London Broil is marinated juicy, flavorful, buttery tender steak that takes minutes to broil in the oven – and it’s inexpensive and feeds a crowd!
London Broil is the perfect easy, affordable, hand’s-off dinner whether for weeknights or special occasions. It boasts minimal prep with huge tender, juicy dividends. The spectacular London Broil marinade is made with soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, brown sugar and seasonings that infuse the steak with complex tangy, sweet and savory notes. To make this London Broil recipe, simply marinate the steak and broil – that’s it for a melt-in-your-mouth steak dinner every time – with almost ZERO cleanup! Serve your London Broil recipe with mashed potatoes, honey garlic roasted carrots, fruit salad, and dinner rolls for a complete feast!
Steak is always a homerun favorite whether for busy weeknights to mix up the monotony of chicken or for special occasions. For every day steak recipes, try: marinated flank steak, pepper steak, Philly cheese steaks and steak tacos. If you are looking for company worthy steak recipes, try: steak and potatoes, spice rubbed steaks with herb butter, pan seared steak with balsamic cream sauce, beef tips and gravy and crockpot beef stroganoff. And then there’s London Broil – perfect for everyday OR special occasions!
London Broil Recipe
Today, I’m bringing you one of the easiest yet tastiest steak recipes out there – London Broil with Herb Butter! This budget friendly London Broil recipe is mouthwatering delicious yet SO simple to make.
The London Broil marinade takes 5 minutes to whisk together, and the steak takes less than 15 minutes to broil for a hearty, succulent, steak dinner that everyone will love. And the best part is – the marinade does all the heavy lifting! It tenderizes your inexpensive steak and transforms it into an intoxicatingly tender, juicy, flavorful steak every time.
When it comes to cooking, this London Broil recipe only requires a couple minutes of broiling on each side, then just top it off with some simple herb butter laced with garlic and lemon zest and watch it drench your steak with more intoxicating flavor. Transform your London Broil into a complete meal with a simple salad and potatoes and enjoy the chorus of “Mmmm” singing your praises from around the dinner table.
I am going to dive into everything about London Broil – what is London Broil, the best London Broil marinade, how to cook London Broil, how to serve, etc. so read on or SKIP to the recipe by using the “jump to recipe” button at the top of the page.
What is London Broil?
Don’t let the name fool you, London Broil wasn’t actually created in London and it’s not a specific cut of steak! This American dish refers to a method of cooking steak, or a steak prepared using that method. London Broil is essentially a tough cut of beef (traditionally a flank steak, sometimes top round) that’s been marinated until flavorful and tender, then broiled until medium-rare. Once broiled, the steak is allowed to rest before being sliced thinly across the grain. Sounds impressive, right? Well, it is! But it’s also incredibly easy to prepare.
What does London Broil taste like?
London Broil became extremely popular in America in the 1950s and 1960s. During that time, the American palate preferred higher levels of acidity and put vinegar and lemon juice on practically everything! London Broil is no exception. The marinade contains both lemon juice and balsamic vinegar per traditional recipes but I’ve grounded it with soy sauce and balanced it with brown sugar. The resulting London Broil is tangy and savory with a kiss of sweetness.
As far as the steak itself, this London Broil recipe uses flank steak. Flank steak is a cut of meat from the cow’s abdominal muscle. It is extremely lean and muscular with very little fat but carries an intense, rich beefy flavor. Flank steak is a relatively long, flat cut of beef, about a foot long, less than one-inch thick with very distinct grains. Although flank steak is a tough cut of beef, it still emerges incredibly juicy and dripping with flavorful from the marinade as long as it is not overcooked.
London Broil FAQ’s
Where to buy steak for London Broil?
Flank steak and top round are widely accessible and should be easy to find at any grocery store. Both cuts are located in the beef section or at the butcher counter. Flank steak sometimes comes packaged in marinade, so make sure to double check the packaging – for this flank steak recipe, we want just the steak.
Can I use top round for London Broil?
London Broil is made with either flank steak or top round steak. I prefer flank steak in this recipe but you are welcome to use top round if you prefer! Top round is thicker, so you will need to adjust the cooking time accordingly.
What to look for when buying London Broil?
Look for flank steak or top round that’s an even, deep red color with a fair amount of fine fat running along the length of the muscles. Look for steak that is smooth verses poorly butchered steak that suffers nicks or gouges from the membrane aggressively being removed. Finally, look for the steak that’s the most uniform in thickness to avoid overcooking thin ends.
How do I store raw steak?
Uncooked steak should be stored in its packaging until ready to marinate or transferred to a freezer bag with all excess air squeezed out. Store in packaging for up to three days.
How do I store cooked London Broil?
London Broil should be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to five days. London Broil can also be frozen in an airtight container with excess air squeezed out or vacuum-sealed to prevent freezer burn. Frozen steak is good for up to three months.
How much London Broil do I need per person?
The general rule of thumb is to allow 4-8 oz. of steak per person, so an average flank steak will serve 4-8 people. You will need to take into consideration the appetite of your eaters (adults/children) and what else you are serving with the flank steak.
Ingredients for London Broil Recipe
This recipe has two main components: the London Broil marinade and the herb butter that’s added on top. The butter is optional but it elevates this lean protein to soaring new heights.
For the London Broil marinade, you’ll need:
- Flank steak: Go with the largest flank steak you can find, preferable 2 pounds, but any size will work as long as you keep your meat thermometer handy.
- Olive oil: I prefer using a good-quality extra virgin olive oil since it’s the most flavorful.
- Soy sauce: Use reduced sodium soy sauce so you can control the amount of salt in this dish.
- Balsamic vinegar: Use quality balsamic vinegar for the best flavor.
- Lemon juice: Freshly squeezed is best, but you can use bottled.
- Brown sugar: Balances the tangy lemon juice and umami of the soy.
- Worcestershire sauce: Adds a depth of complex umami, slightly tangy flavor.
- Dijon mustard: I promise it won’t make your London Broil taste like mustard! It adds a depth of tanginess.
- Herbs and spices: You will need common seasonings such as paprika, pepper, dried parsley, dried oregano and dried thyme to round out the flavor profile.
For the herb steak butter, you’ll need:
- Butter: I use unsalted butter and add salt and pepper to the herb butter to taste.
- Fresh herbs: Pick your favs! I recommend chives and then you can mix and match from your favorite herbs such as fresh parsley, tarragon, thyme, oregano, rosemary and basil – there is tons of flexibility here to flavor the steak butter how you want!
- Lemon zest: Awakens all of the flavors.
- Salt and pepper: I use1/8 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper, but you can use more or less to taste.
How does London broil MARINADE work?
This London Broil marinade produces steak dripping with so much intoxicating flavor you will be obsessed all while tenderizing the steak. This marinade is made with marinade essentials: fat, acid, salt, sugar and flavor enhancers. Here’s how it works:
- FAT: The olive oil dissolves fat-soluble flavor compounds from the seasonings and other flavorings and evenly disperses them onto the surface of the beef and helps them stick.
- ACID: Balsamic vinegar, Worcestershire sauce and lemon juice help tenderize the steak by breaking down lean muscle fibers. The trio also boast layers of rich and tangy flavor.
- SALT: Soy sauce acts as a brine, which increases the moisture capacity of the meat, helping it become juicer and more flavorful. First, the salt hydrates the muscle tissues via osmosis; second, it changes the cells’ structure so that they can no longer contract when cooking. This means less water will be squeezed out and lost, resulting in juicier steak. Finally, the brine draws the rich umami soy flavor further down below the surface into the beef.
- SUGAR: Brown sugar balances both the salt and the acid. It also promotes caramelization and quicker browning.
- FLAVOR ENHANCERS: I’ve used onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, dried herbs such as basil, oregano and black pepper for a kick.
How Long Should You Marinate London Broil?
London Broil should be marinated for at least 4 hours in order to reap the benefits of the tenderizing properties. For the maximum benefit, however, marinate for 12 hours. You don’t want to marinate the steak much longer than 12 hours though because the acid in the marinade will begin to change the structure of the meat and it can become mushy.
How to Cook London Broil
I know I just threw a lot of information about flank steaks at you, but this London Broil recipe is SO EASY. The whole recipe can be broken down into four simple steps:
Step 1: Tenderize Steak
Even if your steak looks even already, you’ll still want to give it a good pounding to tenderize it (works wonders!). Place steak in between two pieces of plastic wrap or I just place it in a freezer size plastic bag. Pound it evenly with a meat mallet or side of a can.
Step 2: Make the London Broil Marinade
Whisk the marinade ingredients together in a large Ziploc bag. Reserve 2 tablespoons to use later. Add the steak, press out excess air, and seal. Massage marinade into the steak with your hands through the outside of the bag.
Step 3: Let the Steak Marinate
Marinate the steak in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours or up to 12 hours. Do not skip this step!
Step 4: How to London Broil in the Oven
Preheat the Broiler to high heat (550 degrees F). Remove the steak from the marinade and place it in a foil lined baking dish. Broil for 4-6 minutes, then flip to the other side and broil for another 5-7 minutes. Note that the pic does not show foil, but you don’t want to skip it or you will be scrubbing extremely stubborn broil stains!
Step 5: Let the Steak Rest
Remove the steak to a cutting board and let rest for 10 minutes before slicing. Then, slice steak into thin strips against the grain (perpendicular to the long strands). Drizzle with the 2 tablespoons of reserved marinade and top with herb butter.
How to Tell When London Broil Is Done
Flank steak and top round are both lean cuts of beef, so it is best not to cook them above medium or else they can be tough and chewy instead of juicy. I would aim for medium-rare for the juiciest London Broil. That being said, the marinade gives you a little wiggle room, but I wouldn’t push it.
The easiest way to tell when the London Broil is done cooking is to use a meat thermometer. An internal thermometer should read 130-135 degrees F for medium rare or around 140-145 degrees for medium. Here’s the complete steak temperature breakdown:
- Rare steak: 125 degrees F
- Medium rare: 135 degrees F
- Medium: 145 degrees F *RECOMMENDED*
- Medium well: 155 degrees F (not recommended)
- Medium Well (not recommended)
- Well done: 165 degrees F (not recommended)
NOTE: The USDA recommends steaks and roasts be cooked to 145°F and then rested for at least 3 minutes for safety.
HOW TO cut London broil
Flank steak and top round both have dense muscle fibers that that you can see running through the steak in one direction – this is called “the grain.” It is important to slice the steak across the grain (meaning the opposite direction/perpendicular to the grain) in order to shorten the fibers. This will ensure your London Broil is melt-in-your mouth tender instead of chewy.
Tips for the Best London Broil Recipe
Although this London Broil recipe is easy and affordable, the lean meat and cooking method don’t offer much room for error. If you follow these tips and tricks, however, you will achieve perfectly juicy London Broil every time:
- Tenderize steak before marinating. Flank steak is extremely lean with hardly any fat or connective tissue so it does not need to be trimmed but it should be pounded with a meat mallet in order to tenderize the steak. Pounding the steak will also help it cook more evenly.
- Don’t skip the marinade! Flank steak and top round need to be marinated in order to increase tenderness. Marinating London Broil with acid and vinegar chemically breaks down the tough muscle fibers to produce tender steak. Marinating also imparts tons of flavor.
- Marinate long enough. I recommend marinating the London Broil for the maximum 12 hours. This will infuse the steak with TONS of flavor and optimal juiciness.
- Don’t over-marinate. On the opposite end of the spectrum, don’t marinate London Broil much longer than 12 hours or the muscle fibers can break down and become mushy.
- Don’t poke holes in the steak. In contrast to popular belief, you should NOT poke holes in steak before marinating. This actually drains out the valuable juices and will result in less juicy steak
- Use food safe containers when marinating. I prefer food-safe sealable plastic bags such as freezer Ziploc bags. They really allow the marinade to envelop the steak vs. a dish in which the marinade might not cover all of the steak. When using a plastic bag, make sure to squeeze out excess air before sealing then roll up the bag so the steak is nice and snug. Sealable bags are also great for easy cleanup – just toss them! You may also use food grade plastic, stainless steel, or glass containers and cover with plastic wrap if they don’t have a lid.
- Don’t reuse marinade. Never reuse a marinade even for basting unless you boil it first to destroy any harmful bacteria. If you want to use the marinade for basting, drizzling or dipping, it is best to reserve a portion before you add the steak (like you do in this London Broil recipe!).
- Don’t overcook. Don’t overcook your London Broil or it won’t be as juicy. Use a meat thermometer to check for doneness and broil to 140 degrees for medium. The steak will rise to 145 degrees after it rests.
- Use a meat thermometer The ONLY way to cook your London Broil to perfection is with a meat thermometer, otherwise it is easy to overcook your steak. A meat thermometer also allows you to accurately cook chicken, beef, pork, etc. to the perfect temperature for optimum juiciness every time.
- Let London Broil rest. While the steak cooks, the juices are forced away from the heat to the middle of the meat. The resting time allows for the redistribution and reabsorption of the juices throughout the whole steak for optimal flavor and juiciness. If you don’t allow for this calming period, valuable juices will seep out and be lost when you slice into the steak, resulting in less juicy beef.
- Slice London Broil across the grain. This will shorten the muscle fibers for tender steak.
- Salt and pepper to taste. If you feel like the London Broil is missing, it is simply salt and pepper. Season to taste so the steak is perfect for YOU!!
Recipe Variations to Try
- Swap citrus. Swap the lemon juice for lime juice or orange juice.
- Swap vinegar. Swap the balsamic for red wine vinegar.
- Make it spicy. Add additional red pepper flakes, some cayenne or chipotle chili powder.
Can I Prep London Broil Ahead of Time?
London Broil is best if marinated up to the time of broiling, but you can make the marinade ahead of time. Whisk the marinade together in an airtight container up to 5 days ahead of time and store in the refrigerator WITHOUT the steak.
How to Store and Reheat London Broil
- Storage: Transfer London Broil to an airtight container. Store in the refrigerator for up to five days.
- Microwave: Transfer sliced steak to a microwave safe plate. Microwave for 60 seconds then at 15 second intervals as needed.
- Skillet: Warm sliced London Broil in a skillet on the stove with some melted butter or oil over medium-low heat, flipping slices halfway through.
- Oven: Transfer steak to a baking sheet, slather with some melted butter, cover with foil and reheat at 350 degrees F for 10 minutes, or just until warmed through.
Can You Freeze London Broil?
You may freeze the steak either after it is cooked or as soon as it’s added to the marinade.
- To Freeze Marinating Steak: Add steak to the marinade in a freezer bag, squeeze out excess air, label and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight, then use immediately.
- To Freeze Cooked Steak: After you have cooked the London Broil, let it cool completely then transfer it to an airtight container or plastic freezer bag and squeeze out any excess air. Freeze for 2 to 3 months.
What to Serve with London Broil?
This London Broil recipe pairs beautifully with practically everything! We especially love it with Company Mashed Potatoes and Honey Garlic Roasted Carrots, but it is also fabulous with any of the following:
- Veggies: Roasted Parmesan Broccoli, Roasted Cauliflower, Brown Butter Asparagus, Creamy Brussels Sprouts, Roasted Butternut Squash or Glazed Carrots
- Potatoes: Company Mashed Potatoes, Smashed Potatoes, Twice Baked Potatoes, Au Gratin Potatoes, Roasted Pesto Potatoes
- Rice or pasta: Rice Pilaf, Million Dollar Macaroni and Cheese, Cranberry Apple Wild Rice, Parmesan Risotto, Spinach Risotto, Mushroom Orzo Pasta
- Salads: a big green salad, Wedge Salad, Apple Salad, Fall Salad, Roasted Butternut Squash Salad or Green Bean Salad.
- Fruit Salads: Winter Fruit Salad, Perfect Fruit Salad, Creamy Grape Salad, Pina Colada Fruit Salad, Berry Salad in Honey Mascarpone Dressing
- Breads: Pesto Pull Apart Bread. Award Winning Cornbread, Perfect Dinner Rolls, Buttery Breadsticks or Garlic Bread.
ways TO SERVE leftover London broil
The most common way to serve London Broil is as the main entree with sides. Just pick any of the aforementioned sides and call it dinner! That being said, London Broil is also a chameleon and delicious in salads, pastas, etc. Here are some fun ideas to mix up how you serve this London Broil recipe:
- London Broil salad: pick your favorite greens and load with thinly sliced steak and your favorite veggies such as sweet grilled corn and peppers. Throw in some buttery croutons for crunch and top with your favorite dressing such as balsamic dressing or blue cheese dressing.
- London Broil pasta: add chopped steak to any of your favorite creamy pastas such as Fettuccine Alfredo, Sun-Dried Tomato Fettuccine, Cacio e Pepe, Creamy Mushroom Pasta, Pepper Jack Mac and Cheese or Homemade Mac and Cheese. You can also swap it for the protein in any of your favorite pastas such as Linguine with Sun-Dried tomato Sauce, Buffalo Mac and Cheese, Beef Stroganoff. You can also go low carb and serve London Broil with zoodles or spaghetti squash.
- London Broil risotto: stir chopped steak into any of your favorite risotto recipes: Mushroom Risotto, Parmesan Risotto, Spinach Risotto – yum!
- London Broil grain bowls: add your favorite grains to a bowl and pile with London Broil and your favorite veggies. The veggies can be roasted/cooked like roasted broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts or butternut squash, or raw such as fresh tomatoes, thinly sliced radishes, sprouts etc. or pickled like pickled jalapenos, carrots, etc. or a combo of all three! You can also top with a fried or soft-boiled egg.
- London Broil baked potatoes: poke holes in washed, dried potatoes. Place on a foil lined baking sheet and lightly brush with oil and sprinkle with kosher salt. Bake for 1 hour or until potatoes are tender and the skin is crispy. Slice open the potatoes, top with chopped steak and cheese then place back in the oven for 5 minutes or until the cheese melts. Top with sour cream, green onions, etc.
- London Broil scrambled eggs or omelettes: chop up steak then add to scrambled eggs along with mozzarella cheese when the eggs are almost set.
- London Broil frittata: add chopped steak to this scrumptious frittata recipe.
- London Broil wraps: wrap sliced steak in flour tortillas or flatbread with lettuce, tomatoes and any other desired veggies/toppings along with something creamy like Greek yogurt.
- Flank steak quesadillas. Sandwich steak, cheese, black beans and cilantro in between two flour tortillas and toast in a skillet to golden, cheesy perfection. Serve with pico de gallo, salsa, salsa verde, and/or guacamole.
Looking for More Easy Steak Recipes?
- The BEST Marinated Flank Steak
- Steak and Potatoes
- Mojo Steak Tacos
- Steak Salad
- Steak Kabobs
- Pepper Steak
- Spice Rubbed Sirloin Steak
- Steak Fajitas
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