This Steak Salad Takes Inspiration From A Classic Brunch Cocktail

Note: This article may contain commentary or the author's opinion.

The Bloody Mary is the classic brunch cocktail, with the Mimosa a close second. What makes the Bloody Mary so popular may be because it is a meal in a glass. Salty, briny, and bursting with tomato flavor flecked with spice, the liquid is accompanied with garnishes that range from a simple celery stalk or pickle spear to a stacked-high skewer of cheese, salami, and peppers.

But can you make the best of the Bloody Mary (minus the alcohol) and add it to steak?

Of course you can!

This fabulous recipe from Food52’s Ali Slagle takes the salty and spicy condiments of the classic cocktail and uses them in both a dressing and a marinade. Two types of vinegar, lemon, horseradish, Worcestershire sauce, and hot sauce join pickles, olives, celery, jalapeños, and cherry tomatoes, to tenderize a slab of skirt steak. You then slice the meat and top it with blue cheese, parsley, and celery leaves.  Many people don’t like blue cheese, regarding the flavor as too sharp, rich, or funky, but it marries beautifully with the steak. Omit it if you…just…can’t.

The trick to treating the steak right is to grill it without seasoning as it will sit in the marinade for an hour after grilling.  The marinade will “invade” the meat, breaking down its fibers, and rendering it soft and flavorful. Skirt steak is the cut of choice here, but make sure the butcher trims the fibrous membrane off for you so you don’t have to do it at home. If you prefer the thicker-cut hanger steak, you can swap it in. Flank steak is another option.

Serve the salad immediately after preparing, or wait until it gets to room temperature. And don’t be afraid to serve this salad alongside side some eggs and, of course, a cocktail.


  • 1 1/2 pounds skirt steak (or hanger steak)
  • 1 tablespoon Sherry or red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • Juice from 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons of your favorite hot sauce
  • 1/4 cup chopped briny green olives, plus 2 tablespoons olive brine, divided
  • 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup celery half-moons, plus some leaves for garnish, if you’d like
  • 2 tablespoons pickled jalapeños
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese
  • 1/2 cup parsley leaves


  1. In a pan over high heat or on the grill, sear the unseasoned steak until browned well on both sides and cooked to medium-rare or desired temperature, about 3 to 4 minutes on each side. Allow the steak to rest while you prepare the other ingredients.
  2. In a large bowl, combine both kinds of vinegar, lemon juice, horseradish, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, and olive brine. Then add the red onion, celery, jalapeños, olives, and tomatoes. Grind a good amount of black pepper over top and stir to combine.
  3. Slice the meat into 1/2-inch slices across the grain and add to the salad. Mix again and allow to marinate for at least 30 minutes for the flavors to meld.
  4. When you’re ready to eat, add the blue cheese, parsley, and celery leaves if you remembered to hold onto them.

You can watch a technique to prepare Bloody Mary steak here.

"*" indicates required fields

Do you prefer nuts in your chocolate chip cookies?*
This poll gives you free access to our premium politics newsletter. Unsubscribe at any time.
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.