Learn an easy and delicious way to make pan seared steak! All you need is a quality steak, flavorful seasoning, and butter for restaurant quality perfection right at home!
Are you ready? I am going to teach you how to cook steak in a pan so you can forget the steakhouse once and for all.
People put so much pressure on themselves trying to make the perfect steak. I totally understand. Steak is such a decadent and glamorous meal that you want to make sure you make it just right.
I happen to love a simple pan seared steak with butter, and the preparation of it couldn’t be any easier. With these simple instructions for pan seared steaks with an oven finish, you will be making restaurant quality steaks in no time at all.
Why You Will Love This Recipe
- Easy guide with all the tips you need to make sure your steak cooks up perfectly!
- Skip the restaurant and enjoy a romantic meal at home!
- Perfect skillet steak recipe for special occasions for the family or guests.
- Cook up juicy, flavorful steaks at home for a fraction of the cost of your favorite steakhouse.
It doesn’t take much to an amazing skillet steak! Really, all you need are five simple ingredients.
- Steak: Choose a high-quality steak. A cowboy steak is great for making pan fried steak.
- Vegetable oil: Use any variety of high heat vegetable oil.
- Seasoning: Use a sprinkle of salt and black pepper to keep thing simple. Another option is to use your favorite steak seasoning.
- Butter: Added to the top of the steak after cooking to give it a rich, buttery finish.
- Parsley: Totally optional but it adds a splash of color to the steak for serving.
What is the Best Steak to Sear?
When making pan fried steak, you want to start with a high quality steak. It’s the star of the show so make sure to choose wisely. I personally love beef rib steak (also known as a cowboy steak) which is perfect for searing.
Here are a few tips to consider:
- Whenever possible try to choose Prime grade or at the very least Choice grade. These may be a bit more pricey but they are better quality.
- Whatever cut of steak you choose, make sure it has quite a bit of fat on it. The fat allows the steak to remain juicy during the cooking or searing process. The result of searing steak makes for a super tender piece of meat.
- Choose a cut of steak that is well marbled. This means it will have visible streaks of fat in the steak. It’s important to keep the steak from drying but also gives it plenty of flavor.
- Thick-cut steaks, at least 1 1/2 inches thick is best. This will give you plenty of time to get a nice sear on the outside of the steak without overcooking the inside.
- Keep in mind that as a steak cooks it begins to shrink in size as it loses moisture. This may impact the size of steak you select. It won’t measure the same once you are done cooking it.
How to Cook Pan Seared Steak with Oven Finish
The trick to making the best, most juicy steak is first cooking the steak in a skillet to give it a nice seared outside but then finishing it in the oven to get it to your desired temperature without overcooking.
Here’s an overview of the steps but be sure to check the recipe card for all the details before you start cooking.
- Bring your steak up to room temperature. This is super important so it cooks evenly.
- Dry the steak. Use a paper towel to blog away all the moisture from both sides of the steak.
- Liberally season your steak with salt and pepper or use a nice steak seasoning. This is one I like and also here is another one if you want to just purchase it. They add such sensational flavorful to the beef.
- When your steak is seasoned, preheat your oven to 425°F. Then heat a cast iron skillet and add one tablespoon of vegetable oil over high heat. This is crucial because the heat should be so hot that it begins to sear the meat instantly!
PRO TIP: When you see a bit of smoke you are ready to begin searing. The pan and oil must be hot in order to get that beautiful browned color you want on the outside of the steak.
- Using a pair of tongs, gently place the steak in the hot cast iron skillet. If you don’t hear that sizzle, it is definitely not hot enough!!
- Sear side one for about 5-6 minutes or until a darkened crust develops. Then, flip it over using your tongs and repeat on the other side and cook until this side also forms a crust.
- Place the entire cast iron skillet in the preheated oven. The baking time will depend on preference here.
- Place a thermometer to the center of your steak to decide doneness (medium rare- 135°, medium – 145°, medium well – 155° and well done 160°). The entire baking time shouldn’t be longer than 15 minutes.
- Once you remove the steak from the oven, add a tablespoon of butter to the top and sprinkle with chopped parsley if you desire.
PRO TIP: Let your steak rest before devouring it. I know it will be hard but do not skip this step. That’s seriously how easy it is to make steak and how to pan sear a steak.
What To Serve With Steak
Here are some of my absolute favorite sides to serve with this pan seared steak recipe!
- Potatoes: They always go great with skillet steak. Choose from Garlic Mashed Potatoes or Baked Potatoes with all the trimmings!
- Bread: Who doesn’t love some fresh cooked bread with steak? I love this Easy Homemade Garlic Bread or this Roasted Garlic No-Knead Bread.
- Swap out the white potatoes for Sweet Potato and Garlic Potato Stacks or Mashed Sweet Potatoes.
- Steakhouse faves: If you go to steakhouses, you know they always have something delicious like crab cakes, creamed spinach and lobster mac and cheese available!
- Looking for hearty comfort food sides? This Southern Baked Macaroni and Cheese and Fried Corn are great options!
- Salad: Keep it simple with this Strawberry Spinach Salad or Harvest Fall Salad.
- Want some fries? Try these Sweet Potato Fries or Crispy Fried Onion Rings
Have leftovers? No worries! Leftover steak is great to add to salads, quesadillas, steak nachos and so much more!
- Choose the best quality steak you can afford. But at the least make sure it has good marbling and is thick-cut to ensure the best outcome.
- Allow the steak to come up to room temperature before cooking. I usually pull the steaks out of the fridge about an hour before cooking.
- Remove your steak slightly undercooked from your desired temperature. It will continue to cook once it’s removed from the oven and this will prevent it being overcooked.
- Add butter at the end of cooking for the best flavor.
- Make sure your pan and oil are hot before cooking so get a nice sear on the outside of your steak. If you see a bit of smoke, it’s ready to begin searing.
- Let your steak rest for at least five minutes before cutting and serving. Resting will allow all the juices to settle. If you don’t they will run out of your steak as soon as you cut into it!
The length of time will depend on the thickness of the steak and how you like your steak cooked. To get a nice sear on a 1 1/2 inch steak, it will take about 5-6 minutes on each side and then about 15 minutes in the oven for a medium rare steak.
Oil is the better option for making pan seared steak. Butter has a low smoke point and will burn at the high heat needed to get a really good sear on your steak. You are better off adding the butter at the end of cooking.
More Steak Recipes
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How to Make Pan Seared Steak
- 1 high-quality steak a cowboy steak is great for this!
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- Salt and pepper or steak seasoning
- 1 tablespoon butter
- Garnish: Chopped parsley if desired
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and add a cast iron skillet with 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil to your stove over high heat. Once the steak is at room temperature, begin drying it with a paper towel. Blot all of the moisture away from the steak on both sides.
- Next liberally season with salt and pepper or use the Omaha Steaks seasoning. That’s what I used here, and it adds such sensational flavorful to the beef.
- Once you are finished seasoning the steak, check the skillet. If you see a bit of smoke (it must be hot in order to get that beautiful browned color you want), you are ready to begin searing. Using a pair of tongs, gently place the steak in the hot cast iron skillet.
- Sear side one for about 5-6 minutes or until a darkened crust develops then flip it over using your tongs and repeat on the other side.
- Once the other side’s crust has developed, place the entire cast iron skillet in the preheated oven. The baking time will depend on preference here. Add a thermometer to the center of your steak to decide doneness (medium rare- 135, medium – 145, medium well – 155 and well done 160). The entire baking time shouldn’t be longer than 15 minutes. Once you remove the steak, add a tablespoon of butter to the top and sprinkle with chopped parsley if you desire. Most importantly, let your steak rest before devouring it. I know it will be hard but do not skip this step. Enjoy!
This post was originally published February 2016. It has been republished with new images and content.