Grilled Teriyaki Steak with Grilled Pineapple Salsa


This Grilled Teriyaki Steak is juicy, tender, flavourful and cooked to wood-fired perfection on the Traeger. Serve it with a quick-and-easy grilled pineapple salsa alongside some grilled veggies or steamed rice for a delicious lunch or dinner. You can prep almost everything in advance and cook things quickly before serving, making it a great option for a cookout or dinner party.

Grilled Teriyaki Steak with Grilled Pineapple Salsa

What You Need for the Grilled Teriyaki Steak

  • Steak: You can use any cut of steak your heart desires here – it’s also delicious with pork chops and chicken thighs. I find that this marinade works best on leaner and less coveted cuts of steak like top sirloin (used here), hanger, skirt or flank. It adds an incredible amount of flavour and the vinegar helps tenderize the meat.
  • Ginger and Garlic: Use fresh garlic and ginger to maximize the flavours and aromas in the grilled teriyaki steak. I like to finely grate them with a microplane rasp-style grater so that they practically dissolve into the marinade. You can also finely chop the ginger and garlic with a knife. Just be sure to brush off any pieces before grilling or they will scorch and turn bitter.
  • Coconut Aminos: Coconut aminos are naturally gluten-free and soy-free, making them a great substitute for soy sauce. It tends to be slightly sweet and much less salty than soy sauce so you’ll still want to add some sodium to the marinade. I like to use a combination of kosher salt and fish sauce.
  • Fish Sauce: On its own, fish sauce is pungent, funky and overpowering. But when added to a marinade like this one, it adds a depth of salty, savoury, umami flavour that you just can’t replicate. Red Boat makes a fish sauce with nothing but anchovies and sea salt. It’s excellent and a great pantry staple to have.
  • Rice Vinegar: Adding vinegar to the marinade will help tenderize the grilled teriyaki steak, especially when using leaner cuts like top sirloin, flank or hanger steaks. It will also help cut through the richness of the meat when used as a sauce for serving.
  • Toasted Sesame Oil: A little goes a long way when it comes to sesame oil. The flavours will get toned down as it cooks, but since the marinade doubles as a sauce, I recommend adding a little bit at a time and tasting as you go so that you don’t accidentally overpower the sauce.
  • Gochujang: I sometimes like to add a spoonful or two of this sweet, savoury and spicy fermented Korean chile paste to the sauce before serving. It’s not Paleo or Whole30 but it will completely transforms the flavour of the sauce into something magical.

    The main reason I don’t add it to the marinade is because not everyone in my family likes spicy foods. This way I can control the heat levels and everyone is happy.
  • Honey: I like to add some honey to balance the savoury elements in the marinade and sauce. It will also let you achieve beautiful grill marks on the teriyaki steak because the honey will caramelize as it cooks.

    *Tip: If you want to make this recipe Whole3o, omit the honey and gochujang in the marinade. Before serving, add the reserved marinade to a sauce pan and cook over a medium heat until it reduces in volume by 1/2. The coconut aminos will caramelize and leave you with a much sweeter finished product.
Grilled Pineapple Salsa Gochujan Teriyaki Glaze Primal Gourmet

What You Need for the Grilled Pineapple Salsa

  • Pineapple: Peel and slice the pineapple into large pieces so that they don’t fall through the grill grates. The natural sugars in the fruit will caramelize on the grill and the flesh will soften and get extra juicy.
  • Red Bell Pepper: This will add sweetness, colour and texture to the salsa. You can also use green or yellow bell pepper if desired. The flavour will be slightly different but still delicious.
  • Red Onion: You can use any onion you like but I like the colour and flavour of red onion here. Especially since the pineapple is so sweet. If you want to take some of the edge off the onion, try rinsing it under some cold water before adding it to the salsa.
  • Green Onion: I know what you’re thinking. Two onions? Yes, the green onions are fragrant, slightly sweet and add a beautiful colour to the salsa.
  • Fresh Chile Pepper: I like red finger chiles because they’re mild, fruity and have a nice, small shape that presents beautifully. It means you can get away with using more of it without burning your face off.
  • Fresh Cilantro: If you’re not a fan of cilantro, try substituting a small amount of basil or fresh mint.
  • Fresh Lime: Use the zest and juice of the lime here. That way you also get the beautiful perfume.
Grilled Teriyaki Steak sliced against the grain

Slicing Against the Grain

Slicing steak against the grain will significantly impact the tenderness and mouthfeel. When slicing against the grain, you cut the steak perpendicular to the muscle fibers, resulting in more tender and easier-to-chew pieces.

The muscle fibers in steak run parallel to each other, and when the meat is cooked, these fibers contract and tighten, making the steak tougher. By cutting against the grain, you shorten the length of the fibers, breaking them up into smaller pieces. This not only improves the steak’s tenderness but also allows the natural juices to be retained, enhancing the flavor and succulence of each bite.

Slicing against the grain also improves the steak’s presentation. The cuts across the grain create shorter slices that display the marbling and texture of the meat, making it visually appealing. It also ensures that the flavour and tenderness are evenly distributed throughout the steak, providing a consistent eating experience.

Most steaks are sold pre-sliced but you can also buy whole cuts and slice them into individual steaks yourself. Top sirloin (AKA picanha) is a great example of steak often sold whole. If purchasing whole top sirloin, trim off as much or as little of the fat cap as you like. Slice into steaks 1.5″ thick with the grain at first. This will allow you to slice the steaks against the grain before serving. If you purchase the steaks pre-sliced and they’re already sliced against the grain, you will need to take that into consideration when slicing before serving.

Grilled Teriyaki Steak with Grilled Pineapple
Grilled Teriyaki Steak with Grilled Pineapple Salsa served over rice primal gourmet
Grilled Teriyaki Steak with Grilled Pineapple Salsa

Grilled Teriyaki Steak with Grilled Pineapple Salsa

This Grilled Teriyaki Steak is juicy, tender, flavourful and cooked to wood-fired perfection on the Traeger Grill.
Course Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine American, Asian
Keyword Grilled Pineapple Salsa, grilled steak, Grilled Teriyaki Steak, Pineapple Salsa
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
marinating time 6 hours
Total Time 6 hours 25 minutes
Servings 6 people


For the Teriyaki Steak:

  • 1.5 pounds top sirloin steak fat cap removed, substitute flank steak, skirt steak, ribeye, NY strip, tenderloin
  • 3 cloves garlic finely grated
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger finely grated
  • 1 cup coconut aminos
  • ¼ cup rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt plus more to taste
  • ½ teaspoon freshly-cracked black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons gochujang optional, plus more as desired

For the Grilled Pineapple Salsa:

  • ½ pineapple cut into large slices
  • ½ red bell pepper diced
  • ½ small red onion finely chopped
  • 2 green onions thinly sliced
  • 1 red finger chile thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
  • Zest and juice of 1 lime
  • Kosher salt and freshly-cracked black pepper to taste


For the Teriyaki Steak:

  • If your steak is not already pre-cut, slice it into 1.5” slices with the grain. This will make it easier to slice against the grain when serving. Transfer the steak to a bowl.
  • In a separate bowl, combine the garlic, ginger, coconut aminos, vinegar, honey, sesame oil, fish sauce, salt and pepper. Whisk until combined. Taste for seasoning and adjust with salt and pepper as desired – it should taste a little on the salty side because it is being used as a marinade. Pour 3/4 of the marinade over the steak and reserve the rest. Toss the steak with the marinade until well coated. Cover and refrigerate 4 to 6 hours.
  • Add the gochujang to the reserved marinade and whisk until smooth. Taste and adjust with more gochujang as desired. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
  • Preheat the Traeger Grill to 500F. Remove the steak from the fridge and let it come to room temperature.
  • Transfer the steaks to the hot Traeger grill, close the grill door and cook, undisturbed, until grill marks form, around 5 minutes. If using a conventional grill, cook the steaks over direct, medium-high heat. Flip and cook the other side until the thickest part of the steaks register 135F for a medium-rare center, around 4 more minutes. Baste the top side of each steak with the reserved marinade after flipping.
  • Transfer the steaks to a board and let them rest for at least 8 minutes before slicing against the grain. Serve with the grilled pineapple salsa and steamed rice.

For the Grilled Pineapple Salsa:

  • While the steaks are cooking, add the pineapple slices to the grill and cook, undisturbed, until grill marks form, around 5 minutes. Flip and cook the other side until grill marks form, around 4 more minutes.
  • Transfer the pineapple to a cutting board and dice with a sharp knife. Transfer the pineapple to a bowl along with the red pepper, red onion, green onion, chile pepper, cilantro, lime zest and lime juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste and toss everything to combine. Taste for seasoning and adjust with salt, pepper, and lime juice as desired. Serve with the grilled teriyaki steaks. Leftovers can be refrigerated up to 5 days.

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