How to Make Chimichurri Sauce – How to Grill Skirt Steak
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I feel very blessed this summer. My deck is full of potted herbs and they are flourishing, even harder to grow herbs like parsley and dill. I’m growing lavender, thyme, sage, rosemary, mint, parsley, basil, dill, and oregano. Four of these herbs (rosemary, oregano, thyme and sage) will stay around all year.
Parsley will not and I will be making plenty of chimichurri sauce for skirt steak, chicken and even fish.
What is chimichurri sauce?
It’s a herb-based, non-cooked sauce made with parsley, dried oregano, olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, vinegar and or lemon juice, red chili flakes, salt and pepper. It is the perfect combination of fat, salt, acid and heat with herbs for more flavor.
Chimichurri sauce finds its roots in Argentina and is served throughout South America as a condiment. There are various stories as to how it got its name, but most likely created for their grilled meats. There is also a Sicilian version that is used mostly for seafood, and sometimes is made with the addition of capers. However, like pesto, it can be used for other meats such as chicken and lamb. It can also be used as a marinade.
How do make chimichurri?
The typical recipe is very finely chopped parsley, oregano, olive oil, lemon juice, finely chopped garlic, splash vinegar, red chili flakes, salt and pepper. You can use fresh oregano as I did or mix in other herbs such as thyme or cilantro. The main idea is fresh herbs, olive oil and acid to spoon over food, mainly meats. If making for fish, add in some capers and lots of lemon zest.
Is chimichurri a marinade?
While chimichurri is most often served with cooked meats, it makes an excellent marinade, due to the combination fat, acid and salt, which helps to break down the meat and tenderize it. Sometimes I replace the lemon with lime juice if using as a marinade and skip the vinegar.
How do you serve chimichurri?
Simply serve on top of grilled meats or as a side sauce. Meats, fish and even roasted potatoes would be amazing with chimichurri sauce. Try chimichurri sauce on your kebabs or beef/steak tacos.
Can you freeze chimichurri sauce?
You can freeze chimichurri sauce the same way you freeze pesto. Put in ice cube trays. Once frozen, place in plastic bags, up to three months. Allow to defrost before using.
What is Skirt Steak?
The skirt steak is the diaphragm muscle, a long flat cut of meat, which is chewy, but flavorful. It’s similar to a flank steak, but has more fat. It is THE cut of meat used for authentic fajitas and perfect with chimichurri.
A chimichurri marinade/sauce is perfect for this cut of meat, as the olive oil and acid from the lemon and vinegar act as a tenderizer, and the garlic and parsley deliver flavor.
How to Grill Skirt Steak
Chimichurri is perfect for skirt steak, flank steak and teres major, all less expensive cuts of meat. We grill our skirt steak quickly about 4 minutes per side and then allow to rest for five minutes before cutting across the steak on the bias. It’s a chewy, flavorful steak, but not tough. Flank steak is another choice, which is a little more tender but not as flavorful.
More Steak Recipes from Spinach Tiger
How to Make a Perfect New York Strip Steak (our most popular post)
Teres Major, a Filet Knock-off
More Herb Based Condiments/Sauces from Spinach Tiger
Chimichurri with Grilled Skirt Steak
- 1 pound skirt steak
- 1/4 cup chimichurri for marinade
- 2 cups fresh Italian parsley finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh oregano or thyme Can sub with pinch dried oregano
- 1 lemon zested and juiced
- 3/4 cups extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 pinch red chile flakes
- sea salt
- black pepper
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- Finely chop parsley, fresh oregano (or thyme) and garlic.
- Zest lemon onto the herbs.
- Juice lemon.
- Add all ingredients to olive oil.
- Season with salt and pepper
- Make chimichurri at least an hour in advance. Use a few tablespoons of this to marinate the skirt steak.
Grill Skirt Steak
- Turn grill on to about 400 degrees.
- Grill each side for four minutes to a medium rare.
- Allow meat to rest five minutes.
- Cut across the bias. Arrange in platter.
- Top with chimichurri.
- Season again with salt and pepper as needed.
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I use the dark as they have more fat, but you could use either really.