Skirt Steak: Part 2

In a previous post, I wrote about the two types of skirt steak—outside skirt steak and inside skirt steak—and showed an example of grilling inside skirt steak with a spicy Korean marinade on my Weber Summit 450 gas grill.

In that post, I casually mentioned that both cuts of skirt steak can be a very long piece of meat (especially the more desirable outside skirt steak) and that it can be advantageous to cut it into smaller pieces before marinating and grilling.

I wanted to show you an example of a really long piece of outside skirt steak, one that I bought recently at a quality butcher counter here in San Jose.

Very long piece of inside skirt steak

Yes, that’s all one piece of meat. The cutting board is 16″ long, so this inside skirt steak must be 28″-30″ long. You can imagine the difficulty of trying to marinate and grill a single piece of meat this size.

I like to trim any areas of excess fat and then cut the meat into manageable sized pieces, like this:

Long skirt steak cut into three pieces

Place the pieces in a Ziploc bag and add your favorite marinade. Here I’m using Lawry’s Teriyaki marinade.

Pouring marinade into Ziploc bag

Sealing meat and marinade in Ziploc bag

Allow the skirt steak to marinate for 1-2 hours in the refrigerator.

When ready to grill, preheat your Weber gas grill on HIGH for 10-15 minutes. When hot, turn all burners down to MEDIUM and clean the grates with a good quality grill brush.

Remove the skirt steak from the marinade and pat dry with paper towels to remove excess marinade. It’s hard to get a good sear on meat when the surface is wet.

Spray one side of the meat with non-stick cooking spray.

Applying non-stick cooking spray

Place sprayed side down on cooking grate and grill for 3-4 minutes.

Grilling first side of skirt steak

Use a grilling spatula to loosen the meat from the grate. Use tongs to move the meat to a rimmed baking sheet pan and spray the top surface with non-stick cooking spray. Return the meat to the grill with the sprayed side down.

Partially cooked skirt steak

Grill for another 3-4 minutes on the second side, then loosen with the spatula and flip with the tongs. There’s no need to use non-stick cooking spray at this point, as the meat no longer tends to stick once it’s been seared.

To add more flavor, brush the meat with additional teriyaki marinade at the end of cooking. Don’t use the leftover marinade from the Ziploc bag, use fresh from the bottle or a portion reserved for this purpose. I like to finish with a different bottled teriyaki product called JES Teriyaki Marinade & Sauce which acts as a sweet, shiny glaze at the end of grilling.

Check the internal meat temp with an instant-read thermometer. Skirt steak is best when cooked medium-rare to medium, in the range of 125-140ºF. If the meat is not yet done, cook for 1 minute, flip and baste, then check the temp again, repeating until done to your liking.

It can be tricky to measure the internal temp of a thin cut like skirt steak, so a thermometer like the ThermoWorks ThermoPop with it’s thin probe tip really helps. Poke the tip into the meat at a very shallow angle, making sure to not poke out the other side, and take a reading. Repeat in several spots and average the results to determine overall doneness.

A finished outside skirt steak doesn’t really need to rest any longer than it takes to get it off the grill, into the kitchen, and onto your dinner plate. Brush with extra marinade as the steak comes off the grill and get ready from some good eating!

Finished inside skirt steak

One tip for enjoying skirt steak: It can be chewy when cut with the grain, so slice it across the grain for a more tender eating experience.

Slicing skirt steak across the grain

To close out this post, I want to share two more photos from another time I grilled outside skirt steak. In this instance, I cut the long piece of meat into individual serving pieces.

Inside skirt steak cut into smaller serving portions

This made marinating and grilling the meat even easier. Thinner pieces that cooked faster could be removed sooner; thicker pieces were allowed to cook longer until done. I think this will be my go-to method for grilling skirt steak moving forward.

Perfectly glazed teriyaki skirt steak

As mentioned earlier, I like to finish my skirt steak with JES Teriyaki Marinade & Sauce which provides the sweet, shiny glaze shown here.