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Recipe for spicy Asian grilled sesame-soy flank steak


The oh-so-good broccoli slaw I made a few days ago cried out for a spicy partner, and this Asian grilled sesame-soy flank steak made a perfect pairing. At least, I assume it was perfect, because my husband Ted and I both tried to claim the leftovers for lunch the next day after eating rather large portions at dinner. Flank steak, cut from the abdominal muscles of the cow, has a reputation for being tough and stringy, but, cooked and sliced properly, it's the most tender piece of beef you can imagine. The trick is to cook it either very fast, as in this recipe, or long and slow, and to slice it across the grain. In this recipe, the marinade contains just enough agave to give the meat a pleasing, sweet glaze on the outside. Cook the steak on the grill, on your panini press, or under the broiler.


Spicy Asian grilled sesame-soy flank steak

From the pantry, you'll need: chili paste with garlic, reduced-sodium soy sauce, agave nectar, rice vinegar, sesame oil.

Serves 4-6.


1 Tbsp chili paste with garlic
2 Tbsp reduced-sodium soy sauce
3 scallions, cut into 1-inch lengths (white and green parts)
1 tsp agave nectar
1 tsp rice vinegar
1 tsp sesame oil
1- to 1-1/2 lb flank steak


Combine all ingredients in a plastic bag. Add one tablespoon of water. Massage everything until the meat is coated on both sides with the marinade. Set the bag in the refrigerator and marinate for 4-6 hours or overnight.

Heat your grill to high heat. While the grill is heating, remove the steak from the refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature.

Remove the steak from the marinade, and place on the grill. Cook on the first side for 5 minutes, then turn the meat and cook for an additional 2 minutes on the second side. (You can cook this under the broiler, if you don't have a grill.)

Transfer the steak to a platter, and let it sit for 10-15 minutes before slicing. Be sure to slice across the grain.

Serve hot, at room temperature, or cold.

[Printer-friendly recipe.]

More grilling with Asian flavors:
Spicy Asian grilled chicken and pasta salad, from The Perfect Pantry
Beef teriyaki skewers, from The Perfect Pantry
Miso marinated grilled salmon, from Andrea Meyers
Grilled maple soy glazed flank steak, from Sarah's Cucina Bella

An Asian-inspired marinade with sesame and soy flavors turns this grilled flank steak into a great dish to enjoy hot or cold.

Disclosure: The Perfect Pantry earns a few pennies on purchases made through the Amazon.com links in this post. Thank you for supporting this site when you start your shopping here.


I love, love, love grilled flank steak!!

Thank you for saying "Rice vinegar" instead of "rice wine vinegar". So many recipes and tv cooks add the word "wine" when I don't think there is such a thing. At least I can never find "rice wine vinegar" in any store.

I will be making this soon...I love the flavors you used here. I often will make skirt steak and always the hot and fast method. My daughter used to ask for skirt steak when I ask what she wants for supper.

Marukan makes a rice wine vinegar, but it might not be everywhere.

Yum! Bookmarking this marinade - looks delish!

I would love this for dinner. The marinade sounds perfect.

Pam, I love flank steak, too, and I think it takes particularly well to this spicy marinade.

Debbie, I always use rice vinegar these days, but I do see rice wine vinegar on the shelves in my local Asian grocery. They are essentially the same thing.

Lyndsey, this marinade would be delicious with skirt steak, too. Again, don't cook it for too long.

Alyssa, I have a real thing for the combination of spicy and sweet and meat. Hope you like it.

Kalyn, not only is this great hot off the grill, but you can mix the leftovers with cooked vegetables or cold rice for a salad the next day. If you have leftovers, that is!

I love your blog! I don't really eat meat, but this seems like a good excuse to do so. I love your choice of the combination of flavors. Sweet & vibrant flavors are the way to go!

Ashley, you could use this same marinade on chicken or tofu, too!

Great! Thanks for the tips on cooking flank. I usually ask the butcher to cut it in tips (little cubes) and I cook it with veggies and add cheese before serving. I love this recipe, though.

Ben, that sounds delicious! I'd love to know more; is that a traditional Mexican way to serve flank steak?

Ok, this looks good enough to eat RIGHT NOW! I'm off to the store to get the ingredients and will make it for dinner tonight.

Thanks for posting it.

YUM! and it looks fairly diet-friendly (not that I am actually sticking to one!)

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