HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >


London Broil

So, I had a beautiful London Broil from Stew Leonards - I seasoned it with Penzy's Chicago seasoning and put it on a hot oiled grill. 4 minutes per side. Let it rest 1-15 minutes.
My problem was it was a bit tough.
The only thing I can think of is that I should brought the meat to room temp before grilling?
Any ideas?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I always marinate my london broil first, then bring it too temp and grill to rare. Let rest for a few minutes. A teriyaki style marinade is good- lemon, oil, soy cause, garlic, ginger and honey. Just cut up the lemon, garlice and ginger and all the liquids to a zip lock bag. Another marinade- which sounds odd but is tasty- equal parts coca cola, ketchup and italian dressing.
    I think the marinades tenderize the meat. London broil is a favorite when I am cooking beef for a crowd.

    7 Replies
    1. re: macca

      How did you cut it? Thin slices across the grain are best. This isn't a tender piece of meat from the loin.

      1. re: paulj

        Yup- thin slices across the grain. My butcher is great- when I am feeding a crowd, I have him cut me a few steaks about 2 to 2.5 inches thick. You are right about this not being a tender piece- hence the marinade.

        1. re: paulj

          In fact London Broil can be a variety of cuts from flank to top round

          1. re: scubadoo97

            My understanding is that "london broil" isn't really a cut but a preparation method. That some vendors will sell a cut of meat as "london broil" is purely for marketing reasons.

            1. re: jgg13

              Pretty much what I was saying that it could be a number of things. Usually it is a cut from a single muscle. I understand and agree it is more of a prep method but name is used as a marketing tool. Some say that london broil is often flank steak. I would be thrilled if I ever saw one in the market that was a flank. Most are top rounds.

          2. re: paulj

            When I do London Broil on the foreman grill, i marinade it in olive oil, kitchen bouquet or gravy master, garlic pepper, rosemary, thyme, and let it sit in a ziploc in the frig for at least four hours, then on the counter for an hour. Tender every time...

          3. re: macca

            I also maritnate mine, with similar ingredients, adding red wine and worcestershire as well. a couple hours really tenderizes the meat.

          4. Pretty much any piece of meat should be brought up to room temperature before grilling it.

            1. London broil can be tough at times, so I always marinate first and done well with that process

              1. It's not my favorite cut of meat. I'd try flank steak or a tri-tip for more flavor.

                1. Next time you decide to have the same London Broil, consider slow roasting the meat first in your oven @ 225* first for about 90-120 minutes, depending on the thickness of the meat. You need not sear the meat, and you will have no fear of overcooking the meat, trust me.

                  You can do any or all of the suggestions for marinating first, bringing to room temperature and even letting the meat rest. When you are ready to grill or reheat, do the same as your original post and the results will be much different.

                  This method I have explained is used at many catering facilities where a large number of guests would be served. At many Country Clubs, this is how Tri-Tips and Flap Meats are cooked and served at Golf Outings with Carving Stations. The marinade is usually simple soy sauce and olive oil. The slow roasting process along with marinating breaks the meat down and tenderizes.

                  1. Try this method next time for a tender London Broil without marinade:
                    Room temp to start.
                    Use a tightly covered fry pan.
                    Heat pan, place in, cover tighly, 2 minutes one side, keep covered
                    Remove from heat after 2 minutes (3 if really thick), keep covered off heat for 5 minutes.
                    Open, flip, cover, place on high heat for 2 minutes, covered, remove for 5 minutes and eat.

                    6 Replies
                    1. re: kc girl


                      I have to say this simple method intrigued me so much, I went out and purchased a Top Round London Broil today to test the recipe. The meat weighed two pounds and was 1.5 inches thick.....evenly cut from end to end. I followed your instructions exactly and used a digital timer for each stage. I started with an extremely hot pan, added the beef and proceeded with your instructions.

                      The results and my observations are as follows:

                      1. The initial sear is very, very smokey, but the lid contained the smoke nicely and no smoke alarms went off.

                      2. Upon removing the lid after seven minutes and flipping the meat, the meat has a great loss of meat juices escaping into the pan.....the meat appears to have steamed as a result, during the five minute phase, as the top/second side is grayish in color.

                      3. Two minutes of covered cooking on the second side, and another five minutes rest.....I remove the lid and see the liquid did not evaporate, but the pan juices look like they would make a nice sauce with the addition of some butter or wine.

                      4. The second side of cooking does not brown or sear at all, and it appears more meat juices escape from the meat. I slice the meat across the grain and the entire piece of meat is well done.......slightly dry, not coughing dry. The meat was edible, but overcooked and not to my liking. It wasn't to too tough to chew surprisingly. Possibly the meat was too thin to begin with, so I will try this method one more time,,,,,,,,,,,

                      With a thicker piece of meat and when the meat goes on sale.......

                      1. re: fourunder

                        Sorry to hear that it was overdone.
                        Mine always comes out medium rare, so I will get more exact time for you with meat weight and thickness and type of pan.
                        And, I use oil in the pan (ooops).
                        I wish I could watch you. I've done it so many times with great results.

                        1. re: fourunder

                          Did you season it first? I don't season until after.
                          Since it is is a "London Broil" maybe all is best to broil as everyone does.
                          But, I have found this pan roasting method to work for me and it is always more tender than broiling. (Maybe I don't broil well?)
                          Maybe it depends on the amount of liquid in meat to begin with? I usually get a medium rare with about a tablespoon of juice or so. (and, you're right. It makes a great sauce - many kinds - but I usually have to add some Johnny's Au Jus concentrate after I remove the meat)
                          When I flip it, the top sides are "steamy gray" but middle is visibly pink.
                          What kind of pan are you using? Some shapes hold heat differently.
                          Maybe it just works for me?
                          Thanks for reporting.

                        2. re: kc girl

                          KC - I'm confused as to what the purpose of the cover is. It's not like you're braising the meat. Maybe I'm just missing something, but I don't see what covering does. If it works for you, more power to you.

                          1. re: jhopp217

                            Keeping the lid on tight makes it like an oven.

                            There should not be braising as that is cooking in liquid.

                            If you want, you can retain the liquid from the first when you open the lid to flip the meat after five minutes, heat up the pan without the meat for a minute on high, put in the meat on the second side, and cover tightly. Sometimes there is more liquid in the pan than I want on the second side sear so thats what I do. Then return the juices to make gravy. Anyway, no braising in this method.

                            After the high heat cooks and browns, keeping it covered off any heat for five minutes keeps it cooking, but very slowly. It's kind of like pan roasting, but you don't put it in the oven after searing. You need a heavy bottom pan so that it stays hot. Aluminum pans won't work this way.

                            See experts on pan roasting here http://www.honestcuisine.com/archives...

                            And consider the tight lid make a small oven stovetop.

                            A good pan with a tight lid that is appropriate size for piece of meat will keep the meat hot enough to cook through without putting it in the oven after the high heat first few minutes.

                            Works for me every time.

                          2. re: kc girl

                            KC- wanted to let you know I just tried your method and it worked beautifully! I have never been able to cook a london broil that didn't turn out like shoe leather. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

                          3. My favorite London Broil recipe is 1/2 bottle of Teriyaki Sauce, 1/2 bottle/can of stout like Guiness or Samuel Smith Oatmeal Stout and 1/2 cup of chopped onion. Marinate steak for several hours and then rinse/pat off the remaining marinade off steak overwise the outside gets burned and inside is underdone.

                            1. I marinate the thin slices of London Broil in a mixture of soy sauce, baking soda, sugar, cornstarch and oil for 2 hours. Then stir fry ginger and green onion, before adding a quick cooked broccoli and the meat with seasoning sauce. It is a tough meat but marinating and quick stir frying makes it very tender.

                              1. I am responding to your OP, but will also comment on some of the other posts. This is something that drives me crazy with people I know personally when it comes to London Broil. London Broil is a method, not a cut of meat, regardless of what that little sticker the butcher puts on it says. Usually it's flank, shoulder or round. The best way to get nice juicy steaks is to marinate them for at least 3 hours in the refrigerator. I like to throw the meat in a plastic bag and pour the marinade in it, and massage it about once every half hour (do not score the meat). There is no reason to bring the meat to room temperature. While grilling is one way to cook it, the best way is to broil it...thus the name. If grilling, only leave on high heat for 2-3 minutes per side, and then let sit on a cooler part of the grill for about 5-6 more minutes. Flipping once. Total cooking time should be between 10-12 minutes. Let sit for at least 10 minutes before cutting. The most important thing about this dish is how you cut it. It must be across the grain into nice thin strips.

                                I have had very good and very bad london broil. If you overcook it, it's no longer london broil, as it's supposed to be served medium rare.. If you don't marinate it, it will be dry. If you cut it the wrong way, it will be very difficult to eat. I also have a friend who barbecues all the time and he never let's meat sit. With LB, this is especially necessary.

                                The only thing I can suggest to you is to use a liquid marinade next time and let it sit in the firdge for at least 2 hours.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: jhopp217

                                  I disagree a bit about the cut. When I moved to Seattle, I was told the same thing by the butcher, that it is a method not a cut. But where I grew up in NJ, if you request a london broil, any butcher would give you an oyster cut top round, without question. Not being a butcher, I don't know the technicality of all this, but I think the tradition part is regional. But yes, always marinate!

                                2. To those who may not know what "oyster cut" for London Broil is,

                                  Not very many supermarkets sell Oyster Cut for London Broil (packaging label actually will say "Oyster Cut") and you might understand from the above link as to why, and so it does cost more per pound than all the other cuts for London Broil. In my area, the only supermarket that used to consistently sell it was Foodtown but they closed in my town some years ago.