Simple Skirt Steak with Chimichurri Sauce – An Easy Dinner Recipe

by Pamela

skirt steak, skirt steak recipes, how to cook skirt steak, chimichurri sauce

Skirt steak is a pretty tough cut of meat. Usually, to tame the tough, we cook tough meat for hours to break it down and make it tender and succulent (ewww…what a word). But skirt steak’s a little different. This rough piece of beef is usually cooked quickly either on the grill or in a pan over high heat. Of all the skirt steak recipes in all the blogosphere (and there’s LOTS of them) I’m going to tell you how to grill it and add even more flavor with a simple chimichurri sauce. Dinner on the table in less than 30 minutes.

First things first…I should probably start by explaining the difference between skirt steak, flank steak and hangar steak. I mean, they all look pretty much the same when you’re staring at them in the meat case don’t they? Skirt steak has the most fat on it (compared to the other two) which allows it to come off the grill nice and juicy. The flank steak is pretty lean and looks the flattest out of the three steaks. It’s got a deep and rich flavor with a more coarse texture than the other two. The hangar steak is the thickest of the three, as well as the toughest. That’s not to say it isn’t delicious, it is, you just need to remember this when you’re handling it.

How to Cook Skirt Steak

All three of these cuts love to sit in a good strong marinade…for a long time. Marinades can act as a flavoring agent as well as a tenderizer, depending on what you put in there (did you know that beer is a tenderizer). Sometimes I’ll drop a skirt steak into a tasty marinade, but most often I just like to sprinkle salt and pepper on it and toss it on the grill. Because I’m not that organized and usually don’t plan ahead. The flavor agent I use, when grilling, is a bright and tangy chimichurri sauce.

So how do you cook a skirt steak? Quickly. In fact, that’s how you cook all three of these steaks. Medium to well done is not how you want to be cooking any one of these steaks. If you do, you’ll find that you could re-sole your shoes with them. Medium rare is the most common preparation for skirt steak. On the grill, or in a cast iron pan, I cook it for 3-4 minutes per side. Let the meat sit for at least 5 minutes before cutting into it (or you’ll lose all of the juices…and I mean ALLΒ  of them).

Skirt Steak Recipes

To serve, cut the skirt steak (flank or hangar) against the grain so that it’s nice and tender. If you cut the steak with the grain it’s going to be chewy, really chewy. I usually drop the cut meat onto a platter or cutting board and spoon the chimichurri sauce all over it. Then you can drop it into tortillas, along with some other veggies or you can just serve it as is over a bed of spicy green cilantro rice.

So get your grill on and enjoy one of these “other” cuts of beef.

Chimichurri Sauce
Prep time
Total time
Skirt steak cooks up in just a few minutes on the grill and has a rich beef flavor. A bright and tangy chimichurri sauce will amp up the flavor even more.
Recipe type: Sauce
Cuisine: Mexican
Serves: 1
  • 2 Cups Parsley (minus the tough stems)
  • ½ Cup Mint Leaves
  • 2 Cloves Garlic
  • ¼ Medium Red Onion (roughly chopped)
  • Zest of 1 Lemon
  • ½ Cup Olive Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
  • 1 Tablespoon White Vinegar
  • ¼ Teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes (depending on heat level you like)
  • Pinch of Kosher Salt
  1. Add all ingredients to bowl of food processor or blender.
  2. Blitz until everything is smooth.
  3. Give sauce a taste and adjust seasoning.
  4. Pour some over meat and the rest into a bowl to serve with the meat.
This recipe makes about ¾ cup of chimichurri sauce.


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Lulu June 17, 2014 at 4:19 pm

This looks like a wonderful recipe, different from the one I’ve used before which seemed a bit bland, although it did have 8 cloves of garlic. Just wondering if this can be frozen or not or be stored for a week. I’m having a party and would like to make ahead. Thanks.

Pamela June 17, 2014 at 4:32 pm

Hi Lulu, Woah! 8 cloves of garlic? You’d definitely keep the vampires away. πŸ˜‰ You could make up the chimichurri and freeze it ahead of time. BUT….leave out the onion and the red pepper flake. Add those 2 ingredients after you thaw it out. Freezing onions gives them a weird texture and freezing spicy stuff makes it hotter. Have a great party!!!!!

Maureen | Orgasmic Chef May 23, 2014 at 9:10 pm

If you invited me for dinner and served this, I might just start swimming.

Pamela May 25, 2014 at 6:42 am

Consider yourself invited with an open invitation any time Maureen!

John@Kitchen Riffs May 21, 2014 at 9:19 am

I love skirt steak. And flank. And hanger. Even diaphragm! And I use rapeseed oil all the time. πŸ˜‰ Great post — thanks!

Pamela May 22, 2014 at 9:30 am

Hi John, I use all those ‘strangely’ named cuts of meat and rapeseed oil all the time too. But you know…some people just can’t handle those names without cringing. LOL

Lori @ RecipeGirl May 20, 2014 at 9:53 pm

This is like the best dinner ever! Love good grilled steak. LOVE chimichurri!

Pamela May 21, 2014 at 11:32 am

Thanks Lori! Super simple means more time to enjoy those outdoors you’ve got now. πŸ˜‰

sippitysup May 20, 2014 at 5:52 pm

You could just say diaphragm steak and see how many takers you get! Skirt and hangar are from that section… I love useless knowledge. XOGREG

Pamela May 20, 2014 at 6:38 pm

Greg, I’m sure there would be LOTS of takers when you call it what it is. πŸ˜‰ Why do you think they call it canola oil instead of rapeseed oil? LOL

Hilary Cable May 20, 2014 at 2:59 pm

Oooohhh this looks a wonderful chimichurri recipe! It’s such a bright, fresh, versatile sauce. I put it on everything when I have it in the house.

Pamela May 20, 2014 at 6:39 pm

Thanks Hilary! Yeah, I always cry a little inside when my chimichurri sauce is gone. πŸ™

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