Fire up the grill for this easy to make and incredibly flavorful grilled flank steak! Covered in a simple flank steak marinade and then grilled to perfection, this will quickly become the only steak recipe you make over and over again!
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of We Love Fire.
Regardless of the season, I use my grill all year long making things like this easy Juicy Lucy burger, these steak shish kebabs, and this amazingly flavorful marinated filet mignon. And I love a good grilled flank steak! This recipe is extra special because it's marinated in the best flank steak marinade you'll ever make!
I love using the grill because it doesn't heat up the entire house like my oven does. And grilling is way less messy! And the flavor! Grilling meat like this Greek marinated chicken and this grilled maple salmon produces some of the most flavorful and satisfying meals. And I especially love how it tastes when I grill flank steak.
- ✔️ Quick Recipe Overview
- ℹ️ Why This Recipe Works
- 🤷 What Is Flank Steak?
- 🛒 Ingredients You'll Need
- 🗒️ Variations
- 🔪 Step-By-Step Recipe Instructions
- Steak Doneness Chart
- 🔪 How To Cut Steak Against The Grain
- 🌡️ How To Reheat Steak
- 🙋🏼 Recipe FAQs
- 💭 Expert Tips
- 🍽️ More Steak Recipes You'll Love
- How To Cook Steak
- Grilled Flank Steak Recipe
🤷 What Is Flank Steak?
Beef flank steak is a versatile cut of meat and can be cooked many ways such grilled, slow cooked, or braised. You can also smoke flank steak. Because it's such a tough cut of meat, it benefits from being cooked either hot and fast or long and slow on lower heat. If beef flank is overcooked, it can be tough and hard to chew.
Beef flank comes from the abdominal muscles and lower chest of the cow. It's a boneless lean cut and contains minimal fat, yet is incredibly flavorful with a nice beefy taste.
It's deep red in color and consists of long muscle fibers. A thin cut of meat, the muscle fibers runs in a single direction which makes flank the perfect cut of beef for marinating and grilling. When it's grilled to medium-rare and cut against the grain, it's amazingly tender and tastes amazing!
🛒 Ingredients You'll Need
Flank steak is one of the best cuts of beef to take in the flavors of the ingredients it's paired with. Marinating your steak is a MUST if you want a flavorful and tender outcome. I use an easy flank steak marinade that consists of the 5 key elements that helps tenderize the meat and puts the flavor meter over the top!
- Soy Sauce - used for the salt element
- Onions - use a sweet onion, like Vidalia, to add a sugar component.
- Olive Oil - not only is it a flavor carrier, but it is also used to help emulsify all the ingredients into a thick sauce that covers the meat.
- Lime Juice - serves as the acidic ingredient that helps boost the flavors while also breaking down the tough fibers.
- Seasonings - Smoked paprika, cumin, garlic, and cilantro are used as seasonings to provide that extra layer of flavor.
I always serve a Mexican corn salad recipe with this beef flank because it's fresh, flavorful, and the perfect side dish for pairing.
- Corn - fresh cut corn off the cob tastes the best.
- Avocado - should be slightly firm and ripe. Ensure it's not overripe or mushy.
- Tomato - fresh roma, cherry, and plum tomatoes work best.
- Bell Peppers - green and red produce a nice robust flavor.
- Onion - red onion adds a mild and sweet taste.
- Cilantro - adds a burst of flavor and freshness.
- Seasonings - cumin, smoked paprika, salt, and pepper are used to add additional flavor.
- Cotija Cheese - a crumbly must-have topping for the salad that adds a salty, tangy, and slightly sharp taste.
See the recipe card below for a full list of ingredients and measurements.
- Instead of using flank steak, try using flat iron steak, skirt steak, or sirloin.
- Try using tamari or coconut aminos instead of soy sauce.
- Regular olive oil or EVOO both work great with this flank steak marinade. Regular olive oil does have a higher smoke point which makes it great for grilling.
- If you have a flavor infused olive oil, it will provide even more flavor.
- Any type of paprika works well. To add a hint of sweetness, use sweet paprika. To add a subtle taste of spice, try using hot paprika.
- If you don't have fresh corn for the corn salad, you can use drained canned corn or frozen corn that has been thawed.
- Substitute yellow or orange bell peppers. You can also use 1 variety or a mixture of all 4.
- Skip the bottled lime juice and jarred minced garlic. Using fresh ingredients will provide the best flavor.
- Feta cheese or Queso fresco are both great substitutes for Cotija cheese.
🔪 Step-By-Step Recipe Instructions
Step 1: Start by making the Mexican corn salad. Chop the red and green peppers and then dice the tomato and red onion. Combine all the ingredients into a large bowl. Cover with a lid or plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator until the steak has been cooked and is ready to serve.
Step 2: Next, prepare the marinade. Chop the cilantro and thinly slice the onions. Then combine all the marinade ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
Step 3: Place the raw meat in either a gallon-size plastic bag or a container with a lid. Allow the steak to marinate for at least 2 hours before grilling.
Step 4: Once it has finished marinating, remove the container from the refrigerator and start the grill, turning it to high heat. The goal is to get the grill very hot, somewhere around 400°F degrees.
Step 5: From there, remove the meat from the marinade and place it directly on the grill grates.
Step 6: Grill for 5-6 minutes on each side to get a medium-rare doneness or until it reaches an internal temperature of 130°F.
When the steak reaches the desired doneness, remove it from the grill.
Step 7: Allow it to rest for 5 minutes before slicing against the grain into thin slices.
Step 8: Remove the bowl of Mexican corn salad out of the refrigerator and spoon it across the meat. Squeeze fresh lime juice on top and sprinkle on the Cotija cheese.
I don't know about you, but I love a versatile recipe. And I'm loving what I can do with this one! You have the option to keep it fancy and serve it with this delicious guacamole recipe and this easy to make Instant Pot Mexican rice. Or, dice it up and make some tacos!
🔪 How To Cut Steak Against The Grain
Cutting steak against the grain is the key to ensuring it's tender, especially when you are dealing with a tougher cut of meat. But what does cutting against the grain mean?
Flank steak consists of long muscle fibers that run in the same direction. Those long fibers are referred to as "the grain of the meat". The goal is to cut the grains into shorter pieces and you do that by cutting in the opposite direction of the way the grains run. This will make it so much easier to chew.
To cut against the grain, cut the meat with a chef's knife at a 45° angle (also called "on the bias") to the cutting board. Don't cut the meat straight up and down because it increases the surface area of the slices making it too thick harder to chew.
When you cut at an angle, it helps break down the muscle fibers and it's easier to cut the meat into thinner slices. You want very thin slices, about ¼ inch. The thinner the meat is cut, the easier it will be to chew.
🌡️ How To Reheat Steak
It's important to know how to properly reheat leftover steak so it doesn't dry out and taste like leather. One of the best methods for reheating steak is to slowly warm it in the oven and then finish it off with a hot sear in a skillet on the stovetop.
To do this, place the leftover meat in an oven safe dish and warm it in a preheated 250°F oven. After 15-20 minutes, sear over high heat with a small amount of olive oil for 1-2 minutes per side.
Reheating steak in the microwave typically dries it out, but you can easily avoid that using this technique. Place the leftovers in a microwave safe dish. Add 2-3 Tablespoons of beef broth over the meat so it maintains the moisture level. Set the microwave to medium heat and cook at 20-second intervals. Ensure you turn the dish at each interval until it is warm.
🙋🏼 Recipe FAQs
It's best when cooked to a medium-rare temperature, which has an internal temperature of 135°F after it rests for 5 minutes. To obtain this temperature, grill for 4-5 minutes on each side.
There are 3 things you need to do to ensure flank steak is tender. The first is the marination process. The marinade will tenderize the meat if it contains the 5 key elements of salt, sugar, acidity, oil, and seasoning. Next, ensure it is cooked to a medium-rare temperature. Anything above that will increase the level of toughness. And lastly, ensure you cut against the grain when it has finished resting. This will break down the muscle fibers even more which makes it so much easier to chew.
Not with a meat tenderizer, no. The marinade, method of cooking, and slicing against the grain technique is all you need to tenderize this cut of meat.
💭 Expert Tips
- To manage the internal temperature of the meat, use an instant read digital thermometer. This will ensure you don't undercook or overcook the meat.
- Remove it from the grill when it reaches 130°F because the internal temperature will continue to rise up to 5 degrees after the meat has been removed from the grill.
- Letting it rest after removing it from the grill is important to ensure the meat maintains all that juiciness.
🍽️ More Steak Recipes You'll Love
My Latest Cookbook
How To Cook Steak
If you love a good steak then you have to check out my cookbook How to Cook Steak: Techniques to Master Selecting, Preparing, and Cooking Steak. Not only are you going to get 65 delicious recipes but this essential steak cookbook teaches you to:
- Know your cuts―Check out at-a-glance steak cut profiles with defining characteristics and ideal cooking methods for various cuts of beef, from flat iron to flank. And, learn the difference between Prime, Choice, and Select grades.
- Prep and store―Find out how to store and prepare the meat before cooking, and discover the best ways to preserve and reheat those delicious leftovers.
- Talk like a butcher―Learn how to shop for meat, understand different grades of beef, and decipher vocabulary like dry aging and grain-fed vs. grass-fed beef.
Grilled Flank Steak Recipe
- outdoor grill
Flank Steak Marinade
- 2 Tablespoons soy sauce,
- 2 Tablespoons lime juice, freshly squeezed
- ¼ cup olive oil
- ½ cup yellow onions, sliced
- 1 Tablespoon garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons cumin, ground
- 2 Tablespoons cilantro, chopped
- 2 lb Flank Steak
Mexican Corn Salad
- 2 cups corn kernels
- 1 avocado, chopped
- ½ red bell pepper, diced
- ½ green bell pepper, diced
- 1 tomato, diced
- 2 Tablespoons red onion, diced
- ¼ teaspoon cumin, ground
- ¼ teaspoon smoked Paprika
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons lime juice, freshly squeezed
- 1 Tablespoons cilantro, chopped
- Cotija Cheese, crumbled
For The Mexican Corn Salad
- Chop ½ the red and green peppers and dice the tomato. Dice the red onion until you have 2 Tablespoons. Add to a large bowl.
- Add 2 cups of corn, 1 peeled and chopped avocado, ¼ teaspoon cumin, ¼ teaspoon paprika, ¼ teaspoon of salt, ¼ teaspoon black pepper, 2 Tablespoons of olive oil, 2 teaspoons of lime juice, and 1 Tablespoon of chopped cilantro to the bowl with the peppers, tomato, and onion,
- Mix well to combine. Store covered in the refrigerator until the steak is ready.
For The Flank Steak
- Add 2 Tablespoons of soy sauce, 2 Tablespoons of lime juice, ¼ cup olive oil, ½ cup sliced onions, 1 Tablespoon minced garlic, 2 teaspoons of cumin, and 2 Tablespoons of chopped cilantro to a large bowl. Mix well to combine.
- Put the raw meat and marinade in a gallon-size resealable plastic bag or container with a lid. Place in the refrigerator to marinate for a minimum of 2 hours, but preferably overnight (up to 12-24 hours).
- Once it has finished marinating, start the grill and let it heat until it reaches a temperature of at least 400°F.
- Grill for 5-6 minutes on each side to get a medium-rare doneness or until it reaches an internal temperature of 130°F. If you're going for more of a medium temperature, grill it for 6-7 minutes on each side. Expert Tip! Remove the steak from the grill when it reaches 130°F because the internal steak temperature will continue to rise up to 5 degrees after the meat has been removed from the grill.
- Once it has reached the internal desired doneness, remove the steak from the grill and let it rest on a plate for 5 minutes.
- From there, slice the steak against the grain into thin slices, about ¼ inch in thickness.
- Spoon the Mexican Corn Salad on top of the grilled steak. Squeeze fresh lime juice on top and add more crumbled Cotija cheese. Serve immediately.
- Use different cuts of beef for this recipe such as flat iron or skirt steak.
- Letting it rest after pulling it off the grill is important to ensure the steak maintains all that juiciness.
- For best results, slice against the grain.
- When making the Mexican corn salad, I use raw corn on the cob because it's so fresh and sweet. Simply rinse the corn and start slicing it off the cob into a bowl. Using raw corn is safe to at directly off the cob.
- Skip the bottled lime juice and jarred minced garlic. Using fresh ingredients will provide the best flavor.