Milanesa is like the South American chicken fried steak. Milanesa Torta is like the South American DQ “Dude”. It’s basically one of the most delicious things ever created because it combines crunchy fried meat with bread and avocado and sour cream and a lingering fear that you’re about to eat too much combined with the stronger fear that this might be your last milanesa torta. Or torta de milanesa if you’re actually from Mexico or South America.
Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay — these are the places that made milanesa famous. The technique of breading and frying a thin-cut piece of meat originated with Austrian wiener schnitzel and then went around and got busy with lots of other countries and cultures. My guess is that whoever brought it over to South America was some kind of Italian person. Milan, milanesa, see where I went with that?
Okay, but now it’s here. It’s delicious, it’s inexpensive, it’s fast. You can serve with mashed potatoes, rice, gravy, lemon wedges, marinara sauce, basically anything. In Mexico, milanesa is often served as a torta and that is in fact the first way I ever had milanesa. Since we haven’t talked about this yet, a torta is a sandwich and it’s made on a bolillo roll and it comes standard with lettuce, tomato, and crema Mexicana. Refried beans and avocado are common, but not necessary (though together they make the foundation for the best vegetarian torta you’ll ever eat). You can also make a chicken milanesa if you prefer.
Milanesa torta recipe video – scroll down for printable recipe
Milanesa torta recipePrint
- Prep Time: 10 mins
- Cook Time: 6 mins
- Total Time: 16 minutes
- Yield: 4-6 1x
- 1 1/2 pound thin-cut sirloin or round steak*
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 lime
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1 1/2 cups Panko or regular dry breadcrumbs
- 1/4 cup oil for frying
- For tortas:
- 4–6 bolillo rolls or sections of French bread
- Avocado, tomato, lettuce, onion
- Mexican crema
- Optional: Refried beans
- Sprinkle steaks with salt, pepper, garlic, and half the lime, juiced. (Cut the other lime half into quarters for serving.)
- Tenderize with a mallet, pounding the seasonings into the meat, until the steaks are between 1/8 and 1/4 inch thick.
- Cut into 4-6 serving pieces, approximately the size of your bread rolls
- Coat each piece in beaten egg, allow excess to drip off.
- Coat generously in breadcrumbs on both sides.
- Heat oil over medium-high heat until sizzling
- Fry milanesa for about 2-3 minutes on each side, or until golden brown and the steaks are cooked medium-well.
- Allow to drain on a rack briefly.
- Butter insides of rolls and toast lightly on a griddle.
- Spread with crema and/or refried beans and top with milanesa and any other vegetables you like! Serve with a lime wedge and hot sauce or salsa.
Look for cuts no thicker than 1/3 inch. This recipe also works with thin-cut chicken breast or pork loin.
Breaded milanesa can be wrapped individually and frozen for up to a month. Cook, still frozen, over medium heat and add a couple extra minutes cooking time.
To reduce calories and fat, lay breaded milanesa on a rack on a baking sheet, spray with oil, and bake at 425ºF for 15 minutes or until cooked and crisped.
Milanesa in Chile, is known like “escalopa”, generally they are served with rice, and tomato salad, are much thinner of what is in the video, and a variate is the kaiser one, where after you cooked you put in top a slide of cheese and a slide of ham, and later rolled and served immediately, with all the heat, the cheese get melted …. yummmy!
Thanks, Enrique! I hadn’t heard of escalopa. The kaiser variety especially sounds amazing!
That looks awesome tasty, and easy! And thanks for bringing the cool to cooking!
Thanks, Norm! Hope you try it. 🙂
Thank you thank you !! My husband and I tried the camarones a la diabla last night !! Delicious! Wanted to ask if I may !! Are you Latina ? Lol love the recipes !
Oh Hilah! Made these over the weekend and they were scrumptious! They weren’t as authentic as yours cause my steak was over a half inch thick and no matter how much abuse I gave to them pounding with the meat mallet, they never got really thin. But even so, they were sooo good! Bought the Mexican crema for the first time (and will forever more) and served with avocado, onion and tomatoes. Thanks for another great dinner!
PS…I’m giving your oyster nachos a try this week!
Wonderful, Linda! Isn’t that crema just absolutely amazing? It pretty much goes on anything … ooh, I bet it would be a nice addition to the oyster nachos, too!
Try putting some nice chimichurri on it, too.
Yum! I bet the sourness of the chimichurri really compliments the fried meat. Thanks, Chris!
hi there , ok you are so right in several ways in this and other recipes (mexican food ones in particular) like in fact bolillo telera and birote ( the three most commo for tortas) are direct sons of baguette averithng is right and the final veredict is the taste but the regular most common torta recipes instead of salsa the dressing is chipotle adobado or jalapeño sliced and the first layer is not cream is frijoles refritos (loosely translated like over-fried beans kind of tasty smashed beans like smashed potatoes) and as a last suggestion you can add over the hot milanesa a layer of quesillo oxaca (kind of mozarella that separates in strips) the idea is that the hot milanesa melt a little bit the quesillo and the most common procedures is cut the bread (exactly as you did) add the bean layer, cut the fried milanesa in strips then milanesa and opened bread goes to the griddle separated, let milanesa reheat one side then turn the milanesa add the quesillo and let it while internal side of the bread comes brown and crispy then (about a minute or two) turn the bread and whith the spatula take th milanesa and put it over the bread then do the same you did add the other ingredients you can cut it or not in two parts let it cool a little and enjoy
Thank you, Nurivan! The chipotle adobado dressing sounds very good. I don’t think I have ever had it that way. I like the idea of cheese, too. And cutting up the milanesa intro strips would make it easier to eat! Thanks!
i usually never leave comments in anywhere but as far as i can tell besides alton brown (who is the only chef in food networks that can be taken seriously when it comes to Mexican cuisine refers) you are the only one who use soft tortilla to make your tacos as it shoud be otherwise hard tortilla (as the tacho shell) are for “tostadas” another mexican delight very near to the “puffy tacos” that you find in san antonio, so because i can see that you really enjoy the food and for a reason or another you aproach to “the real thing” you deserve to know that you are doing so right thats why i leave both coments heare (and some others sprinkled in your site)
hi again ok just to be a little more precise about in this issue well milanesa strips most be more or less arround half inch, cheese goes above the milanesa never stir or blend the idea is soft hot cheese layer over milanesa strips not fondue with milanesa chunks, mozzarela cheese is this case is good enough for this delight, the spicy layer if you go for the jalapeño slices the right one is “jalapeño en escabeche” which means jalapeño in a vinegar solution i’m not sure but i think that they are regular jalapeño used for “nachos “. now chipotle adobado (or sweet chipotle ) is the perfect match for the milanesa there are several brands who offer them in several portions look for the modest canned ones fancy presentations are expensive and flavorless or have a lot of other condiments that you really dont want in your torta, if you find so spicy the chipotle in it self you can add just the liquid in the can the juice have all the chipotle flavor bot less spicy i hop this help a little more feel free to ask me is you think that i can help in anyway with mexican delights (antojitos mexicanos) i hope you enjoy some of this recomendations o by the way a baguette is good enough instead of bolillo
My husband always orders this sandwich when we go to Tortas el Rey (King of Sandwich), so when I saw this recipe I knew I had to surprise him by making it because we are trying not to eat out as much. YOU are the queen of sandwich. I used all the same fixins they have on their sandwiches: mayo, refried beans, lettuce, tomato, onion, cilantro, pickled jalapenos and avocado. It was so delicious and the meat was so flavorful! I am also very thankful that there was a video to accompany this as I am fairly new to cooking meat again- I just started eating meat again after 6 years of being vegan, vegetarian, or pescatarian. Thanks Hilah! You’re amazing. 🙂
Awesome! That’s great to hear, Jessica. And funny, because I still feel like there’s a lot about meat I don’t know, too. I was vegetarian from about age 17-26. 🙂
Yumm tried it and it was delicious