This fresh, flavorful authentic Salpicon recipe is a delicious Mexican shredded beef salad. It's an easy main course or topping on grilled tostadas. Mexican salpicon is full of fresh vegetables and savory shredded meat and can be a whole meal!
Using just a handful of simple ingredients this delicious recipe is perfect for an easy dinner whether on hot summer days or any other time big fresh flavor is welcome.
It's the perfect blend of beefy flavor, crunch cool lettuce, a bit of heat from the chile peppers. Loads of ways to enjoy it from topping corn tostadas to enjoying as a salad.
What is Salpicon?
Prounced 'sal-pea-con or sal-pea-CON' tt's a mixed dish of shredded steak, lettuce, tomatoes, chilies, avocado sometimes served with a vinegar based simple dressing. It's a Latin dish with different variations found in Spain, Latin America and central America.
In Spain the version typically served is a seafood salpicon called salpicón de marisco (or salpicon de mariscos). The version we are making today is also called salpicon de res recipe which translates to 'beef salpicon recipe'.
This is the type of recipe everyone makes slightly differently. Our version comes directly from a friend in Mexico and it's her family's version.
Salpicon is typically eaten as a salad (perfect for large gatherings), on tostadas or stuffed in poblano peppers.
There is no dressing on this recipe and you'll find it's bold with fresh and savory flavors on its own.
Why you'll love this recipe
- it's authentic
- it's an easy recipe
- the meat can be made ahead of time. Make it a day ahead of time then prepare the salad on the day serving (for time saving)
- It's loaded with satisfying flavors
- instead of the traditional way our recipe uses an Instant Pot
What makes this skinny?
- loads of vegetables
- no oil dressing or other added fat
- cooking the steak in the Instant Pot renders the fat and it's left in the pot
Recipe Ingredient Notes
Skirt Steak. You'll use 2 pounds. Cut it into large pieces before adding to the Instant Pot. Flank steak
is a common substitute for skirt steak (though we've only made the recipe with skirt steak).
Serrano chile pepper. Remove the seeds which is the hottest part of the chili peppers. A jalapeno pepper can be substituted and will be slightly less hot.
How to Make Salpicon - Step-by-Step
STEP 1. Cook the steak in the pressure cooker
Add the skirt steak, salt, cold water and onion to the Instant Pot (photos 1-3).
Close and seal the lid. Set to HIGH PRESSURE for 20 minutes.
When cooking is complete allow a 5 minute NATURAL RELEASE followed by a manual release for the remaining pressure (post cooking - photo 4).
STEP 2. Shred beef
Remove the steak from the Instant Pot. Shred with one of the following methods:
Allow it to cool slightly to handle and shred on a cutting board with two forks. OR place the hot beef in a stand mixer with a paddle blade on low speed (monitor so it does not over shred the meat)(photo 5).
STEP 3. Prepare the salad
In a large bowl combine the lettuce, chile pepper, tomatoes, diced onion and fresh cilantro. Season with salt and black pepper. Add the shredded beef and toss to combine (photos 6-7).
Top with avocado slices and serve (photo 8).
How to eat it
- It can be eaten as a whole salad (main dish) or a side dish
- Use it to top corn tortillas (spray a non stick skillet and toast them first instead of deep frying) to make a filling tostada
- Scoop it with tortilla chips
How to Store
The meat can be made ahead of time and stored in an air-tight container in the refrigerator then added to the salad ingredients the next day.
Leftovers of the combined salad should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.