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Easy Skirt Steak Marinade

This skirt steak marinade is an easy way to get an ultra-tasty, juicy, and tender steak in as little as 30 minutes! Lemon, garlic, and cumin are just a few of the simple ingredients that help to make any grilled steak so good!

Skirt steak on the grill.
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Grilled Skirt Steak Marinade

This easy skirt steak marinade is simply the best! It’s 6 ingredients, including garlic, lime, and cumin and it gives the meat so much flavor whether it marinates for 20 minutes or 24 hours. It’s much more cost-effective to make your own, and definitely healthier because there are no added sugars and preservatives often found in store-bought marinades.

Seasoning your meat with a dry steak rub is one thing, but allowing it to marinate and permeate the meat for hours is a whole other way to give your steak its amazing flavor and caramelization. This simple recipe and my marinade for carne asada are not only perfect for grilling in the summer, but keep them handy all year, because they work for pan searing and roasting as well!

Why Should I Marinate My Skirt Steak?

Skirt steak is generally a tougher cut of meat due to the number of connective tissues, but it’s also one of the most flavorful. What the marinade does is break down those fibers, tenderizing the meat, so once it’s grilled, it becomes a perfectly juicy, melt-in-your-mouth piece of meat.

How Long Should I Marinate Skirt Steak?

There is no right answer here. Anywhere from 30 minutes to 24 hours, which is a large window. That would depend on what you’ve got going on in the day and how much time you have given yourself. If I am hosting a BBQ and I know I have a lot of other sides and dishes to take care of, I will allow it to marinate for the entire day and pop it on the grill just before serving. No matter what you do, the lime juice will help break down the fibers and the garlic, cumin, salt, and pepper will give it a delicious flavor.

Ingredients for Marinating Steak

These pantry staple ingredients are perfect for mixing together and creating a deliciously flavored marinade. Whisk the ingredinets into a medium-sized bowl to let rest in the refrigerator. It is the perfect combination and gives this steak a tender and juicy cut!

Skirt steak marinade ingredients on counter.

Find the full printable recipe with specific measurements below.

  • Beef skirt steak: Skirt steak is long and flat compared to other steaks. It is flavorful but not too tender. Using this marinade recipe you will see a difference in the skirt steak.
  • Olive oil: This helps soak in all the flavors and connect it to the cut of beef. This helps tenderize it and give it that added flavor.
  • Lime: Take a fresh lime and squeeze the lime juice out. Zest the outer skin of the lime and make a refreshing flavor with it. You can do this will lemon juice as well.
  • Garlic: Always a delicious add-in to any marinade.
  • Kosher salt: This is a thicker salt. It helps penetrate the steak and breaks down the tough muscle fibers leaving it tender and juicy.
  • Ground cumin: An earthy seasoning that gives the steak a savory and flavorful flavor.
  • Black pepper: A hint of spice but also balances out all the flavors together.

How to Make Steak Marinade

Take your steak recipes to the next level with the best skirt steak marinade recipe! It truly is full of flavor and gives your steak that extra tenderness it needs when sliced into pieces. Every bite will have that rich, buttery flavor that comes from simple ingredients out of your pantry!

Skirt steak marinating in bowl.
  1. Whisk. Combine the olive oil, lime, garlic, salt, cumin, and pepper in a large bowl. Add the steak and marinate for at least 20 to 30 minutes at room temperature or up to 24 hours in the refrigerator. Set out 30 minutes before cooking.
  2. Grill. Use tongs to transfer to a preheated grill and cook until it reaches desired doneness (about 3 to 4 minutes per side over high heat). Remove from grill and allow to rest 5 minutes before slicing.
  3. Slice and serve. Cut against the grain and serve as desired.

What to Serve Skirt Steak With

We love a good cookout with steak and delicious side dishes! Make this a complete meal with so many side options. We love to switch it up every time we make this marinaded skirt steak!

  • Veggies: Cut onions, bell peppers, zucchini, and squash to make a vegetable medley to go alongside the skirt steak.
  • Salads: The salads are endless from pasta to green salads. You can’t go wrong with a delicious salad and homemade dressing alongside a steak.
  • Potatoes: Slice red or yellow potatoes into wedges or fries for a delicious steak and fries dinner.
  • Sauce: Chimichurri sauce over top is delicious or a homemade BBQ sauce is perfect for dipping the steak in.

Grilling Tips

These helpful tips will only better your grilling as well as your cut of meat! Using a meat thermometer is a MUST plus learn the best way to grill steak. These quick tips will take your grilling to expertise!

  • Bring steak to room temperature if you’re marinating it in the fridge. Take it out of the fridge for about 30 minutes before grilling.
  • Add steak to a preheated grill, otherwise, you risk the meat sticking to the grill. You want to hear that initial sizzle as soon as it hits the grill.
  • Allow the steak to rest before slicing it open to keep the juices in.
  • Slice against the grain to keep each bite nice and tender.

What Else Can I Use this Marinade For?

You can’t have too many easy marinades at your fingertips, especially during grilling season. It comes together in minutes, so it’s a great one to have for skirt steak tacossteak tacossteak fajitas, or grilled steak kabobs.

You can also use it on grilled chicken, grilled salmon, and pork.

Recipe FAQs

How long is too long to marinate skirt steak?

The optimal time to marinate tougher cuts of steak like skirt steak or flank is up to 24 hours in the refrigerator. I find that 2 hours up to overnight always gives me good results! Beyond that, it may be a bit overkill to marinate longer than 24 hours.

Should I tenderize skirt steak before marinating?

Unless your skirt steak has been sold as pre-tenderized, this is a great step to ensure that your beef is tender. A simple meat mallet works great to tenderize the steak before marinating.

Should I cover steaks while marinating?

Yes! Whether you are marinating your skirt steak in a sealed bag or container, it is best to seal it before storing it in your refrigerator.

Should I wash off the marinade before grilling?

Gently shaking excess marinade or lightly patting steaks with a paper towel should be all you need to do to prevent flare-ups on the grill.

Skirt steak on grill.

5 star review

“This is delicious! We served this with some veggie Kabobs and it was the perfect summertime meal!”

-Hanna

Make Ahead + Storing

Marinating is always a bonus for making ahead! Plan to grill the day before and learn the best way to keep your steak fresh and flavorful. Storing these leftovers are simple and easy too!

  • Make ahead: The marinade can be made up to 3 days in advance and kept until you’re ready to add the meat. I don’t recommend marinating the meat longer than 24 hours, so I like to add the meat in the morning and grill that same evening.
  • Storing: Once you remove the meat from the marinade, discard the marinade. Store cooked meat in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Reheat on the grill or in the oven to warm through or slice and enjoy cold over top of a salad.

More Ways to Season Steak

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skirt steak on grill

Easy Skirt Steak Marinade

5 from 12 votes
↑ Click stars to rate now!
Author: Jamielyn Nye
This skirt steak marinade is an easy way to get an ultra-tasty, juicy, and tender steak in as little as 30 minutes! Lemon, garlic, and cumin are just a few of the simple ingredients that help to make any grilled steak so good!
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Marinade: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 6

Ingredients 

  • 1 pound boneless beef skirt steak
  • cup olive oil
  • 1 lime , juiced and zested
  • 3 garlic cloves , 1 1/2 teaspoons minced
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper

Instructions

  • Combine the olive oil, lime, garlic, salt, cumin and pepper in a large bowl. Add the steak and marinate for at least 20 to 30 minutes at room temperature or up to 24 hours in the refrigerator. Set out 30 minutes before cooking.
  • Use tongs to transfer to a preheated grill and cook until it reaches desired doneness (about 3 to 4 minutes per side over high heat). Remove from grill and allow to rest 5 minutes before slicing.
  • Cut against the grain and serve as desired.

Notes

Make ahead: This marinade can be made up to 3 days in advance, however I don’t recommend marinating the meat longer than 24 hours. Typically I like to add the meat in the morning and grill that evening. 
Storing: Discard any leftover marinade and do not reuse. You can store leftover meat in a covered container in the refrigerator up to 3 days. 

Nutrition

Calories: 229kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 17g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 48mg | Sodium: 439mg | Potassium: 247mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 17IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 15mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition provided is an estimate. It will vary based on specific ingredients used.

Course: Condiment
Cuisine: American

Did you make this recipe? Don’t forget to give it a star rating below!

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