If you are looking for an easy, filling and delicious weeknight dinner option, flank steak may just become your favorite new go-to. My recipe for Honey Soy-Marinated Flank Steak uses pantry staples for the marinade that's easy to prepare and big on flavor.

Flank steak is the cut of meat taken from the abdominal muscle or lower chest of the cow. This lean cut is long and thin, which can make it tough and stringy when cooked without a marinade. But the combination of liquids and acid from a marinade works to tenderize the meat as it marinates, resulting in a steak that is melt-in-your-mouth tender.

For this recipe, I use honey, soy sauce and extra-virgin olive oil for the liquids, and a generous splash of red wine vinegar as the acid. You could also use lemon or another vinegar as desired. Minced garlic is added to enhance the savory nature of the steak, and the steak is seasoned lightly with kosher salt and pepper before the marinade is applied.

The honey soy marinade can be made in minutes using pantry staples and is the key to achieving a mouthwateringly tender result. Sarah Nasello / The Forum
The honey soy marinade can be made in minutes using pantry staples and is the key to achieving a mouthwateringly tender result. Sarah Nasello / The Forum

The marinade is easy to make — all you have to do is whisk the ingredients together and pour it over the flank steak in a rectangular baking dish. Once the marinade is added, the dish is covered and refrigerated for at least two hours, or up to overnight, before grilling. How easy is that?

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Before grilling the steak, it is important to make sure the grill grates are clean, hot and well-lubricated with vegetable oil to prevent the meat from sticking. Because of its thin profile, flank steak cooks quickly and will only take about three minutes per side, over high heat, to achieve grill marks. Resist the urge to check the steak before three minutes, or it could stick to the grill.

High, direct heat is ideal for grilling flank steak. Sarah Nasello / The Forum
High, direct heat is ideal for grilling flank steak. Sarah Nasello / The Forum

After grilling the steak on each side for three minutes, flip and let it cook for one more minute, then insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the meat to check the temperature. As flank steak is a lean cut, the best temperature to cook it to is medium-rare, but no more than medium. Keep flipping the steak every minute until your desired temperature is achieved. For medium-rare, remove the steak when the temperature reaches 130 to 140 degrees; for medium, 145 degrees.

The flank steak is seared on each side for three minutes to achieve perfect grill marks, and then cooks for just a couple minutes more until your desired temperature is reached. Sarah Nasello / The Forum
The flank steak is seared on each side for three minutes to achieve perfect grill marks, and then cooks for just a couple minutes more until your desired temperature is reached. Sarah Nasello / The Forum

When the steak is ready, remove it from the grill and place it on a cutting board. Cover it with foil and let it rest for 10 to 15 minutes before carving. This is an important step, as the savory juices will spill out if the steak is cut too soon which can result in dry slices.

Once cooked, the flank steak should rest for 10 to 15 minutes, covered with aluminum foil, to prevent the juices from spilling out. Sarah Nasello / The Forum
Once cooked, the flank steak should rest for 10 to 15 minutes, covered with aluminum foil, to prevent the juices from spilling out. Sarah Nasello / The Forum

When carving, use a sharp knife to cut across the grain of the flank steak and slice the meat into thin pieces.

Flank steak is long, thin and lean and is best when carved against the grain into thin strips. Sarah Nasello / The Forum
Flank steak is long, thin and lean and is best when carved against the grain into thin strips. Sarah Nasello / The Forum

Full of charred and savory flavor, this Honey Soy-Marinated Flank Steak is a quick and easy way to satisfy your grilled meat cravings, even on a weeknight.

Honey Soy-Marinated Flank Steak

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Serves: 4 to 6

Ingredients:

2 to 2 ½ pounds flank steak

1 teaspoon kosher salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

For the marinade:

½ cup extra-virgin olive oil

¼ cup honey

1/3 cup soy sauce

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

½ teaspoon black pepper

Directions:

Place the flank steak in a rectangular baking dish. Season by sprinkling kosher salt on the top and bottom of the steak and repeat with ½ teaspoon of the black pepper.

In a medium bowl, add all the marinade ingredients and whisk together until well-combined. Pour marinade over the flank steak, then flip the steak over. Cover the dish and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to overnight. (After 24 hours, the marinade will begin to break down the fibers of the steak.)

To grill:

Make sure the grates are clean before heating and prepare the grill for high, direct heat. Once the grates are hot, wipe them with vegetable oil to lubricate them.

Remove flank steak from the marinade and place it in the center of the hot grill. Cover the grill and let the steak sear for 3 minutes to achieve grill marks. Flip the steak and repeat.

After 6 minutes, flip the steak again and cook for 1 minute; insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the steak to check for doneness. For medium rare, remove the steak when the thermometer reaches 130 to 140 degrees, or 145 to 150 for medium.

Transfer the steak to a cutting board and cover with aluminum foil. Allow the meat to rest for 10 to 15 minutes to preserve the juices.

Use a sharp knife and cut across the grain of the steak into thin slices. Serve and enjoy.

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“Home with the Lost Italian” is a weekly column written by Sarah Nasello featuring recipes by her husband, Tony Nasello. The couple owned Sarello’s in Moorhead and lives in Fargo with their son, Giovanni. Readers can reach them at sarahnasello@gmail.com.