This tender stuffed flank steak recipe is packed with spinach, a mix of chilies and gooey cheese for the perfect holiday or anytime meal. Stuff, sear, bake! So easy!
Are you a fan of flank steak? I sure am. I never liked it as a kid because I thought it was chewy, but I believe it was in how it was prepared. As I grew older and learned how to cook, I came to truly appreciate the simplicity and flavor of a good flank steak.
With the holidays upon us, I encourage you to consider the humble flank steak as an option for a dinner party. Most of us in the U.S. think right away of fat stuffed turkeys and large bone-in hams, but if you're in the mood for a change-up or something a bit different this year, a flank steak will surely deliver.
Like this particular recipe - Spinach, Cheese and Chili Stuffed Flank Steak.
With this recipe, we're not just slapping a slab of flank steak in front of you, which wouldn't be all that bad, to be honest.
Today, we're stuffing it full of fresh baby spinach, flavorful melty cheese, and a selection of chili peppers that you can easily adjust to your own heat level preference.
We butterfly the flank steak, stuff it, tie it up, then season and sear it just before finishing it in the oven. Not only is this stuffed flank steak HUGE on flavor, it's actually very easy to prepare and cook up.
It won't take hours and hours like a turkey.
All that said, let's talk about how to make stuffed flank steak, shall we?
- Flank Steak. Skirt steak is good, too.
- Seasonings. Use Cajun seasonings, salt and pepper.
- Chili Peppers. I'm using sweet golden treasures from my garden (but you can use yellow bell peppers), and serrano peppers. Use hotter peppers if you'd like.
- Other Vegetables. Onion, garlic, and baby spinach.
- Cheese. I'm using Monterrey jack cheese, though you can use your favorite melty cheese.
- Olive Oil. For searing the stuffed flank steak.
How to Make Stuffed Flank Steak - the Recipe Method
BUTTERFLY THE FLANK STEAK. Use a sharp knife to trim any excess fat from the steak, then slice the flank steak along the thin edge almost entirely through, a bit at a time, until the steak opens up like a book.
You can see how wide it is and how it is supposed to look after you butterfly it, cut along the edges of the steak on the cutting board.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Season the steak with Cajun seasonings, salt and pepper.
With the steak opened up, layer on your stuffing ingredients. First, start with the chopped onion and garlic.
The Chili Peppers. Layer them on as evenly as possible. Chop larger peppers into small chunks and slice smaller peppers, like these serranos from my garden, in half or quarters. Choose a selection at your own preferred heat level.
Baby Spinach. You can really load it up here, as the baby spinach will squeeze down easily, and will also soften up and shrink in size from the cooking process.
Cheese. Load this baby up with lots of cheese. I fit 2 cups of shredded Monterrey Jack here. I may have over stuffed it just a tad.
Get Rolling. Roll up the flank steak so that all of the ingredients are stuffed inside of it. I spilled a tiny bit. Oops!
Kitchen Twine. Tie it up with cooking twine. This will help keep everything together as it cooks. Without the kitchen twine, the steak may unravel and spill out the stuffing. Coat with bread crumbs here if you'd like.
Sear the Steak. Heat some oil in a large cast iron pan or pot to medium-high heat. Sear the stuffed flank steak 4-5 minutes on each side, until you get a nice char.
Finish it Off in the Oven. Transfer the pan to the oven (or use a baking dish) and bake for 25 - 30 minutes, or until it is done to your preference. See the recipe notes for cooking times and temperatures.
Remove the steak from the oven and cover it with aluminum foil. Let it rest for 5 minutes to come up to temperature, then slice and serve.
BOOM! That's it, my friends! Pretty easy, right? Cooks up much faster than a holiday bird! Dinner on the table in under an hour.
I love that.
Here are answers to some common questions people have when making a stuffed flank steak.
Recipe Tips & Notes
- Flatten the Flank Steak. After you butterfly the steak, you can pound it flatter with a meat tenderizer or with a rolling pin. This will spread the steak out even further, making it easier to stuff. This is an optional step, but some people enjoy the results.
- The Seasonings. I like to use Cajun seasonings as my typical go-to, but use your favorites. Creole seasoning is excellent, as is blackening seasoning or your own preferred blend, such as Old Bay or even a nice smoky paprika.
- Recommended Steak Cooking Temps. Test your steak with a good meat thermometer to achieve the perfect cook. Here are the recommended temperatures for steak and beef: Rare: 125 F degrees - Medium Rare: 135 F degrees - Medium: 145 F degrees - Medium Well: 150 F degrees - Well Done: 160 F degrees. Pull the steak out 5 degrees lower than your preferred doneness, as it will continue to cook and the internal temperature will rise a bit during the resting period.
- Meat Thermometer. I like to use my Thermapen meat thermometer from ThermoWorks (I’m an affiliate) to get the perfect temperature every time. Works great!
That's it, my friends! I hope you enjoy my stuffed flank steak recipe. It really is a great recipe, perfect for a very nice dinner or holiday meal. Great for a crowd!
Try Some of My Other Popular Holiday Recipes
- Chipotle-Honey Glazed Ham
- Sausage Stuffing
- Cornbread Dressing
- Chipotle Mashed Sweet Potatoes
- Papas con Chile – Cheese Tex-Mex Mashed Potatoes
Try Some of My Other Flank Steak Recipes
Got any questions? Ask away! I’m happy to help. If you enjoy this recipe, I hope you’ll leave a comment with some STARS. Also, please share it on social media. Don’t forget to tag us at #ChiliPepperMadness. I’ll be sure to share! Thanks! — Mike H.
Stuffed Flank Steak Recipe
- 2 pound flank steak
- 2 tablespoons Cajun seasonings
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 yellow bell peppers cored and sliced (I used some sweet golden treasure peppers from my garden)
- 6 serrano peppers sliced
- 1 small onion chopped
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 8 ounces baby spinach
- 2 cups shredded Monterrey jack cheese or use your favorite melty cheese
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- BUTTERFLY THE FLANK STEAK. Use a sharp knife to trim any excess fat from the steak, then slice the flank steak along the thin edge almost entirely through, a bit at a time, until the steak opens up like a book.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Season the steak with Cajun seasonings, salt and pepper.
- With the steak opened up, layer on the peppers, garlic and onion, then the baby spinach, then the cheese.
- Roll the steak up so that all of the ingredients are stuffed inside of it. Tie it up with cooking twine.
- Heat the oil in a large cast iron pan or pot to medium-high heat. Sear the stuffed flank steak on each side, 4-5 minutes, until you get a nice char.
- Transfer the pan to the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until it is done to your preference. See the recipe notes for cooking times and temperatures.
- Remove the steak from the oven and cover it with aluminum foil. Let it rest for 5 minutes, then slice and serve.
• Medium Rare: 135 F degrees
• Medium: 145 F degrees
• Medium Well: 150 F degrees
• Well Done: 160 F degrees See Recommended Steak Cooking Temps.
Harrison Bowman says
Cooked as listed and was pretty good. De seeded sarranos for wife's taste. Concept is awesome. Options of stuffings offer unlimited taste. Actually better the next day as left overs. Flank steak if you've never had, is a bit tough. But in fairness, we cooked to med. rare. Thanks for the recipe.
Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness says
I appreciate you giving it a go, Harrison. Yes, flank steak is not quite as tender as other cuts, but it is packed with a lot of flavor. You can up that flavor quotient next time with some extra seasonings, possibly a marinade - see my jacked up steak marinade recipe or my carne asada marinade recipe - and playing with the stuffing ingredients to your preference. Happy to help you adapt!
Agreed on all points. Marinating your steak in soy sauce can help to break down the proteins and tenderize the meat. You only need a few sprinkles on each side (Don't let him "swim" in soy sauce.) To avoid absorbing a bunch of soy sauce flavor, marinate for at least 30 minutes to an hour before ready to cook.