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How To Perfectly Sear A Steak

Posted by Madeleine Bequette on

How To Perfectly Sear A Steak


First things first, we need to clear the air about a couple concerns or myths that go hand in hand with searing a steak. 

Myth #1:  You Need High Temperatures to Sear 

This is probably the biggest lie in grilling! The appropriate temperature for searing a steak is 300°F to 500°F, anything above 500°F will completely dry out your meat, and leave you with burnt BBQ. No one wants that. 

Myth #2: Searing Locks in All Juices 

A lot of people think that searing their meat will lock in all of the juice within their steak, but this is so false. Searing actually sucks all of the moisture out of your steak. However, just because it doesn't lock in all of the juice, doesn't mean that searing is a great way to prepare your steak! Searing creates a caramelized coat on the outside of your steak made up of the sear marks and all of your seasonings to create a mouth watering flavor! 

Steps To Searing Your Steak

1. Preheat your grill with all of the burners on high or the dampers open and the lid closed for 10 to 15 minutes.

2. Remove your steaks from the fridge, season them, and allow them to come up to room temperature while your grill is preheating.  A room temperature steak will cook faster than a cold one will, and less cooking time means less time to dry out. Additionally, a cold steak will contract more when you put it on the grill, pushing more of the juices out.

3. Brush your cooking grates clean and adjust your grill for direct, high heat.  The best temperature for steaks is 450°F to 500°F.

4. Put your steaks on the grill, close the lid, and set your timer for 2 to 3 minutes, depending on the thickness of your steak.

5. Flip your steaks to a new area of the cooking grate.  They’ve already absorbed the heat from the area of the cooking grate they were placed on first.  Putting them somewhere new ensures that the cooking grate is still hot enough to create those beautiful sear marks.

Close the lid and set your timer for an additional 2 to 3 minutes.**

6. Test your steak for doneness.

7. Once your steak is cooked to your liking, remove it from the grill and let it rest for 30% to 40% of the total time on the grill.

8. Enjoy!

**A thicker steak will require a longer cooking time.  If that’s the case, follow steps 1-5 to sear, and then move your steaks to an indirect zone to finish them.  This will prevent the outside from burning before the inside is cooked.