Flavorful, juicy Flank Steak is perfectly seasoned before being grilled to become one of the best summer meals available.
With the addition of your favorite BBQ sauce and a simple side salad, this tender steak dinner is ready to serve!
WHAT IS FLANK STEAK?
Flank steak is a long and flat cut of beef that is lean and somewhat tough. It’s still quite flavorful, but it’s primarily due to a marinade that tenderizes the meat.
Flap steak melts in your mouth when prepared this way: marinated, cooked quickly at high heat, and thinly sliced.
WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN FLANK STEAK AND SKIRT STEAK?
Flank steak and skirt steak are both long cuts of meat that are used interchangeably in many recipes.
So, what’s the distinction between the two?
Both cuts are tough because they come from the cow’s muscular regions, but skirt steak is the tougher of the two.
Skirt steak also has a more robust beef flavor than flank steak. They’re also from different parts of the cow: skirt steak comes from the plate, while flank steak comes from the (you guessed it) flank.
HOW TO CUT FLANK STEAK?
Flank steak is a chewy steak that is much easier to chew when cut across the grain.
Cutting steak “against the grain” means cutting through the meat’s long fibers – cut flank and skirt steaks across the width of the steak, not down the length of the steak (so you have lots of thin strips instead of just a few super long strips.)
WHAT’S IN THE MARINADE?
- Soy sauce– This adds a lot of flavor as well as a touch of salt to balance out the sweetness of the marinade.
- Petroleum (Vegetable is what we use, but you could use olive oil)
- Dark Brown Sugar– Dark brown sugar adds a touch of sweetness and balances the saltiness of the soy sauce, but we prefer dark brown sugar for a deeper flavor.
- Worcestershire Sauce– Umami is a flavor that many people overlook. Yes, there are sweet, salty, bitter, and sour flavors, but did you know that umami is that earthy goodness? Worcestershire improves the flavor of a beef marinade.
- Dijon Mustard– A strong, but not bitter, mustard that adds flavor.
- Garlic– Garlic adds a stitch of bite to a beef dish by breaking up the muddled flavors.
- Chives– A milder onion flavor that adds a bit of freshness.
- Pepper– While the soy sauce eliminates the need for salt, we do require a little heat from the pepper.
- Balsamic Vinegar– As you’ll see in our cookbook, Raised in the Kitchen, acid is an important component in cooking. It cuts through the flavors, tenderizes the meat, and adds a sweet but tangy flavor to the dish.
HOW TO KEEP FLANK STEAK TENDER?
Flank steak is a fairly lean cut of meat with a lot of fibers running through it. It has a strong beefy flavor, but it can be tough.
- It should be thinly sliced and cut perpendicular to the grain. Look for the direction of the lines running through the meat and cut in the opposite direction. This will ensure that it is as tender as possible.
- Marinades can also aid in the tenderness of the meat.
- Allow it to rest! When it’s done, remove it from the grill and set it aside for 5 minutes to rest. This allows the juices to redistribute, making the meat more flavorful and tender.
AT WHAT TEMPERATURE IS FLANK STEAK DONE?
The temperature of a ‘done’ steak varies according to how you prefer your meat cooked. Aim for an internal temperature of about 145 degrees F for medium.
Because a well-done steak has an internal temperature of about h, I don’t recommend cooking it any longer.
This recipe greatly benefits the use of a meat thermometer.
HOW SHOULD FLANK COOKED?
- Grilling is the best way to cook flank steak because it caramelizes the flavor on the outside and adds a nice sear while still allowing you to control the internal temperature.
- To reduce the amount of time you spend grilling your flank steak. Begin on high heat to sear both sides, then reduce to medium and cook for 9-12 minutes total.
- Because this is a lean cut, cook it rare, medium-rare, or medium. I’d never cook a flank steak to medium rare.
HOW TO SLICE FLANK STEAK?
Make a point of cutting your flank steak against the grain. There are small lines in the meat that are actually muscle fibers, and you’ll want to cut perpendicular to these (i.e. if the fibers run horizontally, make your cuts vertically).
By shortening the fibers, you will ensure that the meat is tender and not chewy or tough.
What should you serve with your tender flank steaks? I’ve got some ideas if you need them. Here are a few of my favorite side dishes and serving suggestions:
- “Oh My” Steak Sauce: This steak sauce has received over 800 5-star ratings! It goes well with any steak, but it really brings out the flavor of this flank steak!
- Chimichurri: We love our flank steak with some garlic-y chimichurri, our favorite arroz con gandules, and sweet fried plantains!
- Tacos: Cut up your flank steak and turn it into tacos! I like to dice up some tomatoes, avocado, lettuce, and other ingredients and let everyone build their own taco in a tortilla.
- Who doesn’t enjoy a little Mac n’ Cheese with.
Their barbecue? It is worth noting that it only takes 15 minutes to prepare.
- Mashed Potatoes: While steak is traditionally served with garlic mashed potatoes, it also pairs well with easy air fryer baked potatoes!
- Corn: Steak and corn on the cob are a delicious combination! Air Fryer Corn on the Cob is a quick and tasty option, but if you’ve already got the grill out, why not make some Grilled Corn?
- Salad: If you want to keep things simple, serve something like this Greek Salad or a quick bowl of coleslaw.
TIPS FOR SUCCESS
That’s all there is to it! Grilled flank steak that is ready in minutes after being marinated.
If you still have questions about how to make the best flank steak on the grill, here are a few more pointers:
- For Rare Steak: If you prefer your meat rare, 5-7 minutes on each side is sufficient.
- Allow the Meat to Marinate for 2-24 Hours: The longer you leave the marinade on the steak, the more flavorful your dinner will be! So, if you have time, start the marinating process the night before.
- Marinating Thick Cuts of Meat: If the meat is thick, cut X’s in the top to help the marinade penetrate the meat completely.
- Preheat the Grill Before Cooking: Before placing the meat on the grill, make sure it is preheated. The meat should have a nice sear on it.
- Prepare to adjust the grilling time: If the meat is thin, it will only take 5 to 6 minutes per side. If the meat is thicker, the cooking time will be 8 to 10 minutes per side. Check for completion. If you like your meat pink, cook it for a shorter period of time.
- For the Juiciest Meat: Allow the meat to rest for 5 minutes before cutting to ensure that it stays moist and does not dry out. Also, ensure that the meat has some fat marbling – this results in a delicious grilled piece of steak with juicy results!
HOW TO STORE AND REHEAT LEFTOVERS?
Any leftover flank steak can be stored in an airtight container for 4-5 days.
You can reheat it in the microwave, but I prefer a pan for more crispy, tender meat. Cook the sliced flank steak in a pan/skillet with a little olive oil until heated through.
Frequently Asked Questions
Grilling flank steak is probably the best way to prepare it, but you can also pan-sear it in a skillet or broil it in the oven. The real trick is to keep your flank steak grill time as short as possible; this lean cut is best cooked rare, medium-rare, or medium.
The flank is the slimmer of the two. It’s a versatile beef cut that can be grilled, roasted, broiled, or sautéed. However, because flank is so lean, it can become dry and tough if overcooked or sliced too thickly—important it’s to cook it to medium and slice it very thinly against the grain.
One of them is not a flank steak. This brawny cut from the cow’s abdomen craves the bold flavors of a marinade or a rub. Marinate the meat for as much time as you have between now and dinner, even if it’s only the 20 minutes it takes to light the coals. Overnight is the best option.
Slow cooking is an excellent way to prepare flank steak for a variety of dishes, including slow cooker flank steak tacos, steaks in gravy, Mongolian beef, and more. Slow cooking tenderizes the beef much more than other methods.