Learn how to cook a Flank Steak that is tender, juicy and has amazing flavor. I’m sharing all the tips, tricks you need along with my favorite flank steak marinade.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe!
This was one of the first recipes I shared here on the blog back in 2008, it’s been a family favorite for a long time. It is one of the most requested meals when my kids come home to visit.
If you ask any of the men at my house what their favorite dinner is, Flank Steak would be in the top two choices for all of them, if not the top choice. Throw in some kind of potato and they are in heaven! I shared a hand written copy of this recipe with a friend years ago. I guess my writing was a little messy because her family calls this flank steak Fist Fire Flank Steak. She could never figure out why it was called fist fire!!
If you have every wondered how to cook a flank steak – this post is for you!
What is Flank Steak ?
Flank steak comes from the bottom abdominal area of the cow and it contains some hard-working muscles and can be a little tough so it is a great choice for marinating. It is a lean cut of beef.
I always marinate my flank steak as the marinade will help to tenderize the meat. Grilling is our preferred way to cook a flank steak.
How to Score A Flank Steak
- Prior to marinating the beef I score the meat to allow the marinade to get deeper into the meat.
- Use a sharp knife and make 4-5 diagonal cuts across the grain of the flank steak, about 1/4 inch deep.
- Flank steak. See below for other cuts of meat you can use.
- Brown sugar
- Soy sauce
- Cooking sherry
- Sesame oil
- Sesame seeds
- Garlic. Fresh and minced
- Ginger. Fresh and minced
- Green Onions
- Oil for brushing
How To Marinade Flank Steak?
I recommend marinading for 12-24 hours if possible. If you are short on time try to do it for at least 3 hours.
Place the steak, along with the marinade into a large plastic zipper baggie.
Put bag it in the refrigerator so the meat lays flat. This way more meat comes in contact with the marinade. You can also use a bowl with a lid or some type of airtight container.
See below for my favorite flank steak marinade.
How to Cook A Flank Steak
We always cook our flank steak on the grill over a high heat. Flank steak is fairly thin so it cooks quickly. We prefer it medium to medium rare which is usually 4-6 minutes per side. Flank steak can get tough and chewy if it is overcooked.
I use a meat thermometer to check the temperature of my flank steak. I love using the Thermoworks Thermapen. Do not slice into it as that will release the juices and dry out the meat.
- Rare – 125 degrees F
- Rare Medium – 135 degrees F
- Medium – 145 degrees F
- Medium Well – 155 degrees F
Pull the meat off the grill about 5 degrees before the desired level of doneness and allow the meat to sit for a few minutes. It will continue to cook as it rests. Slice after resting.
You can use a gas grill or a charcoal grill.
Tip from Leigh Anne
- To make this a quick and easy dinner, I will freeze my flank steak in the marinade in a freezer bag. Thaw the meat overnight and it is ready to throw on the grill at dinner time. You can freeze it for 2-3 months.
How Cook A Flank Steak Without a Grill
Stove top: If you don’t have a grill you can cook the steak in a cast iron skillet, or a heaving frying pan on the stove top.
Cook over medium high heat, 5-6 minutes per side, depending on desired doneness. Use a meat thermometer to gauge temperature.
Broiler: Place the flank steak on a roasting pan and place under broiler. Broil (without turning) until nicely browned and firm, with some give when pressed in the thickest part, 6 to 8 minutes for medium-rare. Let the steak rest for 10 minutes.
How to Cut a Flank Steak
- To help make the flank steak more tender, always slice the meat across the grain, at an angle, with a sharp knife.
- The grain of the steak refers to the direction the muscle fibers run within the piece of meat. Cutting against the grain means to cut through the fibers and make them shorter.
- Cutting against the grain makes the meat more tender and easier to chew.
- We like to slice the meat about 1/3 inch thin strips.
Frequently Asked Questions
What other cuts of beef can I use instead of flank steak?
A good substitute for flank steak is London broil, flat iron steak, skirt steak, or tri tip steak.
How do I reheat leftover flank steak?
Refrigerate any leftovers in an airtight container. They will last for 3-4 days. Steak is best reheated slowly over low heat in a 350 degree F oven. Cover with aluminum foil.
Do I need to bring my flank steak to room temperature before cooking?
If I remember, I do but I have also thrown it onto the grill straight from the fridge. It takes a few more minute to cook but it’s still delicious!
How much flank steak do I need per person?
I have found that a 1 1/2 pound flank steak will feed 4-6 people, depending on how hungry they are and what else you are serving it with.
Check out more of my favorite beef recipes:
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Fast Fire Flank Steak
- 1 flank steak about 1 1/4 lbs.
- 1 1/2 Tbsp. brown sugar
- 1 1/2 Tbsp. soy sauce
- 1 Tbsp. cooking sherry
- 1 Tbsp. sesame oil
- 2 Tbsp. sesame seeds
- 2 Tbsp. minced garlic
- 1 tsp. minced fresh ginger
- 2 scallions sliced 1/8 inch thick
- 1/4 tsp. green pepper I usually don’t put this in
- oil for brushing
- Score flank steak 1/8 inch deep on both sides at 1 inch intervals
- Mix all ingredients except oil for brushing together, pour over steak and rub into both sides
- Marinade at least 3 hours or overnight
- Remove from refrigerator 30 minutes before cooking
- Brush grill with oil
- Cook for 3 minutes each side for rare, 5 for medium, 7 for well done
- Thinly slice against the grain
Tips & Notes:
Originally posted in 2008