Grilled London Broil with Sweet and Smokey Tomato Salsa

I’ve been trying to stay out of the grocery stores – I over spent a bit last week and went above my budget, oops! Because of this little dilemma, I decide to check out my freezer stash and was thrilled to find a beautiful London Broil.
London Broil could be a whole post on it’s own; it’s a bit confusing trying to figure out exactly what it is and what to do with it. You can read a great article about it here, but in a nutshell it’s a lean, but somewhat tough cut of meat. It has wonderful flavor and is great on the grill, but does require a little TLC to bring out it’s best qualities.
I have made London Broil frequently in the past, sometimes from recipes, sometimes my own concoctions but the preparation has always involved a long marinade to help tenderize and flavorize the meat. I have used a myriad of different combinations; soy, garlic, balsamic, honey, brown sugar and ginger have all been employed and generally the results have been quite good.
This recipe, from Cooks Illustrated, is quite different; no marinade, no special flavorings, just a sprinkle of salt, a good tight wrap,  a sit in the refrigerator and a a shower of freshly ground pepper. Sound boring? Au contraire, mon ami! It brought rave reviews from the chief culinary consultant and I thought it definitely ranked as the best London Broil I’ve ever made.
Cooks Illustrated goes into great depth about why this works so well, but let me put it simply The salt draws the juices to the surface of the meat where it is dissolved; the tight wrap helps draw this “brine” back into the meat making for a delicious, flavorful entree.
I served this Delicious London Broil with Sweet and Smokey Grilled Tomato Salsa, Skinny Mashed Potatoes and Grilled Corn with Lime Cilantro Butter (recipes tomorrow). It was a delicious combination; try them all together for a wonderful, healthy dinner that is sure to please!
Delicious Grilled London Broil

2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 bottom round steak, 2 to 2 1/2 pounds and 1 1/2 inches thick
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1. Sprinkle both sides of steak evenly with salt; wrap tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 3 hours (steak can be salted and refrigerated for up to 24 hours).

2. Remove steak from refrigerator 1 hour before grilling.


3. About 20 minutes before grilling, ignite grill, turn all burners to high, close cover, and heat until very hot, about 15 minutes. Scrape cooking grate clean with grill brush.

4. Unwrap steak; insert 3 metal skewers lengthwise through center of steak, spacing skewers about 1 inch apart. This is optional but it will keep meet from curling up on the grill. Brush both sides of steak with oil and sprinkle liberally with pepper. Place steak on hottest part of grill. Grill, flipping steak every 4 minutes, until instant-read thermometer inserted into center of meat registers 120-130 degrees for rare to medium-rare, 16 to 20 minutes.

5. Transfer steak to cutting board and let rest, tented with foil, about 10 minutes. Remove skewers. Holding thin slicing knife at 45-degree angle to meat, slice very thinly and serve.

If you prefer your meat well-done this probably isn’t the recipe for you. London broil tends to become tough and dry when cooked past medium rare.

Adapted from Cook’s Illustrated


Sweet and Smoky Grilled Tomato Salsa

1 cup wood chips, preferably hickory, soaked for 15 minutes
2 punds medium plum tomatoes (10 to 12), cored and halved pole to pole
2 large jalapeno chiles
2 teaspoons vegetable oil, plus additional for brushing cooking grate
3 tablespoons minced red onion
⅓ cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon sugar
1-2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, to taste

1. Place wood chips in small disposable aluminum pan; set pan on edge of grill burner and position cooking grate. Ignite grill, turn all burners to high, cover, and heat until very hot and chips are beginning to smoke, about 15 minutes. (If chips ignite, use water-filled spray bottle to extinguish.) Scrape grate clean with grill brush.

2. Place tomato halves and chiles in bowl; drizzle with vegetable oil and toss to coat evenly. Scrape grill and spray with grill spray.. Place tomatoes cut side down on grill with lid down, checking often to make sure they are not burning. Grill tomatoes until evenly charred and beginning to soften, 4 to 6 minutes. Using tongs, flip tomatoes and grill until skin sides are charred and tomato juices bubble, 4 to 6 minutes more. While tomatoes are cooking, grill chiles until skins are blackened on all sides, 8 to 10 minutes, turning as needed.

3. Transfer vegetables to platter and let cool in single layer, at least 10 minutes.

4. Stem, peel, seed, and finely chop chiles. Pulse tomatoes in food processor until broken down but still chunky, about six 1-second pulses. Transfer tomatoes to bowl; stir in chiles, onion, cilantro, salt, pepper, olive oil, sugar and lime juice as needed to balance flavors. Let stand for 10 minutes and serve. (Salsa can be refrigerated in airtight container for up to 2 days; bring back to room temperature before serving.)

Adapted from Cook’s Illustrated


16 thoughts on “Grilled London Broil with Sweet and Smokey Tomato Salsa”

  • I am terribly guilty of going over the grocery budget. I just love to cook and bake so much that I often get an idea and have to run out and get what I need for it immediately! But this is great and I love using our freezer stash too. Looks delish!

  • Hi Sandra, Thanks for visiting the Café! I might have been a bit more nervous had it not been a Cook’s Illustrated recipe. They have been so trustworthy in the past that I figured it would probably be good……but it was great!

  • Hi Meredith!
    I also am thrilled with this easy technique! Another thing that is so nice about it is the flavor is just a good beef flavor so you can use any type of sauce or salsa with it. I used the left overs in a salad with grilled peaches (Friday’s post) and it was fantastic.Thanks for stopping by, I enjoy reading your blog!

  • [email protected] says:

    I’m so excited to know how to cook a London Broil on the grill! Mine is always so tough but I’m feeding a family of five (all carnivores) and you just can’t beat the price of a London Broil. Going to try this soon!

  • Thanks Kelly, what a grand idea, maybe I’ll just have to have the leftover salsa for lunch! 🙂

    Oh, and by the way – you taught me a new word, I love it! I had never heard the word “cuisson” – I looked it up and found this
    Definition. to sear; preparation to obtain color and lock in juices;
    Cool! You just might find this fancy new word in one of my posts!

  • What a great post! I don’t know what I’m more excited about, the steak (that looks perfectly done) or the salsa – I’m really into finding good salsa recipes at the moment – so this was a gift!

  • Oh my what an incredible meal! The london broil looks perfect, but the skinny potatoes and corn on the cob make my mouth water. Can’t wait to see your recipe for the corn. I followed you so I can keep up with your follow up recipe.

    I have been dabbling with grilled corn lately and the grilling gives it such a deep flavor. Thanks for sharing!

  • Oh wow a London Broil without a marinade! I would have been terrified, thanks for trying it out first. And I know what you mean about going over the grocery budget. That stings when you get up to the cashier’s.

  • Wow, talk about the perfect cuisson on the meat… but for me, the tomato salsa is equally compelling… I think I would order a large soup bowl size! Wonderful Chris.

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