Here is an absolutely foolproof, easy, and quick way to make a juicy steak with a crisp, peppery crust in the oven. Add a loaf of bread, a salad, and a bottle of wine, and you have an easy and delicious dinner you can make for weeknights and special occasions alike.
Good Steak Is Worth It
The first and most important step in cooking a great steak is to buy a great steak. The best way to do this is to go to a local butcher, preferably one who either raises the animals himself or sources them from a local farm, or find a store that sources sustainably and humanely raised meat. Besides being a more ethical buying choice, this meat is usually of better quality and tastes significantly better.
I buy my steak from a butcher at my local market, Bluescreek Farm Meats. They raise the animals on a farm nearby and dry-age the beef for at least a couple weeks — I love their steaks! There is always a difference in taste when buying from good folks like them.
Bottom line: Buy the best steak you can. No matter how expensive it is, it will still be cheaper than eating out. Expect to pay top price per pound of steak. If the price seems too good to be true, in this case it probably is.
Which Cut to Buy?
Rib-eye steaks are my personal favorite, although this method will work with any favorite cut of steak: rib-eye, T-bone, filet mignon, strip-steak, or any others.
Make sure the steak you buy is at least one-inch thick — if it's thinner, shorten the cooking time and check the steak early so you don't overcook it. Also, buy steaks that have some white fat around the edge and a good amount of fat marbling the interior.
One pound of steak will easily feed two, and can be stretched to three or even four people.
Our 15-Minute Oven Method
This method takes 15 minutes, tops. Have the rest of your meal ready, the candles lit, and the wine poured before you start cooking. You'll have a beautifully juicy, medium-rare steak, with crisped and crunchy edges, before you know it! This is probably our favorite way to cook a steak — it's even easier than grilling.
5 Easy Sauces to Dress Up a Steak
This steak is so quick and easy that it leaves you time for making a little special sauce to go along with it. This can be as simple as great guacamole, or as special as a mustard-shallot sauce.
How To Cook Perfect Steak in the Oven
Adapted from Alton Brown's Pan-Seared Rib Eye recipe
What You Need
2 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil
1 tablespoon kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Cast iron or stainless steel skillet
- Let the steak come to room temperature: Open the package and blot the steak dry with paper towels. Let the steak come to room temperature for about 30 minutes on the counter; this helps it cook more evenly.
- Heat the skillet under the broiler 20 minutes before cooking: Turn on your oven's broiler and place an oven rack 6 to 8 inches below the broiler element. Put the skillet on the rack to heat up with the oven.
- Rub the steak with oil: Drizzle a little oil over the steak and use your fingers or a brush to spread it evenly over the steak and on the sides. Sprinkle with half the salt and a few grinds of fresh pepper. Flip the steak and repeat on the other side.
- Place the skillet over high heat: Turn on a stove burner to high heat. Transfer the hot skillet from the oven to the stovetop. Carefully remove the hot skillet from the oven using an oven mitt. Place it over the stovetop burner.
- Sear the steak for 30 seconds: Use kitchen tongs to place the steak in the middle of the hot pan. It should sizzle immediately. Sear for 30 seconds.
- Flip and sear the other side for 30 seconds.
- Broil the steak for 2 minutes: Carefully put the skillet back below the broiler. Close the oven door and cook the steak for 2 minutes.
- Flip and broil another 2 minutes: Pull out the skillet and carefully flip the steak using the tongs. Return to the oven and cook for an additional 2 minutes. At this point your steak will be medium-rare; if you prefer your steak closer to medium, add another 2 minutes to the oven time.
- Rest the steak: Take the steak out of the oven and transfer it to a large cutting board. Tent it loosely with aluminum foil and let the steak rest for about 5 minutes.
- Slice and serve: Slice the steak and fan slices out on each plate. Serve immediately.
- You can also make a pan sauce with the drippings from the steak: How To Make an Easy Pan Sauce in Minutes.
This recipe has been updated — first published June 2012.