Steak with Chipotle-Lime Chimichurri Recipe photo by Taste of Home
Total Time
Prep/Total Time: 30 min.
This flavorful chimichurri steak recipe comes together in less than 30 minutes. Spoon the bright, zesty, herbaceous sauce over any type of grilled steak, like flat iron, top sirloin, ribeye, flank or skirt steak.

Updated: Jun. 20, 2024

Chimichurri steak is a prime example of one of my favorite flavor combinations. While I love rich beef-and-sauce recipes like beef tenderloin in mushroom sauce or chicken-fried steak and gravy, the pairing of steak with chimichurri sauce is a fresh one. Chimichurri and steak balance each other. The bright chimichurri sauce lightens up the steak, and the steak juices infuse the herbaceous sauce with smoky, savory flavors. It’s a perfect match!

What is chimichurri sauce?

Chimichurri sauce is an Argentinian sauce made with fresh herbs, garlic, vinegar, oil and spices. It tastes complex, with richness from the olive oil, bright acidity from the vinegar, pungency from the garlic and a little heat from the spicy peppers. We add lime juice and zest to our recipe to give it a zingy, citrusy punch.

We make our easy chimichurri sauce in a food processor, which combines the fresh herbs with the other tangy, spicy ingredients in mere minutes. Whip it up while the grilled steak is resting, or make it ahead of time to let the flavors meld as the sauce sits in the refrigerator.

Ingredients for Chimichurri Steak

Chimichurri Steak IngredientsTMB Studio

  • Steak: Look for 1-inch-thick beef steaks with good marbling. We like flat iron or top sirloin steaks for their flavor and affordability, but you can make this chimichurri steak recipe with any grilling steak, like ribeye or New York strip steak.
  • Herbs: Fresh parsley and cilantro leaves make up the bulk of the chimichurri sauce. We use dried oregano for convenience, but you can substitute 3 tablespoons of fresh oregano instead (using a 3:1 ratio as a fresh to dried herb conversion).
  • Chipotle peppers in adobo sauce: These smoked jalapeno peppers are canned in a tangy tomato sauce, which adds a spicy, warming character to chimichurri. Look for this canned product in the international aisle at the grocery store. You won’t need the whole jar, so use the leftover peppers in recipes that feature chipotles in adobo sauce.
  • Garlic and onion: These aromatic alliums add depth to chimichurri sauce. Use red onions for their assertive, spicy flavor or substitute yellow onions for a milder taste.
  • Olive oil: Use the best olive oil you can afford to make chimichurri sauce. Fat carries flavor, and olive oil helps to bring all the sauce ingredients together.
  • White wine vinegar and lime juice: Herbs can taste slightly bitter when used in large quantities, and these acidic ingredients counteract that bitterness. You can use other types of vinegar with a bright character, like sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar. Avoid bold or flavored vinegar, like balsamic or malt vinegars, which can overpower the herbs.
  • Lime zest: Lime zest is bright and fresh, and elevates this chimichurri sauce from good to great.

Directions

Step 1: Make the chimichurri sauce

Place the parsley, cilantro, red onion, chipotle peppers and garlic in a food processorTMB Studio

Place the parsley, cilantro, red onion, chipotle peppers and garlic in a food processor and pulse them until they’re finely chopped.

Transfer the chimichurri to a bowl and refrigerateTMB Studio

Add the oil, vinegar, lime zest, lime juice, oregano, 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper. Process the sauce until it’s blended. Transfer the chimichurri to a bowl and refrigerate it, covered, until you’re ready to serve it.

Editor’s Tip: For a rustic chimichurri sauce with a chunky texture, hand-chop the ingredients instead of blending them.

Step 2: Grill the steak

Sprinkle the steaks with the remaining salt and pepperTMB Studio

Sprinkle the steaks with the remaining salt and pepper.

Grill the steaksTMB Studio

Grill the steaks, covered, over medium heat for five to eight minutes on each side or until the meat reaches your desired doneness. A thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the meat should read 135°F for medium-rare, 140° for medium or 145° for medium-well.

Let the steak rest for five minutes before slicing itTMB Studio

Let the steak rest for five minutes before slicing it. Serve it with chimichurri.

Editor’s Tip: After resting the steak, cut the steak against the grain to ensure the slices turn out as tender as possible

Chimichurri Steak in a serving plateTMB Studio

Recipe Variations

  • Make chimichurri with different herbs: Instead of parsley and cilantro, use a custom blend of herbs. Most green herbs work here, especially oregano, dill or mint. You can even use leafy greens like arugula, kale, chard or mustard greens.
  • Swap in another chile: Use fresh jalapeno or Fresno peppers instead of chipotles in adobo. Crushed red pepper flakes are also a suitable substitute.
  • Use chimichurri with other recipes: Spoon chimichurri over grilled pork chops, chicken, fish or shrimp. It also pairs well with grilled vegetable recipes, air-fryer potatoes and lentil bowls.

Can you make chimichurri ahead of time?

You can make chimichurri sauce safely up to four days ahead of time, but we recommend using it within two days. After a couple of days, the sauce will lose its bright color.

How to Store Chimichurri Steak

Store leftover steak and chimichurri sauce in separate airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to four days. The olive oil in the chimichurri can solidify in the fridge, so let the sauce sit on the counter for about 30 minutes before serving. Reheat the steak in a covered dish in a 250° oven, or warm it over medium heat in a skillet, adding a little water or broth to the skillet to keep the steak from drying out.

Chimichurri Steak Tips

Chimichurri Steak in a serving plateTMB Studio

What is the best steak for steak chimichurri?

Beef flat iron and top sirloin are our go-to choices for grilled steak chimichurri, but you can use any type of steak. If you want to stick with the classic smoky, charred steak flavor, try grilled ribeyeskirt steak or flank steak. The chimichurri sauce also tastes fantastic when paired with slow-cooked beef like chuck steak or smoked brisket.

What do you serve with chimichurri steak?

Serve chimichurri steak with steakhouse sides like roasted potatoes, creamed corn or grilled asparagus. Salads are always a good option, especially ones with bright flavors like sliced tomato salad or orange carrot salad.

Chimichurri Steak

Prep Time 30 min
Yield 8 servings.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups fresh parsley leaves
  • 1-1/2 cups fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1/2 medium red onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 to 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • 5 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon grated lime zest
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • 3 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1-1/4 teaspoons salt, divided
  • 3/4 teaspoon pepper, divided
  • 2 pounds beef flat iron steaks or 2 beef top sirloin steaks (1 pound each)

Directions

  1. For chimichurri, place the first 5 ingredients in a food processor; pulse until finely chopped. Add oil, vinegar, lime zest, lime juice, oregano, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper; process until blended. Transfer to a bowl; refrigerate, covered, until serving.
  2. Sprinkle steaks with the remaining salt and pepper. Grill, covered, over medium heat 5-8 minutes on each side or until meat reaches desired doneness (for medium-rare, a thermometer should read 135°; medium, 140°; medium-well, 145°). Let stand 5 minutes before slicing. Serve with chimichurri.

Nutrition Facts

3 ounces cooked steak with 3 tablespoons sauce: 336 calories, 26g fat (7g saturated fat), 73mg cholesterol, 462mg sodium, 4g carbohydrate (1g sugars, 1g fiber), 22g protein.

Steak gets a flavor kick from chimichurri. This piquant, all-purpose herb sauce is so versatile, it complements most any grilled meat, poultry or fish. —Laureen Pittman, Riverside, California