Double Sear Steak: The Ultimate Guide to Perfect Crust

When it comes to preparing a perfect steak, the double sear steak technique is a game-changer for home cooks and professional chefs alike. This method, which involves searing a steak twice during cooking, provides a delectable crust that steak aficionados crave. Here’s how to master the double sear for a steak that’s sure to impress.

The Double Sear Steak Method

The double sear starts with a thick-cut steak, preferably about 1.5 to 2 inches thick. The key is to begin with a room-temperature steak to ensure even cooking. Season the steak generously with salt and, if desired, other spices like black pepper or garlic powder.

double sear steak

Initial Sear: Heat a heavy skillet or cast-iron pan over high heat until it’s smoking hot. Add a high-smoke-point oil like canola or grapeseed oil, and place the steak in the pan. Sear the steak for about 1 to 2 minutes on each side until it develops a rich, brown crust. This initial sear locks in the flavors and starts the crust formation.

Rest and Prepare for the Second Sear

After the initial sear, remove the steak from the pan and let it rest on a wire rack for about 10 minutes. During this time, the internal temperature of the steak will continue to rise slightly. This resting period allows the juices to redistribute throughout the meat, ensuring a juicy final product.

While the steak rests, reduce the heat to medium and prepare any additional ingredients you may want to incorporate, such as herbs, butter, or garlic, which will be used in the second sear.

Completing the Double Sear

Final Sear: Return the pan to high heat and add the steak back into the pan. This time, you can add extra flavorings like a knob of butter, sprigs of thyme, or whole cloves of garlic. Continue to cook the steak, basting it with the butter and herbs, for another 1 to 2 minutes per side. Use a meat thermometer to ensure your desired level of doneness: 120-125°F for rare, 130-135°F for medium-rare, 140-145°F for medium, and 150-155°F for medium-well.

Once the steak has reached the desired internal temperature, remove it from the pan and let it rest again for about 10 minutes before slicing. This second rest allows the fibers in the meat to relax and reabsorb the juices that have been forced to the center of the steak during cooking.

Slicing: Slice the steak against the grain to ensure each bite is tender. Serve immediately and enjoy the complex, enhanced flavors and the perfect crust that only a double sear can achieve.

Remember: The double sear method requires patience and attention to detail. It’s all about controlling the temperature and timing to achieve the desired doneness and crust without overcooking the steak.

Grab Your Free Cheat Sheet Now!

Perfect the Art of Reverse Searing: A Chef’s Guide to Juicy, Flavor-Packed Meals Every Time!

Get Instant Access Now
Download Free Cheat Sheet