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How to Grill Steak: Chef’s Tip Ensures Juicy + Tender Meat for Your 4th of July Party

Impress your guests with flavorful steak they'll want seconds (and thirds) of!

A grilled steak in all of its meaty glory is hard to beat. And thankfully, achieving juicy and tender steak, especially for your 4th of July bash, is easier than ever. All it takes is a few chef’s tips to grill up delicious cuts of steak that will earn rave reviews. Plus, we included a yummy steak recipe that’s bursting with summertime flavor. Keep reading for pointers on how to grill steak without worrying if it will dry out or lose their delicious seasoned taste!

The best cuts of steak for grilling

It’s easy to get lost in the endless options for cuts of beef at the meat counter. But it’s important to know which ones are best for grilling. Below, chef Britt Rescigno shares her three favorite cuts and describes the unique qualities of each one.

1. Ribeye

This cut has amazing marbling that really allows the steak to pick up that beautiful smoky flavor that we love coming off the grill. Also, because of its marbling, it really gets a super sexy crust on the outside of the steak.

2. Top sirloin

Top sirloin steaks have a little more fat than a typical sirloin. But, the steak’s concentrated beef flavor goes wonderfully with its charred crust after coming off of the grill.

3. Skirt steak

Since this cut is thin and lean, it cooks quickly compared to other options. It’s a great choice for grilled fajitas or a steak salad.

Bonus: If these cuts aren’t available at the meat counter, she lists T-bone, porterhouse, New York strip and flat iron steaks as other great choices for grilling.

Various seasoning options for steak

When it comes to steak seasonings, you can never go wrong with a “less is more” approach of salt and black pepper. It’ll accentuate the meat’s natural flavor and smokiness from the grill. If you’re looking to spice things up, try a combination of seasonings like Jacobsen Salt Co.’s Grilling Trio. This seasoning pack contains infused black pepper salt, pure flake sea salt and steak seasoning — allowing you to mix-and-match the flavorings for your steak. Or, make your own smoky-sweet blend using this recipe for Texas Roadhouse Steak Seasoning. Ultimately, let your taste buds guide you when deciding how to dress up your steak!

How to tell when the steak is done

Your steak’s grilling time over high heat will depend upon the meat’s thickness and the desired level of doneness. Keep a meat thermometer handy to take your steak’s temperature once it gets a nice charred brown look. The test kitchen chefs at Food Network say you should insert the temperature probe toward the thickest part of the meat — away from the bone. Here’s their useful temperature chart to tell when a steak will be done to your liking.

  • Rare: 125°F and 3 minute rest time off the heat
  • Medium Rare: 130°F to 135°F
  • Medium: 135°F to 140°F
  • Medium Well: 140°F to 150°F
  • Well-Done: 155°F and over
Steak doneness guide
Liudmila Chernetska

A delicious grilled steak recipe

Here, chef Rescigno shares her Sicilian-inspired recipe for Bistecca Florentine with Caponata. “This traditional Steak Florentine comes together in minutes and pairs beautifully with summer side dishes of caponata and grilled broccoli,” she says. She adds that ribeye and New York strip are hearty steaks options for this recipe, especially if they’re grass fed and grass finished. The reason: This type of beef has less intramuscular fat, or marbling, which results in a meatier flavor and texture once grilled. (For more steak recipes, try this Chimichurri Sliced Steak or Coffee-Rubbed Sirloin With Jalapeño Butter.)

Bistecca Florentine with Caponata

A recipe Bistecca Florentine with Caponata as part of a guide on how to grill steak
Pre

Steak Ingredients:

  • 2 ribeye or New York strip steaks, 10 oz. each, preferably grass fed and grass finished like Pre Beef
  • 2 garlic cloves, mashed
  • ½ tsp. fresh rosemary, minced
  • ½ tsp. fresh thyme, minced
  • 2 lemons, halved
  • 4 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • Coarse finishing salt like Maldon

Caponata:

  • 1 large purple eggplant, peeled and diced in to ½ inch cubes
  • ¼ cup olive oil, divided
  • 4 cloves garlic, mashed
  • 3 stalks celery, trimmed and diced
  • 1 medium sweet onion, peeled and diced
  • 4 cups canned diced tomatoes with juice
  • ⅓ cup green olives, pitted and coarsely chopped
  • ½ cup golden raisins
  • 2 Tbs. capes, drained
  • 1 Tbs. tomato paste
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 2 Tbs. red wine vinegar
  • 1 Tbs. honey
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • ¼ tsp. cayenne pepper, or to taste
  • ½ cup pine nuts, lightly toasted
  • 1 Tbs. fresh Italian parsley, minced

Instructions:

  • Yield: 2 servings
  1. Remove steaks from packaging and blot dry with paper towel. Place on baking sheet with wire insert rack.
  2. Rub each steak with ½ tsp. olive oil, sprinkle chopped herbs and salt over both sides of steaks. Allow to sit at room temperature 30 minutes.
  3. If you have kitchen twine, tie rosemary and thyme sprigs together like little mop. If you don’t have twine, grasp herb bunch with your fingers and hold together to baste steaks.
  4. Preheat oven to 275°F and heat grill to medium high.
  5. Brush cut lemons with a little olive oil.
  6. Place steaks in preheated oven and cook 15 minutes.
  7. While steaks are in oven, sear lemon halves on grill until nicely charred, about 6 to 7 minutes, set aside.
  8. Brush herb mop with little olive oil. Remove steaks from oven and baste with herbs. Place, basted side down, on hot grill. Sear steak 30 seconds on each side, then rotate steak 45° and grill additional 30 seconds on each side for medium rare
  9. Remove to platter and squeeze grilled lemon over hot steaks. Sprinkle with coarse salt, serve with herb sprigs and remaining charred lemon.

To make caponata:

  1. Heat 2 Tbs. of olive oil in large pan over medium heat. Add eggplant and cook, stirring until it starts to soften and lightly browned, about 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.
  2. Add another 2 Tbs. olive oil to same pan and cook garlic, onion and celery until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes.
  3. Return eggplant to pan, add tomatoes, olives, raisins, capers, tomato paste, oregano, vinegar, honey, salt, and cayenne. Stir to combine and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. When ready to serve, place pine nuts in nonstick pan and turn heat to medium low. Toast pine nuts until lightly browned and fragrant, about 6 to 7 minutes, gently shaking the pan about every minute, keep an eye on pan, pine nuts can burn quickly. Remove toasted pine nuts to a plate to cool.
  5. When ready to serve, place caponata in large, shallow bowl, sprinkle with toasted pine nuts and parsley. Serve warm, room temperature or chilled.
  6. Note: Leftovers will keep in the refrigerator for 1 week, or frozen for 2 months.

Read our other how-to guides for more summer grilling tips!

How to Grill Fish: Chef’s Trick Creates Tender Fillets That Won’t Stick to the Grates

How to Grill Ribs So They’re Finger-Licking Tender + Delicious for Your July 4th Cookout

How to Grill Corn on the Cob: Chef’s Trick for Perfectly Charred, Juicy Kernels

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