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This copycat Chipotle Steak recipe tastes even better than the real thing. The marinade is quick and easy and full of the smoky, spicy flavors you love!

A bowl of Chipotle steak, pinto beans, cilantro-lime rice, and pico de gallo.

Chipotle Steak has all the same flavors as Chipotle’s famous Chicken, but here it’s applied to your favorite inexpensive cut of steak like sirloin, round steak, or flat iron steak.

It’s a tasty way to add protein to your burritos, bowls, tostadas, and more. Or serve it like they do in Mexico: Tacos on corn tortillas with just grilled onions, fresh cilantro, and a squeeze of lime juice.

Table of Contents
  1. Recipe ingredients
  2. Ingredient notes
  3. Step-by-step instructions
  4. Recipe tips and variations
  5. Recipe FAQs
  6. Chipotle Steak (Copycat) Recipe

Recipe ingredients

Labeled ingredients for Copycat Chipotle Steak.

At a Glance: Here is a quick snapshot of what ingredients are in this recipe.
Please see the recipe card below for specific quantities.

Ingredient notes

  • Adobo sauce: To make your own adobo sauce, whisk together 1 tablespoon tomato paste, 1 tablespoon cider vinegar, 1 teaspoon chipotle powder (or ½ teaspoon EACH smoked paprika and cayenne powder), ½ teaspoon ground cumin, and a pinch EACH of oregano, garlic powder, and salt.
  • Ancho chile powder: You can buy ancho chile powder online or buy dried ancho chiles and grind them to make your own ancho chile powder or soak them and add straight to the marinade (Culinary Hill may earn money if you buy through these links).
  • Olive oil: Chipotle uses rice bran oil, but olive oil is more widely available (and probably already in your pantry).
  • Oregano: Chipotle uses Mexican oregano, but you can use Italian oregano if that’s all that you have. They have different flavors (Mexican oregano tastes more like marjoram) but both taste great in this recipe.
  • Steak: According to Chipotle’s customer service, the “beef” in their steak could be any number of cuts including part of the loin, ball tip, round steak, flat iron steak, top butt, clod, or knuckle.

Step-by-step instructions

  1. To make the marinade, in the bowl of a food processor or blender, add garlic, adobo sauce, ancho chile powder, olive oil, cumin, dried oregano, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Blend until smooth (add water if needed to fully blend the marinade).
A blender full of the marinade for Chipotle steak.
  1. In a large zipper-top plastic bag or bowl, add steak and marinade, tossing to coat. Let the beef marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes or up to 12 hours in the refrigerator. Bring to room temperature for at least 30 minutes before cooking.
Steaks marinaded in Chipotle flavors.
  1. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil until shimmering. Add marinated steak to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until the temperature reaches 135 degrees for rare or 145 degrees for medium-rare. Depending on the size of your skillet, you can cook the steak in batches.
Cooking chipotle copycat steak in a skillet.
  1. Remove to a cutting board and tent with foil for 10 minutes. Chop into small pieces.
Chopping Chipotle copycat steak on a cutting board.
  1. Season to taste with salt. Serve with your favorite burrito toppings such as rice, beans, guacamole, and salsa.
Cooking chipotle copycat steak in a skillet.

Recipe tips and variations

  • Yield: This recipe makes 20 generous servings, about 1/2-cup each.
  • Storage: Store leftovers covered for up to 4 days.
  • Make ahead: The steak can be marinated the day before you need it. Store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature for 30 minutes before cooking.
  • To substitute dried ancho chiles:
    1. Remove stems and seeds from dried chiles (wearing gloves is recommended).
    2. In a dry skillet over medium-low heat, toast the chiles until fragrant but not smoking, about 5 minutes.
    3. Transfer to a medium bowl and add 4 cups (1 quart) water and 2 Tablespoons adobo sauce. Microwave on HIGH for 6 minutes. Drain well, then add the chiles to the food processor in step 1.
A bowl of Chipotle steak, pinto beans, cilantro-lime rice, and pico de gallo.

Recipe FAQs

What can I do with leftover chipotle chilis and adobo sauce?

Transfer to a bag or glass jar and freeze for future use, or 1-2 tablespoons with ½ cup mayo for a delicious Chipotle Mayonnaise. Or, use in Chipotle ChickenChicken Tinga, or Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers.

Chipotle Burrito Bowl

Tonight, stay in and build your own Chipotle Burrito Bowl with the copycat recipes you know and love. Fluffy rice, black beans, tender chicken, sweet corn salsa, tomato salsa, and lots of guacamole. It’s great…

50 minutes
View Recipe

More Chipotle copycat favorites

A bowl of Chipotle steak, pinto beans, cilantro-lime rice, and pico de gallo.

Chipotle Steak (Copycat)

This copycat Chipotle Steak recipe tastes even better than the real thing. The marinade is quick and easy and full of the smoky, spicy flavors you love!
5 from 66 votes
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 20 mins
Servings 20 servings (about ½ cup each)
Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Calories 210

Ingredients 

For the steak:

  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoons adobo sauce (see note 1)
  • 2 tablespoons ancho chile powder (see note 2)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil or rice bran oil, plus more for the cooking surface (see note 3)
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano (see note 4)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 pounds steak such as sirloin, round steak, or flat iron steak (see note 5)

Instructions 

  • To make the marinade, in the bowl of a food processor or blender, add garlic, adobo sauce, ancho chile powder, olive oil, cumin, dried oregano, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Blend until smooth (add water if needed to fully blend the marinade).
  • In a large zipper-top plastic bag or bowl, add steak and marinade, tossing to coat. Let the beef marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes or up to 12 hours in the refrigerator. Bring to room temperature for at least 30 minutes before cooking.
  • In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil until shimmering. Add marinated steak to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until the temperature reaches 135 degrees for rare or 145 degrees for medium-rare. Depending on the size of your skillet, you can cook the steak in batches.
  • Remove to a cutting board and tent with foil for 10 minutes. Chop into small pieces. Season to taste with salt. Serve with your favorite burrito toppings such as rice, beans, guacamole, and salsa.

Recipe Video

Notes

  1. Adobo sauce: To make your own adobo sauce, whisk together 1 tablespoon tomato paste, 1 tablespoon cider vinegar, 1 teaspoon chipotle powder (or ½ teaspoon EACH smoked paprika and cayenne powder), ½ teaspoon ground cumin, and a pinch EACH of oregano, garlic powder, and salt.
  2. Ancho chile powder: You can buy ancho chile powder online or buy dried ancho chiles and grind them to make your own ancho chile powder or soak them and add straight to the marinade (Culinary Hill may earn money if you buy through these links).
  3. Olive oil: Chipotle uses rice bran oil, but olive oil is more widely available (and probably already in your pantry).
  4. Oregano: Chipotle uses Mexican oregano, but you can use Italian oregano if that’s all that you have. They have different flavors (Mexican oregano tastes more like marjoram) but both taste great in this recipe.
  5. Steak: According to Chipotle’s customer service, the “beef” in their steak could be any number of cuts including part of the loin, ball tip, round steak, flat iron steak, top butt, clod, or knuckle.
  6. Yield: This recipe makes 20 generous 1/2-cup servings.
  7. Storage: Store leftovers covered for up to 4 days.
  8. Make ahead: The steak can be marinated the day before you need it. Store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature for 30 minutes before cooking.
  9. To substitute dried ancho chiles:
    1. Remove stems and seeds from dried chiles (wearing gloves is recommended).
    2. In a dry skillet over medium-low heat, toast the chiles until fragrant but not smoking, about 5 minutes.
    3. Transfer to a medium bowl and add 4 cups (1 quart) water and 2 Tablespoons adobo sauce. Microwave on HIGH for 6 minutes. Drain well, then add the chiles to the food processor in step 1.

Nutrition

Serving: 1servingCalories: 210kcalCarbohydrates: 1gProtein: 18gFat: 15gSaturated Fat: 6gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 55mgSodium: 370mgPotassium: 270mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 261IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 17mgIron: 2mg
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I’m the Executive Chef and head of the Culinary Hill Test Kitchen. Every recipe is developed, tested, and approved just for you.

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Meggan Hill

I’m the Executive Chef and head of the Culinary Hill Test Kitchen. Every recipe is developed, tested, and approved just for you.

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Comments

  1. Hi – We love your copycat recipes and this one is a favorite. Chipotle recently ran a “Carne Asada” as a limited item. I am curious if you have tried to copy that one? It appears in the commercial that they grill (flat top) some form of sliced beef and then season it with lime, cilantro and some form of spices.5 stars

    1. Hi Michael, thank you! I haven’t, and it looks like I missed the boat on that promotion, I don’t see it on their site anymore. I’ll give it a go once it comes back around. Thank you again! Take care! – Meggan

  2. AMAZING RECIPE! I’ve been using it for a few years now, soo sorry it’s late. YOU GUYS ROCK! KEEP THEM GREAT RECIPES COMING! ❤️5 stars

  3. Why does recipe not have onion listed for marinade but video shows this being included? Has the recipe been updated or is that ingredient missing?

    1. Hi Ellen, Chipotle doesn’t use red onion in their recipe but I felt that it tasted better with the red onion. To keep this a true copycat recipe I took the red onion out but feel free to add it! Hope this helps. – Meggan

  4. I don’t usually write reviews for recipes but this recipe deserves to be tried out for sure! I never tried cooking Mexican style dishes and it was my first time but turned out great! I added a mix of salad from tomatoes and cucumbers with sour cream, beans and white rice as carbs. My husband and I both loved it😍

  5. My daughter is the pickiest eater I know. She loved this recipe and stated that it was even better than Chipotle. High praise!

  6. I have not made this yet but plan to because I love the chicken. In the comments it says you add cloves but it’s not in the recipe??

    1. Hi Melissa, sorry about that! There are no cloves, it’s a typo. Thank you for pointing that out! – Meggan

  7. In one place in your posting of this recipe, it says it has 20 servings. In another place it says 8 generous servings. That’s quite a difference. Before I make this yummy recipe, I need to know what the correct serving is – one-twentieth or one-eighth? Thank you.

    1. Hi Susan, thank you so much for pointing this out! This full recipe using 4 pounds of raw steak makes about 10 cups of cooked steak total, so 20 (1/2-cup) servings. There is a slider in the recipe card so you can easily reduce the recipe to yield as much as you like! Thank you again! – Meggan

  8. The directions say to put cloves into the food processor, but there are no cloves in the ingredients. Is this a typo? If it isn’t, how many cloves do we put in?

    1. Hi Toni! It’s a typo, so sorry about that! Thank you for the comment, I’ve fix the instruction. – Meggan

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