Steak fajitas made with sirloin are wonderfully flavorful and surprisingly easy to make.
You don't have to serve them in tortillas! They're very good by themselves or in lettuce wraps.
I adore Mexican food. The flavors are so bold! If I absolutely had to choose my favorite cuisines, I suspect Mexican and Indian would be right up there competing for the top spot. I love boldly seasoned dishes.
If you too enjoy intense flavors, these fajitas won't disappoint. The spice mix I use is amazing. It's so wonderfully flavorful! Plus, this is such an easy recipe. It's ready fast, so it's perfect for a weeknight dinner.
The list of ingredients for making steak fajitas is simple. Yes, you need quite a few spices. But the flavor is well worth it!
The exact measurements of the ingredients you'll need are listed in the recipe card below. Here's an overview:
Seasoning mix: Salt and pepper, chili powder, smoked paprika, garlic powder, dried oregano, and red pepper flakes.
Bell peppers: It's fun to use different colors, and it makes the dish so pretty.
Onion: Thinly sliced. You can use either yellow onion or white onion.
Top sirloin steak: Sometimes I buy the pre-sliced strips sold in trays at the supermarket. But it's easy to slice it yourself. See the detailed discussion below about what meat to use.
Oil: Since we're engaging in high-heat cooking here, it's a good idea to use an oil with a high smoke point such as avocado oil.
Making steak fajitas at home is easy! Scroll down to the recipe card for detailed instructions. Here are the basic steps:
- Your first step is to mix the spices together in a small bowl. You can actually do as I do in the video and mix them in two separate bowls. Half will season the veggies and the other half will season the meat.
- Cook the vegetables with half the spices until tender, then remove them to a plate.
- In the same skillet, cook the beef strips with the remaining spices, then add the vegetables back and cook everything together until heated through.
You can make life easy - as I do in the video below - by using a package of frozen sliced bell peppers. They do add extra liquid to the dish, but I haven't found that to be an issue.
The caveat: they won't be as pretty as fresh peppers. See how colorful the fresh peppers are in the photos? Frozen peppers are not as colorful when cooked.
Frequently asked questions
Traditionally you would use skirt steak. Flank steak is another option. However, both of these cuts are tough, so they're best when marinated prior to cooking.
To make this a truly quick and easy recipe, I prefer to use top sirloin, which is tender enough to allow me to cook it without marinating it first.
Marinating the steak helps to tenderize it. But if you use top sirloin strips, which are more tender than bottom sirloin, you can actually skip the marinade.
Simply season the beef and the vegetables well, saute them quickly, and the fajitas will turn out just as delicious and flavorful as if you've made the dish with marinated beef.
If you're willing to use beef tenderloin in this recipe, it will turn out even more tender. But it's obviously an expensive cut of beef, and most would feel it's better served as steak.
I do. Pre-slicing the meat allows the seasoning to coat it well, resulting in a highly flavorful dish. It also allows for faster cooking time.
- A good way to vary this recipe is by adding more spices. Good options include cumin and dried thyme.
- Instead of using avocado oil as your cooking oil, you can use olive oil or ghee.
The classic choice would be to serve this dish with flour tortillas. But you can also serve it on a bed of cauliflower rice or shredded lettuce, or use lettuce wraps (Boston lettuce makes excellent wraps).
Steak fajitas are also great when served on a plate and eaten with a fork and a knife. And that's how I usually serve them.
You can top them with several tasty toppings such as guacamole, sour cream, salsa, and shredded cheese.
If you have any leftovers, they keep well in the fridge for 3-4 days in an airtight container. Gently reheat them in the microwave on 50% power prior to serving.
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Easy Steak Fajitas
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt or 2 teaspoons kosher salt (such as Diamond Crystal)
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 3 large bell peppers cut into thin strips (or 1 lb. frozen sliced bell peppers)
- 1 large onion thinly sliced (8 oz)
- 2 lb. top sirloin steak cut into thin strips
- 2 tablespoons avocado oil
Optional, for thickening the juices:
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch if using frozen peppers
- In a small bowl, mix together the seasoning ingredients. You can mix them in two separate bowls - half will season the veggies and the second half will season the meat.
- Heat the oil in a large, deep skillet over medium-high heat, for about 2 minutes. Add the bell peppers, the onions, and half the spices. Cook, stirring often, until just tender, about 5 minutes. Remove the vegetables to a plate.
- Add the steak slices and the remaining spices to the same skillet. Stir-fry just until no longer raw, 3-4 minutes. The beef doesn't need to be fully cooked at this point. It will finish cooking when you add back the vegetables.
- Return the vegetables to the skillet. Stir-fry everything together until heated through, 1-2 more minutes.
- At this point, if you have a lot of liquids in the skillet (this happens when using frozen peppers) and you'd like to thicken them, you can reduce the heat to medium and stir in a cornstarch slurry (1 tablespoon of cornstarch mixed with 1 ½ tablespoons of cold water). Keep cooking until the liquids thicken, about 1 more minute. But this is purely optional, and if you use fresh peppers, it won't be needed at all.