How to Make a Tasty Milanesa

Mexican Milanesa recipe, a step by step photo tutorial with delicious results.

Today we have a Milanesa recipe. “Milanesa” refers to a thin cut of meat that is breaded and pan fried, and then served with fried potatoes, a salad, and sometimes rice and beans. It is considered a main dish in many states of México and other Latin American countries, where it is a favorite with children and adults alike.
Mexican Milanesa recipe, a step by step photo tutorial with delicious results.
Besides the main dish, the Menu includes Soup of the day, Rice, Beans, and a Fresh Fruit Drink.  About $3.50 US
Mexican Milanesa recipe, a step by step photo tutorial with delicious results.
This type of milanesa recipe is one of the many dishes regularly offered in small-kitchen restaurants called “Cocinas Económicas”. These restaurants are usually located close to office buildings or industrial areas, in order to cater to the hungry workers at lunch time; here they can get a 3-course meal called "Comida Corrida"  at an affordable price. These small restaurants will serve the main dish with soup, salad, rice or beans, and dessert, all for around 4 or 5 dollars. The cook usually offers 2 or 3 options as a main dish, like “Caldo de res”, Chiles Rellenos, or Asado de Puerco, just to mention a few. Milanesas are (most of the time) part of the daily menu.They can be made with beef, chicken or even pork. Cocinas Económicas are really busy places around noon time because lunch is the main meal of the day in México.

comida casera3
A busy "Cocina Económica". Photo Courtesy of Clelia Pellicano. You can check her great work HERE.


Ingredients for 6 servings
  • 1 1/2 pound of thin cut top round beef steaks (6 steaks)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups of bread crumbs or saltine crackers ground into crumbs (see note)
  • 2 garlic cloves chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • Salt to taste
* This is my mother’s  Milanesa recipe, and we use saltine crackers to bread the milanesas.
* Sirloin steaks also work fine for milanesas, make sure to pound them very thin.
* You can use chicken or pork instead of beef.
* In Mexico, milanesas are sold in some butcher shops or supermarkets already breaded. I usually save some already-breaded  in the freezer to use later on.
Mexican Milanesa recipe, a step by step photo tutorial with delicious results.

1. Grind the garlic clove and peppercorn in a mortar. If you do not have a mortar, finely chop the garlic and use a pepper grinder for the black peppercorns or ground pepper.
2. In a large bowl, whisk the two eggs lightly and add the garlic and peppercorn mixture. I usually add a Tbsp. of water to the mortar after grinding the garlic and peppercorns, that way it’s easier to add the mix to the eggs. Whisk again.
3. In a large dish, spread the bread crumbs mixed with salt (If using regular bread crumbs) and have another dish ready to place the steaks after breading.
Mexican Milanesa recipe, a step by step photo tutorial with delicious results.

4. Now, to start the breading process.  Dip the steaks into the egg mixture.

5. Using kitchen tongs, place one steak into the crumbs, turn to coat both sides. Patting on lightly to make sure the coating adheres to the steak. If necessary, turn steak again to have an even coating of bread crumbs. Place the already-breaded steak aside on a plate. I use wax paper to cover the plates for an easy clean up afterward. Repeat this step with the remaining steaks.

6. Once you finish breading all the steaks you will proceed to fry them. Using a large skillet, heat 1/2 inch of oil over medium high heat. Make sure the oil is hot before placing the steaks. Fry about 3 minutes on each side until golden brown on both sides and cooked through. Place the steaks on paper towels to drain any excess oil before serving.

Mexican Milanesa recipe, a step by step photo tutorial with delicious results.

Serve with warm fries and a salad.
If you have any leftovers make yourself a “Torta de Milanesa” with it.

I hope you enjoy my mother's Milanesa Recipe and come back to tell me about it.

Mely Martinez


  1. Hello Mely :) How are you :), thanks for the lovely recipe :)

  2. It's been way too long since you've posted! I love this recipe. It definitely reminds me of home cooking. Something my mom would have made for my dad when they were the only ones home.
    Thanks for the memories.

  3. The thing I miss most about living in California is the great Mexican food we got there. Nothing like it in Montana! Thanks, Mely!

  4. I love the picture Mely! And the recipe is lovely too. I'll try this sometime.

  5. Qué antojo Mely! Ayer comí milanesa pero quiero más! =)

  6. this looks so crisp outside and we are sure will be perfectly supple inside, very tempting recipe,thanks for sharing :-)

  7. Mely, you always make me so hungry! That looks delicious. Hope you are having a wonderful summer!

  8. I love milanesa, schnitzel, and chicken fried steak! Thanks to the Germans for their culinary influence :)

  9. I'm Italian and I thought this is a recipe of Italian origin: we call
    it cotoletta Alla Milanese, from the city of Milano in North Italy and we use butter and not vegetable oil as tradition in North Italy

  10. Hello Baol,

    I am sure it taste great frying the Milanesa with butter intead of oil.


  11. OMG!! this is the best meal I have made. I absolutely loved these. I had them with corn, salad, and bread. How do you keep them crispy after being in the fridge though other than that their the best after frying. I love the saltine cracker crumbs on them, but I couldn't make them small enough to stick.

    1. Hello Leslie,

      To reheat them, slightly fry them again. They will be crispy again.

      Happy cooking!

    2. I reheat mine in the oven. Place in cold oven on a pie plate, set oven at 400 degrees, take out in 10 minutes. Perfectly hot and crisp milanesa! Don't forget to make torta de milanesa with the leftovers!

  12. I decided to live in Mx for a year and instantly fell in love with Milanesa. I moved back to the states and knew I would probably no longer get it. Just yesterday strolling through the store I saw Milanesa just sitting there! I bought it and found your recipe. It was delicious. My boyfriend and I gobbled it up. Thank you for the recipe!

    1. Hello Vacay Girl,

      I'm so glad you and your boyfriend liked the Milanesa recipe. This is the way my mom makes them at home.

  13. Mely your recipes always mouthwatering. My family always enjoys the milanesas and I have learned to keep an abundance in the freezer. I have done them with chicken and pork ....endlessly delicious.

    1. Hello Tita,

      Thank you for trying the recipe. These milanesas are always a big hit here at too. I even like them cold!

  14. I can hardly wait to try your recipe for milanesas, the photos area mouthwatering, too! Thanks for sharing your mom's recipe.


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