Reverse Sear Temp Chart: Your Guide to Perfect Steak

Understanding the reverse sear technique can transform the way you cook steaks, and a reliable reverse sear temp chart is an indispensable tool in achieving that perfect doneness. This method has gained popularity among chefs and home cooks for its ability to provide a consistently cooked interior and a beautifully seared crust.

What is Reverse Sear?

Before diving into the temp chart, it’s important to understand what reverse searing entails. The reverse sear is a cooking method that involves slowly bringing a piece of meat up to temperature in a low oven or smoker, and then finishing it off with a high-temperature sear on a grill or stovetop. This technique offers greater control over the cooking process and tends to produce steaks that are evenly cooked from edge to edge.

The Importance of Temperature in Reverse Searing

Temperature is the cornerstone of the reverse sear method. The initial slow-cooking phase should be done at a low temperature, usually between 200-275°F (93-135°C), depending on your oven or smoker’s capabilities and the size and thickness of the steak. Monitoring the steak’s internal temperature is crucial during this phase to ensure it doesn’t overcook.

reverse sear temp chart

Once the steak reaches the desired internal temperature, it’s time for the second phase of the reverse sear. This involves searing the steak on a very hot surface for a short period, often just a minute or two per side. The goal here is to create a flavorful and crisp crust without further cooking the interior.

Reverse Sear Temp Chart

Below is a reverse sear temp chart that outlines the target internal temperatures for various levels of doneness. Use a meat thermometer to accurately measure the steak’s temperature.

  • Rare: Remove steak from oven at 110-115°F (43-46°C), final temperature after searing should be 120-125°F (49-52°C).
  • Medium Rare: Remove steak from oven at 120-125°F (49-52°C), final temperature after searing should be 130-135°F (54-57°C).
  • Medium: Remove steak from oven at 130-135°F (54-57°C), final temperature after searing should be 140-145°F (60-63°C).
  • Medium Well: Remove steak from oven at 140-145°F (60-63°C), final temperature after searing should be 150-155°F (66-68°C).
  • Well Done: Remove steak from oven at 150-155°F (66-68°C), final temperature after searing should be 160-165°F (71-74°C).

Remember, these temperatures are guidelines. Factors such as the cut of meat, its initial temperature, and the heat of your searing device can affect cooking times and temperatures.

Step-by-Step Guide to Reverse Searing

Step 1: Season your steak as desired and place it on a rack over a baking sheet. Preheat your oven or smoker to the low temperature specified for the desired doneness.

Step 2: Cook the steak in the oven or smoker until it’s about 10-15°F (5-8°C) below your target doneness temperature. Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature.

Step 3: Preheat a skillet or grill to high heat. Once the steak has reached the target temperature from the oven, sear it for 1-2 minutes on each side to develop a crust.

Step 4: Rest the steak for a few minutes before slicing. This allows the juices to redistribute, ensuring a moist and tender steak.

By following this reverse sear temp chart and the accompanying guide, you’ll be able to achieve steakhouse-quality results in your own kitchen. This method may require a bit more time and patience, but the reward is a perfectly cooked steak every time.

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