Mulitas: Carne Asada Taco-Quesadilla L.A. Style

Mulitas are a delicious Mexican street food very popular in Los Angeles. A mix between a taco and quesadilla that is the ultimate mouth-watering food!

Making them at home is super easy and you can customize the dish to your liking and with ingredients you maybe have already in your fridge.

L.A. Style Mulitas Carne Asada

The meatiness and cheesiness make it a perfect dish. It is among the best Mexican street food you can eat. 

What are mulitas?

The word mulitas are in Spanish that literally means “little mules”. Of course, the translation seems weird for a delicious dish, but it is what it is. 

I suppose it refers that you can pack them with whatever you like, from meat to veggies is really up to you. Furthermore, the size is also relatively small so, I guess that’s why it translates into “little mule”.

So, in simple words, this street food is a Mexican version of a grilled cheese sandwich where the bread is replaced by tortillas. It resembles a quesadilla as it uses tortillas and cheese, but is also a taco since there’s meat in the inside, and salsas.

Two mulitas with carne asada piled.

Ingredients you need

Here is a detailed breakdown of everything you need for making this delicious recipe:

For carne asada

  • Meat: For the filling, you will need beef cut into thin slices and bites. The most commonly used beef cut is the skirt steak or flank.
  • Cumin: Ground cumin has a prominent place in northern Mexican cuisine. So, for cooking carne asada, you will need ground cumin for that warm and earthy flavour.
  • Seasoning: plain salt and black pepper are perfect to season the meat.

For mulitas taco

  • Tortilla: You can either use flour or corn tortillas. However, I prefer corn homemade tortillas as I can make them smaller and thicker. Or just use store-bought tortillas if you don’t feel like making your own.
  • Cheese: You can either use Oaxaca or asadero cheese, Monterey jack cheese, cheddar cheese or even mozzarella.
  • Salsa: We’re using pico de gallo salsa but feel free to browse around our selection of salsas and make the one that inspires you most.

For quick guacamole

I am leaving you a quick guacamole recipe here, it’s made in a very simple way with only avocados, onions, chili peppers and lime juice. If you want a more detailed (and slightly different) recipe for guacamole head over this page.

A mulita stuffed with carne asada, cheese, guacamole and pico de gallo salsa.

About the meat

Even though you can use either shirt or flank steak, the most important thing to know is that you should cut it into thin slices and then small bites. This allows for quick cooking. Also, don’t over cook it as it can get tough/hard, as soon as you see the meat is not longer pink, remove from heat and keep it covered to prevent it from drying out.

Best tortillas to use

Although you can use either flour tortillas or corn tortillas for mulitas, the most commonly used one is the corn tortilla. That’s because corn tortilla is low in fat and has more nutrients and fiber than a flour tortilla. Also, it is perfectly safe for those who are allergic to gluten. So, in my opinion, corn tortillas are best for mulitas. However, if you like four tortillas more, you can use these as well.

Make the quick guacamole

Place diced onions, chilies and chopped cilantro on a bowl. Cut avocado in half and discard the pit. Scoop out the pulp and add it to the bowl. Use a fork and while smashing, mix everything.

Smashing avocados into a bowl.

Season with salt and lime juice to your liking and set aside.

Make the steak

Season beef with salt, pepper and a pinch of cumin. Heat a stove grill pan or skillet on medium-high heat until smoking. Add a drizzle of olive oil to lightly coat the pan. 

Add meat and sauté until meat is no longer pink and is cooked through. Don’t overcook or meat will become tough.

Cooked carne asada on a pan.

Place meat on a container and cover well to prevent it from drying.

Make the mulitas

Heat a skillet or pan over medium heat and drizzle with a little bit of oil. Place a tortilla, add some cheese then add meat.

Add more cheese on top and close with another tortilla. Brush the tortilla on top with oil.

Tortilla on skillet with cheese and beef steak on top.

Allow the cheese to start melting, then carefully, using a spatula, flip over to cook the other side. Gently press the tortilla to stick it with cheese and meat.

Mulita cooking on a skillet.

Keep flipping the stuffed tortillas until cheese is melted and bubbling and the border of tortillas starts to get crispy.

Flipping tortilla with a spatula.

Garnish

Put mulitas on a plate, gently peel the top tortilla and add guacamole and pico de gallo. Close and serve immediately with your favorite toppings.

Peeling tortilla on top to see the melted cheese.
Look at that cheesy, gooey, filling!

Drinks to pair with mulitas

Mulitas served on a red plastic basket.

Mulitas (carne asada taco/quesadilla)

Delicious mulitas are made with carne asada and cheese sandwiched between two tortillas, then garnished with guacamole and pico de gallo salsa.
PREP 20 minutes
COOK 15 minutes
TOTAL 35 minutes
5 from 5 votes
Print Pin Rate
Servings: 6 mulitas
Author: Maricruz

Ingredients 

For carne asada

  • 1.1 lb flank or skirt steak (cut into thin slices)
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • 1 Tbsp canola oil
  • salt and pepper

For mulitas

  • 12 corn tortillas, medium size (store-bought or homemade)
  • 1 ½ cups Oaxaca, asadero, mozzarella, monterey jack, etc. (shredded)
  • pico de gallo salsa
  • canola oil (as needed)

For quick guacamole

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 lime
  • 1 serrano chili (or any green chili)
  • salt (to taste)

Instructions

Make the quick guacamole

  • Place diced onions, chilies and chopped cilantro on a bowl. Cut avocado in half and discard the pit.
  • Scoop out the pulp and add it to the bowl. Use a fork and while smashing, mix everything.
  • Season with salt and lime juice to your liking and set aside.

Make carne asada

  • Season beef with salt, pepper and a pinch of cumin. Heat a stove grill pan or skillet on medium-high heat until smoking. Add a drizzle of olive oil to lightly coat the pan.
  • Add meat and sauté until meat is no longer pink and is cooked through (about 8 minutes).
  • Place meat on a container and cover well to prevent it from drying.

Make mulitas

  • Heat a skillet or pan over medium heat and drizzle with a little bit of oil. Place a tortilla, add some cheese then add meat.
  • Add more cheese on top and close with another tortilla. Brush the tortilla on top with oil.
  • Allow the cheese to start melting, then carefully, using a spatula, flip over to cook the other side. Gently press the tortilla to stick it with cheese and meat.
  • Keep flipping the stuffed tortillas until cheese is melted and bubbling and the border of tortillas starts to get crispy.
  • Put mulitas on a plate, gently peel the top tortilla and add guacamole and pico de gallo. Close and serve immediately.
Nutrition
Calories: 352kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 27g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 245mg | Potassium: 473mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 220IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 212mg | Iron: 2mg
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Recipe Rating




5 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I tried mulitas the first time we went to LA in 2015 and loved them! So happy to find your recipe and can’t wait to try!

  2. 5 stars
    Saw this post shared in Facebook and knew I had to try mulitas. Thank you for the detailed recipe, they were beyond delicious!

  3. 5 stars
    Thank you so much for this mulita recipe. Easy to make, delicious and the kids devoured them! Now, how can I make them stop asking for mulitas every single day? :D