This post was created in partnership with the Minnesota Beef Council.
This Thai-inspired beef salad may just become your new favorite steak salad recipe! Perfectly grilled steak tops tender butter lettuce and crunchy veggies and features a sweet-savory vinaigrette to create the perfect summery dish.
Unique Flavors and Serious satisfaction
We get it. For some, a salad isn’t a meal. But hear us out! This grilled Thai-Inspired Steak Salad inspired by the flavors of one of our favorite cuisines packs a seriously satisfying punch thanks to perfectly grilled steak and a variety of textures from the vegetables in the salad. And the dressing…oh, the dressing. It’s light and flavorful and brings everything together so beautifully. We’re not usually ones to toot our own horns but we bet you’ll find this grilled steak salad to be one of the best salads you’ve ever made at home.
Ingredients for a Thai-inspired Steak Salad
- Beef sirloin steak – Sirloin steak is a lean and flavorful cut of beef that’s also budget-friendly. Other cuts of beef you can use: Skirt steak, Flat iron steak, New York strip steak, or flank steak.
- Fine salt and black pepper – May substitute kosher salt, if desired
For the Steak Salad Dressing:
- Lime juice – Lime juice is more traditional when it comes to Thai-inspired dishes but lemon juice will work in a pinch if that’s all you have.
- Avocado oil or olive oil
- Coconut aminos
- Chili-garlic sauce – may substitute sriracha
- Fish sauce – May substitute additional coconut aminos, if desired
- Fine salt
For the Salad:
- Greens of choice – butter leaf or baby butter are our favorite choices because they’re tender and mild. Romaine lettuce delivers a pleasant crunch and is a great substitute for butter lettuce. If you want even more flavor, you can add a handful of peppery arugula to the mix.
- English cucumber
- Cherry tomatoes
- Fresh cilantro leaves
- Fresh mint leaves
- Shallot – May use thinly-sliced red onions if shallots are not available
- Green onions
- Dry roasted salted peanuts
How to make A darn good Thai Beef Salad
- Preheat the grill to medium-high heat (425°F). While the grill preheats, pat the steaks dry with paper towels and sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper.
- Make the dressing. Combine the lime juice, avocado oil, honey, coconut aminos, chili-garlic sauce, fish sauce, and salt. Whisk well to combine. Taste and adjust salt and/or chili sauce and set aside.
- Grill the steaks. Place the steaks on the grill over indirect heat. Grill for 5-6 minutes then flip and cook for another 4-5 minutes or until a meat thermometer registers 140-145°F. Cooking time will vary depending on the thickness of the steaks. Thinner steaks will need less cooking time, thicker steaks will need more.
- Remove the steaks from the grill to a clean plate. Loosely tent with bowl or a sheet of aluminum foil and allow steaks to rest for 5 minutes before transferring to a cutting board and slicing against the grain to create thin slices.
- Make the salad. Add the lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes, cilantro, mint, and shallots to a large bowl. Toss gently with salad tongs or two large spoons.
- Plate the salad. Divide the salad among 4 plates. Top each plate with sliced steak. Drizzle each salad with 2 tablespoons of dressing and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of chopped peanuts just before serving.
lean, Green, and ready in under 35 minutes
We’ve partnered with our friends at the Minnesota Beef Council to bring you this Grilled Thai Beef Salad recipe that we know you’re going to love. It’s packed with protein from lean beef sirloin steak which is an excellent way to support lean muscle growth and maintenance. Lean cuts of beef like sirloin steak are not only great sources of protein with an average of 25 grams in each 3 ounce serving, but they’re also an excellent source of 10 essential nutrients including protein, zinc, iron and B vitamins.
As busy moms and registered dietitians with active lifestyles, beef makes a regular appearance on our own tables for the reasons listed above and the fact that’s it’s delicious whether it’s served on the best steak salad, as an Easy Beef Taco Bowl with Salsa Ranch, or these simply stunning Crockpot Beef Tips with Gravy served over mashed potatoes. To learn more about beef nutrition and how it’s a natural fit for active lifestyles, click here.
Q&A for Thai-inspired Steak Salad
Here are some questions we get asked often about this recipe:
- Are steak salads healthy? This one sure is! It’s easy to pack a lot of calories into a salad with the addition of high-fat or sugary dressings, but this Thai Beef Salad isn’t that. It’s veggie-focused with a light, flavorful dressing featuring good-for-you fats and just sweet enough thanks to a touch of honey, so yes, we’d say it’s perfectly healthy.
- How do I meal prep this salad? This is a great salad to prep ahead since grilled steak is tasty even when served cold. Here’s how to do it:
- Grill the steak and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes before thinly slicing.
- Divide the salad ingredients among 4 meal prep containers with tight-fitting lids. These glass containers are our favorite because they’re freezer-safe, oven-safe, and microwave-safe and they stack neatly to keep your cupboard space tidy.
- Prepare the dressing and store separately in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
- Chop the peanuts and store separately in an airtight container in the pantry until ready to use.
- When it’s time to eat, drizzle your salad with dressing, sprinkle with chopped peanuts and dig in!
- Why is there no marinade in this recipe? We’ve skipped the marinade and instead relied on good old salt and pepper to season the steak. Not only does this save several steps and time, it allows the flavor of the beef to truly shine without competing with the other flavors in the salad and dressing.
How to Choose a Great Steak
Use these tips to choose the freshest cuts when buying steaks:
- Look for meat that has a good color and appears moist (but not wet or soggy). Avoid grey, brown or green colored steaks.
- Cut edges should be straight, not ragged.
- If buying prepackaged meat, avoid packages that have liquid pooled in the tray or tears in the packaging.
- Press your finger into the meat. It should be firm and cold to the touch.
- Give it a sniff. If it smells rancid or sour, choose another one.
What if I don’t have an outdoor grill? Can I make the steak on the stove or in the oven?
If you don’t have a grill, a large cast iron skillet or grill pan over medium-high heat on the stove is a good option. Sear the steak on both sides for 4-5 minutes then transfer the pan to a preheated 450℉ oven and cook until desired degree of doneness. For the oven, position the upper rack 3-4 inches from the broiler and broil for 11-15 minutes, flipping halfway through. Always use a meat thermometer or instant-read thermometer to check for desired degree of doneness.
- 1 lb. Beef sirloin steak
- Fine salt and black pepper
For the Dressing
- 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice (1 medium lime)
- 3 tablespoons avocado oil or olive oil
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 2 teaspoons coconut aminos
- ½ – 1 teaspoon chili-garlic sauce (may substitute sriracha)
- ½ teaspoon fish sauce (may substitute coconut aminos)
- ¼ teaspoon fine salt
For the Salad
- 5 ounces salad greens of choice (about 6 cups)
- 1 English cucumber, seeds removed and sliced into half rounds
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved (12 ounces)
- 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves, stems removed (1 small bunch)
- 1 (0.67 ounce) package fresh mint leaves, leaves removed from the stems (about ½ cup)
- 1 medium shallot, thinly sliced (¼ – ⅓ cup)
- 2 green onions, thinly sliced
- ¼ cup dry roasted salted peanuts, chopped
- Preheat the grill to medium-high (425°F). While the grill preheats, pat the steaks dry with paper towels and sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper.
- Make the dressing by combining the lime juice, avocado oil, honey, coconut aminos, chili-garlic sauce, fish sauce, and salt. Whisk well to combine. Taste and adjust salt and/or chili sauce and set aside.
- Place the steaks on the grill over indirect heat. Grill for 5-6 minutes then flip and cook for another 4-5 minutes or until an instant read thermometer registers 140-145°F. Cooking time will vary depending on the thickness of the steaks. Thinner steaks will need less cooking time, thicker steaks will need more.
- Remove the steaks from the grill to a clean plate. Loosely tent with bowl or a sheet of aluminum foil and allow steaks to rest for 5 minutes before thinly slicing against the grain.
- Make the salad by adding the lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes, cilantro, mint, and shallots to a large bowl. Toss gently with salad tongs or two large spoons.
- Divide the salad among 4 plates. Top each plate with sliced steak. Drizzle each salad with 2 tablespoons of dressing and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of chopped peanuts just before serving.
Last Step! Please leave a review and rating letting us know how you liked this recipe! This helps our business thrive so we can continue providing free recipes and high-quality content for you.
To deseed the cucumber, slice the cucumber lengthwise then use a spoon to scrape out the seeds.
© The Real Food Dietitians
Pin Now to Make Later!
This post was made possible by Primal Kitchen. Although we received compensation for this post, the opinions expressed here are – as always – 100% our own. Thank you for supporting the great companies we work with thereby allowing us to continue creating great recipes and content for you.
Photo Credit: The photos in this blog post were taken by Rachel of Half Acre House
For ultimate success, we highly recommend reading the tips in the full blog post above. All photos and content are copyright protected. Please do not use our photos without prior written permission. If you wish to republish this recipe, please rewrite the recipe in your own unique words. Link back to the source recipe here on The Real Food Dietitians. Thank you!
Jessica is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist living in Boulder, CO with her husband and two daughters. She’s been described as a ‘real food evangelist’ and loves sharing her knowledge with others to help them break free of the diet mentality and find their own food freedom. In her spare time, she enjoys CrossFit, telemark skiing, mountain biking, and camping out under the stars.