Herby Skirt Steak Recipe

Skirt steak, believe it or not, was once upon a time looked on as a cheap, throwaway cut of meat. Nowadays, we most commonly associate skirt steak with fajitas, and when it comes to making a true, authentic fajita, skirt steak is the only way to go. These days, skirt steaks can be pretty pricey, so you might want to use them for something other than fajitas. (Go ahead and make those with cheaper chicken, authenticity be darned.) 

Recipe developer Hayley MacLean likes to enhance the flavor of this cut of meat with an herb crust composed of basil, parsley, and mint, Yes, mint! While we might associate this herb with lemonade or mint juleps, its fresh, cool flavor can also complement savory dishes and it's widely used in Middle Eastern, Mediterranean, and Asian cooking. There are two different ways you can cook the meat. MacLean prefers to grill it, but pan-searing will result in a steak that's just as flavorful. If your skillet is too small to fit the entire skirt steak, you may need to slice it in half and cook one piece at a time, but the second steak will be done long before the first one grows cold.

Gather the ingredients for herby skirt steak

In addition to skirt steak, you'll need some salt, pepper, and paprika for seasoning it, plus the ingredients for the marinade/sauce. This concoction is made with the herbs named earlier (basil, parsley, and mint), and it also involves olive oil, lemon juice and zest, garlic, shallot, and crushed red pepper.

Make the herby sauce

Mix the oil, lemon juice and zest, garlic, shallot, herbs, and red pepper in a blender or food processor, seasoning this mixture with a pinch of salt and another one of black pepper. MacLean advises to "pulse until well blended, but not pureed," explaining that "you want some texture to the sauce."

Once you're done blending, measure out ½ cup of the stuff and set it aside for later as this will be used to make a sauce for the cooked steak. The rest will be used as a marinade.

Marinate the steak

Sprinkle the steak all over with the paprika plus some more salt and pepper. Once seasoned, put the steak in a Ziploc-type bag or a shallow pan and cover it with the marinade. Stick the bag or pan in the fridge (you might want to cover the latter or zip up the former), then let it sit for at least 2 hours. After 2 or more hours have passed, take the steak out of the fridge and let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Cook the steak

If you're grilling, preheat the grill to medium, then remove the steak from the marinade. Once you do so, MacLean advises to "brush the excess marinade off of the steak to keep it from burning." Grill it for 6 minutes on one side, then flip and grill for another 4 to 6 minutes.

If you prefer to pan fry, heat the skillet on high for a few minutes until a drop of water sizzles, then add the steak to the pan. (You should still shake, scrape, or brush away the marinade.) Cook the steak for 2 to 4 minutes per side, depending on how well done you want it to be.

Whichever cooking method you choose, MacLean says to "allow [the steak] to rest for 7 [to] 10 minutes before slicing across the grain." You can then either drizzle it with the reserved herb mixture or serve this on the side.

Herby Skirt Steak Recipe
5 from 29 ratings
Switch up the way you cook steak with this delicious, herb-crusted skirt steak recipe.
Prep Time
Cook Time
steak with herbs on plate
Total time: 20 minutes
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • 4 garlic cloves, smashed
  • ½ large shallot, chopped
  • ½ cup packed basil leaves, chopped
  • ½ cup packed parsley leaves, chopped
  • ¼ cup packed mint leaves, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • salt, to taste
  • black pepper, to taste
  • 2-pound skirt steak
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  1. Combine the oil, lemon juice and zest, garlic, shallot, basil, parsley, mint, and red pepper in a food processor along with a pinch of salt and pepper.
  2. Reserve ½ cup of the herb mixture.
  3. Season the skirt steak on both sides with the paprika and a generous sprinkling of salt and pepper, then poke it a few times with a fork.
  4. Place the skirt steak in a large resealable bag or a shallow dish along with the remaining herb mixture and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
  5. After 2 hours, take the steak out of the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.
  6. Preheat a barbecue grill to medium heat or a cast-iron skillet on a stove burner set to high.
  7. Shake or scrape the excess marinade off the steak before cooking it.
  8. If grilling the steak, cook it for 6 minutes on one side, then flip and cook for another 4 to 6 minutes.
  9. If pan-searing the steak, cook it for 2 to 4 minutes per side.
  10. Let the steak rest for 7 to 10 minutes before slicing.
  11. Serve the steak with the reserved herb mixture.
Calories per Serving 945
Total Fat 83.3 g
Saturated Fat 18.9 g
Trans Fat 1.6 g
Cholesterol 147.4 mg
Total Carbohydrates 5.7 g
Dietary Fiber 1.7 g
Total Sugars 1.3 g
Sodium 753.9 mg
Protein 46.7 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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