How Long To Grill Steak Rare To Well Done Times And Temperatures
How long should you grill steak to get your preferred doneness level? It varies, of course, and mostly on the thickness of the cut. Read on to learn the grilling times and target temperatures of steaks from rare to well done, from under 1 inch to over 2 inches thick.
Even avid grillers like you and me have occasionally been caught staring at the meat counter at the market, befuddled by the many options, names, types and cuts of steak.
And you havent even got it to the grill yet! There, youre faced with another boatload of choices from which cooking technique and what temperature, to how thick and for how long? Only high school calculus is more complicated than this!
And lets face it, the consequences of cooking the wrong cut the wrong way the wrong temperature for the wrong time? Misery in the form of dried up old shoe leather on your plate.
Ill be the first to admit Ive been there more times than I care to remember.
Thats why I decided to knuckle down, and bone up on all the many terms, cuts and cooking times, to learn how long to grill steak. Every type and any size of steak.
You now have the benefit of sitting there comfortably with your feet up, sipping a nice cold drink, and reading at your leisure all my in-depth research!
How To Grill Steak Perfectly:
First you are going to want to pick your cut of meat. Now, everyone loves a good filet mignon, I am not exception. The other go-to is a New York Strip classic. But, my absolute favorite is a ribeye. There is just enough fat marbled through it that it marinates itself as it cooks and stays incredibly moist and tender. The flavor is amazing. It is my go-to. Go grab a 1 inch ribeye for you and whoever else you are having over..
But Filet Mignon is hard to beat!
Next, after you go out and grab your cut of meat, you are going to want to let it come to room temp before you season your meat. Just salt and pepper people. You dont need to reinvent the wheel. But first, take a fork and pierce the meat all over fat and everything. Then sprinkle with salt and ground black pepper on both sides enough that it will be nicely seasoned, but not over-powered with either.
You can also if you want always fun to mix things up!
After you have cleaned your grill thoroughly with your brush, spray it with a grill-worthy non-stick spray and then turn it up to 450-500.
Place steak over direct heat to sear let it stay over direct heat for 3-4 minutes. Flip and sear an additional 3-4 minutes on the other side. If you are cooking a fattier meat, like a ribeye, you will probably want to move the steak over to indirect heat at this time. Leaner meats, like a New York Strip or Filet should be left over direct heat the entire time.
How To Start A Charcoal Grill With A Chimney
Members of our Test Kitchen agree when it comes to charcoal chimneys like this. The cooks love ’em! It’s our recommended method for lighting a charcoal grill. Josh explains, “A charcoal chimney is my preferred method for lighting coals. A chimney allows for proper ventilation around the coals as they heat, and also allows for easy mobility.”
To use a charcoal chimney, start with these steps:
Step 1: Add charcoal to the chimney
Fill your chimney with the amount of charcoal specified by your product. You want your charcoal to reach the top, but not overflow.
Step 2: Place starters under the chimney
Starters will be lit on fire, so you can use any items that catch easily. Many people use newspaper or old paper, but Josh recommends using things you may have around the house that burn more slowly than paper, like paper cups, wood chips, dryer lint or even wax.
Step 3: Light the chimney
Light the starters on fire under the chimney. Keep an eye on the coals for the next 10 or so minutes.
Step 4: Pour coals onto the grill when you see flames
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Once you see flames poking through the coals, it’s time to flip the chimney over. Gently grab the handle and pour the coals out.
Step 5: Top with grate when coals turn white
After a few more minutes, once the coals have turned white, spread them and cover with a grate and get to grilling.
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Is Steak Good On Charcoal Grill
When grilling steaks on the charcoal grill, be sure it is heated to the utmost. A hotter place would be ideal at 550-650 degrees F. For direct heat, you want the coals to be direct on the side of the grill where all of the heat is indirect while the other side doesnt have coals. Allow the great to heat up by replacing the metal grate on your top.
What Is The Maillard Reaction
The cornstarch and salt mixture, along with the sprinkle of pepper right before you begin grilling will help perfect your maillard effect. The maillard effect refers to the unique caramelization of these ingredients on the meat. The smell and taste of the meat and seasonings simply defies description which is I am sure why the French were compelled to create a word for it.
The key to creating a perfect maillard reaction is making sure your meat is well seasoned and your cooking heat is nice and high.
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How To Cook Ribeye Steak
How to cook steak depends very much upon the cut you choose. Ribeye steak is always a popular steak choice, prized for its tenderness and flavor. The best way to cook ribeye steak is on the grill. But pan-seared ribeye steak is also delicious, and you can broil ribeye steak in the oven as well. No matter which method you choose, our cooking instructions and video will deliver the tender and juicy steak you crave. Use a meat thermometer and you can be sure your steaks are cooked to perfection!
The Best Charcoal Grilled Steak
This post is sponsored by Home Depot. All text and opinions are my own.
Theres nothing like a beautiful summer day, your family enjoying the outdoors with you and firing up your grill for the ultimate dinner!
What makes it even better is when that dinner includes these delicious Charcoal Grilled Steaks.
Theres is nothing better than a steak thats piping hot off of a charcoal grill.
The flavor is absolutely amazing!
If you are new to grilling a steak on a charcoal grill dont worry!
We will give you the ultimate guide to getting a delicious, juicy steak off your charcoal grill.
It might take a little extra work compared to a gas grill, but once you taste the difference you wont mind the extra few minutes of work!
Trust us, its totally worth it!
One of our favorite tricks to getting the ultimate charcoal grilled steak is using our favorite Kingsford Hardwood Charocal Briquettes found at Home Depot!
We love them because the are made of all natural hardwood and create low amounts of ash during use.
Plus, they create a high heat which is perfect for searing these delicious steaks!
You can use them on your charcoal grill, smoker or ceramic grill.
Did I mention that they give your steaks the ultimate smoky flavor which is the secret of why our steaks taste better than anyones!
Shhhh, dont tell anyone our secret oh wait, maybe you should!
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How Long Do You Cook A Steak For On A Gas Grill
Now that we have our grill to temperature, we can take a look at different cook times based on how well done you want your meat. The other variable to take into consideration is the thickness of the steak. Thinner steaks will cook faster, while thicker steaks may need some extra time to come to temperature.
Here are the average cook times when using a gas grill to cook steak:
- Medium Rare: 4-5 minutes on the first side, flipping and grill for an additional 3-5 minutes
- Medium: 5-7 minutes on the first side, then an additional 5-7 minutes after flipping
- MediumWell: 8-10 minutes on the first side, and another 8-10 minutes after flipping
As a reminder, keep in mind the thickness of the cut. Depending on the size of the steak, you may need to add some additional cook time. Check out our steak temperature guide to find the right temp and times for your steak. Also check out our favorite grilling gadgets of 2022.
Is It Necessary To Cook A Steak Over High Heat
Yes, it would help grill a steak over high heat to speed up the cooking process. Your steak will get more tender as it cooks faster. By searing your steak over high heat, youll get grill marks. To avoid burning your steaks, make sure you cook them at the proper temperature.
Before grilling, make sure the steaks are at room temperature. Theyll cook more quickly than cold steaks, and cold steaks will contract more on the grill and release more fluids, leaving your steaks with less flavour.
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Gas Vs Charcoal Grills
Most people will tell you that charcoal or wood-fire grills are preferable for grilling steaks because they bring that smokey, charred flavor. If you are using a charcoal grill, skip the charcoal briquettes and lighter fluid, as these can add a kerosene flavor to your steak. Instead, opt for wood or natural, hardwood lump charcoal .
But don’t fret if you have a gas grill. The heat is ultimately more important than how you get it. You can still achieve great results with a gas grill. And gas grills allow for greater precision and control over the heat, which is definitely a plus for the amateur and the grill-master alike.
By Step Guide For Grilling Steak
In the video below, Malcolm Reed of HowtoBBQRight breaks down his step by step guide to grilling a perfect, medium rare steak every time.
Lets get the rundown.
1. Apply Seasoning to your Steak
The first step is to apply a little seasoning to your steak. Malcolm recommends his All Purpose seasoning that is comprised a mixture of salt, pepper, and garlic.
These are classic steak seasonings that will always go well. If you dont have access to Malcolms AP Seasoning, simply apply a little salt, pepper, and garlic of your own.
2. Light Charcoal
Since you have to wait an hour for your steak to dry brine, it doesnt make sense to light your charcoal until after you have seasoned your steak.
Load up your charcoal chimney and light a fire starter underneath it. Once your charcoal is ashed over completely, dump it into your grill.
You have a couple of options for how you are going to place your charcoal, depending on the equipment you have on hand.
If you have a set of GrillGrates , you may choose to dump your charcoal in the center and space it evenly throughout your grill.
Otherwise you may simply choose to bank your charcoal to one side of your grill. This way youre able to sear over direct heat as per the below instructions.
If your steak is not finished you can lay it on the cool side away from direct heat and avoid burning your steak.
3. Add some more seasoning
4. Use GrillGrates
5. Place on grill and cook
Also Check: Seasoning For Ribeye
How To Start A Charcoal Grill
Whether you love the taste of roasted vegetables or the seared flavor of steak, there’s no denying that grilling is one of the best ways to prepare summer staples. Knowing how to use a charcoal grill is an essential summer skill. Charcoal grills are arguably the perfect way to get that classic “grilled” flavor, but if you’ve never used one before, you’re probably wondering how to start a charcoal grill.
Thankfully, it’s not that hardand once you’ve mastered the process, you’ll be one step closer to that perfect hamburger. And even better, you’ll be able to show off at the next backyard barbecue.
How Hot Should Charcoal Grills Be For Steaks
When searing steaks, you need to ensure that the charcoal grill has enough heat to create that beautiful brown and crispy crust on the outside but not too hot to burn it.
At 450 degrees to 500 degrees Fahrenheit, you will be able to create that crispy crust on the steak within 2 minutes on each side.
However, you will not be able to cook the interior of the steak.
That is why I recommend using the two-zone technique so that if you are done putting that beautiful crust on the steak, you can use lower heat to cook the interior of the meat.
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Dont Overcrowd The Grill
You can either go with multiple individual steaks or a single full-size steak. We recommend you not to overcrowd the grill if you want the steak to be perfectly cooked.
One large steak is easier to manage than multiple small steaks. When you are attending one of them, the other might burn.
Also, since you have to flip the steaks quickly to sear properly, it is important to only put as many on the grill that you can conveniently attend.
A larger steak of 32-ounce can serve 6 people. Instead of cutting it before grilling, you should grill the whole thing as one and then cut it into multiple slices. This will help you in feeding a party of people, without hampering the taste of the steak.
Setting Up The Gas Grill:
When using a gas grill it is important to make sure that you preheat it, and clean and season the grill before placing your steak on the grill to cook. Once it is hot, use a grill brush and clean the grates, then use either some beef fat, or a cloth saturated with oil and brush the grill surface before placing your steak on the grill. This helps with getting great grill marks and helps the meat release from the grill.
Ideally you want your grill near 400F when you place the steak on the grill and once you get the steak grill marked and flipped to the other side, you want to shut off the center burners and turn the outside burners to low. This will help to keep your steak moist and tender.
The thicker the steak, the longer it takes to cook. So if you are cooking a standard steak cut, which is between 1 and 1.5 inches thick, cooking time is about 20 minutes total.
While your grill is heating up, take your steak which should be at room temperature, season it on both sides, and take it to the grill. Once the grill is ready, time to start grilling your steak.
Season your steak on both sides, then take to the grill, I use my own seasoning, but you can use any one you choose.
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Checking Steak Doneness Based On Internal Temperature
The internal temperature is critical to cook your steak to the desired doneness you want. The internal temperature is recorded in the thickest part of the steak and you should absolutely use a probe meat thermometer to check your temperature readings.
Remove the steak from the gas grill 5°F before it gets to the ideal internal temperature you have in mine because the internal temperature will continue to rise while the meat is resting. Here are the internal temperatures you need to have for your steaks.
Failing To Keep The Charcoal Lit
Knowing how to keep a charcoal grill hot is important if you dont want your meat to turn into a crispy hockey puck. The key to good grilling is getting a nice sear and allowing the internal meat to get to temperature as efficiently as possible without drying out. A BBQ only burning half its charcoal wont do the trick.
Once you see your charcoal turning gray on its edges, move it around with a poker. Youll need to do this every few minutes, or as you see the fire start to dim.
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Prepare The Steak And Start The Grill
Whenever cooking a steak on the grill, you want your steak to be at room temperature before you cook it. This helps with flavor again, but an even cook throughout the steak. So if youre cooking a steak from frozen, youve got to plan ahead. Take the steak out of the freezer at least a day before, and let thaw in your refrigerator. Then, about an hour before you throw your meat on the grill, you need to remove it from the fridge and bring to room temp on the counter. If your steak is not frozen, you still want to bring it to room temp before grilling, so time on the counter is crucial.
While your steak is warming to room temp, its time to heat up the grill. Take your charcoal briquettes, and stack them in a pyramid. If you want to get fancy, you can buy a chimney like this, and fill the chimney about halfway. Chimney or not, use about 10-15 briquette. Spray with lighter fluid, and stuff some newspaper in the pile/chimney, then let sit and soak into the charcoal for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, you can light the charcoal on fire. Prop your lid back on the grill, but dont fully cover itthe fire needs oxygen to thrive and stay lit. Let the charcoal burn until the edges turn white. Now youre ready to grill.