 at 9:03 am

OMG – trying this tonight – love your photos – I am getting hungry! Thanks for the beautiful website!!


Rkstr December 3, 2012 at 7:06 pm

really really good!!!!!


Laura December 19, 2012 at 1:56 pm

DELICIOUS!! We loved these. Thanks for an awesome recipe!


dwagner May 5, 2013 at 12:37 pm

Best steak tacos we ever inhaled!
Real easy too.


Andrew August 10, 2014 at 12:37 pm

Just made this. Holy cow. Amazing. Thank you so much


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