How to Cook Steak in a Cast Iron Skillet

Sometimes, the old methods are the best. If you’ve got an old well-seasoned cast iron skillet hanging around, you’re in possession of one of the very best tools for cooking steak. Interested in learning how to cook steak in a cast iron skillet? Here’s what you need to know.

How to Cook Steak in a Cast Iron Skillet

Sometimes, the old methods are the best. If you’ve got an old well-seasoned cast iron skillet hanging around, you’re in possession of one of the very best tools for cooking steak. Interested in learning how to cook steak in a cast iron skillet? Here’s what you need to know.

Why Use A Cast Iron Skillet To Cook Steak?

Why should you use a cast iron skillet for your steak? Here are just a few reasons.

  • Thick and heavy – Thicker pans heat more evenly, and are able to maintain a high temperature even after cold food is placed in the pan. Cast iron pans are exceptionally thick and heavy, making them a great choice.
  • Oven-safe – Cast-iron pans can go directly from the stovetop into the oven, which is why they’re the perfect choice for thick steaks that can’t just be pan-fried.
  • Stands up to extreme temperatures – Even the best non-stick pans can’t handle heat of over 500 degrees Fahrenheit. Cast iron, on the other hand, can easily handle temperatures of over 1000 degrees – though we won’t be needing that much heat capacity!

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Armed with the right equipment, it’s time to consider Cast Iron Skillet selection!

How To Cook A Steak In A Cast Iron Skillet – Step-By-Step Instructions

Now that you know why a cast iron skillet is a great steak cooking tool, we’ll go over step-by-step cooking instructions.

NOTE: You can use this method with any cut of steak. However, it’s particularly well-suited to large, thick cuts of meat, such as tenderloin, ribeye, or porterhouse.

The Technique

  1. Begin by preheating your oven to 500 degrees. Place a large, well-seasoned cast iron skillet in the oven. After the preheating timer goes off, keep the pan in place for 10-12 more minutes.
  2. While your pan is heating, rub your steaks with olive oil and the seasoning of your choice – even just salt and pepper will do nicely.
  3. Turn your stove’s largest burner on high. Using a protective glove, remove the cast iron pan from the oven, and place it on the burner. Be careful – it’s HOT!
  4. Place the steaks in the pan. They should sizzle immediately. Brown the steaks for a maximum of 60 or so seconds, and flip to repeat the process on the other side.
  5. Remove the pan from the cooktop, and turn it off. Return it to the oven, and set a timer for 6-10 minutes, depending on the thickness of the steak.
  6. Remove the steak from the pan, and let it rest for at least 5 minutes.

By using the stovetop to brown the exterior of the steak, and the more indirect heat of the oven to cook the interior of the steak, this method results in tender, juicy steak with a delicious golden crust.

That’s it! You’ve just learned how to cook steak in a cast-iron skillet. This is a bit more complex than just pan-frying a steak – but trust us, your efforts will be well-rewarded!

About the author

A chef and a food writer - Pete Ross (aka Peter Pans) brings you the best of the best. The Best pots and Pans available online - as well as in depth articles looking at gas, induction and a whole lot more.

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