As a steak lover, you likely have already mastered the art of grilling. And if you’re like many people, you’re looking for a new way to prepare your favorite cuts. At Ruth’s Chris Steak House, we know all about innovative steak-cooking methods, and our culinary team is sharing some of their favorite tips for cooking at home in the guide below.
In a Cast-Iron Skillet
You shouldn’t need to wait for perfect grilling weather to enjoy a juicy steak? Cook a picture perfect steak inside using a cast-iron skillet. This type of pan holds heat better than others, helping your steak cook evenly with just the right amount of browning. For best results, use a boneless steak like a ribeye or New York strip.
To begin, heat vegetable oil in the skillet. Meanwhile, gently dry both sides of the steak with a paper towel for a crispier crust and season with salt and pepper. After the oil gets hot, place the steak in the skillet. You’ll be tempted to flip it as soon as it starts smelling good, but let the first side really develop that seared flavor before flipping and browning the other side of the steak. To amp up the flavor of your favorite cut, reduce the heat and add butter, garlic, and thyme to the pan, basting the steak until it achieves your desired doneness. Then transfer it to a plate and let it briefly rest before enjoying that first bite.
Compared to cooking steak on the stove, the sous vide process takes much longer—often hours—but chefs have long lauded this French cooking method for its preciseness and home cooks love the hands off approach to the perfectly cooked steak.
Meaning “under vacuum” in English, sous vide involves placing meat in an airtight plastic pouch and submerging it in a temperature-controlled water bath. Using an immersion circulator to cook a steak sous-vide will result in an impeccably even cook and maximum juiciness.
However, the sous-vide process alone won’t give you the crispiness you’re looking for; you’ll also need to sear the steak, preferably in a cast-iron pan. While some people prefer to sear their steak before submerging it in the sous vide, searing afterward will give you that tasty crunch you love.
Pro tip: Definitely season your steak with salt and pepper before it goes in the sous vide, but realize that the long cook time will allow the steak to really absorb those flavors. It’s recommended to partially season the steak before sous vide and then finish seasoning it before you finish your steak in the pan.
Using a Smoker
If you really want to put a twist on your typical steak, consider smoking it. Wood smoke completely transforms the flavor of beef; that’s what makes Texas barbecue so good! If you want to employ this method, though, keep in mind that smaller cuts cook fast, leaving little time for the smoke to seep into the meat. Therefore, we only recommend smoking for larger cuts of steak like a porterhouse, T-bone, or extra-thick ribeye—basically anything over 1.5 pounds.
Before placing your steak in the smoker, consider marinating your steak to keep it from drying out during the long smoking process. Now think about what flavor the wood chips are going to add to the steak. Choose a medium wood like apple or hickory, which will provide a mixture of sweetness and smokiness.
When you’re ready for cooking, set the smoker to approximately 230°F, place the steak inside, and close the lid so that the smoke stays contained. For every 1.5 pounds of beef, let the steak smoke for about an hour.
Don’t Feel Like Cooking? Visit Ruth’s Chris for a Steak Dinner
If you’d rather sit back and relax while expert chefs prepare your steak for you, that’s certainly another great option! A steak at Ruth’s Chris is always perfectly seasoned and served sizzling in butter on 500° plates. Make a reservation at your nearest Ruth’s Chris Steak House for dinner to savor a perfectly steak cooked every time.