Sautéed Skirt Steak is my go-to for an easy meal out by the pool. This recipe originally appeared in Gourmet Magazine 20 years ago. The steak is brushed with Worcestershire sauce, marinated for 15-30 minutes, and sautéed (or grilled) on high heat.
This is a gluten-free and low-carb recipe. Please note, Worcestershire sauce is only gluten-free in the United States. If you live in Canada, please check the package or ask your grocer.
Not all Skirt Steak is Created Equal
The skirt is a long, thin piece of meat that comes from the steer's diaphragm. There are two pieces on each animal, the outside skirt and the inside skirt. The outside is a longer and thinner piece of meat than the inside, making it a more tender cut and more expensive. I have seen skirt steak in some markets with no label as to whether it is inside or outside. I always assume these are the less expensive inside cuts and avoid them, but you can always ask the butcher.
How to Prepare Skirt Steak
Because it is so thin, the steaks cook rather quickly. Trim off excess fat and lightly pound the meat with the flat side of a meat mallet until it is ¼" thick so it cooks evenly.
Your heavy-bottom skillet, preferably a cast-iron skillet, should be pre-heated on high heat, and the steaks should be cooked for 3-4 minutes per side, to medium-rare. More than that, and the meat will be tough. Let it sit for 5 minutes after cooking and then thinly slice across the grain with a very sharp knife.
To grill the steak, preheat a gas grill to high heat and grill 3 minutes per side. Remove from heat and loosely cover for a few minutes before serving. Slice against the grain and serve with accumulated juices.
How to Cut Against the Grain
Skirt steak has to be cut against the grain to shorten the long muscle fibers in the meat. By cutting across the fibers, you shorten them, making them less chewy and more enjoyable to eat. As you can see here, the grain, or long fibers of the meat, are running from left to right. What you want to do is cut into the fibers, as shown here.
Paleo and Kaufmann Phase One Suggestions
If you are on a Paleo or Kaufmann Diet, you can season the meat with salt, pepper, and some garlic powder, ground ginger and juice of a lemon instead of Worcestershire sauce. When it comes off the grill, add 2 tablespoons of butter to the top of the meat and cover loosely with aluminum foil for 10 minutes. The butter will mix with the pan juices for an effortless sauce.
Suggested Side Dishes:
Sautéed Skirt Steak
- 3 pounds outside cut skirt steak cut into 3 equal pieces to fit in pan
- 3 tablespoons Lee & Perrins Worcestershire sauce
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter softened
- salt and pepper to taste
- Trim off excess fat from the top of the meat and lightly pound with the flat side of a meat mallet until it is ¼" thick.
- Brush Worcestershire sauce on the meat. Let it marinate at room temperature for 15-30 minutes.
- Preheat your 12" cast iron or heavy-bottomed skillet on high heat. If you're grilling, heat grill on high heat for at least 15 minutes before adding meat.
- Cook 3-4 minutes per side until medium-rare.
- Remove meat from the pan or grill, place on a cutting board. Spread butter over steak, loosely cover with aluminum foil and allow to rest for 5 minutes.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste. Thinly slice against the grain.
The nutrition information is provided as a courtesy and it comes from online calculators. Although we try to attempt to provide accurate information, these figures are estimates only.