Flank Steak with Orange and Avocado Salsa

To grill the steak: Build a two-level fire (mound the coals on one side of the grill, leaving the second side empty) Sear the steak on both sides over the hot side. Slide the steak to the cooler side and let it cook to the desired temperature.) The time will be about the same as cooking on top of the stove, but have a thermometer handy (125ºF for rare or 130ºF for medium rare) to test the temperature, since the intensity of heat varies depending on your grill. Transfer the steak to a cutting board and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes.

Recipe Tester Note: Try cutting the citrus and avocados into chunks rather than slices! It's a little easier to eat as tacos this way.

  • Prep time: 15 minutes
  • Cook time: 6 minutes
  • Resting time: 5 to 10 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings


For the salsa

  • 2 tablespoons finely diced red onion
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 to 5 oranges, any kind
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro leaves 

For the steak

  • 1 1/2 pounds flank steak
  • 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons ancho chili powder
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

To serve:

  • 4 ounces queso fresco, crumbled
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 1/4 cup cilantro leaves
  • Warm tortillas or salad greens, for serving (optional)


1 Begin making the salsa: In a bowl, combine the red onion, lime juice, vinegar, oil, salt and pepper. Let stand for 5 minutes while you slice the oranges. (The acid in the lime and vinegar takes the edge off the raw onion so it doesn’t overpower the salsa.)

2 Prepare the oranges: With a serrated knife, trim the ends of each orange. Place one orange flat end down on a cutting board. Using a sawing motion and going from top to bottom, cut away the pith and peel from the orange following the curve of the orange.

Cut the orange into slices. Cut the slices into halves if small, and quarters if large. Repeat with the remaining oranges.

How to Cook Flank Steak on the Stove Top prepare the oranges

3 Finish the salsa: Add the sliced oranges and any accumulated juices to the bowl with the onion and lime juice. Taste and add more salt and pepper, if you like.

Easy Flank Steak with Salsa make the salsa

4 Pound and season the steak: Cover a cutting board with a piece of plastic wrap and set the steak on top. Place another sheet of plastic wrap on top of the steak. Using a mallet, a rolling pin or a heavy frying pan, pound the steak to an even thickness of about 1/2-inch.

Uncover the steak and rub each side with 1/2 tablespoon of the olive oil. Sprinkle each side with ancho chile powder and pat it into the meat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Easy Flank Steak with Salsa pounding the steak Easy Flank Steak with Salsa season the steak

5 Cook the steak: Set a cast-iron pan or griddle over high heat and heat until hot. Add 2 teaspoons of the oil and tilt the pan to spread it over the bottom.

Add the steak and cook for about 2 to 3 minutes on a side, or until it is lightly browned and the internal temperature registers 125ºF for rare or 130ºF for medium rare.

6 Rest the steak: Transfer the steak to a cutting board and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes.

7 Slice and serve the steak: On a cutting board, slice the and transfer it to a serving platter. Top with the salsa. Finish with queso fresco and cilantro scattered over top and the avocado slices arranged alongside. Serve with warmed tortillas, if you like.

Easy Flank Steak with Salsa