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Beef Suya

4 Servings

1 hour 15 minutes 30 minutes active

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Flat-iron steak is a broad, flat cut from the shoulder of the cow; look for a single 1½-pound piece. Blade steaks, also known as top blade, are a similar cut and are sometimes labeled flat-iron; they are sold in smaller portions and a line of gristle runs down the center of each piece. Either cut worked, but if you opt for blade, choose the thickest you can find and remove the gristle (which means cutting each steak into two pieces) before slicing the meat into strips. Salting the beef and letting it sit before applying the spice paste allows the seasoning to better penetrate the meat. The best way to check the meat for doneness is to cut into a piece at the center of a skewer; it should be medium-rare. We liked serving the suya with cucumber, tomato, cabbage and onion—cooling counterparts to the salty, piquant beef. If you prefer to make this indoors, place the skewers on a wire rack set in a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet. Broil on the uppermost rack until well-browned, about 5 minutes, flipping halfway through.




Don’t skip the lime wedges for serving. They provide a much-needed hit of acidity and freshness.

1 hour 15 minutes

30 minutes active


  • pounds flat-iron steak, sliced against the grain into ½-inch-thick strips

  • teaspoons kosher salt, divided


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stephanie e.
May 21, 2024
a winner!
Lots of yummy sounds from the family! Easy to make with lots of satisfying flavor. Will try with chicken, pork and maybe try skirt steak too. Thanks MSK
Sandra M.
June 5, 2023
The flavor on this is phenomenal. I doubled the recipe and used sirloin tri-tip otherwise followed the recipe exactly. Served with lettuce, tomato, lime juice, cilantro plain basmati rice. I also made a very plain white sauce (equal parts mayonnaise, greek yoghurt, salt and a splash of vinegar). Definitely going into rotation.
Scott P.
September 30, 2022
This turned out great. My Nigerian wife thought it was authentic and delicious
leah r.
July 29, 2022
This is one of my all time favorite things to make and to eat. I follow the recipe without changes and love it. Can’t get enough. Also tried the rub on tofu for the vegetarians in our group. It didn’t stick well but they love the flavor when they just scooped the rub off the pan and back onto their tofu. Going to try it on chicken next time.
Siri N.
October 27, 2022
This got very good reviews - will make again. I appreciated that the recipe used easily accessible ingredients instead of the peanut powder I often see in Suya recipes. I paired it with coconut rice and the tomato-chili recipe that is served with the Suya-spiced potatoes on this site. Not too spicy and quite easy.
Anne E.

It doesn't say what to do with 1/3 of the spice blend that you set aside.

Janelle C.

Hi Anne,

Use the remaining spice blend to sprinkle over the cooked skewers as stated in the last step.

The Milk Street Team

Chef Ted R.

Perfectly seasoned, excellent flavor, simply delicious! Would appreciate traditional side dish suggestions. Thank you!

Jennie H.

Yum! Simple to put together, but really hits it out of the park for flavor.
I made a simple salad of diced, peeled and seeded cucumber, cilantro, grated carrot, seasoned with a small splash of olive oil salt and sumac.
Over a bed of coconut rice was a lovely meal.

Jonathan N.

Could this work with skewered chicken thighs? I'd guess at least you'd have to skip the salting step (and instead put all the salt in the peanut-spice mixture), right? Any other advice?

Lynn C.

Hi Jonathan -

You could try the suya coating with chicken thighs. I would salt the chicken ahead of the remaining mixture - you still want to pre-season the meat. For cutting and skewering chicken and cooking times, I would use this recipe for chicken skewers as your guide - Good luck!

The Milk Street Team

Michael P.

We pared the Beef Suya with the Tomato-Herb salad with Sumac. I thought the flavors really contrasted well.