What’s The Difference Between Inside And Outside Skirt Steak?

Everyone wants to find their perfect type of steak. With more common types available from sirloin and rump, on top of more premium cuts like tomahawk and ribeye, it’s always easy to overlook cuts like inside and outside skirt steak. 

What’s The Difference Between Inside And Outside Skirt Steak

But what is skirt steak, what does it taste like, and what’s the difference between the inside and outside variations?

Follow the rest of our guide to find out.

What Is Inside Skirt Steak?

The idea behind this cut is that you’re getting a piece of meat with all the flavor of the flank steak without having to pay for the extra cost or trouble involved in buying a whole flank steak.

This steak comes from the bottom half of the cow, which means there are only two sides: the belly side and the loin end.

The best way to cook skirt steak is by grilling it over medium heat. You want to sear the outside so the exterior gets crispy while keeping the interior tender. To do this, you’ll need a grill pan or cast-iron skillet since it won’t get as hot as your regular stovetop. 

What Does Inside Skirt Steak Taste Like?

Inside skirt steak has a similar texture to flank steak but is much leaner. It can be cooked just like any other steak – by searing both sides until they get nice and browned before finishing off in the oven.

When cooking, it doesn’t matter if your steaks have been marinated or not because the marinating process will help keep them moist.

What Is an Outside Skirt Steak?

Outside skirt steak is very different from its inside counterpart. The outside portion of the steer is known as the flank steak, and it’s usually the most expensive part of the animal.

Because the flank steak has a lot of fat and connective tissue, it takes longer to cook and requires a higher temperature to finish. Cook it too long and it becomes tough; undercook it and it might lack some of the flavors.

What Does Outside Skirt Steak Taste Like?

The outside skirt steak tastes similar to beef brisket. There aren’t many cuts that can compare to the flavor of brisket, but outside skirt steak falls into that category.

It’s got a strong beefy flavor that’s full of umami. If you’ve never had beef brisket, I would recommend trying it first. It’s something that everyone should experience at least once.

Skirt steak is often used as an ingredient in stews, chili, burgers, tacos, and other dishes. It also makes great sandwiches!

What Are The Differences Between Outside And Inside Skirt Steak? How Do You Know Which One To Buy?

When shopping for skirt steak, you’ll notice that the price ranges vary based on whether it’s coming from the inside or outside portion of the cow.

The inside skirt steak starts around $10 per pound, whereas the outside version runs about $12 per pound. The main difference is in the amount of fat and connective tissues.

If you know that you like beef brisket, then you probably already know how to tell the difference between the two kinds of skirt steak. If you don’t, here are a few things to look out for when deciding what kind you want to buy.

Fat Content

You’re going to see a big difference in the fat content depending on where the steak came from.

What’s The Difference Between Inside And Outside Skirt Steak (2)

For example, sirloin steaks and filet steaks have been known to have less fat than other cuts like rump and ribeye. It all depends on what body part the steak has been cut from.

Inside Skirt Steak – Less Fat

This type of skirt steak is going to be a little leaner than the outside variety since it doesn’t contain as much fat and will taste a lot less fatty as a result.

Outside Skirt Steak – More Fat

The outside skirt steak will have more fat than the inside one. That’s because it comes from the more fatty area of the cow and therefore has a higher fat content than the inside variation of the steak cut.

Connective Tissues

Inside skirt steak isn’t going to have as much connective tissue as the outside version. That’s because the inside portion of the cow is going to be less developed than the outside skirt, having less connective tissue.

Connected tissue is made up of collagen fibers and helps make the meat tender. 

Final Thoughts

Because of how similar the names are, you’d be forgiven for not knowing that these two steaks have a lot of differences.

Inside steak tends to be a bit leaner in looks and taste, with outside skirt steak having a higher fat level. Both also have different tastes in general, with outside skirt steak tasting quite similar to beef brisket. 

Everything about taste always comes down to personal opinion and whether certain people prefer certain flavors in different cuts of steak.

Paired with a good texture, your perfect steak might be one of these two forms of beef, with both having their positives and negatives. Hopefully, our guide has helped you choose your next steak meal!

John Rinder