A New York strip steak is a cut of beef from the short loin of a cow is actually the larger side of the T-bone. Typically it is easy to find a well marbled cut of strip steak making for a delicious grilled steak option. A common misconception about this cut is that it is tough, a tough strip steak is an over cooked strip steak.
When selecting a New York strip to grill remember that thicker is better. A thicker cut steak takes longer to cook which allows for a larger margin of error when grilling. Thinner cut steaks are what leads people to believe that they are a tough cut. A steak that is cut to 1/2 to 3/4 of an inch thick can be fully cooked in only 5 to 7 minutes.
A New York strip can handle being cooked in the medium to well done range because of the fat content.
When grilling a strip steak we will follow all the same basic steps as grilling any higher end cut of beef. While using a slightly lower heat and keeping and eye out for flare ups caused by the melting fat.
Step 1: Remove the strip steaks from refrigeration at least 1 hour before grilling and season (we like this Chicago steak seasoning) to taste. For almost any steak we will only season with either salt and pepper (fresh ground works best) or Lawrey’s seasoning salt, in either case use just a light dusting that covers the entire steak. If you feel like you must cover your meat while out of the fridge, set a paper towel over the top, you want the air to get to it. Over this hour not only will the steak be reaching room temperature it will be breaking down and absorbing your seasoning.
Step 2: Preheat your grill to a medium high heat, when grilling with charcoal have multiple heat zones available. We use a lower heat then normal here to help slow down the cooking process. If using a gas grill you may preheat to high to get better grill marks, just turn down the heat before the steaks hit your grates.
Step 3: Place your strip steaks over directly over flames for 2 to 4 minutes, depending on thickness. Until they no longer stick the grill grates, if you only used dry seasonings they will release on there own when they are ready. If you are cooking a thin cut strip and it takes more then 3 minutes to release from the grates jump to step 5 and check your temperature.
Step 4: Rotate your strip steaks 1/4 turn while moving them to a clean unused part of your grates and let cook for an additional 2 to 4 minutes. This step will help to achieve better cross-hatch grill marks. It is at this stage you need to be on the alert for flare ups. If you are grilling with a closed lid listen for a sizzling sound. When a flare occurs move your steaks off of the direct heat immediately, once the fat has begun to render it will not stop until it is removed from the heat completely.
Step 5: Flip your strips over. If your still over direct heat at this point let the steaks cook for an additional 2 to 4 minutes.
Step 6: Move from direct heat to an indirect heat zone and do a temp check. Since strip steaks are typically cut thinner you will need to stick your probe through the side of the meat (as shown above) and attempt to get the tip into the center of the steak. Your temperature is probably around 100 to 120 degrees and from here should keep rising at about 2 degrees per minute.
Step 7: Remove steak from grill 5 to 10 degrees short of reaching your ideal temperature. For example if your shooting for medium rare that is 145 degrees, remove the steak from your grill when your in the 135 to 140 degree range. If your steaks show signs of curling (shown above) remove from the grill immediately, they are over cooked.
Step 8: Place on plate, tent the plate with tinfoil and let sit for a minimum of 5 minutes. This will raise your temperature into the ideal temp zone
Following these simple steps will help you get the best flavor and make your strip steaks as tender as possible.
About the author: Mike is the owner of 4thegrill.com, a Certified Food Safety Professional and KCBS member.
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