Sirloin steak is economical and delicious with a hearty beef taste. Learn how to grill sirloin that is moist and tender with the seasoning of your choice or my special marinade.
I originally called this recipe Bourbon Street Sirloin Steak a la Applebees, which seemed fine in 2010, but they changed their recipe a number of years ago.
I liked the old Applebee version a bit more than the current version. But mine is better than both. So, I changed the name, but that doesn't change my recipe.
I have always wondered how a relatively cheap piece of beef got so darn good. It was an obvious target to recreate. If this were a throw-down, I'd win—better taste, very tender and moister than the 2010 (or current) Applebee's version.
A simple marinade for about 1 hour, then 9-12 minutes on the grill. Grrrrreat!!!!! This one goes in my repeat over and over file.
But the basic technique of grilling sirloin works with the seasoning of your choice, so if you don't have the time for the marinade, skip it and just season and cook.
And one final tidbit, the Applebee's version was named after Bourbon Street, not bourbon the drink. Hence, no bourbon in the recipe.
I have to do the five since the taste and moisture were great. But it is sirloin and not quite higher-end steaks, so call it a higher 4 if you want.
🐄What is Sirloin Steak?
We are going to talk American terms for a few minutes. The sirloin is located behind the short loin, which is where strip steaks and t-bones come are located. There is the "top sirloin," which costs the most of sirloin and is most tender. It will definitely be labeled as top to fetch the premium price.
The bottom sirloin is where the sirloin steaks come from (what I'm cooking here). Also, the tri-tip roast comes from the bottom sirloin. Under that will be the sirloin tip roast.
In other parts of the world, what we call the loin area is called the sirloin, and what we call the sirloin is called the rump.
👨🍳Tenderizing Sirloin Steak
Top sirloin won't need quite this much attention, but the standard "sirloin steak" can benefit from some tenderizing.
I'm taking "two bites of the apple," so to speak, in this recipe. I'm using both a mechanical tenderizer and a chemical. The chemical is Adolf's meat tenderizer which has a pineapple extract to help tenderize. You can skip either one or both, but your steak will be a bit less tender.
While I suggest my marinade, you can season like any other steak. Just some salt and pepper will be fine. I frequently use All Purpose Seasoning - 7:2:1 and 7:2:2, which adds some garlic, also.
Many people will use a standard seasoning like Montreal seasoning, which will provide excellent results.
Any grill should work; you just need to get it very hot. Either gas or charcoal is fine. It just needs to be very hot.
Since it is beef, just turn it up to the max. For charcoal grills, also as hot as it goes.
⏰How Long to Grill
A good estimate of total cooking time with a hot grill is 9 to 12 minutes. There are many variables: the exact grill temperature, the thickness of the steak, and your desired final temperature.
A sirloin is from a well-used muscle area of the cow, so it tends to be tougher. It is also leaner than many other cuts, so it is best cooked on the rarer side. If you like your beef well done, you should pick a different cut of meat.
YOUR TIME WILL VARY and NEVER COOK BY TIME ALONE. There you have it. I apologize for "yelling," but I can not emphasize those points enough.
Like most cooking, there are many variables.
- The size and thickness of the meat
- The exact temperature of the meat
- The grill temperature at the start of cooking
- How much heat your grill loses during flips
- Your desired final internal temperature
You must have an instant-read meat thermometer to do this correctly.
|Doneness||Internal Temperature||Approx. Grill TIme|
|Rare-cold red center||125°-130°||6-7 Hard to get right|
|Medium Rare-warm red center||130°-135°||7-9|
|Medium-pink and firm||140°-150°||9-12|
|Medium Well-minimal pink||150°-155°||12-14|
|Well Done-firm and brown (not recommended)||160°+||14+|
📖Grilled Steak Recipes
🖼️Step-by-Step Photo Instructions
Please note images may vary some since they are from several cookings over time.
Trim two sirloin steaks, about 8 oz. each and about 1 inch thick.
Clean and oil grill. Preheat the grill on high. Wait to preheat if using the marinade.
Optional: Use a mechanical meat tenderizer if available to prep meat. If not available, use a narrow knife and puncture each side about 20 times.
Optional Marinade: In a 1-gallon zip lock bag, mix 1 cups water, 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce, 2 tablespoon soy sauce, 4 teaspoons chili powder, 2 teaspoons garlic powder, 2 teaspoons paprika, 2 teaspoons pepper, ½ teaspoon salt, 1 ½ teaspoon Adolf's meat tenderizer, 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper, 1 teaspoon onion powder, and ½ teaspoon oregano. Place meat in marinade and refrigerate for about 2 hours (1-4 hour range).
If not using the marinade, then season to your taste with salt and pepper or another seasoning. Grill with lid closed over high heat for 5 minutes and turn. Continue until you reach the internal temp of your choice. 140°-145° (medium) will take 9-12 minutes total usually.
Remove and let rest for 5 minutes.
Grilled Sirloin Steak with Marinade
- 2 sirloin steaks - about 8 oz and 1 inch thick each
- Salt and Pepper to test - or seasoning of choice.
Suggested Steak Marinade- do not add other seasoning if used.
- 1 cups water
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 4 teaspoons chili powder
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 2 teaspoons pepper
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 ½ teaspoon Adolf's meat tenderizer - optional
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon oregano
- Trim two sirloin steaks, about 8 oz. each and about 1 inch thick.
- Clean and oil grill. Preheat the grill on high. Wait to preheat if using the marinade.
- Optional: Use a mechanical meat tenderizer if available to prep meat. If not available, use a narrow knife and puncture each side about 20 times.
- Optional Marinade: In a 1-gallon zip lock bag, mix 1 cups water, 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce, 2 tablespoon soy sauce, 4 teaspoons chili powder, 2 teaspoons garlic powder, 2 teaspoons paprika, 2 teaspoons pepper, ½ teaspoon salt, 1 ½ teaspoon Adolf's meat tenderizer, 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper, 1 teaspoon onion powder, and ½ teaspoon oregano. Place meat in marinade and refrigerate for about 2 hours (1-4 hour range).
- If not using the marinade, then season to your taste with salt and pepper or another seasoning. Grill with lid closed over high heat for 5 minutes and turn. Continue until you reach the internal temp of your choice. 140°-145° (medium) will take 9-12 minutes total usually.
- Remove from the grill and let rest for 5 minutes.
My Private Notes
- Top Sirloin is best for this recipe—about 8 oz each and about 1 inch thick.
- Top sirloin will usually do well without tenderization, but others should probably be tenderized somehow.
- I include both chemical and mechanical tenderization. You can skip one or both if you wish, but the steak will be a bit less tender.
- The marinade is good in one hour but better in 2-4 hours.
- Thicker sirloin will take longer to cook.
- Please be sure to use an instant-read thermometer to get the results right for you. Never cook steak by time alone. Time is provided only to help in your planning, not as the exact cooking time. The variables of the grill, the meat temperature, meat thickness, and other things can change the cooking time.
To adjust the recipe size:
You may adjust the number of servings in this recipe card under servings. This does the math for the ingredients for you. BUT it does NOT adjust the text of the instructions. So you need to do that yourself.
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Originally Published May 1, 2010. Updated with expanded options, refreshed photos, and a table of contents to help navigation.