Prepare The Perfect Steak
How To Choose The Best Cut Of Steak
For just about any steak, its especially important to look at thickness. Although thinner cuts of steak can cook just fine on the grill or in the oven, theyre a little more difficult to master. An extra 30 seconds or minute too long, and your delicious steak can turn into a not-so-tempting hockey puck. Thicker cuts allow you a little more time to play with, so you can get the perfect grill marks and cook without overcooking it. Of course, the right thickness can vary with your preferences, but its a good idea to choose a cut thats at least 1-inch thick for any cooking method.
Then, look at the marbling. See those white lines running through each cut? Thats marbling, which is another name for the fat that runs through the steak, almost like thin veins. You think you dont want fat in your steak, right? Thats a common thought, but naturally occurring marbling through the muscle is what gives your steak tenderness and flavor. As it cooks, the fat renders itself down, creating the excellent texture and rich steak flavor you expect. So, the right amount of fat is a good thing! Of course, you dont want a fatty steak, so look for nice, thin lines of marbling rather than chunks of fat.
More Tips For Grilling Steak
After spending some time cooking steak with LaFreida and talking shop with Raichlen, your correspondent has garnered a few of the finer points in beef preparation and cooking.
- Don’t overdo it with seasonings. A good steak, as any cook worth their salt might contest, is already so rich in flavor that very little needs to be done in the way of preparation and seasoning. Pull it out of the fridge, let it come to room temperature, and season with salt. But don’t overdo it with heavy, preservative-infused seasonings. Also, save the pepper for after cooking, especially when cooking at high heat. Peppercorns have a low burning point and burn over an open flame, leaving behind a bitter flavor that hardly resembles fresh-cracked pepper.
- Temperature is key. Unless you spend your workdays slinging steaks, there’s no real trick to checking the doneness of the steak. Use a good meat thermometer to determine when your steak is done to your liking. Even LaFrieda uses one.
- Use a cooling rack. When it comes time to pull your steak, get it on a resting rack. Letting a steak sit in all of its juices after you’ve worked so hard to build a nice crust is a tragedy.
- Let it rest. LaFrieda recommends pulling a steak and letting it sit for about two minutes before cutting it to allow it the chance to reabsorb its juices. The bottom line is that once you cut into a steak, it stops cooking, so use your best judgment considering your target temperature.
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Best For Busy Lives: Butcher Box
Maybe you love to eat steak and other meat regularly? Maybe you lead a busy life and dont have time to shop? Perhaps you live somewhere without easy access to a butcher shop? Or maybe, its some combination or even all three?
My point is, there are many good reasons to have someone else do the work for you when it comes to shopping for meat.
Butcher Box is a subscription-based mail-order meat company thats ready to simplify your steak shopping. You start by choosing your plan: you can fully customize an order or select mixed protein, beef & chicken, beef & pork, or all-beef which would be the go-to for steak lovers.
Then, you choose the size of box you want to be delivered, either 811 pounds or 1622 pounds. Finally, you let them know how often to send your order: every 4, 6, or 8 weeks. Thats it!
Now you just wait for delicious steaks to start coming your way. Oh, and shipping is free to all 48 contiguous states.
So, what can you get? The example given for a curated smaller box includes:
- 2 pounds of ground beef
- 2 New York strip steaks
- 1 pound premium steak tips
- 2 pounds chuck roast
- 4 top sirloin steaks
As you can see, youll not only get steaks, but youll also get some other quality beef to cook with. Plus, you can always add on extra steaks or choose to customize your order completely.
Butcher Box offers a level of quality and convenience that might be just what youre after for a set-it-and-forget-it approach to buying steaks. No more empty freezers!
Selecting The Right Cut
First, a definition. Steaks are basically any piece of meat that falls under the category of “fast-cooking” cutscuts that are low enough in connective tissue that they don’t require the long cooking times that “slow-cooking” cuts require. The difference between a steak and roast essentially comes down to size. Any good roast can be cut into individual steaks .
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Why Youll Love This Recipe:
Im so guilty of claiming perfect this and perfect that I know, Im aware of that.
Perfect is subjective. So lets define what a perfect steak means to me.
Characteristics of a perfect steak:
- Nice deep brown crust
- Rosy pink from crust to crust
So, if you agree on those descriptions of a perfect steak, then keep on reading.
Pricey: The Best Steaks Money Can Buy
These pricey cuts of steak cost a lot because they come from the parts of the steer that haven’t been worked very hard. As a result, the meat is naturally tender and contains little or no connective tissue that needs to be cooked down. These ultra-desirable pieces also come with premium price tags because they make up a relatively small part of the steer. Since these steaks are inherently tender and deeply flavorful, they require much less effort and technique to cook. You can skip the marinade and simply sear over high heat to lock in the flavor, then continue cooking to desired doneness.
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Steaks Over 15 Inches Thick Reverse Sear Method Of Start It Low Finish With A Sear
For any steak over 1.5 inches thick, the reverse sear method is fantastic. It is arguably and believe me, people do argue it a lot! Lol the best way to cook thicker steaks.
The reverse sear method is so named so because it flips the traditional way back to front:
Reverse searing is where you cook the steak low and slow until its 10 or so degrees Fahrenheit below the perfect temperature throughout, and then sear it to finish.
This method is good because the more gently you cook a piece of meat, the more evenly it cooks. So reverse searing, bringing it up to temp slowly, then searing hot at the end, results in a perfectly done steak throughout, with a very thin Maillard crust.
With thick steaks that you sear first, then finish slow, you tend to end up with a few mm of crust on the outside, then a few mm of well-done steak, a few mm of medium-well steakand so on, until a bullseye medium-rare center. A good portion of the outside layer is overcooked.
Reverse seared steaks are perfect doneness edge to edge, with a good crust. Brilliant!
So, in conclusion:
Steaks 1.5-inches and under you should sear first, finish low. Steaks over 1.5-inches thick, use the reverse sear method.
OK, so with that out of the way, lets now look at the best 11 steaks for grilling.
Selecting A Good Steak Cut = Deliciously Grilled Steak
Even if you are fairly new to grilling, you can still cook a perfectly grilled steak thatll impress. It just comes down to knowing what to look for. This includes the quality of the meat, the amount of marbling, the thickness, and that its one of the best steak cuts for grilling.
If you take all of these things into account, you have a much higher chance of cooking a tender, juicy steak every time and mastering how to cook competition steak. Step out of your comfort zone and try a different steak cut than you are used to. You never know, you may discover a new favorite.
Make sure to also check out our article here on tips for grilling steak like the pro Grillmasters.
The insider tips on grilling steak dont stop here. With online steak grilling classes straight from champion Grillmasters like Allen Newton and John Lindsey, BBQ Champs Academy can help you take your grilling game to the next level. Dont miss out on all of the step-by-step instructions, tips, and secrets and master how to cook competition steak. Learn how to grill steak straight from the pros!
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Best Mail Order Steaks And Online Delivery Services In 2021
With the closing of shops for the pandemic, we had to find alternative ways to load up on the necessities of life. Speaking of which, did you know you can order steaks online? To help you get the best value and the best steaks, lets take an exhaustive look at the best available mail-order steak services for every niche.
This article lists and reviews the 14 best mail order steak services available online, allowing you to choose a company that suits your specific needs and tastes.
The phrase mail-order makes me think about the cheesy ads I saw in comic books when I was a kid. Remember them? I so badly wanted to send away for x-ray specs, ventriloquism lessons and plans to make my own robot.
I never did, and Im sure its just as well all of that stuff was total crap. There was no end of products to waste your money on via mail order from pills to increase your cars fuel efficiency to overseas brides.
But, you CAN order incredibly delicious, high-quality steaks and other cuts of meat right to your door through mail order!
To help you avoid a mail order disaster , Ive reviewed tons of companies that ship steaks through the mail or courier, and boiled it down to the 14 best.
Below, you will learn what each of them does best and which you should try for the exact steak youre after. From value to premium and some real niche sellers, you dont want to waste your money if its not here.
All set? Just send $3.95 and a self-addressed stamped envelope
Best Steak Gift Boxes: Kansas City Steaks
Anyone with a barbecue knows that the best gift of all is more meat! If you have a friend, relative, co-worker, or employee who deserves a special treat, I highly recommend reviewing the gift box options from Kansas City Steaks.
Theres a dizzying array of gift boxes, some with all steak and others with combinations of food items, and they ship in sophisticated black boxes emblazoned with the Kansas City Steak Company logo. You can also choose combos that include desserts and sides and other main course options.
I love the thoughtful inclusions in some of the boxes. Like the Butter-Topped Gift-Boxed Steaks Special Combo: your lucky recipient gets 2 6oz Filet Mignon, 2 8 oz Kansas City Strips, 2 8 oz Ribeyes, and 3 oz of roasted garlic butter for a decadent finish.
And its more than just a pretty package Kansas City Steak Company sells premium aged steaks, including prime rib, porterhouse, and Kansas City Strip Steaks, aka NY Strip. Plus, you can find hard-to-get cuts like picanha, bone-in filet mignon, and ribeye cap steak.
So, if youre gift hunting for that special meat-lover on your list, hit up the Kansas City Steak Company and make sure you get an invitation to dinner:
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The Godfather Of Steaks
If rib-eye is king, then filet mignon is the godfather. Its one of the priciest pieces of beef you can buy because it comes from the very tip of the tenderloin. Its the most tender meat on the cow, and each one only produces a few cuts. Its almost completely devoid of fat, sinew, and tendon, which gives it that soft, buttery texture.
The great thing about filet mignon is that it can be cooked in various ways and will always taste amazing. That is, if you dont overcook it. It should be a crime to serve filet any more done than medium rare, but it happens.
We recommend using a combination of direct and indirect heat when grilling a filet mignon. You can sear it over high heat then move it to low heat to finish. Or you can try incorporating a sous vide reverse sear method.
Dont Be Afraid Of The Butcher
In most instances, the highest grade of beef youll find at the grocery store is USDA Choice. You may also run into some difficulty finding some of the good cuts of steak in these stores. If you are serious about cooking great grilled steak its time to befriend your local butcher.
Your local butcher will have a much larger variety of the best steak cuts for grilling and will have many of them in USDA Prime . Plus, if you dont see exactly what youre looking for just ask the butcher. Chances are theyll cut it for you right then.
At your local butcher shop, youll get more personalized service, they can help you select great steaks with plenty of marbling, and youll be supporting a small business as well.
If you dont have a local butcher shop, you can also order online from some of the great American cattle farms and ranches like Snake River Farms / Double R Ranch. Then youll have great quality steak cuts shipped straight to your door.
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You Cant Put Moisture Back Inside A Steak
As steaks grill over high heat, they lose moisture. Fat and juices are literally pushed out of the meat. Thats the price we pay for making the steaks easier to digest.
Perhaps the most important part of grilling a steak is taking it off the heat before it has lost too much moisture. There is a short window of time, usually just a minute or two, when steaks go from medium rare to medium, or from medium to medium well.
Catching that window requires vigilance. Dont walk away from a steak on the grill. And remember, its always better to take it off when its underdone and then return it to the grill than it is to let a steak overcook.
Best Steaks To Grill For Smokey Juicy Flavor
08.10.2020Meat Tip Monday
There are few things in life that taste better than a properly grilled steak. Its smokey and juicy flavor with a lightly crisp crust makes a steak worthy as a celebratory entrée yet its quick and easy enough for a weeknight dinner.
Before firing up the grill, you must first pick your cut of beef. The best steaks to grill will often come from the beef primal cut called the short loin, but we have also included a few exceptional stand-outs from other cuts of beef. Any of the beef cuts below will make a delicious, drool-worthy grilled steak.
The ribeye steak is perhaps the finest of all steaks due to its combination of luxurious tenderness and big, beefy flavor. Whether you opt for the boneless or bone-in version, ribeye steaks are ideal candidates for the grill. Sometimes youll hear it called a ribeye and other times a rib steak, but for all practical purposes, the two terms are synonymous. Grill ribeye steaks over medium-high heat until it reaches your desired doneness.
Also called a New York strip, Kansas City strip, strip loin, or top loin steak, the strip steak is every bit as magnificent as the ribeye. Strip steaks might pack more of an intense beef flavor than a ribeye, possibly at the expense of tenderness, but there are so many variablesincluding grading, aging, and marblingthat its a draw. The bone-in version, while less common, is sometimes called a club steak.
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The Food Lab’s Definitive Guide To Grilled Steak
Summer’s here and I’ve got a brand-new backyard to grill in, so now seems like as good a time as any to reexamine some of the things we know about grilling beef.
Sure, we can all agree on what our goal is: A perfect steak should have a crusty, crunchy, well-browned exterior surrounding a core of perfectly pink, juicy, tender meat that spans from edge to edge. A perfect steak should have a nice contrast between the smoky, almost charred exterior and the deeply beefy interior. A perfect steak should be chin-drippingly juicy and melt-in-your-mouth tender.
We all know where we want to go. The real debate is, what’s the best way to get there? You’ve just dropped $50 on some prime aged beef, and you’re rightfully nervous about screwing it all up. After all, there’s a lot at… ahem, wait for it… steak.
Want to know how to grill a steak? Here’s my advice: Do not do it the way they do it at steakhouses. It seems counterintuitive: Surely a restaurant with years of experience cooking hundreds of steaks a day knows a thing or two about how it’s done, right? Well, yes. They know how to cook a steak in a steakhouse setting, where their goal is consistency, quality, and, more importantly, speed. Hungry customers don’t want to have to wait for their meat, and a steakhouse has equipment and techniques designed to meet those needs.
Ready to dive in? Let’s go!