Grilled Cuban Flank Steak
Flank steak is delicious when it’s marinated in Cuban flavors and grilled, and this tasty Grilled Cuban Flank Steak is a perfect idea for a low-carb meal. And read the information in this post if you’re not sure what makes Cuban Steak so flavorful!
In one of my previous lives, before I became a food blogger and a carb-conscious eater, I was president of my local teacher’s association, aka the teacher’s union. This was a demanding high-pressure job that I sometimes loved, sometimes hated, but one thing I did enjoy about the job was the chance to travel.
I went all over the U.S. for meetings, and it was in Miami Beach that I had my first experience with Cuban food. I loved the way beef and pork were marinated in lime juice in the Cuban cuisine, so a few years ago I tried to re-create that flavor in this flank steak, and it was a winner! Now this Grilled Cuban Flank Steak is one of my most-used ways to cook beef on the grill.
I’m featuring this favorite recipe as my pick for Friday Favorites this week, hoping I can entice you to try it soon! If you’re grilling for beef-lovers, I can promise this will be a hit.
What ingredients do you need for this recipe?
(This is only a list of ingredients; please scroll down for complete printable recipe. Or if you use the JUMP TO RECIPE link at the top of the page, it will take you directly to the complete recipe.)
- flank steak
- fresh-squeezed lime juice, I used my fresh-frozen lime juice
- olive oil
- ground cumin (affiliate link)
- Dried Oregano (affiliate link)
- Onion Powder (affiliate link)
- Garlic Powder (affiliate link)
- soy sauce or Gluten-Free Soy Sauce (affiliate link)
- ground Chipotle chile pepper (affiliate link) (or use your favorite hot sauce)
- lime zest (optional)
What is flank steak?
Flank steak is actually a piece of meat from the abdominal muscles of the cow and it’s very lean, which is why this is a cut of beef that’s perfect to be marinated. It’s also best cooked quickly over high heat. When the flank steak is done, it should be sliced against the grain of the meat.
What flavors make this a Cuban steak recipe?
Marinating the flank steak in a marinade that has lime juice, cumin, oregano, onion, and garlic gives it the Cuban flavors. And personally I’d always serve this Cuban Flank Steak with wedges of lime to squeeze on at the table.
How can you tell when meat is done on the grill?
If you have one, I recommend using an Instant Read Meat Thermometer (affiliate link) to check the temperature of meat on the grill. Flank steak is best when it’s not cooked to more than medium; here are the recommended temperatures: Rare (Cool red center) 125 F/51C, Medium-Rare (Warm red center) 135F/54C, Medium (Rosy pink center) 145F62C.
Can you cook the Cuban Flank Steak without an outdoor grill?
If you don’t have an outdoor grill (or it’s not grilling weather) these tasty recipes for beef, flank steak can definite be cooked at high heat on a stove-top grill pan with ridges or George Foreman Grill. (affiliate links)
Want more ideas for beef cooked on the grill?
I know beef is more expensive these days, but if you still like a nice piece of beef cooked on the grill you can find ideas in my round-ups for Amazing Keto Steak Recipes and Low-Carb and Keto Beef, Pork, and Lamb on the Grill.
How to make Grilled Cuban Flank Steak:
(This is only a summary of the steps for the recipe; please scroll down for complete printable recipe. Or if you use the JUMP TO RECIPE link at the top of the page, it will take you directly to the complete recipe.)
- You can’t read the price, but this lean flank steak I got at my local market was a bargain.
- Combine fresh lime juice, olive oil, cumin, oregano, onion powder, garlic powder, soy sauce, Chipotle chile pepper (or hot sauce), and lime zest (if using).
- Put the steak in a Ziploc bag or plastic container with a tight-fitting lid, pour in marinade, and marinate in the refrigerator for 8 hours (or up to 24 hours.)
- When it’s time to cook, let meat come to room temperature while you oil the grill and preheat to medium high.
- Then grill to desired temperature, 125 F/51C for rare, 135F/54C for medium rare, or 145F62C for medium.
- Flank steak is best when it’s not cooked above medium. I use an Instant Read Meat Thermometer (affiliate link) to check the temperature.
- When meat is done, let it rest for 5 minutes before you slice it.
- Cut meat into thin slices and serve with fresh lime pieces on the side to squeeze over the meat when you eat it. (I could have cut mine a little thinner but that didn’t stop us from devouring it!)
Make it a Low-Carb Meal:
For a low-carb meal this Grilled Cuban Flank Steak would taste great with Marinated Fresh Mozzarella with Herbs, Grilled Zucchini Greek Salad, Summer Tomato Salad with Goat Cheese, Grilled Mushrooms, or Easy Grilled Vegetables.
Favorite Recipes for Beef Steak:
- Grilled Flatiron Steak with Chimichurri Sauce
- Steak and Mushroom Kabobs
- Carol’s Easy Steak Marinade
- Low-Carb Marinated Beef Kabobs
- Pan-Grilled Steak with Olive Sauce
- 1 large piece of flank steak (this recipes makes enough marinade for 3 pounds of meat)
- 1/3 cup fresh lime juice
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 tsp. ground cumin
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- 1 tsp. onion powder
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 T soy sauce (see notes)
- 1/2 tsp. ground chipotle chile powder (or use your favorite hot sauce)
- 2 tsp. lime zest (optional)
- Combine marinade ingredients. Put flank steak into a ziploc bag and pour marinade in, seal bag, and marinate all day in refrigerator. (You can marinate up to 24 hours if desired.)
- Take meat out of refrigerator and let it come to room temperature before grilling.
- Oil the grill with a paper towel dipped in olive oil, then preheat gas or charcoal barbecue grill to medium-high (you can only keep your hand there for a few seconds.)
- Grill meat to desired doneness, approximately 4-5 minutes per side for rare to medium rare or 6 minutes for medium. I wouldn’t cook flank steak more than medium or it will be tough.
- Cooking time will depend on the thickness of your flank steak, the best way to judge the doneness is to use an Instant Read Meat Thermometer (affiliate link), cooking to 140-145 for medium rare or 155-160 for medium. (The meat in the photo was cooked about 5 minutes per side.
- Remove meat from grill and let rest about 5 minutes. (You can cover with foil to keep it warm if needed.)
- Slice across the grain and serve hot, with slices of fresh lime to squeeze on the meat.
You can sub coconut aminos for the soy sauce for a Paleo version of this.
Recipe created by Kalyn.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 117Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 11mgSodium: 156mgCarbohydrates: 2gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 4g
Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.
Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
This Cuban steak recipe is a perfect main dish for any type of low-carb or Keto eating plan or any phase of the original South Beach Diet. If you’re making this for the South Beach Diet, remember the guideline to choose meat with less than 10% fat.
Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use Grilling Recipes to find more recipes like this one. Use the Diet Type Index to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest, on Facebook, on Instagram, on TikTok, or on YouTube to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.
Historical Notes for this Recipe:
This flank steak recipe was first posted in 2006, and I have been making it ever! It was last updated with more information in 2023.