Asian Steak Marinade recipe creates tender, juicy and flavorful steak that pairs exceptionally well with Asian Cucumber Salad and Easy Peanut Noodles. This recipe is very quick and easy to make. The best part, it produces steak that very much rivals dining out.
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Cuts of Beef That Work Best with This Marinade
Two of the most popular cuts of beef to use with this marinade are flank or skirt steak. Thankfully though, there is plenty of room to choose your favorite cut of meat. However, what will change is the length of time needed for marinating.
Marination Times for Different Cuts of Beef
- Flank Steak– Ideal marination time is approximately 4 hours but no longer than 24 hours.
- Skirt Steak- Marinate for 3-4 hours but no longer than 10 hours.
- Tri-Tip Steaks– Ideally marinate for at least 6 hours but no longer than 24 hours.
- Rib Eye Steaks– Marinate for 1-2 hours but no longer. (Rib eye steaks are already a very flavorful and tender cut of meat. With this particular marinade, longer marinating times will ruin the steak.)
- Porterhouse, New York Strip or T-bone– Very similar to rib eye steaks, marinate no longer than 1-2 hours.
- Toasted Sesame Oil– This oil adds a deep nutty flavor to the beef, making this steak incredibly flavorful.
- Rice Vinegar (aka rice wine vinegar)– People believe that vinegar helps in tenderizing steak because of the acid. However, many chefs debate this. What rice vinegar does undoubtably do is provide acidity which helps to create a rounded flavor.
- Soy Sauce– Adds a umami flavor and helps to tenderize the beef.
- Garlic and Ginger– Two of the most important ingredients that adds a ton of flavor. Either fresh or powdered ginger may be used. However, powdered ginger saves about 10 minutes in the preparation time.
- Sugar-A key ingredient in helping the beef to caramelize when cooked. Caramelizing (aka browning) adds a deeper more complex flavor to the steak, making it very interesting to eat. If granulated sugar is unavailable, use brown sugar.
- Salt– Intensifies the flavor and helps the other ingredients to penetrate the beef.
- Chili Garlic Sauce (not pictured)- This is an optional ingredient that adds in a layer of spice. Another option would be 1 teaspoon of red pepper flakes.
How To Make
- Measure ingredients and add toasted sesame oil to a large mixing bowl.
- Add in remaining ingredients.
- Whisk well.
- Lay steak out in a nonreactive shallow dish or roasting pan. (Nonreactive pans are stainless steel, glass or cookware with an enamel coating.)
- Pour marinade over the top of the steak and place in refrigerator.
- Flip steak halfway through marinating time and place back in the refrigerator for the remainder of marination. Remove steak from refrigerator 1 hour before cooking and let sit at room temperature. Just before cooking remove steak from marinade and scrape off excess using a bowl scraper.
Best Cooking Methods
Regardless of what cooking method is chosen below, it is incredibly important to let your steak rest for 5-7 minutes after cooking and before cutting. This allows the juices to redistribute into the meat, creating juicer and more flavorful beef.
Hot Grill (gas grill)
Preheat grill to high heat and oil the grates with a high heat oil such as avocado. Depending on the type of steak chosen, follow the grilling time below for medium rare beef.
- Flank Steak– Grill 3-5 minutes per side.
- Skirt Steak– Grill on high for 1-2 minutes and then lower heat to medium. Continue grilling the first side for another 2-3 minutes, flip the steak and grill for another 2-3 minutes.
- Rib Eye Steak– Grill for 4-6 minutes per side.
- Tri-Tip Steak– Grill for 6-8 minutes per side.
- Porterhouse Steak, New York Strip Steak and T-bone steak– Grill 3-5 minutes per side.
Cast Iron Skillet
When cooking with a cast iron grill pan it is best to preheat the pan over high heat for a full 5 minutes. Once heated, add 1-2 tablespoons of a high heat oil (enough to cover the bottom of the pan). Cook the steak of your choose by following the time listed below.
- Flank Steak– Cook for 6- 6 1/2 minutes per side.
- Skirt Steak– Cook for 2-3 minutes per side.
- Rib Eye Steak– Cook for 5-6 minutes per side.
- Tri-Tip Steak– With tri-tip steak, heat the cast iron over medium/high heat. Transfer the meat to an oiled skillet and then lower the heat to medium. Cook for 5-6 minutes per side making sure that the internal temperature reaches 135℉ using a meat thermometer.
- Porterhouse Steak, New York Strip Steak and T-bone steak– Cook for 7-8 minutes per side or until an internal temperature of 135℉ is reached.
I absolutely adore my Ninja Foodie Smart Air Fryer and used it to grill the flank steak pictured in the photos above. This particular Air Fryer roasts, grills, bakes and has a crisp function. In other words, it is a complete life saver with preparing dinner quickly and easily.
- Flank Steak– There is no need to use the thermometer with flank steak when cooked in the air fryer. Grill on high for 7-10 minutes making sure to flip halfway through.
- Skirt Steak-Similar to flank steak, there is no need to use a thermometer on skirt steak when grilled in an air fryer. Grill on high for 7-9 minutes. Flip halfway through the cooking process.
- Rib Eye Steak– Use the thermometer attachment and cook on high to the desired doneness using the chart below. Total time will be approximately 8-10 minutes.
- Tri-Tip Steak-Use the thermometer attachment and cook on high to the desired doneness using the chart below.
- Porterhouse Steak, New York Strip Steak and T-bone steak– Use the thermometer attachment and cook on high to the desired doneness using the chart below. Total time will be approximately 9-12 minutes.
Frequently Asked Questions
What does cutting across the grain mean?
The grain on a piece of beef means the direction that the muscle fiber run. To cut across the grain means to cut it opposite of the direction of the grain. This shortens those muscle fibers making for a more tender cut of beef.
Is it ok to cook with toasted sesame oil?
Toasted sesame oil has a deep rich brown color and a strong nutty flavor due to the sesame seeds being toasted prior to oil being expelled. Because of this, it is best not to deep fry with toasted sesame oil. However, its smoke point is 450℉ so it is definitely ok to use when making stir fry or in marinade. It is important to note, some people feel the taste of toasted sesame oil changes when heated. In short, this makes whether to cook with toasted sesame oil a personal preference.
Can olive oil be used instead of toasted sesame oil?
I recommend not to use olive oil for this recipe. If toasted sesame oil can not be used, use a semi flavorful oil such as regular sesame oil or peanut oil.
Should the steak be brought to room temperature before cooking?
A majority of chefs will tell you to bring a steak to room temperature before cooking. However, it takes hours to bring a steak to room temperature. You are more than welcome to attempt this. I take a middle road approach by letting the steak sit at room temperature for 1 hour before cooking.
Can this marinade be used on salmon and chicken?
Absolutely! However, marination times will vary.
- Salmon– Marinated for at least 30 minutes but no longer than 2 hours.
- Chicken Thighs– Marinate for 6-12 hours.
- Chicken Breasts– Marinate for about 2 hours. Any longer and the breast meat will become too soft.
What can be done with the remaining marinade?
It is best to discard the remaining marinade.
More Delicious Steak Dinners
Asian Steak Marinade
- 1/2 cup toasted sesame oil
- 1/4 cup rice vinegar
- 1/2 cup soy sauce *use tamari for gluten-free needs, See Note #1 below
- 2 tablespoons crushed garlic *about 5-6 large garlic cloves
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 2 tablespoons sugar See Note #2 below
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon chili garlic sauce *optional, See Note #3 below
- 2 pound flank steak See Note #4 below
- In a large bowl whisk together marinade ingredients.
- Lay flank steak out in a nonreactive shallow dish or roasting pan (See Note #5 below).
- Pour marinade over the top of the steak and place in the refrigerator for 2 hours.
- Remove from refrigerator and flip steak over. Spoon marinade over the top of the steak making sure it is fully covered in marinade. Place back in refrigerator for another 1 hour.
- Remove steak from refrigerator and let sit at room temperature for the last hour of marination.
Cooking Instructions (gas grill, cast iron skillet or air fryer)
- Gas Grill Instructions- Preheat gas grill to high heat for at least 5 minutes with the lid shut. Just before grilling, carefully oil the grates with a high heat oil. Remove steak from marinade and scrape off excess marinade. Grill 3-5 minutes per side for medium rare beef. Let the steak rest off of heat for at least 5 minutes.
- Cast Iron Skillet- Preheat pan over high heat for at least 5 minutes. Add 1-2 tablespoons of high heat oil (enough to cover the bottom of the pan). Remove steak from marinade and scrape off excess marinade. Cook the steak for 6-6 1/2 minutes per side. Let rest for 5 minutes.
- Air Fryer Instructions (steak in photos was cooked with an air fryer)- Using the grill function on high heat, preheat air fryer. Remove steak from marinade and scrape off excess marinade. Grill on high for 7-10 minutes (depending on the thickness of the steak) making sure to flip halfway through for medium rare doneness. Let steak rest for 5 minutes. See Note #6 below