Grilled Beef Teriyaki

The weather has been crazily warm here in the Northeast; 60-degrees in mid-December. Of course, I took advantage and was able to BBQ a delicious meal. The beef is marinated for an hour, which helps tenderize this otherwise notoriously tough cut of beef. The recipe’s other trick is to thicken the sauce with corn starch, which cuts the preparation time of the sauce down to about 20 minutes. The results were delicious. Both my boys loved the sweet richness of the teriyaki. I’d rate it as 4-1/2 stars.

Strips were too narrow, but it was still delicious.


  1. The instructions said to cut the steak on a 45-degree angle, which was completely inadequate. 45-degrees resulted in the narrow, inch-wide strips. In reality, I should have cut the steak practically horizontally at just a 20-degree angle to obtain strips that are several inches wide. (see desired results here)
  2. I used flank steak instead of flap meat. I’m sure flap meat is labelled something else, but I haven’t figured that out yet (Chris Kimball says it’s sometimes labeled as “sirloin tips”, but it doesn’t have the same open grain). Plus flank steak is ubiquitously available and often on sale (I paid only $6/lb).
  3. The only other change was to substitute vermouth for sake. I’m sure sake would have been better, but I have never had it in my kitchen.
  4. I would like to dedicate this meal to my niece Morgan, whom I just visited and whose favorite restaurant is Panda Express. Hopefully I will be able to visit when the weather is warmer so that I can prepare it for her. It is delicious.

Rating: 4-1/2 stars.
Cost: $14.
How much work? Medium.
How big of a mess?  Low/Medium.
Start time 5:00 PM. Finish time 6:30 PM.

Chris Kimball’s original recipe is here. The descriptions of how I prepared this today are given below:

2 pounds flank steak (or flap meat)
1/3 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup mirin
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 medium garlic cloves (approx. 1 tablespoon)
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon grated orange zest
2 medium scallions

1/3 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup sake
1/2 cup mirin
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
1 teaspoon cornstarch

  1. Slice the steak with the grain into rectangles that are roughly 5″ x 5″. Then slice each rectangle (slicing against the grain) into 1/2″-thick strips by holding a chef’s knife almost horizontally at just a 20-degree angle.
  2. Slice scallions on the bias, putting the white part in a gallon-sized Zip-lock bag, and reserving the green part for later. Press garlic into the bag, and all all the remaining ingredients (except scallion greens) and mix until combined.  Put beef strips in bag, and remove  as much air as possible. Seal bag and refrigerate for 1 hour, flipping the bag every 15 minutes so that the beef will marinates evenly.
  3. After about 30 minutes of marinating, light a chimney starter filled with 6 quarts of charcoal and allow to ignite for about 30 minutes.
  4. While grill is heating, whisk all the sauce ingredients in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and stir  occasionally. Reduce to medium-low and allow to simmer for 15 minutes until the sauce becomes syrupy and reduces to about 1 cup.  Put 1/4 cup in a cup for brushing on the beef, and place the remaining sauce to serving bowl.
  5. Once the charcoal is fully ignited and partially covered with thin layer of grey ash, put all coals on one half of grill leaving the other half completely empty. Replace the grill grate, cover the grill, and preheat for 5 minutes; then scrape the grate clean with a grill brush. Season the grill by dipping a wad of paper towels in oil then wiping the grate clean.
  6. Remove meat strips from the marinade and pat dry with paper towels. Place on grill over hot coals and cook, uncovered, for about 5 minutes or until the first side is nicely seared. Use tongs to flip the beef and grill for about 5 more minutes or until the second side is nicely seared. Brush the top of meat with about 2 tablespoons sauce then immediately flip and cook 30 seconds. Brush the other side of the meat with 2 more tablespoons of sauce; again immediately flip and cook for the final 30 seconds.
  7. Remove from gill and put on a serving platter. Cover with aluminum foil and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Sprinkle scallion greens over beef and serve, passing the remaining sauce separately.

2 Responses to Grilled Beef Teriyaki

  1. lorri says:

    Mmmm sounds good! I sometimes have sake in the house but if not, then an unoaked white wine (pinot griot? something light) is what I’ve used. just another alternative for you.

    and your local liquor stores might have the “single serve” sake available. the main brand (large mfr) i believe is: gekkeikan sake, 180 ml = 6 oz. the nice thing about that is it’s a single serve drink. perfect for cooking. cheers ~

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