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Are you planning on hosting your friends for a cookout? Want to establish yourself as the grill master amongst your family?

Whatever the reason might be, being able to serve up the perfect steak is something that every chef wants to achieve. Of course, grilling steak can be a challenge, especially if you have not tried it before.

When it comes to grilling steak, it can be very easy to overcook it, leaving it tough and dry.

So to help you become the BBQ king, we have looked at some top tips to ensure you can enjoy the perfect meal every time.

Prepare your steak for grilling

Before you think about grilling steak, you need to prepare it. Thankfully, this only takes a few minutes, and you can do it in three steps:

1) Season

The first thing that you should do is season both sides of your steak with a mix of kosher or table salt. This acts as a brine that keeps the meat tender and juicy. Once seasoned, place the meat in the fridge for several hours.

2) Remove from the fridge

Before placing your steak on the grill, you need to remove the chill from the fridge. To do this, leave it out of the fridge for around half an hour, as this will provide a better sear and ensures it cooks evenly.

 3) Pat dry

You will also want to remove any moisture, so make sure you pat it dry before placing it on the grill. Just make sure you re-season with your salt and pepper!

Steak grilling on a gas grill

If you have a gas grill, then there are two options you can use for the perfect finish: direct grilling or a reverse sear method. These are both great choices, and in order to get started, you will need to prepare two zones, an intense direct heat side to sear and a lower heat to cook the middle.

Direct grilling steak on a gas grill

This is the most traditional method when it comes to grilling steak, but it can also be tough to get right. If you are looking for the perfect steak for your next barbecue, then these five steps will help you:

  1. The first step is to turn your grill to high before thoroughly cleaning the grates before greasing them. You can then lower the heat on one side of the grill to create your two different cooking zones.
  2. If you are cooking a thin piece of steak, then you can grill it directly on a high heat on both sides until it has reached your desired level.
  3. If you are planning on cooking a thicker cut of meat, then you should first sear each side over your direct heat. You should then place it over a high heat for three minutes on each side, rotating it half way through to create that beautiful, crosshatched finish.
  4. When you have been able to create the perfect crust on each side, the next step for grilling steak is to move it onto the indirect heat area. Close the lid and let it cook until the meat has reached your desired levels, using a meat thermometer to ensure it is fully cooked.
  5. No matter whether it is a thin piece or a large piece, make sure you let it rest for five minutes before slicing.

Reverse searing steak

Another method for grilling steak is to reverse sear it. This might seem complex, but it is fairly straightforward:

  1. The first thing you should do is heat your grill and clean and grease it in the same way you would for direct grilling. You should then turn down one side to around 225 degrees, using a smart thermometer to ensure you get it exactly right.
  2. You should then place your meat over the indirect heat and keep the lid of the barbecue closed. After 15 minutes, check the temperature of the meat and flip it over as required to ensure it cooks evenly. You should be aiming for the middle of the steak to be around 15 degrees below where you want it to be, as this will increase when you begin to sear it.
  3. When your steak has reached your desired temperatures, take it off the grill and close the lid. Turn the heat up high and leave it for a few minutes.
  4. Place the steak back on the grill and let it sear on each side for around two minutes, turning it halfway to create the crosshatch marks.
  5. Finally, take the steak off the grill and let it rest for five minutes before you begin slicing it.

Grilling steak on a charcoal grill

While gas grilling has become one of the most common ways to barbecue, many pitmasters prefer to use charcoal. This method uses the same beginning steps as a gas grill, but for the reverse sear method, then instead of putting the heat up for the final sear, you should gather the hot coals to create a concentrated area.

If you are using a charcoal grill, then you could attempt the caveman cooking method, which involves cooking the meat directly on the coals. This can be a tricky method, and some top tips to remember includes:

  1. Build your fire and heat coals, as well as heating your grill to a medium-high heat.
  2. Season your steak with olive oil and then a generous amount of kosher or sea salt and pepper.
  3. Remove any excess ash that has built up on the coals. While some ash on your steak is fine, you do not want too much taking away from the flavor.
  4. When your coals are hot, place the steak directly on them for around four minutes, turning them halfway through to ensure the entire surface is in contact with heat.
  5. When you see juice beginning to bubble from the surface of your steak, take it off the coals and rearrange them, so all of the hot coals are facing up. Turn the steak over and place it back on the coals to cook the other side.
  6. Leave for several minutes and check the temperature before removing and letting it to rest.

Tips for grilling steak

If you are following these methods but still not getting the perfect steak, then some top tips to help you include:

  • Make sure you are choosing the best cut of meat that you can. Typically, the thicker and more expensive cuts offer maximum juiciness, while flatter steaks are great for marinating.
  • Add plenty of salt to your steak. This will help to create a delicious crust
  • Never place the steak on the grill cold. Always make sure you are bringing it up to room temperature.
  • Flip it as often as you need to, just make sure you are leaving it long enough on each side to form a crust.
  • Always leave it to rest for at least five minutes before slicing.

Final Thoughts

Grilling steak can be a daunting process, but it is an essential skill for any pitmaster.

Taking your time and following these steps will help ensure you can enjoy a perfect steak every time you turn on your grill!