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This recipe is going to show you the best way to cook filet mignon for the perfect medium-rare. This method is so incredibly easy, you’ll be cooking restaurant quality steaks before you know it. You can also use this method for preparing any type of steak and even lamb.
My favorite method is to cook filet mignon in the oven and it only takes about 10 minutes total. It is incredibly quick and your steak will come out perfect each and every time! This filet mignon recipe is part of my Cilantro Chimichurri recipe which I often use to top my steak.
What equipment do you need to cook filet mignon in the oven?
If you’re going to learn the best way to cook filet mignon, you’re going to need the right equipment. To properly cook a filet mignon in the oven, you will need two pieces of equipment. First, you’ll want a nice cast iron skillet. These are nonstick, will retain their temperature, can be used on the stovetop and in the oven, and will give your filet mignon the perfect sear.
Next, you will need a meat thermometer. Some people try to learn how to touch the steak, but I prefer to keep things to a science. Why ruin a good steak if you don’t have to. Using a meat thermometer is no longer complicated. Once you insert the thermometer, you can place the temperate reading on the fridge, set the temperature you want, and an alarm will even go off once the temperature is reached. They now even make wireless thermometers to you can read and get alerts straight to your phone!
Steak Tempurature Guide
When I was in my early 20’s I worked at a steakhouse so I have always been very specific about my steak temperatures. Medium rare is the classic temperature to cook steak, but I also do not mind medium. Anything above those temperatures and the steak will start to become dry and tuff. I find that most restaurants undercook their medium-rare and overcook their medium steaks. Rarely have I been to a restaurant that gets it right every time. Below is a quick guide on the different temperatures of steak.
- Rare = all red (it is given a very quick flash sear, but the inside remains raw and cold)
- Medium Rare = pink on the outside and red in the center
- Medium = all pink
- Medium Well = gray on the outside and pink in the center
- Well Done = all gray
What Internal Temperature is Medium-Rare Steak?
A medium-rare steak will have an internal temperature of 130° – 140°. Since steak should rest before it’s cut, I recommend removing the steak from it’s cooking source at 130° and letting it rest for 5 minutes, which it will continue slowly cooking to reach a final temperature of 135°-140°.
How to take care of a cast iron skillet
I am going to give you some quick tips on how to take care of a cast iron skillet. I used to ruin these things until I finally figured out how to clean them properly. First, save yourself the trouble and purchase a pre-seasoned cast iron pan. This is that nice dark coating you see which also makes the cast iron nonstick. Second, and this is very important….
Do Not Wash Your Cast Iron!
Do Not Use Soap on Your Cast Iron!
Do Not Use a Brillow Pad on Your Cast Iron!
To clean your cast iron, simply wipe the extra oil or butter out with a paper towel. Then use a scraper tool, and scrape anything stuck to the pan. Next, add a little water and use the scrub brush, made for cast iron. Rinse again with water, and then spray the cast iron with pure canola oil, and wipe it around with another paper towel. There are great cast iron cleaning sets you can purchase.
A few times a year, you can re-season your cast iron by simply rubbing canola oil all over the pan and sticking it in the oven upside down at 375 degrees for 1 hour (place foil underneath on the bottom rack to catch any oil dripping). Then let it stay in the oven to cool down. If I have any issues with food sticking, I know it’s time to give it a re-season.
The best way to cook filet mignon in the oven
Start by putting your cast iron skillet on the stove over high heat. While your cast iron is heating up, lightly season your steaks with fresh cracked sea salt and pepper. Once your cast iron starts to get hot, add a spray of olive oil.
Side Note: If this steak was not going to be drizzled with my cilantro chimichurri, I would add butter. If I am serving the steak with no sauce, I will also add a small sliver of butter on top of each steak before going into the oven. This is similar to how most steak houses such as Ruths Chris, prepare their steaks.
Next, you’re ready to add your filets to the cast iron skillet. The skillet should be hot enough that as soon as you add your steaks, they immediately begin to sizzle. Getting them nice and brown on each side should only take 2-3 minutes. Don’t forget to also get the sides of your steak.
Once your filet is nice and brown on all sides, add your steak to the oven and insert a meat thermometer. You want to make sure the thermometer is touching the center of the steak and does not poke through to the bottom. As soon as an internal temperature of 130° is reached, remove your steak from the oven.
Now that your steak is finished cooking, remove it from the cast iron and let it rest on a cutting board for 5 minutes. Once you remove your steak and let it rest, it will continue cooking. Since the cast iron will be very hot, if you do not remove your steak, it will continue cooking even more and will potentially result in an overcooked steak. This is why we immediately remove the steak from the skillet and place it on a board to rest.
Why do we let steak rest before it is cut?
All steaks and most all meats need a few minutes to rest before cutting them. This allows all the juices to redistribute through the meat. It will result in a juicier, more flavorful, and tender steak.
How to reheat leftovers
Nothing is worse than having someone try to reheat delicious steak in the microwave. It will lose all of its flavors, become dry, and overcooked. The best way to reheat your steak, while still having it be about the same temperature, is to throw it back onto your cast iron and give it a quick sear on both sides under high heat.
Best Way to Cook Filet Mignon for Perfect Medium-Rare
- 12 oz filet mignon 2 6oz filet mignons
- ½ tsp salt fresh cracked
- ¼ tsp black pepper cracked or ground
- First, preheat your oven to 400° and put your cast iron skillet on the stove over high heat. While your cast iron skillet is heating, season your steaks.
- Once your cast iron is hot, add a spray of olive oil and sear your filet mignon on both sides for 2-3 minutes until they are nice and brown. Also, brown the sides of the filet.
- Next, place the cast iron in the oven and place a meat thermometer in the center of the filet. Remove the filet once the internal temperature reaches 130°.
- Immediately place your filet mignon on a wooden board and let rest for 5 minutes before serving.
- Always let your steak rest for 5 minutes off of the cast iron skillet
- make sure your cast iron is hot on high heat before searing your steak
Do you agree this is the best way to cook filet mignon in the oven? If you try this recipe, I would love to hear your thought. Was your filet mignon the perfect medium-rare?
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