How to Reverse Sear a Steak

How to Reverse Sear a Steak

Cooking steak is one of the trickiest things to cook well in a home kitchen. Cooking a steak on your stovetop lets you control the cooking the most, but you’ll end up with a smoke-filled kitchen and an unevenly cooked steak with a great crust. If you cook your steak in the oven, your steak will be more evenly cooked, without that steakhouse like crust. The best way to cook a steak perfectly, with a perfect brown crust and an even temperature is to do a reverse sear. First, you cook the steak in a low oven and then finish it on the stovetop. It takes a bit of time, and a little technique, but I’ll show you how to reverse sear a steak.

This technique can work on a steak that you cook the day you buy it, but if you want the best results, season your steak well the day before and stash it in the fridge for a night or even two. I bought my steak on Sunday morning and cooked it Monday night. The trick to getting the best results with this technique is to make sure the outside of the steak is as dry as possible. In order to ensure your steak is dry, you’ll need to salt the steak on a wire rack set on a baking sheet. Salting the steak draws out moisture. Putting it on a wire rack makes sure that the moisture has a place to go and doesn’t pool under your steak. So plan ahead, and get ready to make one of the best steaks of your life.

The reverse sear technique is the best way to cook your steak to your desired temperature at home. Use an instaread thermometer to check your steak’s temperature to ensure that your steak is cooked perfectly. Here is a temperature guide to make sure your steak is cooked just how you like it.

• Rare 120-125
• Medium Rare 130-135
• Medium 140-145
• Medium Well 150-155
• Well Done 160+


A nice thick steak. For this technique, you want a steak that is at least an inch thick.
Salt and Pepper
Canola oil
A pat of butter(optional)


  1. Preheat your oven to 250 degrees.
  2. Make sure your steak is completely dry. Place the steak on a wire rack set on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet. Cook until it is within 10 degrees of your desired doneness then remove your steak from the oven.   Set the steak aside and cover loosely with aluminum foil.
  3.  Put a cast iron skillet into the oven and raise the temperature to 500 degrees.
  4.  Carefully remove the skillet from the oven and put it on a medium-high burner. You want the pan to be extremely hot. Add just enough oil to cover the bottom of the pan. Sear your steak for about a minute on each side. Add a pat of butter and carefully spoon baste the steak as it is searing. At this point, the steak should have a nice, brown crust, and it is done.


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