Sunday, September 1, 2013

Baja Beach Tacos Two Ways

You are about to see the laziest photos of some really good tacos. I guess I was too hungry for food styling. Does that ever happen to you? You want to share a recipe in the best possible way but you just want to get the delicious food in your mouth now! Anyway...

Saturday Mom came over to look at recipes for Labor Day. I decided to treat her to Baja Style Fish Tacos. The girls in the family love fish tacos. Dad not so much. So she doesn't make them at home and she rarely gets to our favorite place in Bossier City, LA. Don Juanz is a great surfer style taco bar. They serve very fresh and light Mexican fare. We love their Baja Beach Fish Tacos! This taco has sushi grade yellow fin tuna grilled rare and dressed with creamy lime cilantro dressing, cabbage, cilantro, and jack cheese in a fresh corn tortilla. So so good! This is my attempt at recreating their tacos at home.

I started by making the dressing first. That was the one ingredient I had not made before. I saw a lot of recipes out there, but I decided to pick my favorite ingredients from each. It turned out a little strong on it's own. I used a huge garlic clove and it gave the dressing a lot of heat. But it was perfect on the taco. I think next time I will use a smaller garlic clove and see what happens. Right now I would say reserve this dressing for tacos. I wouldn't go covering a bunch of lettuce with it. I am going to try a shrimp taco with it real soon.

For the tuna I chose to use frozen fillets that I thawed. That is what my store had that day. It worked out really well. I seasoned them really simply with my spiced salt blend and grilled them. This is where the fun begins. The toppings! Don Juanz has two different tacos the Baja Beach I described earlier and the Pacific Rim which is topped with lettuce, mandarin oranges, jack cheese and cilantro. I could not pick one, so I made both. I still can't pick which one I like best. They are both great. The Baja Beach style is crunchy from the cabbage and the lime cilantro dressing is more notable. The Pacific Rim style is sweet and juicy from the mandarin oranges. The best thing to do is have one of each.

All in all I think this copycat recipe was a success. Mom loved them and dear sister popped in a little later to try one. She asked how did I find Don Juanz's recipes. So I think this recipe is close enough for my family. I hope you will enjoy them as well.

Baja Beach Tacos Two Ways
Serves 4


8 corn tortillas
2 tuna steaks (less than 8 oz each)
Olive oil
Spiced Salt, to taste (click here for recipe)
Creamy Lime Cilantro Dressing (recipe follows)

Toppings for Baja Beach Fish Taco:
Green cabbage, shredded or coleslaw mix
Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
Cilantro, roughly chopped

Toppings for Pacific Rim Fish Taco:
Iceberg lettuce, shredded
1 (11 oz) can Mandarin oranges, drained
Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
Cilantro, roughly chopped


Preheat grill to high heat for 10 minutes. Pat tuna steaks dry with a paper towel. Rub tuna with olive oil. Season tuna with spiced salt (or salt, black pepper and red pepper flakes). Grill for 2 to 2-1/2 minutes a side on an open grill for rare. Place corn tortillas on the grill to warm about 1 minute. Remove tuna and tortillas from grill. Slice tuna against the grain into thin slices. Spread a heaping teaspoon of dressing in the center of tortilla. Top with several slices of tuna and add your choice of toppings from above.

Creamy Lime Cilantro Dressing
Makes about 1 cup


1/4 cup light mayonnaise
1/4 cup light sour cream
1 lime, zest and juice
1 garlic clove, minced or grated
1 green onion, minced
1/4 cup cilantro, minced
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp white vinegar
1/2 tsp Kosher salt, or to taste


Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Mix well and refrigerate until ready to use.

Baja Beach Fish Tacos

Pacific Rim Fish Tacos

Linking to:
Ms. enPlace: See Ya in the Gumbo
The Tumbleweed Contessa: What'd you do this weekend?
This Gal Cooks: Marvelous Mondays
Jam Hands: Recipe Sharing Monday
With a Blast: All My Bloggy Friends
Memories by the Mile: Tuesday Trivia-Vermont and Link Party
Anyonita's Nibbles: Tasty Tuesdays
My Turn for Us: Freedom Fridays
Law Student's Cookbook: Pantry Party September 2013
Carole's Chatter: Food on Fridays - Tuna
Food of the World: Mexico
The Lazy Gastronome: Taco Tuesday Link Party


  1. Your mom thought you had Don Juanz's recipes- what a great compliment! I agree with you- why choose? Have both! I saw these at See Ya In The Gumbo and had to come over to get a closer look- yum! :)

    Now following you on google connect! :)

    Hope you're having a great weekend,

    Love, Joy

  2. Too funny! I never feel like food styling. Thought I was the only food blogger out there who felt that way. Seriously, sometimes I scrap a blog post or put off making something b/c I can't stand the thought of the dreaded photo shoot.

    I think these photos are pretty great...they make me want to try the tacos. Both kinds! Thanks for sharing them.

  3. These look so delicious! Yum!
    I'd like to invite you to join my blog's monthly party, Pantry Party. This month's theme is fish. We'd love to have you!

  4. Hi Denise,
    Your Baja Beach Tacos look delicious and we would really enjoy them. Thanks so much for joining our Foods of The World Tour to Mexico, hope you will join in France next month.
    See You Soon!
    Miz Helen

  5. We used to go to Baja and get fish tacos off the stands. There is nothing that compares to them!! Thanks for sharing on Taco Tuesday!!


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