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Coulotte Steak with Easy Chimichurri

Coulotte Steak with Easy Chimichurri

Coulotte steak is a very tender cut of beef making it a perfect cut to throw on the grill. Also referred to as Picanha, we top our beef coulotte with a flavorful chimichurri just like your favorite Brazilian steakhouse. Checkout our full collection of beef recipes.

What is Coulotte Steak

Coulotte steak is a well marbled and boneless cut of beef that surrounds the ribeye steak on the top sirloin portion of a cow (sirloin cap). This triangular shaped cut, with a large fat covering, is located on the hindquarter section and is the prized cut at Brazilian churrascaria (aka Brazilian Steakhouse).

This flavorful cut of beef is as tender as a filet mignon, with more fat marbling. 

Most grocery stores don’t stock coulotte steaks. If they do, they’re usually too thin to grill. Ask your butcher if he’s able to cut one for you. We have great success going this route.

There are a few online suppliers we purchase picanha roasts from: Wild Fork Foods, Snake River Farms and ButcherBox. Nothing beats a prime coulotte steak. Wild Fork Foods is the same place we buy pork belly for pork belly burnt ends.

There are QUITE a few names for this slab of big ol’ beef to keep your eyes peeled for, including:

  • Top sirloin cap steak
  • Top sirloin butt
  • Top butt cap
  • Rump cap
  • Picanha steak (pronounced pi-can-ya)

Coulotte Steaks on metal skewers.

Coulotte Steak vs Picanha

Coulotte steaks and Picanha are the exact same cut of beef. Picanha is the Portuguese name for Coulotte.

How to Cook Coulotte Steak

This Coulotte steak recipe is ridiculously easy to make. To cook coulotte steak, just follow these quick steps:

Cutting the Steaks

Trim the fat cap to your desired thickness. Make sure to keep a healthy chunk of it on as it adds moisture and flavor to the beef. Next, using a sharp knife, make light criss crossing slits in the top of the fat cap. Don’t go too deep. Slice the top sirloin cap steaks into 1″ – 1.5″ thick steaks.

If using metal skewers, now would be the time to thread the sirloin steaks on them. Just squish the steak into a “c” shaped figure and slide them the skewer through the middle.

Close up photo of a beef roast

Seasoning the Steaks

Drizzle the steaks with a thin layer of olive oil and coat with a healthy coating of the steak seasoning mix. We find a simple mix of garlic powder and salt and pepper works best when paired with the chimichurri.

Grilling the Steaks

This grilled coulotte steak recipe works great on a a gas grill or charcoal grill.

  • Gas Grill – Generously grease the grates and turn half the burners on medium-high heat (350 – 400 degrees), to maintain two grilling zones (direct and indirect). Cook according to the directions in the recipe card below.
  • Charcoal – Generously grease the grates and build a medium-high heat fire for indirect cooking. Cook according to the directions in the recipe card below.

Top Sirloin Butt Temperature

Cook steak coulotte by temperature, not time. Here are the “final doneness temperatures”. Your “pull from the grill” temperature will be 2-3°F below the temperatures called out below as resting will increase the temp. Use a meat thermometer to ensure accuracy.

  • Rare: 125°F – 130°F
  • Medium Rare: 130°F – 140°F
  • Medium: 140°F – 150°F
  • Medium Well: 150°F – 160°F
  • Well Done: 160°F+

* The USDA recommends cooking steaks and roasts to a minimum of 145 degrees F for safety.

Cut coulotte steaks on a black cutting board.

Beef Coulotte Skewers

Traditionally, when making Brazilian Churrasco (Brazilian BBQ), the meat is threaded onto metal skewers, as pictured above. This is the set we picked up on Amazon for only $1 per skewer. It’s not necessary however; just a fun twist to the normal grilling method.

Chimichurri

We use a quick and easy chimichurri recipe. Ingredients include: olive oil, red wine vinegar, parsley, garlic, red pepper chili, oregano and salt and pepper. If you want to amp it up, use our mint chimichurri recipe from our Sous Vide Lamb Chops recipe.

Chimichurri Sauce in a clear bowl with whisk.

Steak Sauce and Rub Variations

We have quite a few different dry rub recipes and grilled steak sauce options on FoodieandWine. You can utilize any of them, with success, on coulotte steaks. Here are a few that would be fantastic substitutions if you’re not in a chimichurri mood.

Top Sirloin Cap Steak Tips

  • Always use a meat thermometer when making grilled meat. You want to cook based on temperature not time. Our go-to digital thermometer is the Thermaworks Dot. It never fails.
  • Picanha ranges in size from 2 – 2.5 lbs. If it’s larger than 2.5 lbs, it more than likely has other cuts included.
  • Make shallow slits on the fat cap to held aid in flavoring the meat.
  • Slice thin and against the grain. I repeat. Slice thin and against the grain.
  • Cap the temperature at medium. Sirloin butt will toughen up after a certain temperature. It’s best to serve rare, medium rare or medium.
  • The smaller end pieces will cook faster, so keep an eye on those.
  • Add it to your list of Christmas Dinner Ideas alongside our Prime Rib Recipe and Smoked Prime Rib.

Two coulotte steaks on a silver baking sheet.

Coulotte Steak Recipes

This versatile cut of boneless beef can be utilized in a variety of different dishes and cooking methods. While grilling it is our go-to, we find sirloin cap roast perfect to use in other recipes:

Steak Sandwich (Sub it in our Prime Rib Sandwich recipe)
Korean Beef Bulgogi
Beef Stroganoff
Stir Fry

Two coulotte steaks on a silver baking sheet.
Print Recipe
5 from 3 votes

Coulotte Steak with Easy Chimichurri

Coulotte steak is a very tender cut of beef making it a perfect cut to throw on the grill. Also referred to as Picanha, we top our beef coulotte with a flavorful chimichurri just like your favorite Brazilian steakhouse. Checkout our full collection of beef recipes.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Resting10 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine: Brazilian
Keyword: Beef Recipes, Brazilian Recipe, Grilled Beef
Servings: 6 Steaks
Calories: 402kcal
Author: Darcey Olson
Cost: $30

Ingredients

Coulotte Steaks

  • 1 2-2.5 lb Coulotte Roast, Cut Into 1" Steaks (*Note 1)
  • 1.5 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 2 tbsp Kosher Salt
  • 1 tbsp Black Pepper
  • 1 tbsp Garlic Powder

Chimichurri Sauce

  • 1 Cup Fresh Parsley, Finely Chopped
  • 1/2 Cup High-Quality Olive Oil
  • 4 Garlic Cloves, Minced
  • 1 Red Pepper Chili, Finely Diced (*Note 2)
  • 3 tbsp Red Wine Vinegar
  • 1 tbsp Dried Oregano
  • Salt and Black Pepper, To Taste

Instructions

Chimichurri Sauce:

  • Combine all the ingredients in a small mixing bowl and refrigerate a minimum of one hour for the flavors to meld. Taste and adjust salt and pepper as needed.

Prep the Steaks:

  • Trim the fat cap to your desired thickness. Make sure to keep a healthy chunk of it on as it adds moisture and flavor to the beef. Next, using a sharp knife, make light criss crossing slits in the top of the fat cap. Don't go too deep.
  • Slice the roast into 1" thick steaks (*note 1). If using metal skewers, now would be the time to thread the steaks on them. Just squish the steak into a "c" shaped figure and slide them the skewer through the middle.
  • Drizzle the steaks with a thin layer of olive oil and coat evenly with the salt, garlic powder and black pepper.

Gas Grill:

  • Generously grease the grates and turn half the burners on medium heat (350 - 400 degrees), to maintain two grilling zones (direct and indirect).
  • Transfer the steaks to the grill and cook over indirect heat for 15-18 minutes, turning every 5 minutes until the internal temperature reaches 3 degrees LOWER than your desired final temperature. The smaller end pieces will cook faster, so keep an eye on those.
  • Remove from the heat and let rest for 5-10 minutes before topping with chimichurri and serving.

Charcoal Grill:

  • Generously grease the grates and build a medium heat fire (350 - 400 degrees), to maintain two grilling zones (direct and indirect).
  • Transfer the steaks to the grill and cook over indirect heat for 15-18 minutes, turning every 5 minutes until the internal temperature reaches 3 degrees LOWER than your desired final temperature. The smaller end pieces will cook faster, so keep an eye on those.
  • Remove from the heat and let rest for 5-10 minutes before topping with chimichurri and serving.

Notes

Note 1 - The steaks can be cut up to 1.5" thick, however the cooking time will need to be elongated to make up for the thicker slices of beef.
Note 2 - You can sub in 1 tsp of red pepper flakes or a jalapeno if you can't find a red chili pepper.
Note 2 - Temperature:s
  • Rare: 125°F - 130°F
  • Medium Rare: 130°F - 140°F
  • Medium: 140°F - 150°F
  • Medium Well: 150°F - 160°F
  • Well Done: 160°F+

Nutrition

Calories: 402kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 35g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 18g | Cholesterol: 89mg | Sodium: 2419mg | Potassium: 671mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 934IU | Vitamin C: 25mg | Calcium: 73mg | Iron: 4mg
Recipe Rating




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