If you’re a fan of grilled flank steak, you might have wondered whether it’s better to grill with the grill open or closed. The answer is not straightforward and depends on a few factors.

What is Flank Steak?

Before we dive into the grilling process, let’s first understand what flank steak is. It is a cut of beef that comes from the abdominal muscles of the cow.

It’s long and flat and has tough fibers running through it. Flank steak is known for its rich flavor but requires some preparation to make it tender.

Grilling with the Grill Open

When you grill with the grill open, you expose the meat directly to the flames and heat. This method is great for searing both sides of the steak quickly and creating those beautiful char marks. However, it can also dry out your meat if not done correctly.

One way around this is to use a two-zone fire setup. Start by heating one side of your grill on high heat and leaving the other side off or on low heat.

Sear your flank steak over the high-heat side until you have those char marks you want, then move it over to the cooler side to finish cooking. This will prevent your steak from drying out while still giving you that delicious sear.

Grilling with the Grill Closed

Grilling with your grill closed means that you’re using indirect heat to cook your flank steak. This method takes longer than grilling with an open grill, but it can result in more evenly cooked meat that retains its juices.

To use this method, preheat your grill on high heat for around 10-15 minutes before reducing one side’s heat or turning one burner off if using a gas grill. Place your seasoned flank steak on the cooler side of your grill and close the lid.

Check on your meat every few minutes and flip it over halfway through the cooking time. You can use a meat thermometer to ensure that the internal temperature of your steak is where you want it.


So, should you grill flank steak with your grill open or closed? As we’ve discussed, it depends on what you’re looking for.

If you want those beautiful sear marks and don’t mind a quicker cooking time, go with the open grill method. If you prefer more even cooking and juicier meat, the closed grill method is your best bet.

No matter which method you choose, be sure to use a meat thermometer to check for doneness. A perfectly cooked flank steak should have an internal temperature of around 135°F for medium-rare or 145°F for medium. And don’t forget to let your steak rest for a few minutes before slicing into it to allow those juices to redistribute throughout the meat.

Now that you know how to grill flank steak like a pro, fire up that grill and get cooking!