A Refreshing Twist: Delicious Steak Salad Recipe


Are you craving a hearty meal that is light, flavorful, and perfect for summer? Look no further than this mouthwatering steak salad recipe. With marinated, grilled flank steak, fresh vegetables, crispy fried onions, crumbled blue cheese, and a homemade creamy balsamic vinaigrette, this salad is a satisfying and refreshing option. Say goodbye to heavy steak dinners and hello to the perfect warm-weather meal!

Overhead image of grilled steak salad recipe on a large serving platter with a side of bread

Grilled Steak Salad: The Perfect Compromise

During the hot summer months, serving a rich steak with heavy sides might not be what you’re after. That’s where this grilled steak salad comes in. It’s the ideal compromise! You get the satisfying flavor and texture of beef, combined with the crisp, light, and refreshing in-season veggies. To bring it all together, we’ve got a slightly sweet, tangy, and creamy balsamic vinaigrette dressing. It’s truly the ultimate warm-weather meal!

The Best Steak for Salad

When it comes to this salad, we highly recommend using grilled flank steak. It’s perfect for quick family dinners because it’s affordable and easy to work with. Flank steak is thin, which means it cooks fast, and you can even prepare it in advance.

To achieve the best flavor, you’ll need to tenderize the flank steak. One way to accomplish this is by marinating it with a combination of brown sugar, Dijon mustard, and Worcestershire sauce. This marinade adds a lovely sweet-and-savory flavor to the meat, while also tenderizing it. You can marinate the flank steak for at least 30 minutes, but for the best results, marinate it overnight. The longer you marinate, the more tender, juicy, and flavorful your steak will be!

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Of course, if you’re not a fan of flank steak, feel free to use any of your favorite cuts of steak. Whether it’s filet mignon, ribeye, skirt steak, London Broil, grilled New York Strip, or steak tips, this recipe is versatile and the salad will be delicious either way.

Pouring dressing on steak salad

The Perfect Dressing

This amazing steakhouse salad is accompanied by a sweet, creamy, and tangy balsamic vinaigrette. Whisking it together takes just a few minutes and requires simple ingredients. The light and acidic dressing nicely balance the richness of the meat.

If balsamic vinaigrette isn’t your thing, you can easily substitute it with another dressing of your choice. A homemade buttermilk ranch or a pepper jelly vinaigrette for a little heat are both great options. Classic Caesar dressing or a simple red wine vinaigrette also work well. You can even try a green goddess dressing for a delicious twist!

Creamy balsamic vinaigrette dressing in a measuring cup with whisk


Here’s a quick overview of what you’ll need for this grilled flank steak salad. For specific measurements and detailed instructions, refer to the printable recipe box at the bottom of the post.

  • Flank steak: approximately 1 ½ – 2 lbs., serves 4-6 people
  • Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, and Dijon mustard: for marinating the steak
  • Garlic powder, kosher salt, and black pepper: to season the meat before grilling
  • Balsamic vinegar, mayonnaise, water, brown sugar, garlic, Dijon, olive oil, salt, and pepper: for the dressing
  • Lettuce or greens: any lettuce will do, but a mix of crunchy Romaine and tender baby spring greens works well. Arugula with its peppery flavor is also a great companion for the steak.
  • Cherry tomatoes, red onion, and cucumber: fresh veggies that add flavor and crispness to the salad
  • Crumbled blue cheese: or any other cheese of your choice such as goat cheese, crumbled feta, or freshly grated Parmesan
  • Crispy fried onions: optional garnish for extra crunch and flavor
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Overhead shot of ingredients for steak salad recipe

How to Make Steak Salad

To enjoy the best entrée salad, you’ll want to create a perfect balance of flavors and textures. This steak salad accomplishes just that! It combines cool, crisp veggies and greens, rich and tender meat, sharp and creamy blue cheese, and crunchy fried onions. It’s a restaurant-quality dinner that’s easy to make at home!

  1. Marinate the steak for at least 30 minutes or overnight.
  2. Whisk together the dressing.
  3. Remove the steak from the marinade, pat it dry, and season it with garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Let it rest for 30 minutes while you prepare the grill and other salad ingredients.
  4. Grill the steak.
  5. Assemble the salads.
  6. Drizzle with the dressing and serve immediately.

Marinating flank steak
Seasoned flank steak
Horizontal shot of a pan of grilled steak salad with blue cheese

Serving Suggestions

To complete your meal, serve the steak salad with a loaf of crusty No-Knead Bread, homemade focaccia, or easy garlic bread. It also pairs well with skillet cornbread, corn muffins, buttermilk biscuits, cheese biscuits, or Aunt Bee’s 3-ingredient sour cream muffins.

Preparation and Storage Tips

  • Serve the salad warm or at room temperature. You can prepare the ingredients in advance and serve the steak at room temperature on top of your salad. Alternatively, combine warm steak with cool, crisp lettuce for a delightful contrast.
  • Prepare the dressing up to 1 week in advance. Store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to use.
  • Leftover steak salad will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 day. However, note that the lettuce and veggies may become soggy as they sit in the dressing.
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Hands holding a platter of steak salad

Recipe Variations

  • Sear the meat in a cast-iron skillet instead of grilling the flank steak. Heat oil in a large skillet over high heat, add the steak, and cook until browned to your preference.
  • Experiment with different cuts of steak such as filet mignon, ribeye, skirt steak, London Broil, New York Strip steak, or grilled steak tips.
  • Try different types of cheese instead of blue cheese. Goat cheese, fresh Parmesan, or crumbled feta are all delicious options.
  • Use your choice of lettuce. Romaine, mixed spring baby greens, radicchio, iceberg, or arugula all work well.
  • Add extra veggies like radishes, bell peppers, shredded carrots, or corn.
  • Pick your favorite dressing. If balsamic vinaigrette isn’t your preference, a homemade buttermilk ranch, a pepper jelly vinaigrette, a classic Caesar dressing, or a simple red wine vinaigrette will also taste fantastic. Don’t forget that green goddess is another delicious option!
  • Southwest Steak Salad: Add corn, black beans, and sliced avocado. Serve the salad with Ranch dressing or a salsa-ranch dressing. Use this fajita flank steak recipe.
  • Steak Caesar Salad: Incorporate the grilled flank steak into a classic Caesar salad recipe.

Close-up side shot of grilled flank steak salad on a platter

Tips for the Best Steak Salad Recipe

  • Marinate the steak for at least 30 minutes. For optimum tenderness and flavor, marinating it overnight is best. This allows the marinade to penetrate the meat, breaking down the tough fibers for a tender and flavorful steak.
  • Let the marinated flank steak sit at room temperature before grilling. This ensures even cooking.
  • Grilling time may vary based on steak size, thickness, and temperature. Use a thermometer to determine when your meat is done. For medium-rare steak, the internal temperature should reach 130-140°F.
  • Let the grilled flank steak rest for 10-15 minutes before slicing. This allows the juices to redistribute through the meat, preventing them from running out onto your cutting board.
  • Always slice flank steak thinly against the grain. This results in tender steak rather than chewy slices.
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Overhead shot of summer steak salad served with balsamic dressing

Looking for More Salad Recipes?

If you enjoyed this steak salad, give these other salad recipes a try:

  • Chicken Caesar Salad
  • Tuna Nicoise Salad
  • Spinach Salad with Bacon and Hard-Boiled Eggs
  • Seafood Salad
  • Classic Waldorf Salad
  • House Salad with Candied Pecans

To discover more delicious recipes and explore the world of Family Cuisine, visit our Family Cuisine website!

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