Vaca Frita Recipe Receta Vaca Frita

Vaca Frita Recipe | Receta Vaca Frita

Vaca Frita means fried cow in spanish.

It is a popular Cuban shredded stewed flank steak dish.

It is very similar to ropa vieja the main difference being that tomato sauce is not one of its ingredients.

Instead vaca frita recipe is marinated in lime, garlic and salt.

See all other from Cuban Recipes | Recetas Cubanas

Ingredients List:

  • 2 lbs Flank Steak
  • 8 Clove Garlic, Minced
  • 1 Onion, Chopped
  • 1 Onion, Thinly Sliced
  • 1 tsp Cumin
  • 1 Bay Leaf
  • 1 tsp Oregano
  • 1/2 Cup Lime Juice
  • Vegetable Oil
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • Salt & Pepper to Taste


Place the meat into a large pot and cover with the water. Add 1 teaspoon of salt, 4 cloves of minced garlic, and the chopped onion.

Bring the mixture to a boil over medium high heat. Then reduce to medium low heat and simmer until the meat is tender, about 20 minutes.

Remove the meat from the pot and let cool. When the flank steak is cool enough to handle, shred it and put into a large bowl. Mix the lime juice, oregano, cumin, bay leaf and the remaining garlic and add it to the steak, make sure the lime juice coats the beef shreds well.

Refrigerate and marinate the meat for 2 to 3 hours. When you’re ready to cook, remove the steaks from marinade and pat dry with paper towels.

Heat a large, flat griddle until very hot. Working in batches, spread the shredded beef on the griddle in a thin layer and season with salt and pepper. Cook over high heat, turning once or twice, until sizzling and crispy in spots, about 6 minutes per batch. Transfer to a platter and serve.

Put small amount of vegetable oil on a large skillet and heat over high heat. Add the onion slices and cook until they are translucent. Working in batches add the steak, season with salt and pepper and cook until it gets brown and crispy in spots.

Transfer to a platter and serve.