Thai Beef Tacos with Lime- Cilantro Slaw + Coconut Ginger Rice

Does your family ever look at you funny when you tell them that you’re preparing something out of the ordinary for dinner? Do they give you that skeptical look when you share the recipe title with them? In my ongoing effort to provide variety and flavor to our weekly meals, I often receive these sorts of looks from the fam. It all usually works out in the end though, so I’m not sure why I continue to get met with such skepticism.

Yesterday’s Edamame Dumplings were a prelude to our wonderful Asian-style dinner. Another choice from Cooking Light: Thai Beef Tacos with Lime- Cilantro Slaw. The side dish (not light) comes from the Blue Mesa Grill: Coconut Ginger Rice.


This is an easy, fairly quick meal. The “marinade” for the flank steak is super basic. It’s so basic, in fact, that I worried that there wouldn’t be much flavor for the beef. The marinade included sugar, ginger, fish sauce, chili-garlic sauce, pepper and garlic. That all gets thrown into a big ziploc with the flank steak, and it sits for just 20 minutes in the fridge.

The slaw is quick too- especially if you buy the bags of coleslaw mix and matchstick carrots. It’s tossed with similar spices as well as lime juice and cilantro.


The verdict: You should make this. Why? Because it’s different. When I told my family that we were having tacos for dinner, they said- ‘YAY!’ Then I told them they were Thai tacos and they looked at me like I had a major screw loose. During dinner, I heard things like, “Wow, these are really good.” (with a large element of surprise included.) My 6 year old even ate the slaw inside the taco, and I can tell you with 100% certainty that he wouldn’t eat that stuff if it was just sitting on a plate. I will also tell you that you should eat the slaw inside and outside of the taco. It’s pretty tasty either way.

*An additional note on the marinade for the steak: If you like spicy, it wasn’t spicy as prepared in the given recipe. If you want spice, add more chili garlic sauce. Marinating it longer may also help the spice flavor come through a little more.


But here was the real star of dinner: Coconut- Ginger Rice. It doesn’t sound all that exciting, but it was. Besides coconut milk, a couple other fun ingredients are included in this side dish: sushi ginger and pesto. I didn’t know if I could find sushi ginger, but I was able to locate it easily at my market’s sushi counter. If they don’t sell a little tub of it, you can ask the sushi guy and he’ll give you some (especially if you’re really nice and you tell him how good his sushi looks.)

We gobbled up this rice like there was no tomorrow. The next day we had yummy Thai taco leftovers, and wished we had made more rice too (since I had halved the recipe.)

And if you’re someone who doesn’t usually have things like fish sauce and chili garlic sauce at-the-ready in your fridge… go ahead and pick some up. You’ll be surprised how many recipes include these ingredients, and they’re easy to find in the Asian section of your market.

One of these days, the family may come to learn that my recipe choices are more often than not excellent ones. Until then, I can handle the looks. After all, there is usually a delicious ending.

The taco recipe can be found HERE.

The rice recipe can be found HERE.

Leave a Comment




28 Responses to “Thai Beef Tacos with Lime- Cilantro Slaw + Coconut Ginger Rice”

  1. 1

    Chef Erik — May 2, 2008 @ 12:17 AM

    Looks absolutly delish. I live for coconut rice. Nice recipe!!!

  2. 2

    Amy J. — May 2, 2008 @ 12:23 AM

    Oh my goodness, that totally sounds good!

  3. 3

    Sharon — May 2, 2008 @ 1:04 AM

    I am obsessed with coconut rice right now. After we made it once, its hard for us to make any other kind of rice. We’re a little OCD like that :) I cannot wait to try it with sushi ginger. I think that’ll add an awesome zing! Oh, and I can eat a whole bowl of ginger. Gross, I know, but I love it!

  4. 4

    noble pig — May 2, 2008 @ 1:09 AM

    Sounds great. I love coconut rice more than anything. This recipe sounds delicious.

  5. 5

    dobetter — May 2, 2008 @ 1:21 AM

    The coconut ginger rice looks great! I’m going to try that one!

  6. 6

    Dee — May 2, 2008 @ 1:22 AM

    This looks great, but I’m having me some edamame dumplings tonight. I’ve got the wonton wrappers and some edamame on hand so it’s obviously written in the stars!

  7. 7

    Kevin — May 2, 2008 @ 1:41 AM

    Both the Thai tacos and the coconut rice sound really good. Coconut rice is one of my favorites. The addition of the pesto and pickled ginger sounds really interesting.

  8. 8

    Prudy — May 2, 2008 @ 1:42 AM

    Recipe Girl:
    Just wanted to let you know that I think your photography also looks amazing! You’re doing a great job! The food looks wonderful and that’s what you’re going for. Keep up the grand work. Erin Mylroie

  9. 9

    RecipeGirl — May 2, 2008 @ 1:53 AM

    Erik / Noble Pig/ Do Better- Thanks. We LOVED the rice.

    Amy- Thanks for stoppin’ by.

    Sharon / Kevin- I’m not really into the sushi ginger so much, but it was great in the rice!

    Dee- be sure to let me know what you think of those edamame dumplings! Hope you like them.

    Prudy- What a nice compliment. Thanks for commenting :)

  10. 10

    Obsessive Foodie or Food Addict....You Decide — May 2, 2008 @ 3:10 AM

    I have never made coconut rice….I love coconut and I love rice, DAMN I am mmaking coconut rice. I love tacos. I LOVE IT ALL!!!!!! DAMN FOOD, why does it have to be so yummy!!!!!

  11. 11

    StickyGooeyCreamyChewy — May 2, 2008 @ 3:21 AM

    This looks like a delicious meal! I’ll have to give those tacos a try. I’ve made coconut rice before and I love it. I’ve never put pickled ginger in it, though. I’ll have to try that too.

  12. 12

    Melanie — May 2, 2008 @ 4:08 AM

    Wow…WOW! I’m totally impressed with that dinner and I’m really excited about the rice – we eat rice all the time and I need a way to change it up.

  13. 13

    Cynthia — May 2, 2008 @ 4:13 AM

    I love your site very much! Thanks for visiting mine and leading me to yours.

    I really like the idea of the Coconut-Ginger rice, you should try that combo with some minced cilantro mixted in… big time yum! :)

  14. 14

    Emiline — May 2, 2008 @ 8:23 AM

    These recipes sound great- you really are the recipe girl!

    I really dig the coconut rice.

  15. 15

    Grace — May 2, 2008 @ 8:38 AM

    out of all the great dishes in this post, i believe i’d be partial to the slaw. it sounds deliciously crunchy and refreshing, and i’m automatically in love with anything containing cilantro. what a fabulous meal!

  16. 16

    Jack — May 2, 2008 @ 1:19 PM

    Okay, this one’s going on my “must try” list. Sounds like these will be really bright and flavourful.

  17. 17

    Manggy — May 2, 2008 @ 1:57 PM

    This sounds great, I would love to adapt it as a chicken dish :)

    You’re right, Chili Garlic sauce is a staple!! :) (ok, I live in SE Asia, but still..)

  18. 18

    Mike of Mike's Table — May 2, 2008 @ 2:48 PM

    Sounds like a great dish to me! I’d be all over this one…

    I’ve given up on responding to the skeptical looks, lol, I get too many of them.

  19. 19

    HoneyB — May 2, 2008 @ 4:04 PM

    Sounds delish! I will try with my abundance of venison! I have never had coconut rice before, but I have a feeling I would like it. I love coconut!

  20. 20

    Elle — May 2, 2008 @ 5:01 PM

    Looks fantastic! And I’m with you–keeping those ingredients on hand is a good thing–they’re pretty common these days!

  21. 21

    Deborah — May 2, 2008 @ 5:30 PM

    I have made those tacos before, so I can vouch that they are delicious! And the coconut ginger rice sounds tasty too.

  22. 22

    JennDZ - The Leftover Queen — May 2, 2008 @ 6:50 PM

    This looks really really good. A nice diversion from the norm and Thai ingredients are always so fresh and perfect for warmer weather!

  23. 23

    adventuresinshaw — May 2, 2008 @ 8:54 PM

    That coconut ginger rice sounds soooooo good! That may be going on my list for tonight’s dinner!

  24. 24

    diva — May 2, 2008 @ 9:55 PM

    coconut ginger rice sounds amazing. yummy. i love coconut rice on its own.

  25. 25

    Laura — May 3, 2008 @ 4:16 AM

    To be fair to my family, they pretty much eat everything, but having said that, I solve your dilemma by refusing to tell them what is for dinner before it is plopped in front of them. :)

    This looks good–like a Thai Beef Salad in a wrap (I LOVE Thai salads).

  26. 26

    Indigo — May 3, 2008 @ 6:42 PM

    Oooh, both of these sound great. Saving both!

  27. 27

    Ellie @ Kitchen Wench — May 4, 2008 @ 1:12 PM

    Wow, that taco looks amazing – and I love the sound of the slaw, definitely a bookmarker!

  28. 28

    Amy — May 4, 2008 @ 1:15 PM

    Thai and tacos combined? Sounds heavenly!