Making a steak is easy. Consistently making the perfect steak is a different story. Different sizes, fat contents, and cooking tools can make it feel like a crapshoot every time. Luckily, there's a hack to ensure that you don’t over-, or undercook another steak. Reverse sear to the rescue!
When customers at our Nashville shop ask us for steak cooking advice, we start them off with two simple tips that are essential no matter the cooking method —
- Keep it simple. A neutral oil, Kosher Salt, and pepper are all you need for already flavorful pasture-raised, dry aged steak.
- Invest in a great meat thermometer. We love our Meater+ — it's Bluetooth enabled making it easy to monitor the internal temperature without opening the oven or grill, gives estimated cook times, and alerts you when it’s time to take your meat off the heat.
Now that we’ve got the basics covered, let’s dig into the meat of the reverse sear method.
Traditionally, most people start their steak or chop by hitting the high heat for a nice sear before lowering the heat to allow the interior to cook through. With the reverse sear, the order of operations is swapped. The cut is cooked to the ideal internal temperature (minus a couple of degrees), and is seared after resting. While this method takes a little longer, it’s worth it. By cooking in the oven first, you give the exterior of your cut the opportunity to dry out, which makes for an extra nice seared crust. You also reduce the risk of burning your cut’s exterior, and don’t have to spend as much time standing over the stove.
Take your steak out of the refrigerator about an hour before cooking. A cut that is room temperature all the way through will cook more quickly and evenly.
Pre-heat the oven to 275℉, insert your Meater+ per the instructions, then place your steak on a tray with a rack. For a rare steak, set your thermometer to 95℉ — you want it to be close but not totally cooked.
After about 20 minutes, your steak should be at the desired temperature. Take it out of the oven, tent it with foil, and allow it to rest for 10-15 mins
In a heavy bottom pan, heat some grape seed oil over medium/high heat.
With the thermometer still in place, sear each side for about 2 minutes then add 2 Tbs of butter, along with some sage, rosemary, and thyme (or whatever is on hand), and let it sizzle for a minute. If your cut still hasn't reach the desired internal temperature (see below), spoon the butter over your steak until it’s done.
One of the benefits of this method is that it doesn’t have to rest as long, but we still suggest giving it a little time before digging in (about 5 mins or whatever your Meater suggests).
Final Internal Temps
Rare: 125℉ (remove from oven at 95℉)
Medium rare 130℉ (remove from oven at 100℉)
Medium 140℉ (remove from oven at 110℉)
Well done 160℉ (remove from oven at 130℉)