Reverse Sear on Steak: Master the Technique at Home

When it comes to preparing the perfect steak, the reverse sear on steak is a method that has been gaining popularity among chefs and home cooks alike. This technique allows for precise temperature control and can lead to a perfectly cooked steak every time.

The Fundamentals of Reverse Searing

The reverse sear is a technique that involves cooking the steak at a low temperature in the oven before finishing it off with a high-heat sear in a skillet. By reversing the traditional sear-then-cook method, you can achieve a steak with a uniform doneness from edge to center and a beautifully caramelized crust.

Choosing the Right Cut

To begin, select a thick-cut steak, ideally one that is at least 1.5 inches thick. Ribeye, New York strip, or a filet mignon are excellent choices for this method. Thinner cuts are not recommended as they may overcook before you achieve the desired crust.

Preparing Your Steak

Season your steak generously with salt and let it rest at room temperature for about 30 minutes to an hour. This allows the salt to penetrate the meat and helps the steak cook more evenly.

Low-Temperature Cooking

Preheat your oven or smoker to 225°F (107°C). Place your steak on a wire rack over a baking sheet and insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the steak. Cook the steak until it is about 10-15 degrees Fahrenheit below your desired final temperature. For a medium-rare steak, this would be around 115°F (46°C).

The Searing Finish

Once the steak reaches the target temperature, remove it from the oven and let it rest for a few minutes while you preheat a heavy skillet over high heat. Add a small amount of high smoke point oil to the skillet, and once the oil is shimmering, lay the steak in the hot pan. Sear each side for 1 to 2 minutes, or until a deep brown crust has formed. Add butter, garlic, and fresh herbs for the final 30 seconds and baste the steak with the aromatic butter.

reverse sear on steak

Let the steak rest for a few minutes before slicing to allow the juices to redistribute. Serve immediately for the best flavor and texture.

Tips for Reverse Searing Success

  • Use a meat thermometer to monitor the internal temperature of the steak accurately.
  • Allow your steak to rest after seasoning and after cooking to ensure juiciness.
  • A cast-iron skillet is ideal for the final sear due to its heat retention properties.

With practice, the reverse sear on steak can become your go-to method for cooking steak. It takes a bit of patience, but the results are well worth it. By following these steps, you’ll be able to achieve a restaurant-quality steak in the comfort of your own kitchen.

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