Five-Spice Steak With Couscous

A well-rounded steak dinner easy enough for a weeknight.  

Five-Spice Steak with Couscous
Photo: Caitlin Bensel
Hands On Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
30 mins

There's one secret to this savory, spiced steak dinner and it lies in the spice cabinet. Five-spice powder is a fragrant blend of dried seasonings found in Chinese cuisine. The mixture includes cinnamon, cloves, fennel seed, star anise, and Szechuan peppercorns and it most definitely deserves space in your spice rack. Here, a hefty sprinkle seasons juicy, grilled steak. The seasoning also helps create a scrumptious crust as the exterior of the steak caramelizes on the stove. This satisfying dinner is served with a refreshingly zippy herb salad studded with radishes and onion, plus fluffy couscous. Pro tip: Look for skirt steak with an even thickness for uniform cooking.


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

  • 1 ½ cups couscous

  • Canola oil, for grill

  • 1 1.25-lb. skirt steak, patted dry

  • 1 tablespoon five-spice powder

  • 1 ¼ teaspoons kosher salt, divided

  • 2 radishes, sliced (1/2 cup)

  • ¼ cup thinly sliced red onion (from 1 small onion)

  • ½ cup packed chopped mint

  • 1 ½ tablespoons fresh lemon juice (from 1 lemon)

  • 1 cup chopped fresh parsley


  1. Bring 1 1⁄2 cups water, olive oil, and garlic to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high. Stir in couscous; cover and remove pan from heat. Let stand, covered, until water is absorbed, 4 to 6 minutes. Fluff with a fork and cover to keep warm.

  2. Preheat grill to medium-high (400°F to 450°F) and grease grates with canola oil. Rub steak with five-spice powder and 1 teaspoon salt. Grill steak, covered, flipping once, until cooked to desired doneness, 3 to 4 minutes per side for medium-rare (125°F). Transfer to a cutting board and let rest for 5 minutes.

  3. Stir together radishes, onion, mint, lemon juice, parsley, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt in a medium bowl. Slice steak against the grain into 1/4-inch-thick pieces. Serve with parsley salad and couscous.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

529 Calories
16g Fat
55g Carbs
39g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 4
Calories 529
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 16g 21%
Saturated Fat 5g 25%
Cholesterol 92mg 31%
Sodium 467mg 20%
Total Carbohydrate 55g 20%
Dietary Fiber 4g 14%
Total Sugars 1g
Protein 39g

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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