Firing Up for a Grilliant Summer

Simple steps for grilling brilliantly

Firecracker Burgers with Cooling Lime Sauce
Grecian Top Loin Steaks and Mushroom Kabobs

(Family Features) Whether cooking on a gas or charcoal grill, at home, at a park or at a tailgate, grilling provides an unmistakable aroma, a sizzling sound and maximum flavor. And research shows that when it comes to grilling, nearly three out of four Americans choose beef as the meat they grill the most often; but nearly 30 percent are still looking for more information on how to harness the power of the grill.

For guaranteed, delicious results when grilling beef, try following these three easy steps:

1. Choose Your Cut

Some of the best cuts for grilling include naturally tender ribeye, top loin (aka strip) and ground beef. Flank steak is also an excellent choice after a dip in a tenderizing marinade.

Tip: Rubs and marinades are easy ways to add flavor and tenderize.

2. Prepare Your Beef

Prepare grill (gas or charcoal) according to manufacturer's directions for medium heat. Remove beef from refrigerator and season with herbs and spices, as desired.

Tip: Wait to salt until after cooking so you don't draw out the natural, flavorful juices from the meat.

3. Grill
Place beef on grates and grill, covered, turning occasionally. Test doneness with meat thermometer: Cook burgers to 160°F and steaks to 145°F for medium rare or 160°F for medium.

Tip: Turn steaks with long handled tongs instead of a fork. Do not press down on steaks or burgers as flavorful juices will be lost.

Tip: For detailed grilling time by cut, visit and type in "grilling."

More ways to master your "grilliance"

  • Temperature is critical when grilling. Don't grill over high heat - this may cause charring on the outside before the inside has reached desired doneness, which is why it's best to grill over medium heat. If using a charcoal grill, make sure the coals are white, ash-covered.

  • Trim visible fat before grilling to prevent flare-ups.

  • Less tender cuts, like flank steak, benefit from a tenderizing marinade. Think acidic ingredients like lime juice or vinaigrette.

  • Keep raw meat separate from other foods. Use clean plates and utensils for cooked food.

For more delicious recipes, grilling tips and simple rub or marinade ideas, visit

Firecracker Burgers with Cooling Lime Sauce


  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef
  • 6 sesame seed sandwich rolls, split, toasted
  • 1 cup watercress or mixed spring greens
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • 1 tablespoon Caribbean jerk seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup low-fat plain yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons grated lime peel
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt


  1. Combine ground beef and seasoning ingredients in large bowl, mixing lightly but thoroughly. Shape into six 1/2-inch-thick patties.
  2. Place patties on grid over medium, ash-covered coals. Grill, covered, 8 to 10 minutes (over medium heat on preheated gas grill, 7 to 9 minutes) until instant-read thermometer inserted horizontally into center registers 160°F, turning occasionally.
  3. Meanwhile, combine sauce ingredients in small bowl; set aside.
  4. Spread sauce on cut sides of rolls. Place one burger on bottom half of each roll; top evenly with watercress. Close sandwiches.

Makes 6 servings

Total Time: 35 minutes

Grecian Top Loin Steaks and Mushroom Kabobs


Lemon Pepper Rub
  • 3 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons lemon pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
Steak and Kabobs
  • 1 pound medium mushrooms
  • 1 medium red onion, cut into wedges
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6 lemon wedges
  • 2 boneless beef top loin steaks, cut 1 inch thick (about 1 1/4 pounds)
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese (optional)


  1. Combine rub ingredients.
  2. Combine mushrooms, onion, oil and 2 teaspoons rub in medium bowl; toss. Alternately thread mushrooms and onion onto six 12-inch metal skewers. Finish with a lemon wedge.
  3. Press remaining rub onto beef steaks. Place steaks and kabobs on grid over medium, ash-covered coals. Grill steaks, covered, 11 to 14 minutes (over medium heat on preheated gas grill, 11 to 15 minutes) for medium rare (145°F) to medium (160°F) doneness, turning occasionally. Grill kabobs 6 to 8 minutes or until mushrooms are tender, turning occasionally.
  4. Remove vegetables from skewers; toss with cheese, if desired. Carve steaks. Season beef and vegetables with salt.

Serves: Makes 4 servings

Total Time: 30 minutes

SOURCE: The Beef Checkoff

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