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This fresh and satisfying Grilled Steak Salad has tender slices of steak atop a bed of crisp lettuce and juicy tomatoes. And for the true taste of summer, finish it off with the perfect charred flavor of lightly grilled corn and asparagus for a protein-packed and totally delicious dinner.
Mouthwatering Grilled Steak Salad
I love a good restaurant salad. I actually get really excited reading a menu and seeing all of the different combinations that I might not have thought of on my own. Yet when you put it all together, you end up with an explosion of flavors and textures that totally make it more than just a pile of lettuce and tomatoes.
But what I love even more is making a restaurant-quality salad at home. Yes, for lunch you’ll usually just find me throwing together some greens, leftover chicken or chopped up deli meat, a sprinkle of cheese, and a drizzle of Creamy Dijon Dressing.
However, taking just a few minutes more to add some extra ingredients that are prepared with a little care will lead to a chef-inspired creation that might be even better. Especially since when you make it at home, even an over-the-top grilled steak salad like this one can be lighter and healthier than one you’d order.
Why this Recipe Works
Besides the juicy steak and fresh tomatoes, this steak salad recipe also has grilled asparagus and corn. It’s a true taste of summer with the smoky char of the veggies balancing out the cool freshness of the romaine lettuce and tomatoes. Finish it off with parmesan cheese and a drizzle red wine vinaigrette, and it’s a dinner-worthy salad for the biggest of appetites. It’ll knock your socks off!
For the Steaks
- Top sirloin steaks: A lean and affordable cut that when allowed to marinate, can become almost as tender and flavorful as a filet.
- Canola oil: You want an oil with a high smoke point since you will be grilling. Therefore, canola is preferable to something like olive oil, or you can use vegetable, avocado, or grapeseed oil
- Worcestershire Sauce: If you are gluten free, be sure to read the labels, as not all Worcestershire sauce is gluten free. In the United States, Lea & Perrins is, but it may not be in other ocuntries.
- Fresh rosemary: In this recipe, fresh is preferred over dried. If you much use dried, you’ll only need a teaspoon.
- Salt: Just a bit to season the meat.
For the Salads
- Corn: Fresh on the cop, removed from the husks.
- Asparagus. Wash and dry it, then snip off the ends. The easiest way to do this is to hold each end and gently bend until it snaps.
- Canola oil, salt, and pepper: For seasoning the vegetables before grilling.
- Romaine hearts: Wash them, then chip and dry the leaves.
- Small heirloom or grape tomatoes: Slice these in half
- Shaved Parmesan cheese: Adds a salty, savory element to this salad.
- Red Wine Vinaigrette: I love my homemade sweet red wine vinegar dressing, which I include in the recipe card below (check out the post at that link for all the details). But you can use your favorite red wine vinaigrette, whether it’s your own recipe or from a bottle you picked up at the store.
How to Make Grilled Steak Salad
You’ll need to grill the individual components, shake up the dressing, then put it all together. Here is a little overview, and all of the details are in the recipe card below.
Grilling the steaks
Combine the oil, Worcestershire sauce, rosemary, and salt, add the steak, and refrigerate at least 6-8 hours, but preferably overnight.
When you’re ready to grill, preheat grill on about medium to medium-high heat to 400-450°F. Cook about 8 minutes, flipping once to medium doneness. Remove the steaks and allow them to rest. Later on you’ll slice them thinly against the grain.
Assembling the steak salad
While the grill is still lit and the meat is resting, you’ll grill the corn and asparagus. Coat each with a bit of oil and season with salt and pepper. The corn will need about 8 minutes, turning frequently to give it an even golden-brown color. The asparagus only takes about 3 to 5 minutes to give it a bit of char but keep it crisp-tender.
Wash, chop, and dry the romaine and add it to the bowl. Add tomatoes and Parmesan on top. Cut corn off of the cob, place on top of the romaine, then add the asparagus.
Dress and serve
Place sliced steak on top of the salad and serve with the Red Wine Vinaigrette Dressing. You can give the entire salad a drizzle of dressing and toss it before serving. Or let everyone take their plate of salad and add their own dressing.
Tips for success
Letting your steak soak in the marinade overnight not only makes it more flavorful but also gives it time to break down, making a lean and affordable top sirloin steak almost as tender as a pricier filet mignon.
Alternatively, you could use grilled flat iron steak. And if you want a larger steak to feed a crowd, try a flank steak or skirt steak. You might want to double the marinade and be sure to slice these steaks thinly against the grain, as they can be a little tough.
Canola oil is recommended for the marinade and for brushing the veggies before grilling because it has a high smoke point, so it is less likely to cause excess charring and give a burnt or bitter flavor.
If you don’t like to use canola oil, you can use vegetable, avocado, or grapeseed oil.
If you prefer your steaks rare to medium-rare, just adjust the cooking time, or vice versa if you would like them more well-done (though I rarely recommend a well-done steak as it is usually too chewy). A thicker steak will also need additional time.
Choosing your lettuce
Hearty romaine holds up well to the warm and heavy toppings. Iceberg would work too, though it does not have as much nutritional benefit. If you want more of a flavor punch, try arugula or baby spinach though these will wilt a little.
When grilling the corn, make sure to tun it frequently so it gets just a bit of color to bring out the flavor. You don’t want to to burn.
For the asparagus, you are just looking for a bit of char but still hold its shape and be a bit crisp-tender. You’ll only need a few minutes, unlike when you are grilling asparagus as a side dish and want it a bit more tender.
The steak salad dressing
I love the tangy flavor of the homemade red wine vinaigrette to cut the richness of the steak. And I also love that it uses basic pantry ingredients that you can shake up in minutes. However, if you are short on time, just grab a bottle from the store.
You also can customize this grilled steak salad with any dressing you love!
- Creamy Balsamic Dressing made with Greek yogurt is a light compliment to the grilled steak. Maybe you want to use balsamic vinegar in place of the Worcestershire for the marinade.
- Hot Bacon Dressing adds a rich touch with more smoky, salty flavors and a hint of sweetness.
- Avocado Ranch Dressing is perfect for the Ranch-lovers with the extra creaminess from avocado and buttermilk.
Make it a Meal
While this is definitely a filling dinner salad, maybe you’d like to add something else to finish off your meal.
- Add a basket of flaky Gluten Free Biscuits alongside that salad.
- Give it a bit more crunch with some Parmesan Polenta Croutons.
- Chili Lime Shrimp can turn this salad into a surf and turf meal.
- Let some butter melt onto a slice of Gluten Free Cornbread.
- Have a summery meal with Blue Cheese Bacon Potato Salad.
Grilled Steak Salad with Corn and Asparagus
For the Steaks
- 2 top sirloin steaks (about 1 1/2 lbs)
- 1 Tablespoon canola oil, or vegetable or grapeseed oil
- 1 ½ teaspoons Worcestershire Sauce
- 1 Tablespoon fresh rosemary
- ½ teaspoon salt
For the Salads
- 3 ears of corn, removed from the husks
- 1 lb asparagus, washed and dried with the ends snipped off
- canola oil, salt, and pepper for seasoning the vegetables
- 2-3 Romaine hearts
- 2 cups of small heirloom or grape tomatoes, sliced in half
- ½ cup shaved Parmesan cheese
- 1/2-3/4 cup Red Wine Vinaigrette, homemade (see below) or store bought
For the Red Wine Vinaigrette
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar (you can use a but less or subsititute with Swerve brown or honey, if desired)
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary
- salt and pepper, to taste
For the Steaks
- First, marinate your steaks. Add the oil, Worcestershire sauce, rosemary, and salt to a container or plastic zip top bag. Stir everything around the bit, add the steak, press out any excess air and seal the bag or container.
- Refrigerate at least 6-8 hours, but preferably overnight.
- When you’re ready to grill, preheat grill on about medium to medium-high heat to 400-450°F.
- Place steaks on grill and cook for about 8 minutes, flipping halfway through cooking time. Steaks should be a nice medium to medium-well at this point. They should have grill marks on the outside and still have some pink in the middle.
- Remove the steaks and allow them to rest on a plate while you grill the corn and asparagus and prepare the rest of the salad.
For the Salads
- Keep the grill lit. Brush corn with a little canola oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place corn on the grill and cook for about 8 minutes, turning every few minutes to cook evenly. It is done when you notice the corn starting to brown but not char or burn. Set aside.
- Toss the asparagus in a teaspoon or two of oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place on the grill for 3-5 minutes, just enough to get a nice sear but not turn mushy. Set aside.
- Wash the romaine. Cut off the ends. Then, cut the rest into pieces about an inch or two wide. Pat dry.
- Place romaine in a large bowl. Add tomatoes and Parmesan on top.
- Cut corn off of the cob, place on top of the romaine, then add the asparagus.
- Slice the steak thinly against the grain. Place sliced steak on top of the salad and serve with a Red Wine Vinaigrette Dressing.
For the Red Wine Vinaigrette
- Add olive oil, red wine vinegar, brown sugar, Dijon mustard, Italian seasoning, and fresh rosemary to a jar that has a tight-fitting lid. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper.
- Secure lid and shake vigorously. Adjust seasoning with additional salt and pepper, if needed.
- Use immediately or store covered in the refrigerator for up to a week.