How Hot Should A Grill Be For Steak
We may get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.
No other grill food compares to a perfectly grilled steak. It may seem easy enough to cook a piece of meat, but simply cooking a steak does not ensure that the steak will be tender or juicy. Most people can agree that the goal for a perfectly cooked steak is brown outside and juicy inside. We have searched multiple sources to bring you some of the best tips and tricks around to ensure the perfect finished product.
The best temperature to grill the perfect steak is about 450-500 degrees Fahrenheit. Many factors contribute to ending up with the perfect steak. From preparing your meat to what to do with it when it comes off the grill, every step of this process is equally as important as the next.
Some of the considerations that we will discuss in further detail are:
- Meat preparation
- Monitor time and temperature
- Resting your steak
While the temperature of your grill plays an important role in the outcome of your steak, it is only a part of the equation. You may find yourself questioning whether to close the grill lid, whether to grill over direct or indirect heat, how long to sear your steak, or how many times to flip your steak. We will address all of these points in more detail and discuss other closely related topics, just keep reading.
Here Are Instructions For A Great Grilled Steak:
1. Preheat your grill with all of the burners on high or the dampers open and the lid closed for 10 to 15 minutes.
2. Remove your steaks from the fridge, season them, and allow them to come up to room temperature while your grill is preheating. A room temperature steak will cook faster than a cold one will, and less cooking time means less time to dry out. Additionally, a cold steak will contract more when you put it on the grill, pushing more of the juices out.
3. Brush your cooking grates clean and adjust your grill for direct, high heat. The best temperature for steaks is 450°F to 500°F.
4. Put your steaks on the grill, close the lid, and set your timer for 2 to 3 minutes, depending on the thickness of your steak.
5. Flip your steaks to a new area of the cooking grate. Theyve already absorbed the heat from the area of the cooking grate they were placed on first. Putting them somewhere new ensures that the cooking grate is still hot enough to create those beautiful sear marks.
Close the lid and set your timer for an additional 2 to 3 minutes.**
6. Test your steak for doneness.
7. Once your steak is cooked to your liking, remove it from the grill and let it rest for 30% to 40% of the total time on the grill.
**A thicker steak will require a longer cooking time. If thats the case, follow steps 1-5 to sear, and then move your steaks to an indirect zone to finish them. This will prevent the outside from burning before the inside is cooked.
Dont Season Your Steak Too Soonyes Thats A Thing
With larger steaks it’s always a good idea to finish with some large flake or finishing salt once it’s sliced, says Prentiss. If you do not have an hour to temper and season ahead of time, season immediately before grilling, anything shorter than 40 minutes will only pull moisture out of the steak and not let the outside get those beautiful grill marks and crust.
Chef Juan Carlos of SoBou in New Orleans likes to add in a bit of olive oil as well, which he says help gets better sear or griddle marks. If you do decide to add some fat, stick with olive oil, not butter, says Angelo Auriana. Hes the chef at Factory Place Hospitality. There is no real need for butter when cooking a steak because it already has plenty of fat and flavor in the meat itself, he says.
You May Like: Mcdonald’s Steak Egg And Cheese Bagel Nutrition
What Is A Medium Rare Steak
MEDIUM RARE A truly seared steak. A medium rare steak is the recommended doneness to taste the natural flavor of the meat. Its usually how meat connoisseurs and chefs like to eat it.
- Internal Temperature: 130-135
- Grill Time: ~3.5 minutes per side
- Center Color: Pink with thin brown stripes on top and bottom.
- Center Temperature: Room Temperature
Searing Steak For The Maillard Reaction
The Maillard reaction is one of nature’s greatest miracles. It is a cascade of chemical changes that happen when meat reach approximately 285 to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
THE MAILLARD REACTION IS ONE OF NATURE’S GREATEST MIRACLES.
At this temperature, certain amino acids and sugars react with each other to create hundreds of delicious flavor compounds and pleasing aromas. The meat also begins to turn brown as a result of this reaction.
The same reaction happens in bread, vegetables, and most things we eat. That classic “cooking” smell we’re all drawn to that’s the Maillard reaction you’re smelling.
You May Like: Sam’s Club Philly Cheese Steak
Myth #: Searing Steak Locks In Juices
Myth #1: Searing locks in juices. There is some sort of misconception that somehow the entire surface of a piece of food can be melted into an impenetrable layer that juices cannot escape from, which is completely impossible. Searing actually removes more moisture from food, but this does not detract from the great flavor and texture contrast that searing provides to food.
Sear marks are a delicious hallmark of grilled good. Not only does searing food caramelize the outside of the food and whatever seasonings you used, creating a one-of-a-kind flavor, but it also gives grilled food those recognizable markings that make your mouth water. Sear marks look and taste great, but, alas, they do not lock in juices.
Its true that the heat from the grill will actually push juices out by causing the muscle fibers to contract. Those juices can be saved, however, as long as you grill food for the correct amount of time, and of course, let your food rest for 30% to 40% of the total cooking time before you cut into it.
If youre a Weber enthusiast, I know youve seen this rule before. Letting your food rest allows those muscle fibers to relax again and the juices to run back into the meat, keeping it moist and delicious.
Bringing Your Steak To Room Temperature
Steaks should be brought to room temperature prior to cooking. This ensures a faster Maillard reaction and a juicy steak properly browned on the outside.
Unwrap your steak and place it on a plate or cutting board to bring it to room temperature. Your meat should be left out for about 20-30 minutes prior to cooking to bring to room temperature.
Also Check: Seasonings For Ribeye Steak
The Best Temperature For Cooking Steaks On A Grill
When cooking steaks on a grill, following the proper temperature guidelines for each cut is essential. Medium-rare steaks should be cooked for four to six minutes on each side. If you want a rarer steak, you may want to cook it for seven to ten minutes on each side. For best results, start with a lower temperature than your desired finished temperature and monitor it by using your finger to determine whether it is done or not. Remember that you can always cook it longer, but you will lose some tenderness if you overcook it.
When cooking steaks on a grill, the temperature should be between 135 and 140 degrees, and the temperature should be at the centre of the thickest part of the steak. If you are cooking medium-rare steaks, the ideal resting temperature is 145-155 degrees. When cooking medium-rare, keep in mind that the internal temperature of the meat will continue to rise a few degrees after the meat is removed from the grill.
Know What Cut Of Steak Is Best For You
Whether youre cooking a rib-eye, porterhouse, filet, skirt or sirloin steak, you should know what youre buying before you bring it home. The method you use for cooking your steak depends on the cut you get. Assess your budget, skill level and what kind of dish you want to make before you fire up the grill. Here’s a guide to every cut of steak to help you tell flank from flatiron.
Recommended Reading: How Long Can Omaha Steaks Stay In Shipping Cooler
Thicker Steaks Should Slide Over
Most steaks grill beautifully over direct high heat alone. The only time you might need to move them is if/when they cause flare-ups. However, some steaks are so thick that if you left them over direct heat alone, they would burn on the outside before they reached the internal doneness you like.
If your steaks are much thicker than an inch, consider the sear and slide approach. After you have seared both sides nicely over direct high heat, slide the steaks to a part of the grill that is not so hot, perhaps over indirect heat, and finish cooking them safely there.
Dont Be Stingy With Salt
Whether you opt for a rub, marinade or just salt and pepper, one lesson you definitely learned from grandmas cooking is to not be stingy with salt. When preparing your steak, make sure you coat the entire thing generously in salt before it goes on the grill, this will give it that restaurant-quality flavor youre looking for. Just like with the rub, you can salt it in advance to mimic the dry aging process or just before you grill.
You May Like: Mcdonalds Steak Egg And Cheese Bagel Calories
Top Tips For Barbecued Steak:
- Preheat the barbecue to the correct temperature before adding the steak. As a general guide, you should be able to hear a sizzle as the steak hits the hot surface. The heat seals the surface, trapping the juices inside.
- Bring steak to room temperature just before cooking. The meat can become tough if it goes straight from the fridge to the barbecue.
- Drain any marinade from the steak before placing it on the barbecue to cook. Excess liquid can ignite on the barbecue and cause a flare-up. Plus, if youre cooking steak on a flatplate, the liquid can boil around the meat and make it tough.
- Limit the number of steaks cooking on the barbecue at any one time. Overcrowding reduces the heat, which can prevent the steaks from cooking evenly and cause them to release juices, making the meat tough.
- Use tongs to turn your steak. Sharp forks can pierce the surface, which allows the juices to escape.
- Cover the steak loosely with foil before resting to keep it warm. If you cover it tightly, the meat will sweat and lose its moisture.
- Clean your barbecue grill or flatplate with a stiff wire brush or scraper while its still warm. This leaves it ready for your next barbie.
How To Grill Steak Perfectly
In my humble opinion, one of the KEY things everyone needs to know how to grill is steak. Once you know how to grill a steak perfectly every time all the other grilling comes naturally. Its also the one thing you dont want to mess up, because trust me messing up a $20 per lb piece of steak is no bueno.
I can confidently say I am a master at grilling steaks! In fact, so much so that Mike actually prefers to get a top-quality steak, stay in and get a good bottle of wine. Trust me, once you learn how to make a steak the right way youll never want to go out for a steak again.
Read Also: Steak Of The Month Club Butchers Market
How Long To Grill Steak
- For a 1 inch steak you will be grilling it approximately 3-4 minutes per side over direct, high heat then move to indirect until it reaches your desired temp .
- For a 2 inch steak you will still grill it for 3-4 minutes per side over direct, high heat, but then you will move it to indirect heat until it reaches your desired internal temperature .
How To Temp Steaks The Right Way
The absolute best way to get an accurate temperature of steak is to use a reliable digital meat thermometer to do the job. The temperature should be quick-reading to make sure youre not risking overcooking the meat while you wait for the reading. Heres how to get an accurate temperature read for your steak using a thermometer:
Read Also: Seasoning Steak Overnight
Tips For Grilling Steaks:
- Choose the cut thats right for you. There are many good cuts of steak to choose from, depending on your preference. I love rib-eyes, strip steaks and T-bone steaks. If you prefer a thin steak they cook faster and youre not dealing with a big thick piece of meat when you eat. If you cant find the thin cut youre looking for, purchase a thicker cut of meat and ask the butcher at the store to slice it in half, horizontally.
- Choose high quality steak. The quality of the meat you purchase plays a huge factor in how good your steaks will turn out! Steaks are given different grades based on the marbling and the age the animal was at slaughter. The highest quality meat is younger beef that has the most marbling. At most grocery stores, youll have your choice of the following three grades:
- Select: cheaper, or sale priced meat.
- Choice: The best choice for your local grocery store. Higher quality and widely available.
- Prime: the best of the best. Not found at most supermarkets but you can find prime cuts of meat at Costco!
Push The Probe Tip Past Center & Pull Back Through The Steak
Properly understood, finding the current temperature of a steak means finding the temperature of the thermal center of that steak. While some chefs recommend inserting the probe from the side, we find that the easiest way to find the temperature of the center of a steak is to insert the thermometer probe tip into the steak from the top, avoiding bone.
Push the Thermapen probe tip past where you think the center of the steak is
and then pull the Thermapen probe tip back through the steak until you find the coolest temperature reading. This will be the steaks thermal centerthe coolest temperature in the center of the steak.
For example, if you push your probe tip past the center of the steak and see 136°F on the Thermapen display, and then, as you pull the probe tip back through the steak, you see 128°F , 123°F , and 127°F you know that the temperature at the thermal center of that steak is the lowest reading: 123°F .
Recommended Reading: Frozen Steaks Delivered
Clean And Oil Your Grill
No matter what you are grilling, you should always begin with clean grill grates. Not only does this make it easier to flip and remove the food from the grill but it also does not impart any flavors from previous grilled meals, such as barbecued chicken, into the steaks. Make sure to clean your cooking grate using a stiff wire brush. It is best to do this after you’ve finished grilling while the grates are still warm, but you can also clean the grill while it is preheating if you discover caked on residue. Taking the time to brush off old bits of cooked-on food will pay off handsomely when your steaks release from the cooking grate with ease.
You also want to coat the grates with vegetable or canola oil before heating the grill. Pour a little bit of oil on a paper towel and rub onto the clean, cold grill grates.
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.
Also Check: Mcdonalds Bagels Discontinued 2020
How To Grill The Perfect Steak
Learning how to grill the perfect steak is the firstand maybe most importantstep in achieving summer backyard grilling cred. Of course, it’s all about hitting that sweet spot of gorgeous exterior char with perfectly cooked tender, juicy middle. But never fearthat balancing act is easy to achieve with a few simple strategies. Follow this guide, and you’ll be ready to enjoy countless carnivorous feasts all summer long.