Grilled Balsamic and Garlic Flank Steak


This grilled flank steak relies on vinegar both for flavor and to increase tenderness. The recipe requires just 20 minutes of active work time.

Active Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
40 mins
4 to 6 servings

Flank steak is recognized for its bold, beefy taste. The long, flat cut comes from the abdominal muscles of the cow, making for lean, relatively chewy meat that's often used interchangeably with skirt steak. The balsamic vinegar in the marinade does double duty here, imparting complex flavor and serving to tenderize the meat by breaking down muscle fibers. Because flank steak is prone to becoming tough, you'll want to make sure not to cook it past medium. To make it even more tender, slice the finished steak thinly across the grain.

How to grill flank steak

Grilling marinated flank steak couldn't be any easier. A blender makes quick work of whizzing up the marinade, which includes balsamic vinegar, olive oil, garlic, and thyme. Equally quick is the meat's soaking period — this recipe requires only five minutes of marinating time before it hits the grill pan.

Yep, we're using a grill pan here to simplify both the cooking and cleanup. After removing your steak from the marinade, season it generously with salt and pepper. Once the pan has preheated, add the meat and cook over moderately high heat until it's about 135°F, around eight minutes per side. The steak will continue cooking to a perfect medium off the heat as it rests for 10 minutes on the cutting board.


  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 large garlic clove

  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme leaves

  • 1 (2 1/2-pound) flank steak

  • Kosher salt

  • Freshly ground black pepper


  1. In a blender, combine the vinegar, oil, garlic, and thyme; puree until smooth. In a large glass or ceramic dish, pour the marinade over the steak. Let stand for 5 minutes.

  2. Heat a grill pan. Season the steak with salt and pepper. Grill over moderately high heat, turning once, until medium, about 8 minutes per side. Transfer the steak to a board and let stand for 10 minutes. Slice the steak, transfer to plates, and serve.

Grilled Balsamic-and-Garlic Flank Steak
© Tina Rupp

Suggested pairing

This flavorful steak demands a weighty red with good acidity. The Carménère grape from Chile is a great pick.

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