Grilled Chile-Rubbed Flank Steak
This post is sponsored by Beef. It’s What’s For Dinner. on behalf of the Beef Checkoff. All opinions are my own.
Back to school and back to the routine! The night before school starts, my family sits down for a celebratory meal to kick off the year. This year for our family’s back-to-school dinner I’m firing up the grill and making chile-rubbed flank steak. It’s a variation of a recipe I’ve made in cooking classes for several years and I know it’s a crowd pleaser in my house.
The flavorful dry rub is quick to put together. Make a double batch and store leftovers for another dinner down the road. Sprinkle the spice rub on both sides of the flank steak 40 minutes before you’re ready to grill.
In this chile-rubbed version, I love to serve the steak with an herby sauce on the side. Chermoula is made with cilantro and parsley and has a bright citrus and garlic flavor. You can also serve chimichurri or even “any greens” pesto on the side. A simple corn relish tossed with lime zest and juice, cilantro, jalapeño, Cotija cheese and avocado is the perfect accompaniment. All you need to round out the dinner menu is a green salad with a tangy vinaigrette.
With a couple of Smart in the Kitchen School cooking class techniques and tips, flank steak might become your go-to grilled meat of choice. Lightly score the meat in a crosshatch pattern on both sides of the steak. Scoring does two things: helps to tenderize the meat and lets the flavor from the dry rub or marinade penetrate the meat.
Pre-heat the grill on high and then brush down the grates once it’s time to cook. Oil the grates with a neutral-flavored oil. To oil my grill, I use old kitchen towels or paper towels and add a little avocado oil. Quickly and carefully wipe down the grates with the oil-soaked towel before adding meat. Hold the oil-soaked towel with grilling tongs to be careful! Once the meat is on the grill, have a spray bottle or cup of water close by to tame any flare-ups. You’ll also need a clean set of tongs and a sheet pan for removing your steak once it’s cooked. Don’t use a tray or board for cooked meat that was used for raw meat, or be sure to thoroughly clean it first.
Get your meat thermometer ready, it’s time to grill!
What is the best way to cook flank steak?
Flank steak isn’t marbled with fat, it’s a leaner cut that can end up tough if not cooked and cut properly. I prefer high heat cooking methods, such as a grill. You can also broil the meat in the oven or sear it in a hot pan.
Can you keep flank steak from getting tough?
Score the meat in a cross hatch pattern on both sides of the meat. This helps to cut through some of the meat fibers and tenderize the steak. Once the meat has cooked and rested for a few minutes, cut it in thin slices against the grain.
What’s the internal temperature when cooked?
For medium, remove flank steak from the grill when the internal temperature reaches 145 degrees when measured on an instant read thermometer. I wouldn’t recommend cooking flank steak over 145 degrees because of its lower fat content. Otherwise, it may turn out dry and tough.
How can you serve flank steak?
Use it for fajitas, carne asada tacos or steak quesadillas. Leftovers are perfect in steak salads with jalapeño buttermilk ranch.
Grilled Chile-Rubbed Flank Steak
- 1 flank steak about 2 pounds
- 2 tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 2 freshly ground pepper a few grindings
- Avocado oil or other neutral high heat oil for the grill
- Score the meat in a wide crosshatch pattern on both sides. To do this, drag the tip of your knife lightly across the meat, no deeper than a ¼ of an inch, in parallel lines about an inch apart. Then repeat from the other direction to make a diamond pattern. Then flip the meat to score the other side. Scoring the meat helps to tenderize it and all those little cuts help the marinade and flavor absorb.
- In a small bowl, mix the chili powder, paprika, cumin, red pepper flakes, garlic powder, coriander, salt and pepper.
- Sprinkle the spice rub on both sides of the flank steak. Marinate for at least 40 minutes or up to overnight.
- Preheat the grill on high. Once it’s hot, brush down and oil the grates. (It’s much easier to clean the grill grates once they’re hot. To oil the grill, pour about 2 tablespoons avocado oil onto a paper towel or old kitchen towel and quickly wipe down the grates. Any neutral-flavored high heat oil will work.)
- Reduce heat to medium-high. Grill the steak, turning once, about 6-8 minutes per side for medium (remove when the internal temperature reaches 145 degrees).
- Transfer the steak to a cutting board. Let it rest, covered with foil, for 5 minutes before thinly slicing against the grain.
** This post is sponsored by Beef. It’s What’s For Dinner on behalf of the Beef Checkoff. All opinions are my own.
The recipe, photographs and all content is all my own. Thank you for allowing me to create and share sponsored posts to highlight favorite brands, ingredients and products.