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3 steak picado tacos on a white plate with topping options.
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5 from 4 votes

Steak Picado (Bistec Picado)

Steak Picado is a traditional Mexican recipe filled with tender braised steak, onions, tomatoes, garlic and tons of seasonings. You'll be left with a hearty steak dish, perfect for eating next to rice and beans or tucked into a tortilla.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time1 hr 30 mins
Total Time1 hr 45 mins
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: Beef Recipes, Cinco De Mayo Recipes, Taco Recipes
Servings: 8 Servings
Calories: 202kcal
Author: Darcey Olson
Cost: $15


  • 2 tbsp Olive or Vegetable Oil
  • 2 lbs Steak Picado (or Other Beef Cuts) (*Note 1)
  • 1 tbsp Cumin
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1 tsp Oregano
  • 1 tsp Dried Ancho Chili Powder (*Note 2)
  • 1/2 tsp Coriander
  • 1 Large Onion, Thinly Sliced
  • 3 Cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 1 Small Chopped Jalapeño (*Note 3)
  • 1 28 oz Whole Plum Tomatoes (*Note 4)
  • Water, As Needed (*Note 5)


  • 1/2 cup Chopped Cilantro


  • Pre-heat a dutch oven (or large deep skillet with a lid) over medium high heat.
  • Once pre-heated, add the oil to the dutch oven and swirl to coat. Add the steak and spread out as much as possible.
  • After 2-3 minutes (when the bottom of the steak is browned), add the cumin, salt, garlic powder, oregano, dried ancho chili and coriander and stir to combine.
  • Turn the heat down to medium and add the onion, garlic and jalapeno. Cook for approx. 4-5 minutes.
  • Add the tomatoes and use a wooden spoon to crush. Add additional water until the liquid covers the majority of the meat. The amount varies depending on the size and shape pan you utilize.
  • Stir in the tomatoes, place the lid on the dutch oven and turn the heat down to low to simmer.
  • Cook for 90 minutes, stirring every 15-20 minutes. Add in extra water, as needed, to cover the majority of the beef chunks.
  • Remove the lid and let simmer for another 30 minutes.
  • Taste and add salt, if desired. Sprinkle with chopped cilantro and enjoy!



Note 1 - If you can't find steak picado, these other cuts work. Just cut them up into 1" pieces before cooking.
  • Steak Picado (some stores actually stock packages labeled steak picado).
  • Bottom or Top Round Steak
  • Sirloin Steak
  • Chuck Roast
  • Flank Steak
  • Skirt Steak
Note 2 - You can replace with regular chili powder, cayenne pepper or leave out entirely.
Note 3 - The jalapeno adds flavor, not heat, but feel free to omit if it's not your thing.
Note 4 - You can also use (2) cans of diced tomatoes. We like the quality of whole tomatoes, therefore that's what we utilize. 
Note 5 - Make sure the beef chucks are always covered in liquid (a little poking out the top won't hurt). If you see the water getting low, add more as needed.
Recipe adapted from here


Calories: 202kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 68mg | Sodium: 358mg | Potassium: 454mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 175IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 43mg | Iron: 3mg