For the most flavorful Chimichurri Skirt Steak, start with a dry rub of salt and tasty seasonings, and then finish with fresh chimichurri sauce.
I’ve seen plenty of recipes that drizzle a great homemade chimichurri sauce onto grilled steaks and serve. Nothing wrong with that simplicity, it’s wonderfully tasty. But I wanted to take things a step further and really add flavor to my skirt steak, from start to finish, for this Chimichurri Steak recipe. We’ll start with a dry rub to get tons of flavor into the steak before it cooks, and then add that bright sauce at the end.
Scroll down to read more about how it all comes together or click here to jump straight down to the recipe.
What Cut Is Best For Chimichurri Steak?
The most commonly used cuts of meat for this type of recipe are flank steak and skirt steak. Both are good options, but I chose skirt steak because it has great flavor while being thinner and thus quicker-cooking than flank steak.
Do I Need To Marinate Skirt Steak?
Sometimes skirt steak benefits from a marinade, like in my amazing Carne Asada recipe. But, because we’re finishing this steak with a delicious chimichurri sauce, I needed to do some testing to make sure any flavors complemented but didn’t compete with the sauce.
My favorite result was to actually use a dry rub instead of a liquid marinade preparation. This dry rub really is more like a dry brine because it contains salt. Dry-brined steaks are really tender and extra-flavorful, so this ended up being a great addition to the skirt steak here.
To make the dry rub/dry-brine, mix together salt, chili powder, and black pepper and then rub it all over the steak. Let it sit on the steak for eight hours in the fridge. It gives the meat a really good seasoning while still allowing the bright flavors of the sauce that we’ll add later to come through.
How To Make Chimichurri Skirt Steak
Cut your skirt steak in half, or into 10-inch long sections, so that each piece fits into a large pan. Mix together the dry brine seasoning mix and rub it all over the pieces of steak. Put the steak on a rack, uncovered, in the fridge for up to 8 hours. Note that 4 hours is a sufficient amount of time for the flavors to start penetrating, but 8 is better. Longer than 8 though, the steak starts to get too salty. 8 hours really is the sweet spot here.
When you’re ready to cook, heat olive oil in your skillet over medium-high heat. It’ll be hot enough to start cooking when you can see the oil shimmering. Don’t brush the steak off and don’t rinse it or pat it dry or anything. Just leave it as it was and add it to the oil in the pan. Cook each side of the skirt steak for three to four minutes for medium done meat, then move the steak to a clean cutting board to rest for five minutes before slicing.
While it rests, you can make the easy chimichurri sauce in a blender. It’s a great sauce made with fresh parsley, oregano, garlic, olive oil, and vinegar.
Finally, slice the steak against the grain (learn how to cook skirt steak perfectly, and how to slice it against the grain here – it’s kind of tricky and counter-intuitive, but doing it makes a huge difference to the tenderness of the final steak slices). Then drizzle the slices with the chimichurri sauce when serving. It’s seriously so amazing!
More Steak Recipes
Podcast About Making Chimichurri Steak
Listen to me explain briefly about how to cook bacon from frozen, along with some other great tips, by clicking the play button below:
- 1 (1 and 1/2 to 2 lb.) skirt steak
- 1 tsp. salt, divided
- 1/2 tsp. chili powder
- 1/4 tsp. black pepper
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1/2 cup firmly packed fresh parsley leaves
- 1 Tbsp. fresh oregano leaves (optional)*
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled
- 6 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 3 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
- Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
- Transfer skirt steak to a cutting board. Cut steak in half so that each piece fits into a large frying pan.
- In a small bowl mix together ½ teaspoon of the salt, chili powder, and black pepper. Rub each piece of steak all over with the seasoning.
- Transfer steak to a rack set over a plate and refrigerate uncovered for 8 hours.
- In a large skillet heat olive oil over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add steak pieces.* Cook each side 3 to 4 minutes for medium.
- Transfer steak to a clean cutting board. Let rest 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, make the chimichurri sauce. To a blender or food processor add parsley, oregano (if using), garlic, olive oil, vinegar, remaining ½ teaspoon of salt, and red pepper flakes (if using).
- Cover blender/processor and pulse 4 to 5 times or until desired consistency.
- Slice steak against the grain. Transfer to a serving platter, arranging steak so that it is slightly overlapping for a fanned appearance. Drizzle chimichurri sauce over slices before serving.
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*I’ve tested this recipe using dried oregano in place of the fresh and didn’t like it at all. My advice is to just omit the oregano if you don’t have any fresh on hand. The chimichurri is delicious with parsley as the only herb so you’ll be fine.
**If the steak pieces will end up being crowded in your pan, it is best to cook them in batches, keeping the first batch warm by tenting it with foil while the second batch cooks. Alternatively, you can cook them using two skillets.