Nickel Free Steak Recipe

A good steak satisfies like nothing else. I’ve found it’s all in the marinade and not over cooking the meat. When making steak, I prefer either New York cut or flank steak. I marinate my steak meat at room temperature. marinating-the-steakNot owning an outdoor grill, I use my Lodge Cast Iron griddle. It does get smoky, so be sure to use the oven fan! Told by the company Lodge Cast Iron that their cookware is 99.999% cast iron and does include “a trace amount less than 0.001%” of nickel. Since iron  reduces your body’s absorption of nickel, I use this piece of cookware often.

When I was a kid I couldn’t stomach meat. My parents forced me to eat it until I was age 10. Then they allowed me to become a vegetarian. I only ate fish and avoided all meat for nearly 6 years. Since so many foods high in nickel are also high in protein, I’ve wondered if my years being a vegetarian contributed to my being highly allergic to nickel. While training for a marathon and told I needed to eat more protein, I was surprised to learn how much I love steak and meat again!The Recipe:
2 garlic cloves
2 tablespoons lemon juice (usually ½ a fresh lemon)
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
½ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon rosemary
2 steaks (I prefer New York cut)

The Cooking Steps:
To make the marinade, first finely chop the garlic and squeeze a lemon. Combine the garlic, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, balsamic vinegar, black pepper and rosemary in a small bowl. Once everything is thoroughly mixed, I pour the marinade over the steaks and let them sit on the counter for about an hour.

Turn both stove top burners on medium under the Lodge cast iron griddle and wait for them to fully heat before adding the meat. Grill it to your liking on both sides and enjoy!

I like to also grill asparagus with a little oil and garlic powder.
I like to also grill asparagus with a little olive oil and garlic powder.
Make sure to open some windows or turn on your oven fan as it can get smoky!
Make sure to open some windows or turn on your oven fan as it can get smokey!
  1. I’m curious – just found out I’m allergic to nickel also. I so appreciate your helpful site. As I’m studying the nickel foods listed on a paper given to me by the doctor, asparagus is right up there with foods to avoid a lot of. I see asparagus showing on your steak recipe plate. Do you not have it on your list?

    1. Hi Dixie,
      Thanks for your comment and I’m glad you’ve found my website useful. The list of foods I was given to avoid that are high in nickel didn’t include asparagus. I haven’t found eating asparagus to cause me to react. Have you tried it to see if it causes issues for you?
      Warm regards,

  2. So did you go off all the hi nickel list and add them back on at a time slowly? I just found out I have a nickel allergy? and a lot of food on your list is on the no no list. I dont break out with rash, I have the large blister type.

    1. Hi Robyn,
      Thanks for your comment. I only ate foods that were lower in nickel for 2 years. I did not eat anything higher, it was really hard, but a conscious choice. I loved the benefits of not having to deal with the itchy, scaly, redness of my skin. Now I don’t necessarily reintroduce foods into my regular diet, but I will from time to time (like once a month) eat a steak salad or tiramisu cake. I know that the chocolate is going to cause a worse reaction than the salad, so often I’ll choose to eat salad over the tiramisu cake because it’s a healthier indulgence. When I do indulge, I still experience terrible eczema, but I know it’s coming. I cannot eat foods higher in nickel regularly, or my skin would be reacting all of the time.
      The list on my site, is the list that I was given by my dermatologist. Everyone of us is different and what’s tricky about this allergy is there can be other triggers in addition to foods, that can aggravate our eczema, like environmental, stress, lack of sleep, etc. I hope that helps.
      Warm regards,

  3. Hi Christy,
    Haven’t gone for the patch test yet but we (my allergist and I) are feeling pretty confident I’m allergic to nickel too. Going for the test in the next month. In the mean time I have cut out almost everything on the list and my symptoms have drastically reduced.
    I’m wondering about grilling vs using pans on the stove. I love grilling my meat when possible.
    Thank you for your informative pin! Very interesting and helpful!!

    1. Hi Denise,
      Thanks for your comment. I grill all the time, especially in the summer. Many grills are stainless steel. If this is the case, you might be able to replace the actual grill grate with your grill’s manufacturer. Or you can use a Lodge cast iron grill plate on top. If your grill’s original grill plate doesn’t bother you, why change it! I use my original stainless steel grill grate alone and with cast iron cookware on top.
      Warm regards,

  4. Asparagus has 3 points on my nickel list (article from a peer-reviewed journal and supplied by my Dermatologist). Love it, but I definitely react when I eat it.

    1. Hi Catherine,
      Thanks for your comment. Asparagus is identified as low, medium and high in nickel depending on what low nickel list you look at. It’s probably one of the more complicated veggies that people can or cannot tolerate. It could depend on the person and also the soil where the asparagus is grown and the freshness of the veggie when eaten.
      Warm regards,

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