Pan Seared Steaks

Steak is one of the most basic dishes you can make. All you do is lightly oil, season and apply some heat. A good steak has a nice crust to it, that is not charred and should be tender and just done in the center. You would think it would be hard to mess up, but I always ended up with steaks that either charred and overcooked or undercooked with an undeveloped crust. This recipe however makes great steaks foolproof!

The crust on a good steak is a result of caramelizing the fat, protein and sugars on the surface of the steak. It should be a nice dark carmel brown and not a thick impenetrable layer of charred meat. If the pan is not hot enough or there is too much moisture on it, you end up steaming the meat and missing out on all of this extra flavor. As you can see it takes a bit of balance

In order to get a perfect crust you need to sear the steak over high heat, but if you cook the steak for too long over high heat the nice crust will turn into char. This recipe gets are this by searing both sides of the steak over high heat on top of the stove and then finishing it in a hot oven to allow the steak to cook through. I have tried this a couple of times, and it has come out perfect every time.


  • I would try this recipe with a rib-eye or NY Strip steak that is at least 1″ thick. There are some other cuts that would work well too, but these cuts offer a great balance of beefiness and tenderness.
  • An instant read thermometer is very helpful when cooking steak, it allows you to check the steaks doneness without slicing into it.
  • You want to use a stainless steel or cast iron pan for this. You don’t want to heat a nonstick pan to these high heats. If you plan on making a pan-sauce, go for the stainless-steel. It is easier to see how fond (the steak crusties that stick to the pan) is developing. Cast iron pans also do not like acidic things that might be going into the pan sauce
  • It is going to smoke a lot! Make sure you have your vent fan on high. Also make sure you have a window or outside door cracked. The vent fan needs a source of fresh air, or else it has nothing to pull in.



From: Alton Brown, Good Eats – Steak Your Claim


  • 1 boneless rib eye or NY strip steak, 1 1/2-inch thick
  • Canola oil to coat
  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper


  1. Place 10 to 12-inch cast iron skillet in oven and heat oven to 500 degrees. Bring steak(s) to room temperature.
  2. When oven reaches temperature, remove pan and place on range over high heat. Coat steak lightly with oil and season both sides with a generous pinch of salt. Grind on black pepper to taste.
  3. Immediately place steak in the middle of hot, dry pan. Cook 30 seconds without moving. Turn with tongs and cook another 30 seconds, then put the pan straight into the oven for 2 minutes. Flip steak and cook for another 2 minutes. (This time is for medium rare steaks. If you prefer medium, add a minute to both of the oven turns.)
  4. Remove steak from pan, cover loosely with foil, and rest for 2 minutes. Serve whole or slice thin and fan onto plate.

21 thoughts on “Pan Seared Steaks

  1. A bearnaise sauce can be nice on occasion, but I usually don t bother with making sauce for steak at home, mainly because a good pan seared steak already tastes so fantastic. You can also use it as the star ingredient for Steak Salad  to have something a little different than the usual chicken.

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  3. EJW
    How embarrassed you must feel. Can’t read, doesn’t know the definition of plagiarize and needs a dentist to boot. Wow, truly stupid human being. By the way, why not post your real name?

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  5. You copied Alton Browns (Food Networks) Recipe and don’t even give credit. Yes you did to, because the directions are copied word for word. What jerks.

    • He did give credit at the very beginning of the recipe clearly labeled “Recipe courtesy Alton Brown, Good Eats
      Episode: Steak Your Claim” so you are you being so mean. He was just simply trying to share a recipe which is not plagiarism take it from a college professor I know!

  6. Wonderful!!!!! My medium rare steak was cooked perfectly. I have tried various things, but Alton’s recipe is certainly the best.

  7. Who really cares who took what. You are telling me “Good Eats” is the first to figure out how to salt and pepper a steak? Newp.. Regardless, thanks for the recipe. Steak is awesome and dont worry about the uptight d-bags who cannot handle a recipe.

    • and its not because its the same recipe, its because this is plagiarism. At least re-write your recipe, but you were to lazy to even do that.

    • EJW – Recipes are descriptions of techniques. Copying them is not considered plagiarism, they are not artistic expressions. The Photographs and lead-in text is considered “artistic” and that is unique.

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  9. Hi Steak Bugler person, I am a little confused… I say it is from Good Eats right under the recipe title. I am the first to admit I don’t come up with most of these recipes, I just try to find good ones to pass on to people. Sorry for the confusion. I think Alton is great and have learned a ton from his show. I wouldn’t want to rip off his work.

    • f*#%tards, go back to school and learn to read
      The credit is the first thing on the gray box…

      The recipe is straightforward and my ny strip came out awesome.


  10. Pingback: Pan Seared, Thick Cut Steak

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