Add some spice to your life by trying this Grilled Beef Satay with Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce. There’s a kick in both the marinade and the peanut sauce. The sauce, although it brings a little heat, adds a creamy, cooling influence to the dish. If you don’t like too much heat, you can taper down the hot chili sauce and the crushed red peppers.
If you haven’t already done so, it’s time for pulling the cover off of your gas grill that’s sat dormant through these crazy wintry days. Light that baby up and let’s get GRILLiN’. Honestly, it feels like years since I’ve felt the warmth of the sun on my face. So I’ve been relishing in the 60° weather these past few days. Finally, I do believe Spring is on its way.
Why I love this recipe:
It can be either an appetizer for a dinner party or a dish for your main course. Just by adding a side dish of brown rice and a salad to these skewers, you can elevate this appetizer into an entrée that carries the evening.
The marinade itself would work with any beef, pork, or chicken dish. If you want to add a little kick to any of the meats listed here, it will definitely take any of these to a new level.
The spicy peanut sauce is the perfect finish for a flavor-packed flank steak. The dipping sauce is the star of the show. Whatever you do, don’t forget the sauce.
You can substitute any vegetable on the skewers for a variation. There’s no limit to whatever vegetable you like when adding them to these skewers. Let your imagination run wild with this recipe.
Flank Steak is a good choice
You may be wondering what in the world is flank steak or if you’ve ever eaten it before. If you’ve devoured fajitas anytime in your life, then you’ve probably eaten flank steak, if, of course, it wasn’t chicken fajitas. One nice thing about flank steak is it won’t break the bank. It’s a very economical cut of meat but full of beefy flavor.
It’s all in How You Slice It
Although flank steak can be a little tough, slicing it thin and cutting against the grain makes for a more tender result. This way the fibers are shorter and easier to chew.
If you are slicing the steak yourself, it helps tremendously if you place it in the freezer for about 10-15 minutes. Being partially frozen makes it easier to get the slices thin and you won’t end up tearing the meat apart.
Cutting the meat at an angle gives you a wider strip, otherwise, it ends up being a wimpy skewered piece of steak. I always ask my butcher to slice the meat for me. They do a much better job of getting it thin and angled. I’ve never been charged a dime for their service. I’m tellin’ ya, they’re some of the nicest and helpful people at my meat counter.
Skewering the Meat and Vegetables
If you are using wooden skewers make sure and soak them in water for about 30 minutes before going on the grill. Place them in a cake pan and add enough water to cover them. The water-soaked skewers then become flame resistant.
It’s not as important if you are using an electric grill as I did here in this recipe because you don’t have the flames trying to ignite the wood. Of course, you could just purchase a set of metal skewers which solves the problem altogether. But I love the rustic aspect of the slightly charred wood.
For this Beef Satay, I started with the strips of flank steak and threaded them on the skewer (accordion style), added two or three chunks of red onion and red bell peppers, another strip of flank steak, more vegetables, and ended with the steak.
You can arrange meat and vegetables however you like. Add whatever vegetables you prefer most. Some suggestions are mushrooms, zucchini, cherry tomatoes, etc. I will probably throw in some green bell peppers next time to add another pop of color.
A flavor-packed spicy marinade
The ingredients in the marinade are simple but they pack a powerful punch. You more than likely have all of them in your cabinet: Teriyaki Sauce, Hot Pepper Sauce (like Tabasco), Red Pepper Flakes, and Toasted Sesame Oil. Simple, huh?
According to how much heat you like to bring to a dish, you can either tone it down by reducing the amount of hot pepper sauce and red pepper flakes or spice it way up by adding more. This recipe is probably a medium spice.
Marinade for 30-45 minutes
Once you’ve skewered everything for this Beef Satay, combine the marinade in a small bowl and place the skewers in a large cake pan. Pour the marinade over the skewers and let them sit in the refrigerator for about one hour. Make sure and turn them several times while they’re marinating in order to penetrate all sides. Discard the marinade when finished.
How to avoid tough meat
Overcooked meat is always tough, especially flank steak. Three to four minutes on each side achieves the perfect “medium-rare” meat. I pulled out my trusty electric grill when I took these photos.
The gas grill is a really great way to go if you decide to make these. Start with the highest heat for the grill, brush it with avocado oil, and heat almost to smoking. Then turn it down to medium-high before you begin to grill the skewers.
Rest the skewers for 10 minutes
Oh, the beauty of these charred fiery pieces of flank steak and their side-kick of veggies. Grilled to perfection and ready to fully gratify someone’s hunger cravings. Mainly mine! But there’s still some waiting time that needs to take place. Pull the skewers off the grill, and cover them with foil and let them rest for a good 10 minutes.
An alternative to Beef
This recipe is just as good with chicken or pork. Pick up some chicken tenders or cut strips from pork fillets, skewer them along with any veggies you like and then continue with the recipe. This is such a versatile dish that you can use a variety of meat and vegetables. It’s all in the imagination.
Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce
The peanut sauce, in my opinion, is the star of this show. Beef Satay is not complete without it. This sauce carries some really good heat all the while bringing a cooling effect because of the peanut butter itself. It is super easy to pull together and can be done while the skewers are resting. Like the marinade, similar ingredients are added to peanut butter with a little bit of honey for a subtle sweetness.
Grilled Beef Satay with Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce, when pulled straight from the grill, are perfect for a backyard BBQ. Or for a quick midweek meal, these can be prepared ahead of time by skewering the meat and vegetables the day before. Marinating is the only thing that really takes time, and that only 60 minutes.
Brown rice is a welcoming companion to this healthy”ish” entrée. But whatever you do, don’t leave off the peanut sauce. This is, by far, the star attraction.
About 20 years ago, I was desperately looking for a healthier way to eat and came across a cookbook title “The Sonoma Diet Cookbook.” This literally changed the way I cook. The recipe here was inspired and adapted from one of the dishes in that cookbook. If you like a lot of flavor, a little bit of spice, and a delicious dipping sauce, you’re gonna be in love after you taste this.
If you love this as an appetizer, check out these other great recipes.
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Grilled Beef Satay with Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce
These lip-smacking beef satay skewers bring a bit of heat with both the marinade and the spicy peanut sauce. Perfect for dinner or an appetizer.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes (not including the marinating time)
- Cook Time: 8 minutes
- Total Time: 23 minutes (not including marinating time)
- Yield: 8 servings 1x
- Category: Main Dish
- Method: Grilling
- Cuisine: Beef
Beef Satay Skewers with Veggies
- 2 lbs Beef Flank Steak, cut into long thin strips
- 2 large Red Bell Peppers, cut into 2-inch chunks
- 2 large Red Onion, cut into 1 1/2 inch wedges
- 1 cup Teriyaki Sauce
- 2 teaspoons Hot Pepper Sauce (like Tabasco)
- 1 teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
- 2 teaspoon Toasted Sesame Oil
- Grapeseed Oil for Grill
Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce
- 5 tablespoons Smooth Peanut Butter
- 2 tablespoons Teriyaki Sauce
- 4 tablespoons Water
- 1 1/2 teaspoon Hot Pepper Sauce (like Tabasco)
- 1 teaspoon Toasted Sesame Oil
- 1 tablespoon Raw Honey
Beef Satay Skewers with Veggies
- In a medium-sized bowl whisk together the teriyaki sauce, hot pepper sauce, red pepper flakes, and sesame oil.
- While the flank steak is partially frozen, cut the flank steaks against the grain into thin strips. Cut diagonally in order to create a wider strip. I have my butcher do this step which saves me time in the kitchen.
- On wooden or metal skewers alternately thread the strips of flank steak (accordion style), red onion wedges and red bell pepper chunks. Line the skewers in a large cake pan and drizzle the teriyaki mixture over the skewers, making sure to coat the bottom sides. Cover with foil and refrigerate. Marinate for 60 minutes, turn each skewer over several times to fully coat each side. Discard the marinade after use.
- Brush the electric grill with grapeseed oil and heat on high until almost smoking. Place each skewer on the grill and cook for 4-4 1/2 minutes on high, turn over and cook another 4-4 1/2 minutes.
- Pull the skewers off the grill and cover with foil for 10 minutes to let them rest. Use a hot pad to remove the skewers as they can become hot from the grill.
- Serve with the peanut dipping sauce and a side dish of brown rice.
Peanut Dipping Sauce
- While the skewers are grilling and resting, combine peanut butter, teriyaki sauce, water, hot pepper sauce, sesame oil, and honey in a medium-sized microwavable bowl. Microwave on medium for about 45 seconds. Using hot pads, remove the bowl from the microwave and whisk all the ingredients together. Set aside.
- Have your butcher cut the beef flank steak into long thin strips for the skewers. This will save you so much time in the kitchen. Butchers do not charge an additional fee for cutting meat, I always take advantage of it.
- Although flank steak can be a little tough, slicing it thin and cutting against the grain makes for a much more tender result. This way the fibers are shorter and easier to chew.
- If you are slicing the steak yourself, it helps tremendously if you place it in the freezer for about 10-15 minutes. Being partially frozen makes it easier to get the slices thin and you won’t end up tearing the meat apart.
- If I use wooden skewers, I always soak them in water for about 30 minutes. It’s not as necessary with this dish because they are only on the grill for a few minutes.
- I use grapeseed oil for the electric grill because it can endure high heat.
- This recipe is just as good with chicken or pork. Pick up some chicken tenders or cut strips from pork fillets, skewer them along with any veggies you like and then continue with the recipe.
- Serving Size: 1 Skewer with drizzled peanut sauce
- Calories: 321
- Sugar: 14 g
- Sodium: 838 mg
- Fat: 14 g
- Saturated Fat: 5.7 g
- Unsaturated Fat: 7 g
- Trans Fat: 0 g
- Carbohydrates: 16 g
- Fiber: 1.5 g
- Protein: 30 g
- Cholesterol: 70 mg
Keywords: Beef Satay, Beef Satay Recipe, Satay with Peanut Sauce, Beef Skewers