This Grilled Skirt Steak Recipe is marinated in a simple, yet jaw-dropping marinade and grilled to absolute perfection. So easy to master, you’ll be firing up the grill on a weekly basis.
Holy smokes, am I super excited to share this recipe with you. Imagine, perfectly juicy and tender steak that’s marinated in a delicious blend of sweet, savory, spicy and acidity, grilled for just a few minutes on high heat to give it that perfect caramelized char on the outside… can you taste it yet?
I have been OBSESSED with this recipe all summer long, and it’s time you join the obsession.
Difference Between Skirt and Flank Steak
What exactly is Skirt Steak? How does it differ from Flank Steak? Can you use Flank Steak in place of Skirt Steak?
All great questions!
Both Skirt Steak and Flank Steak are long, narrow cuts of beef.
Skirt steak comes from the diaphragm muscles of the cow, containing a lot of tough fibers and is usually quite thin. Visually, you should be able to see these fibers running through the cut of beef.
Flank steak, on the other hand comes from the bottom abdominal area of the cow, and is typically more muscly and thicker cut of beef.
Can You Swap?
These two cuts of beef are probably the most interchangeable, but if you are wanting to swap flank steak for skirt steak, you’ll want to pound the flank steak down to a more even thickness. You can use a meat mallet or a heavy rolling pin.
Since skirt steak is typically a thin cut of beef, it only needs a few minutes of high heat on the grill to cook, where flank steak can be a little thicker and could possibly need more time.
The Best Marinade
Skirt Steak takes a marinade very well, but you want to be careful to not let it sit for more than 24 hours, as this can be overkill for the thin cut of beef. All you really need is at least 30 minutes.
- Olive Oil
- Dry Sherry
- Soy Sauce
- Crushed Red Pepper
This simple marinade adds the perfect punch of flavor to the steak, with a little touch of honey to help caramelize the outside of the steak.
How To Cook on the Grill
Since skirt steak is a thin, tough cut of beef, it does best when only cooked to a medium-rare (130-135 degrees F) or at most, medium (135-145 degrees F).
In order to make this steak nice and tender on the grill, we need to cook it at a HIGH heat.
I’m talking, as high as your grill can go. 500 degrees+.
My grilled Skirt Steak recipe only needs a few minutes per side, just enough to quickly caramelize the outside, while still remaining nice and tender on the inside. If you overcook the steak, the fibers running throughout will get tough and chewy.
What Temperature For Steak?
Again, we’re ONLY cooking this steak to a medium-rare… at most medium (and I would err on the lower side of medium). If you’re looking for a steak that you can cook to anything more than this, this is not the recipe for you.
- Medium-Rare: 130 – 135 degrees F.
- Medium: 135 – 145 degrees F.
- Medium-Well: pick a different cut of steak like a ribeye or filet.
- Well: put the steak down and try this Salisbury Steak Recipe instead.
This is my favorite instant read meat thermometer, an affordable piece of equipment that will help you become a better cook.
PRO TIP – let the steak sit at room temperature in the marinade for at least 30 minutes prior to grilling. This will help it cook more efficiently.
After your steak has cooked, let it rest for at least 5 to 10 minutes before slicing into it. Don’t cover the steak with foil at this time as that could increase the internal temperature. Instead, if needed, loosely cover with foil only if absolutely necessary (ie: flies nearby).
How To Properly Slice Steak
One last bit of info before I send you on your way with this delicious skirt steak recipe, and it might be one of the most important steps… how to cut steak once it’s cooked!
You can visibly see the fibers running through the skirt steak (easiest to see prior to cooking), this is called “the grain”. You’re going to thinly slice the steak in a perpendicular cut, or “against the grain” to achieve the most tender bite.
Example: For this steak, I’ve made one cut right in the middle of the steak, dividing it into two more manageable pieces. Then I turn the steak 90 degrees, so the grain is going in a perpendicular direction to my slicing.
What To Serve With
Like I said earlier, we’ve been making this grilled skirt steak recipe on constant repeat in our house. Here are some of our favorite sides to pair with it…
- Easy Chimichurri Sauce – that gorgeous green stuff pictured above
- Garlic Parmesan Rice
- Baked Potatoes
- Roasted Broccoli or Brussels Sprouts
- Grilled Veggie Kabobs
I highly, highly recommend pairing with the chimichurri sauce, which is why I’ve included it in the recipe card below.
I’m so excited for you to try this recipe!
Grilled Skirt Steak Recipe
- 2 lb. Skirt Steak
- salt and pepper
- Season steak with salt and pepper on both sides.
- Combine the olive oil, dry sherry, soy sauce, honey, garlic and red pepper in a zip top plastic bag (or shallow baking dish). Place steak in bag and let marinate on counter top for 30 minutes.*
- Preheat grill to high heat (at least 500 degrees or higher if possible), clean grates and brush with oil if needed.
- Remove steak from marinade (discard any remaining marinade) and sear on the hot grill for 3 to 4 minutes per side, until the steak reaches an internal temperature of 130 degrees F. Let rest for 5 minutes before slicing the steak AGAINST the grain into thin strips. Serve with the chimichurri sauce if desired.
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