Grilled Skirt Steak

Grilled Skirt Steak is flavorful, juicy and incredibly simple to make at home! Learn how to make the best skirt steak marinade, as well as how to cook and cut skirt steak for an easy summertime meal.

Close up of thinly sliced skirt steak on a white plate

Grilled Skirt Steak is one of our family’s favorite summery recipes.

Not only is this steak bursting with flavor, but it’s simple to put together and easy to cook.

It takes a little planning—yes, we’re going to be marinating the steak, so you’ve got to put that together in advance—but it’s worth the extra effort. (Much like my Citrus Chicken Marinade, it takes a little time and planning, but oh boy, is it worth the extra effort.)

What is skirt steak? Skirt steak is a thin cut of meat from the beef plate, which is found in the belly. (It’s nestled between the brisket and the flank, for those who are interested.) It’s a tough cut of meat with a lot of connective tissue.

Why I love this recipe:

Grilled Skirt Steak is a dream. It cooks up quickly and yields a flavorful piece of meat that’s perfect for sharing.

Also, you can eat the steak by itself with traditional steak side dishes, like Homemade Mashed Potatoes and Lemon Pepper Green Beans, OR you can put it into tacos or a quesadilla for an easy, kid-friendly meal that’s perfect for any night of the week.

All you need is a little time to make this steak recipe, which includes a citrusy skirt steak marinade that we’ve been perfecting for the past few months.

The marinade does the heavy lifting for us, giving the steak flavor while also tenderizing the thin, tough cut of meat. It’s a win-win situation.

Other steak recipes to try: How to Broil Steak | Steak Bruschetta with French Onion Marmalade | Grilled Steak Flatbread Pizza Recipe | Easy Steak Salad with Orange Vinaigrette | Baked Steak

Want more summery recipes that are great for hosting? Check out my Outdoor Entertaining Recipe Index for more ideas.

Ingredients to make steak marinade in bowls on a marble with a blue towel

What you’ll need to make this recipe:

The Speckled Palate participates in affiliate programs. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a commission from qualifying purchases. Please refer to my disclosure page for more information about these affiliate programs.

In addition to these tools, you’re going to need a few ingredients to make this steak recipe, too:

  • Skirt steak—while you could technically use this recipe for another type of steak, we’re using skirt steak and this post is written specifically about skirt steak. There will be differences in the cook time and methods listed here if you use a different type of steak.
  • Extra virgin olive oil—this is the neutral oil base for our recipe. I really like using olive oil and avocado oil.
  • Soy sauce—the low-sodium variety is my go-to. If you want to make this a gluten free skirt steak, use tamari instead. (Always read the labels on your sauces, friend!)
  • Lime juice—purchase some limes from the store and juice them yourself. It makes a huge difference in the flavor! The shelf-stable bottles of juice from the store are simply not the same.
  • Hot sauce—use your favorite! This balances out the sweetness from the brown sugar and adds a little heat without overwhelming.
  • Brown sugar—I used dark brown sugar because I love the deep molasses undertones it offers, but you could easily use light brown sugar, too.
  • Garlic—freshly minced is going to give us the most flavor. You’re going to need several cloves because this recipe calls for 2 tablespoons. Trust me when I say it’s worth the effort.
  • Salt and pepper—all you need is a pinch of both!
Collage showing how to make a skirt steak marinade, how to marinate the skirt steak and what it looks like after marinating

How to marinate skirt steak

In a medium bowl, combine the olive oil, soy sauce, lime juice, hot sauce, brown sugar and minced garlic. Add a pinch of salt and pepper, too. Stir until combined.

Place the skirt steak in a gallon-sized zip-top bag. Pour the marinade on top of the steak.

Seal the bag, and use your hands to massage the marinade into the steak.

Refrigerate for 2-12 hours.

The time you marinate your steak will determine the flavor, as well as tenderize the meat. The longer it marinades, the more the marinade will flavor the meat. It should not overtake the beefy flavor of the skirt steak.

How to grill skirt steak

Remove the steak from the fridge about 30-45 minutes before you plan to grill it. Remove it from the marinade and pat it try with a paper towel.

Why? A cold steak won’t cook as evenly and if the steak is wet, it will not get as good of a sear.

Next, fire up the grill. We want to do this 30-45 minutes or so before we put our steak on the grill because we want it to be screaming hot. If you have not, clean the grates with a grill brush.

When the grill has been consistently running between 500-525°F, place the steak on the grill. Close the lid.

Cook for 4 minutes, then open the lid and flip the steak. It should have good grill marks on the bottom side.

Grill for another 2-3 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the steak reaches 130°F, which will rise to medium rare-medium doneness after the steak rests.

Pro tip: Skirt steak can become tough if overcooked. I do not recommend cooking it past medium, otherwise, it is chewy and tough to eat.

When the steak is done, remove from the grill. Place on a plate and cover with foil. Let the steak rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing.

After the steak has rested for 5 minutes (if not longer) to allow the juices to redistribute, place it on a cutting board and slice thin.

Serve with your favorite side dishes, and enjoy immediately!

Tips for slicing skirt steak

If a skirt steak is cut improperly, it will be chewy and challenging to eat.

Here are some tips for cutting it right every time (because I’ve definitely done this wrong, and my poor family has been very sad at dinnertime):

  • Cut against the grain. Cut at a 90-degree angle from the fibers running through the meat. You can learn more about it here.)
  • Chop it into smaller pieces before cutting against the grain if that’s easier for you.
  • Use a very sharp knife and tongs.
  • Cut it into ¼”-½” thick slices.
Skirt steak on a grill

Erin’s Easy Entertaining Tips

Grilled Skirt Steak is an excellent entertaining dish because skirt steaks slice up thin and feed a crowd easily.

They feel fancy, but it’s actually pretty simple to make. Grilled skirt steak also feels special because generally speaking, we don’t eat steak every week.

One of the beautiful things about entertaining with grilled steak is that you can make several steaks at the same time with little issues.

Here are a few tips and tricks for making this marinated skirt steak:

  • Marinate the steaks when you’ve got the time. The beauty in the marinade is that the steak can marinate for 2 hours or it can go as long as 12 hours in the marinade.
  • Double or triple the recipe. If you’re feeding guests, you’ll probably need more steak. Double or triple the marinade recipe to add more steak to the grill. You can do them all in one large zip-top bag together.
  • Choose side dishes that can be made ahead of time. Choose ones that you can make in advance, like Classic Potato Salad, No Mayo Potato Salad or Instant Pot BBQ Baked Beans, so that the only thing that needs cooking are the steaks.
  • Transform it into Skirt Steak Tacos! Don’t forget to drizzle ’em with Avocado Cream Sauce.
  • Use a meat thermometer. That way, your skirt steak will be perfect every time!
Sliced skirt steak on a plate surrounded by taco toppings

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does skirt steak take on the grill?

It depends on what temperature you’re cooking the steak at and how cooked through you want the skirt steak. It can take from 5-10 minutes, give or take these factors.

Is skirt steak good for grilling?

Yes! Skirt steak is best cooked quickly at a high temperature, so it’s an excellent choice for grilling.

How do you cook skirt steak so it isn’t tough?

Cooking skirt steak over high heat is really important. However, the way you cut the skirt steak is also important to it not being tough. Be sure to cut it against the grain.

How hot should grill be for skirt steak?

Our grill was between 500-525°F. You want it to be HOT.

How do I know what temperature my steak is done?

Skirt steak is best done at medium rare (135°F) or medium (145°F), in my opinion, because it becomes tough.

Remember that the steak will reach this temperature while resting, so remove it from the grill 5-10°F before the desired temperature.

Two grilled skirt steaks on a white plate before cutting

Quick tips for grilling skirt steak

  • Double or triple the recipe for a party or a backyard barbecue! Throw all the steaks together in the skirt steak marinade. Cook them at the same time, too, if your grill is large enough—or do them in batches. Just be sure to take each steak’s temperature before removing them all from the grates.
  • Use a meat thermometer. That way, your skirt steak will be perfect every time!
  • How to store leftover steak: Store leftover steak in a food-safe container in the refrigerator.
  • How to serve leftover steak: Let leftover sliced steak come to room temperature before eating it. Heating it in the microwave will make it tough. You may give it a quick sear in a pan over high heat.
  • Have a whole (unsliced) steak leftover? Store it whole, and sear it in a skillet the next day with a little butter or oil.
Close up of thinly sliced skirt steak on a white plate
Yield: 4 servings

Grilled Skirt Steak

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 7 minutes
Marinating Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 17 minutes

Grilled Skirt Steak is flavorful, juicy and incredibly simple to make at home! Learn how to make the best skirt steak marinade, as well as how to cook and cut skirt steak for an easy summertime meal.

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ lb. skirt steak
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup low sodium soy sauce
  • ¼ cup lime juice, freshly squeezed
  • 1 ½ teaspoons hot sauce
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • Kosher salt and black pepper

Instructions

Marinate the skirt steak

  1. In a medium bowl, combine the olive oil, soy sauce, lime juice, hot sauce, brown sugar and minced garlic. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Stir until combined.
  2. Place the skirt steak in a gallon-sized zip-top bag. Pour the marinade on top of the steak.
  3. Seal the bag, and use your hands to massage the marinade into the steak.
  4. Refrigerate for 2-12 hours to marinate. (The longer the steak marinates, the stronger you will taste the marinade in the meat. However, the marinade should not overtake the meaty, beefy flavor of the steak.)

Grill the steak

  1. Remove the steak from the fridge 30-45 minutes before you grill it. Remove it from the marinade and pat it try with a paper towel. Place on a plate. We do this because a cold steak will not cook as evenly, and a wet steak will not get a good sear on it.
  2. Fire up the grill. Do this 30-45 minutes or so before you plan to grill. The grill needs to be screaming hot for the steak. If you have not, clean the grates with a grill brush.
  3. When the grill has been consistently running between 500-525°F, place the steak on the grill. Close the lid.
  4. Cook for 4 minutes, then open the lid and flip the steak. It should have good grill marks on the bottom side.
  5. Grill for another 2-3 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the steak reaches 130°F, which will rise to medium rare doneness after the steak rests. (Skirt steak will become tougher if it is cooked much past medium. Please keep an eye on it since it cooks quickly.)
  6. When the steak is done, remove from the grill. Place on a plate and cover with foil. Let the steak rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing.
  7. After the steak has rested to allow the juices to redistribute, place it on a cutting board and slice against the grain in thin slices.
  8. Serve with your favorite side dishes, and enjoy immediately!

Notes

This marinade recipe can work for up to a 2 lb. skirt steak. It can be doubled or tripled to accommodate more meat. If you’re making multiple skirt steaks for a crowd, consider marinating them together in a large bag. Just be sure that all of the meat has been properly submerged in the marinade.

It is very important to use an instant read meat thermometer to ensure your steak is cooked properly! Judging a steak’s doneness by look or touch can be inconsistent, especially since skirt steak is so thin compared to other cuts of meat.

When is my steak done? Skirt steak is best cooked to medium rare (135°F) or medium (145°F) because it becomes tough if the meat cooks past these temperatures. Remember that the steak will hit the temperature while it’s resting, so remove it from the grill about 5-10°F before the desired temperature.

How to store leftover steak: Store leftover steak in a food-safe container in the refrigerator.

How to serve leftover steak: Let leftover sliced steak come to room temperature before eating it. Heating it in the microwave will make it tough.

Have a leftover (whole) steak? Store it whole, and sear it in a skillet the next day with a little butter or oil.

Recommended Products

As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

4

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 684Total Fat: 52gSaturated Fat: 14gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 36gCholesterol: 101mgSodium: 1100mgCarbohydrates: 9gFiber: 0gSugar: 6gProtein: 44g

Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate.

How much did you love this recipe?

Follow me on Instagram for more content, and share a photo of your creation with the hashtag #speckledpalate!

Similar Posts

5 Comments

  1. Loved all of your tips, this turned out so tender and flavorful — the only problem, everyone ate so much we didn’t have leftovers!

  2. My new favorite marinade! It adds so much flavor and tenderizes the meat beautifully. We used our skirt steak to make salads and it was delicious!

  3. We tried this last night and it was PERFECTION! Super tender and so full of flavor! Thanks for all of the great tips, this is going in the monthly rotation!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.