My current preferred steak searing method


I eat a lot of steak, ribeyes mainly. I buy the whole standing rib roasts in USDA rime when they go on sale in December at like 9.99$ a lb. Like 3 of them each weighing in at 16+ pounds. Although I might do the prime rib for Christmas this is mainly for making ribeyes and I don’t trim much if any fat off. I don’t leave any fat on the plate even for a ribeye. I slice them up, add some salt and vacuum seal them the off to the freezer.

When it is time (as it is quite often) I toss one or two in the sous vide at 129 for 3 hours. The only variation is how to sear. I have tried over the gasser, on CI,with a searzall, over charcoals nearly up to the grill and the chimney of coals. The charcoals do the best job but most of the time it is me cooking one steak and doesn’t seem worth it. I particularly want the fat to get a nice crispy brown exterior which makes it even better to eat. Remember I haven’t really trimmed the fat like a normal ribeye so there is plenty of it…it is USDA prime so it is buttery soft.

SO I crank up the cast iron (slowly…I first heat to low and then to high), add a tiny bit of canola or ghee if I have it. Toss the seasoned side of the dried steak down and take my Searzall to the top side focusing on the fat. 60 seconds later I flip it, repeating the dual approach. Right then I lift it up and hit the searzall to the fat on the side and we are done. A little butter on the top and fork ready.

That’s just the way I am doing it now.


What’s a Searzall? I assume a gasser is a stove, dunno what a CI is either.

(Windmill Tilter) #3

This is a brilliant approach. Cast iron is an under-rated searing method. It’s one drawback is that it relies on contact surface area. When steaks hit that high heat, they tend to curl in unpredictable ways so not all of the meat is touching. The searzall solves this problem by allowing you to focus searing on the areas that the cast iron missed. Brilliant!

I’m curious if you’ve tried just plain old butter? It smokes like crazy, but oh the flavor.


Gasser = gas grill

Ci. Cast iron


I occasionally toss some butter down just beforE the steak goes on but it smokes and burns too easily. That’s why I prefer ghee. But I think melted on top gets the flavor

If you don’t get full contact you just press it down!

(Windmill Tilter) #6

I just use an old 10lb cast iron weight that I leave on the grill as it comes up to temp with the frying pan. It sears the top and squishes the bottom flat at the same time :smile:

(Erin Macfarland ) #7

Ribeye makes up about 75% of my diet lol…so I can relate to buying it in bulk! I love my Weber Gemini grill but when there’s a foot of snow here in Colorado I don’t always want to go out and fire it up. I got a Ninja air fryer and it was life changing. Crazy tender, crispy thick ribeye done in about ten minutes. And you can pour all the fat and juices back over the top. I am so busy with my kids’ sports I don’t have much time to cook even though I love to. Air fryer FTW! And no splatters or mess to clean too!!

(Jack Bennett) #8

I’ve gotten nice - and lazy - results with an electric griddle. I just did a couple of ribeyes for Valentine’s Day dinner with my wife.

After sous-vide, I crank the griddle up to max heat (it claims about 450F), add a little ghee or avocado oil, and sear for a minute or two. It’s a bit simpler than cast iron or gas grill but probably not quite as hot.

(Scott) #9

I often put the cast iron in the oven at 450 before transfering to the top burner for the steak to scream when it hits the molten pan.

(Joey) #10

Hmmm… you’ve piqued my interest (!) … My favorite way to prepare thick steaks of any cut is on the propane grill. I carefully check for “done-ness” with a digital meat thermometer.

But I admit when the snow is piled high on the grill, sometimes I go for the cast iron. For some reason it never quite matches the grill in outcome (probably the psychology of those burn stripes?).

But an AIR FRYER? Never thought about that for a fine cut of beef steak. How do you control for the extent of the “done-ness?” How do you like your steaks prepared? I mean 10 minutes sounds like there’s very little room for error - a minute or two either way would be a big difference, no? - are things reasonably consistent from meal to meal? :steakcake::steakcake::steakcake::steakcake::steakcake:?

(Marianne) #11

Last night, my sister and I watched America’s Test Kitchen on Youtube. They featured
how to cook a steak in a cast iron pan. It looks so good. Went and got a couple of strip steaks and am going to try it today.

(Erin Macfarland ) #12

@SomeGuy I cook prime steaks in it and they turn out perfect- I say nearly as good as on my grill, plus there’s no preheating and you don’t lose the fat that cooks off. Super easy to use, plus it’s amazing for bacon, wings, roasted veggies…I’m a huge fan!

(Windmill Tilter) #13

What temp do you bake at? It looks like they were using a 5000CFM vent hood to suck up the smoke! The smoke point of tallow is around 400F, so I assume you keep it around there? Do you get the same “crust” that they got in the vid? Is there much smoke involved? My wife goes ballistic when I smoke up the kitchen… :flushed:

(Windmill Tilter) #14

Here is the NY strip I cooked last night. I like a nice thick crusty sear on my steak, and it’s a smoky business, so I do it outside. I just use a 15’ extension cord and a induction heater. It brings the pan up to temp in 60 seconds from the time I press “on” to the time I put the steak on. I set it on 450F, give it a big ol’ dollop of beef tallow, wait 60 seconds, and then drop the steak. I cook 3 mins per side. It ain’t pretty, but it works!

(Joey) #15


(Joey) #16


(Marianne) #17

What temp do you cook your steaks to? I like med. to med. well, but most people like med. rare.

(Joey) #18

Yup, we’re in the med/rare camp.

So I take a steak off right when it reaches 130 F. Then we let it set for about 10 minutes - keeps it from losing too much moisture as it continues to cook internally. My wife doesn’t like the sight of blood :wink: but she likes the taste of pink meat Seems to work well.

“Over cooking” a steak (med-well) at our place would be a swing and a miss. The better the steak, the more regret.

(Scott) #19

I use the thermometer for chicken and pork because people are paranoid about it but my steaks only get the finger poke test. Usually I just look and say to myself “yeah, that looks like 4 minutes a side” Grill on high at temp at the start.

(Marianne) #20

I made two strip steaks last night using the 500 degree cast iron method. Took them off the pan at 140 and let them rest for 10-15 min. Cooked perfectly to our liking, but as you say, they had lost some of their juicyness. Neither my husband nor I can do blood/bloody drippings.