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How to Cook Carne Asada in the Oven

How to Cook Carne Asada in the Oven

Last Updated on 17th December 2021 by

Carne asada can be used as a dish on its own or can be serve with burritos, tacos, fajitas, and other dishes that require you to fill them with meat. Carne asada just means grilled meat, and the kind of meat it can be may vary. It’s usually beef but can be one of several different cuts of beef.

Usually, carne asada is made from very thin cuts of beef that may be cooked at a high heat or grilled and may be marinated ahead of time. The beef may also be seasoned with a rub or served with just its natural flavoring.

To get that authentic carne asada texture and taste, you need to cook the meat at a very high heat on a grill. That’s really the most important thing about making this dish. All the other factors can vary from person to person and from recipe to recipe.

I’ll show you how to cook sliced carne asada in the oven, but you should know which kind of meat to use for it. Yes, this dish is usually made from beef, but which cut of beef would be able to give you that authentic flavor and experience?

Most people will use cuts of flank steak, flap meat, or skirt steak to make carne asada. All of these are fairly thin cuts of meat with an obvious grain that would traditionally be marinated and cooked over a high flame.

You can use whichever one you like, and most people will go with whichever cut is cheapest. They all work very well for this dish, and every one of these kinds of beef cuts will taste very good when prepared in the traditional carne asada method.

How to Cook Carne Asada in the Oven

I told you just now that is usually prepared on the grill, but did you know that you can make it in the oven as well? How to cook carne asada in the oven? 

It takes about the same amount of time as if you were to put it on the grill, which is around 4-6 minutes on each side. If you were making it on the grill and cooking it at high heat, it would take anywhere from 4 to 8 minutes to cook on each side. One thing to keep in mind about the cooking time is that it will vary based on how thick the meat is and how much of it you’re cooking at once. You want the meat to cook all the way through and to warm evenly and fully, and that won’t happen if you use the same cooking time for very thin cuts as you would for thicker cuts.

Now you know how long to cook carne asada in the oven, and let’s talk about the method for cooking it.

You always start carne asada with a marinade, at least for the traditional method. You can leave off the marinade if you want, but if you are marinating the meat, be sure to seal your meat with the marinade sauce in a resealable plastic bag. Store that in the fridge for a minimum of four hours and up to 24 hours. If you want a really good, thorough marinade, I suggest allowing the meat to marinate for at least 10 hours before trying to cook it up. When you marinate your meat, it is a good idea to flip it halfway through the marinade time.

Once the meat has marinated enough, it is time to cook it up the oven. How to cook thin cut carne asada in the oven? You want the rack you cook it on to be very close to the broiler in the oven. Place the top rack so that is resting just 4 inches below the oven‘s broiler and set the broiler to high. Place your meat on a baking sheet or in a broiling pan and allow it to broil for about 4 to 6 minutes on both sides.

How to best cook carne asada in the oven and know that it is done cooking? The method I have given you is a good guide to go by, but you have to realize that it some cuts of meat will cook faster or slower than others. You should check the meat to ensure it is cooked all the way through. If you want a medium rare carne asada, then pull it out when the internal temperature is about 135 degrees Fahrenheit. You can check that with a kitchen thermometer. It’s very easy to check the temperature of carne asada meat because the slices are so thin. If you want your meat to be cooked to a medium level of doneness, you can pull it out when it has reached 145 degrees Fahrenheit.

How to Cook Trader Joe’s Carne Asada in the Oven

Trader Joe’s makes a very good carne asada, or at least one that’s very popular. It might not be to everybody’s taste, especially because it can be kind of acidic. If you want to copy that and make your own carne asada taste almost identical to what you get at Trader Joe’s, you need to use the right marinade. How you cook it in the oven could be the same way I’ve showed you up above. It’s in the marinade where the secret flavor is.

You could simply just buy Trader Joe’s carne asada from this store and cook it according to the directions I’ve given you. If you’re trying to copy their marinade, however, you need specific seasonings like paprika, cilantro, orange juice, onion, garlic, and cayenne pepper.

Their carne asada cooks very well in the oven, and you don’t have to use the grill at all. You can even cook it in a frying pan if you want, cooking about 3 to 4 minutes on each side for a medium level of doneness.

To cook it in the oven, cook for about four to six minutes on each side, just like the recipe I gave you above.

When carne asada is cooked properly, it will be thin, flavorful, and tender. You want to be careful about overcooking it and drying it out. You also want to make sure it is well hydrated and marinated so that when you cook it, it will still be soft and tender.

Carne asada should be served hot in most cases, but it can be served cold when mixed with a salad or as part of a wrap. Remember that carne asada is generally cooked on the grill, but it can be prepared in the oven or on your stovetop in a pan. If you buy raw meat or marinated carne asada frozen, you should thaw it out before cooking it. Allow it to sit in the fridge overnight or sit in a pan of water for a few hours to thaw out completely.


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I'm Pauline, a retired patisserie chef, mother of four and now a full time food blogger! When i'm not cooking i love long walks, reading thriller novels and spending time with my grandkids. Head to my about me page to learn more about the woman behind the food!  You can find my Facebook here

Jackie Lance

Sunday 20th of February 2022

It can get confusing but she did give instructions. She said to cook it on a high broil on the top rack about 4 inches from the top of the broiler. The meat is so thin that you should check it carefully she said because every oven will vary. Flip it when it starts to brown a little. Cook it to your liking as far as how rare you would like it. I hope this helps.


Sunday 30th of January 2022

Exactly I'm so confused I don't wanna use the microwave ugh


Sunday 15th of August 2021

Hello, the article says it’s going to tell us how to cook it on the oven, but no oven cooking instructions are given. Key would be what temperature.