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How To Cook London Broil (On The Grill)

sliced london broil steak with chimichurri

This post is sponsored by Horse Soldier Bourbon. Sponsored posts, along with affiliate links, are what enable bloggers like me to maintain and operate sites that are free to the public. That said, I only work with products and brands that I personally use and would feel proud to give as a gift.

When I first learning how to cook London broil I had no idea what I was doing. In fact, I wasn’t even sure why anyone would buy the more expensive “steaks” given you can get one of these monsters (two pounds or more) for a quarter the price of the other steaks.

At that time, we’re talking circa 1993, I wasn’t aware there was a difference between London broil and filet mignon. I just knew I was on a very limited budget, and I wanted the biggest steak I could afford. Tenderness be damned.

Truth be told, I didn’t even know what I was missing as I had never had a ribeye or a filet mignon at the time. In any case, during those very lean economic times living on base, I got pretty dang good at making “steak night” special; despite living on the salary of an E3 in the US Marines.

I played around with different methods in order to figure out how to cook a London broil. I used different seasonings and went through my share of that powdered meat tenderizer. I’m actually laughing about that memory as I write this.

The London broil recipe I’m sharing today is a culmination of almost 30 years of grilling steaks. We’ll start with an incredible marinade that’s put together with a hefty pour of my favorite bourbon, Horse Soldier. Then, we’ll get the London broil on the grill, using a technique that’s perfect for this cut.

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sliced steak with chimichurri

What Is London Broil?

This might just be the most asked question concerning this “cut” of meat. I say cut parenthetically because London Broil isn’t a cut of meat at all.

Instead, it’s a cooking technique that usually involves marinating a cut of beef and then broiling it. At one point in time, the term was used to describe flank steak.

Now, London broil steak is usually what you’ll find printed on the label of what is actually a thick cut of top round steak. By thick cut, I mean about 1.5 to two inches thick.

That thickness is perfect for the reverse sear method of cooking, with some added scoring to help with both seasoning and surface area for charring.

cooked steak with score marks

Should London Broil Be Cooked Fast or Slow?

Traditionally, London broil has been done in the oven under the broiler. Cooking fast with relatively high heat. That method works…sort of.

I mean, it will produce meat that’s safe to eat but it’ll be a bit chewy and you’ll end up with a grey ring of well done meat surrounding a rare to medium rare center.

So, grilling this steak slowly first, and then fast is really how to cook London broil. For this method, we’ll start using indirect heat until the meat is warmed through and then we’ll sear it hot and fast, basting with the bourbon and beef tallow on every flip.

The beef tallow and bourbon glaze provide multiple benefits. The bourbon brings a slight sweetness; and the sugars in the bourbon help to develop this beautiful crust. The beef tallow provides some much needed fat to this otherwise very lean piece of meat.

London Broil Ingredients

  • Bourbon: When it comes to cooking with bourbon, I believe in cooking with what you drink. I’m a huge fan of Horse Soldier bourbon for a number of reasons, and have been for a while. The spicy oak, hints of caramel and vanilla make this the perfect bourbon for this marinade.
  • Red Pepper Flakes: Even if you’re not a huge fan of the heat, trust me on this one. In this marinade, they provide a nice level of understated heat, not overpowering at all.
  • Soy Sauce: When working with cuts of meat that don’t have a signature flavor profile themselves, it’s important to build flavors in various ways. The salty sweet flavor from the soy sauce is key here.
  • Garlic: Use fresh garlic, not the powdered stuff. Mince it fine or use a garlic press if you have one, so it gets into the shallow cuts we make in the meat.
  • Olive Oil: This isn’t a time where you need super high end olive oil. We’re not using it for flavor here, though it does have a mild flavor impact. The olive oil here is really just used as a conduit to get the other marinade ingredients into the steak.
  • Salt & Pepper: Instead of putting these in the marinade, I have better luck seasoning the steak first with salt and pepper, so that it gets into the score marks.
sliced steak with herbs and peppers

What Should I Serve With London Broil?

This meat goes well with so many different sides. I personally love to serve it over a bed of polenta, with some fresh chimichurri. It also goes really well with garlic mashed potatoes and I love it with grilled baby bok choy. The grilled baby bok choy will benefit from the high heat used to finish this steak, so it’s perfect for this dish.

Ingredients
1 2 lb. London broil (Top Round Steak)
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper

For the Marinade
½ cup Horse Soldier Bourbon
¼ cup soy sauce
½ cup olive oil
¼ cup Worcestershire sauce
¼ light brown sugar
2 Tbsp minced garlic
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tsp red pepper flakes

For the Mop
½ cup Horse Soldier Bourbon
½ cup Beef Tallow

Serves: 6-8 |Active Prep Time: 10 minutes |Cook Time: 40 minutes

How To Grill a Tender London Broil

Step 1: Using a sharp knife, make a series of 1/4″ deep slices in a diamond pattern on both sides of the steak.

london broil steak scored in diamond pattern

Then season both sides of the steak with the salt and pepper, ensuring it gets into the cuts, and place the steak in a sealable zip top bag. Then, whisk together all ingredients for the marinade.

steak seasoned with salt and pepper for london broil recipe

Gently pour the marinade into the bag with the steak, squeeze as much air out of the bag as possible and seal the bag. Place it on a plate and put it in the refrigerator for 4-6 hours.

london broil in plastic bag with bourbon marinade and bourbon bottle in background.

Step 2: Remove the steak from the refrigerator and allow it to come up to room temperature for 1 hour. While the steak is sitting out, light your grill and set up for two zone cooking, establishing the temperature at 225 °F.

Step 3: Remove the steak from the marinade and discard any remaining liquid. Place the steak on the grill over indirect heat. Using a reliable leave in thermometer, monitor steak temperature and remove steak from the grill when it reaches 117 °F.

steak on grill over indirect heat

While steak is cooking over indirect heat, add the bourbon and beef tallow to a small sauce pan and place over low heat until the tallow has melted into a liquid. Keep warm and set aside.

Step 4: Stoke the coals or increase the temperature of a gas grill to high. Establish as hot of a direct heat zone as possible. Then, place the steak back on the grill over direct heat.

steak on grill over hot coals

Glaze the surface of the steak with the bourbon and tallow mixture and flip the steak. Repeat (glaze, flip — glaze, flip) every 20-30 seconds for a total of four minutes per side, or until the internal temperature of the steak reaches 125 °F as indicated by a reliable instant read thermometer.

thick steak over hot coals on grill

Step 5: Remove the steak from the grill and let rest 3-5 minutes before slicing.

sliced steak with polenta and chimichurri for london broil recipe
sliced london broil steak with chimichurri

How To Cook London Broil (On The Grill)

4.82 from 11 votes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Inactive Prep Time: 6 hours
Course: dinner, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 6

Ingredients

  • 1 2 lb London broil
  • ½ tsp Sea Salt
  • ½ tsp Ground Black Pepper

Marinade

  • ½ cup Horse Soldier Bourbon
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup Worchestershire sauce
  • ¼ cup light brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp garlic finely minced
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes

Mop

  • ½ cup Horse Soldier Bourbon
  • ½ cup beef tallow

Instructions

  • Step 1: Using a sharp knife, make a series of 1/4" deep slices in a diamond pattern on both sides of the steak. Then season both sides of the steak with the salt and pepper, ensuring it gets into the cuts, and place the steak in a sealable zip top bag. Then, whisk together all ingredients for the marinade. Gently pour the marinade into the bag with the steak, squeeze as much air out of the bag as possible and seal the bag. Place it on a plate and put it in the refrigerator for 4-6 hours.
  • Step 2: Remove the steak from the refrigerator and allow it to come up to room temperature for 1 hour. While the steak is sitting out, light your grill and set up for two zone cooking, establishing the temperature at 225 °F.
  • Step 3: Remove the steak from the marinade and discard any remaining liquid. Place the steak on the grill over indirect heat. Using a reliable leave in thermometer, monitor steak temperature and remove steak from the grill when it reaches 117 °F. While steak is cooking over indirect heat, add the bourbon and beef tallow to a small sauce pan and place over low heat until the tallow has melted into a liquid. Keep warm and set aside.
  • Step 4: Stoke the coals or increase the temperature of a gas grill to high. Establish as hot of a direct heat zone as possible. Then, place the steak back on the grill over direct heat. Glaze the surface of the steak with the bourbon and tallow mixture and flip the steak. Repeat every 20-30 seconds for a total of four minutes per side, or until the internal temperature of the steak reaches 125 °F as indicated by a reliable instant read thermometer.
  • Step 5: Remove the steak from the grill and let rest 3-5 minutes before slicing.

Notes

Cooking this cut of beef to more than medium isn’t recommended as it will get tough, quickly.
 
 
 

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