The best garlic grilled flank steak recipe ever for delicious juicy flank steak or skirt steak with a crunchy crust on the grill. Perfect easy recipe for grilled flank steak for steak salad, steak tacos, fajitas, and more!
Grilled flank steak (or grilled skirt steak) is one of my all-time favorite things to cook, year round.
Skirt steak and flank steak are rich, meaty, and easy cuts of meat to grill or broil, taste great, and while they have a reputation for being a bit fussy (they need to be cooked and cut very specific ways, or they can get too chewy and tough), with a tiny bit of know-how, they are simple and super easy ways to have a delicious steak dinner
This recipe calls for flank steak – but this recipe and method works fabulously if you have a skirt steak, too!
I talk a little bit about the difference between skirt steak and flank steak later in the post – if you can’t find flank steak and can only find skirt steak, don’t worry at all, because this recipe is great for either – even though they are very different types of steak (though they can look pretty similar).
just take me to the best garlic grilled flank steak ever recipe already!
If you’d rather skip my (very helpful, i think) tips and tricks, essential cooking info, and similar recipe ideas – and get straight to this deliciously easy garlic grilled flank steak recipe, simply scroll to the bottom of the page where you can find the printable recipe card.
What Is Flank Steak?
Flank steak is delicious for fajitas, stir fry, homemade cheesesteak, or just sliced on it’s own with some fresh vegetables.
Flank steak is meaty, rich, juicy and delicious – and is a leaner cut of steak with less marbling.
Flank steak is well known as a cut that can turn tough quickly – and needs to be cut a specific way when serving (against the grain) since it is made out of long, thick muscle strands.
What is The Best Way to Cook Flank Steak?
Flank steak gets a bit of a bad rap for being tough – which certainly can be the case if not cooked properly.
Flank steak is absolutely heavenly when sent to soak in a marinade – but, unlike other tougher cuts of steak, is also quite beautiful on the grill.
Is a Flank Steak The Same as Skirt Steak?
Flank steak and skirt steak are both cut near the belly of the cow, in the “short plate” area. The flank steak is lower, leaner, and has less fat marbling than skirt steak.
Can You use Skirt Steak For Flank Steak?
Skirt steak is from a similar part of the cow as the flank steak, but has a little bit more fat and connective tissue in it (skirt steak is a little more marbled than flank steak), so it needs to break down a little more. Luckily, skirt steak is great grilled if you take just a couple extra steps!
If you’re having a hard time finding flank steak and grab skirt steak instead, don’t skip the marinade (preferably overnight) and give it a quick pound with a meat tenderizer before popping it on the grill.
How To Cut Flank Steak
Flank steak is a chewy steak, and is much easier to chew if it is cut against the grain.
Cutting steak “against the grain” means you’re cutting through the long fibers of the meat – cut flank steaks and skirt steaks across the width of the steak, not down the length of steak (so you have lots of thin strips instead of just a few super long strips.)
How to Grill Flank Steak
Flank steak is very easy to prepare – it’s delicious, meaty flavor shines through with very little work – but it is best when you use a couple tips and tricks to ensure perfect tender grilled flank steak.
These tips will help you keep your flank or skirt steak from becoming too tough, chewy, or flavorless – and are so easy to do!
- Remove silver skin.
- The tough slivery skin often still on flank steak and skirt steak should be removed as much as possible – to remove it, you might need a knife point to get some of the skin loose enough to get a good grip on it and simply tear it off.
- Removing silver skin from steak is very important since it becomes tough, chewy, and offers no flavor to the grilled steak.
- Cook fast at very high heat.
- Since flank steak has very little fat and connective tissues, it can become tough when cooked too long at low temperatures.
- For perfect tender juicy flank steak you need to cook it hot and fast – grilled or broiled at high heat.
- Marinate flank steak before grilling.
- Again, because flank steak has little fat marbling, it really benefits from a good soak in a marinade to soften the meat and help lock in tons of juicy flavor.
- Marinades are also a delicious way to add flavor to the steak – add in different herbs and spices to find a blend you love the best!
- This recipe is a very very basic marinade intentionally so you can add in other herbs you love. Some great ideas to try:
- Chinese Five Spice for a slightly sweet kick thanks to the cinnamon in the spice blend.
- Teriyaki Sauce or soy sauce for an Asian Flank Steak twist.
- Blackening spices for a cajun kick.
- Montreal Steak Spices for a zesty steak (don’t add salt if using Montreal Steak Herb mix since its already quite salty.)
- Don’t overflip.
- Part of the intense flavor from grilled steak comes from the char the steak gets on the grill – which needs time to form! Resist the urge to flip your flank steak too often, so your steak can get a delicious, crunchy sear on the outside.
- If making for meal prep to be reheated later, consider cooking slightly less.
- If you’re making this steak with the intention of reheating it again another day, consider cooking it a level lower than your ideal doneness so you can reheat it without making it too tough or dry from overcooking.
- This is especially important if you are microwaving to reheat! I personally love flank steak cold on taco salads though.
Grilled Flank Steak Marinade Recipe Ideas:
I’m adding tons of delicious juicy flavor to this flank steak with a simple lemon garlic marinade – but if you’re looking to kick this recipe up a bit, here are some of my other favorite flank steak marinades- simply prepare the marinade as written below and then continue on with my easy grilled flank steak recipe as followed in the printable recipe card:
- Teriyaki Flank Steak
- Chimichurri Flank Steak Marinade
- Italian Flank Steak Marinade
- Balsamic Flank Steak Marinade
- Honey Soy Flank Steak Marinade
What to Serve With Garlic Grilled Flank Steak:
Flank steak is fabulous with fajitas – pop some onions and peppers on the grill for an out of this world grilled fajita night at home… but if you’re looking to serve this garlic grilled flank steak at a cookout, I have some of my favorite easy side dishes that are perfect for a backyard BBQ!
Click the individual links below to get to each easy recipe:
The Best Garlic Grilled Flank Steak Recipe Ever
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Lay flank steak out flat, trim any extra fat or silver skin.
Generously season steak with salt and pepper.
Add olive oil, herbs, lemon zest and juice, and diced garlic to a large bowl or (preferably) a large plastic bag and mix well.
Add steak to bag and let marinate for 40 minutes up to two hours.
Heat grill or start charcoals - aiming for high heat (about 400 degrees).
Remove steak from bag, and sprinkle with garlic powder.
Cook steak on very hot grill, flipping every 4-5 minutes.
Wipe a little olive oil on the grill's grates before adding steak.
For medium rare steak, the steak will cook for about 10 minutes (this will vary depending on your grill, how hot it is outside, if it is windy, etc so be sure to check your steak and how quickly it's cooking).
For a steak that is medium all the way to well done, cook the steak directly over the heat, flipping twice, for 10 minutes as listed above - and then move slightly away from the heat (to a higher rack, or spot where the flames aren't directly underneath) so it will continue to cook to your preferred doneness without becoming too charred.
Remove from grill when steak is at your preferred doneness.
Place a small piece of foil over the steak to "tent" it and let it finish carryover cooking as it rests for 10 minutes.
When steak has rested for at least 10 minutes (don't rush - if you cut it right off the grill the steaks juices will all run out), slice it width-wise (so you have lots of thin strips instead of just a few long strips) against the grain - which is essential to keeping the steak from being too chewy or tough.
Serve immediately and enjoy!