What Temperature to Cook Steak? [Medium Rare & More]

The perfect way to cook a steak is a question that many home cooks struggle with.

With so many variables, from the type of steak to the cooking method, it can be tough to know how to cook steak perfectly every time. But don’t worry- we’re here to help!

For the best results, use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of your steak as it cooks. A rare steak should be about 120 degrees F, Medium Rare 130 degrees F, Medium 140 degrees F, Medium Well 150 degrees F, and Well Done 160 degrees F.

Cooking steak is all about personal preference. Some people like their steak rare, while others prefer it well done.

The best way to know what temperature your steak is is to use a meat thermometer. This will ensure that your steak is cooked to perfection every time. 

What Temperature Should My Steak Be?

Here are some general guidelines for cooking steak at different temperatures: 

RareMedium RareMediumMedium WellWell Done
115-120 degrees F130-135 degrees F135-145 degrees F145-155 degrees F155-165 degrees F

When it comes to cooking steak, there is no one-size-fits-all answer.

The type of steak, the thickness of the steak, the desired level of doneness, and personal preference all play a role in determining the perfect cooking temperature. 

The best way to know for sure what temperature your steak is is to use a meat thermometer. This will ensure that your steak is cooked to perfection every time. 

Steak Cooking Methods

What Temp To Cook Steak In An Air Fryer?

Using an air fryer to cook your steak, the perfect temperature is between  350-400 degrees F. 

  • For a rare steak, cook for 3-4 minutes per side. 
  • For a medium-rare steak, cook for 4-5 minutes per side. 
  • For a medium steak, cook for 5-6 minutes per side. 
  • For a medium-well steak, cook for 6-7 minutes per side. 
  • For a well-done steak, cook for 7-8 minutes per side.

No matter what method you use for cooking your steak, the most important thing is to use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of your steak.

Cooking Steak In A Cast-Iron Skillet

  1. Preheat your cast iron pan on medium-high heat.
  2. Season your steak with salt, pepper, and any other seasoning.
  3. Add a tablespoon of oil to the pan, and swirl to coat.
  4. Add your steak to the pan
  5. To sear the steak, leave it on one side for a minute or two or until it slides around the pan freely.
  6. Cook for 3-4 minutes per side for a rare steak, and add a couple of minutes if you prefer medium or medium-rare.
  7. Remove the steak from the pan, and let it rest for 3-5 minutes before cutting into it.

What Temp To Cook Steak In The Oven After Searing?

If you’ve already seared your steak, the oven is the perfect place to finish cooking it. The ideal oven temperature for steak is between  350-400 degrees F. 

Simply move your cast iron skillet into the oven for a few more minutes, depending on the level of doneness you are looking for.

This allows the steak to cook evenly without overcooking the outside.

What Temp To Cook Steak In The Oven Broiler?

If you want to cook a steak in the oven completely, the broiler is a great option. 

  1. Set your oven to “Broil.” This should be around 450-550 degrees F. 
  2. Let it preheat for about 10 minutes. 
  3. Place your steak on the top wire rack in the oven, making sure there is plenty of space around it so that heat can circulate evenly. 
  4. For a rare steak, cook for 3-4 minutes per side and an additional minute or two to increase each level of doneness. A probe thermometer is a great way to check your steak’s temperature without having to open the oven each time. 

What Temp To Cook Steak On A Griddle?

If you have a griddle, you prefer to use:

  1. Preheat your griddle to medium heat or 300 degrees F. 
  2. Season your steak to your likeness
  3. Cook for about three minutes on each side and continue flipping until you reach your desired temperature. 

What Temp To Cook Steak On The Grill?

One of the most popular ways to cook a steak is on the grill. 

  1. Preheat your grill to high heat, about 500 degrees F. 
  2. Once it is heated, clean your grill grates with a wire brush. 
  3. Next, oil your grill grates by holding an oiled paper towel with tongs and rubbing it on the grates. 
  4. Season your steak with salt, pepper, and any other desired seasonings. 
  5. Place your steak on the grill, and do not touch it for at least two minutes to create a nice sear. 
  6. After two minutes, check your steak to see if it has nice grill marks. If so, rotate it a quarter turn to create more grill marks. 
  7. Cook for two more minutes, and then flip your steak. 
  8. Cook for another four minutes or until your steak reaches the desired level of doneness. 
  9. Remove your steak from the grill, and let it rest for at least three minutes before cutting into it. 
  10. Slicing against the grain will result in a more tender steak. 

What Temp To Cook Steak On A Pellet Grill?

If you choose to use your pellet grill for your steaks:

  1. Fattier steaks are the best choice. 
  2. Ensure they have been sitting out long enough to reach room temperature.
  3. Apply your preferred seasonings.
  4. Have your grill set to low heat to begin the smoking process.
  5. Leave your steaks in for 15-30 minutes on this low heat.
  6. Once they have finished, remove the steaks and crank up the grill to the highest setting Ideally as close to 600 degrees as possible.
  7. Let the grill pre-heat again.
  8. Add the steaks to the grill and cook to your desired doneness.

Cooking Steak On The Stove

If you plan to use a frying pan for your steak:

  1. Add oil to the pan and heat it up until it is nearly smoking. 
  2. Place your steak in the pan, and do not touch it for about two minutes to create the sear.
  3. Flip your steak, and add butter and any desired herbs to the pan. 
  4. Baste your steak by spooning the butter and herbs over the meat. 
  5. Cook for another two minutes or until your steak reaches the desired level of doneness. 
  6. Remove your steak from the pan, and let it rest for at least three minutes before cutting into it. 
Steak on stove

What is the Best Method for Cooking Steak?

There are many ways to cook a steak, and the best method depends on your preferences. 

If you want a quick and easy option, cooking a steak in the oven or on the stove is a good choice. 

Grilling or smoking a steak will take longer, but it can add more flavor to the meat. 

No matter how you choose to cook your steak, be sure to let it rest for a few minutes before cutting into it so that the juices can redistribute evenly. 

Are There Different Temperatures For Different Cuts of Steak?

Yes, there are definitely different temperatures that work best for different cuts of steak. 

For example, a thick-cut ribeye steak is going to need a different cooking temperature than a thin filet mignon. 

Here is a general guide for what temperatures work best for different cuts of steak:  

  • Thick-cut ribeye: Cook at a high heat, about 500 degrees F. 
  • Thin-cut ribeye: Cook at a medium-high heat, about 425 degrees F. 
  • Filet mignon: Cook at a medium heat, about 350 degrees F. 
  • Flank steak: Cook at a high heat, about 500 degrees F. 
  • Skirt steak: Cook at a high heat, about 500 degrees F. 

Can You Judge Steak Doneness By Color?

Generally speaking, you should not judge steak doneness by color.

The only way to know for sure if your steak is cooked to the desired level of doneness is to use a meat thermometer. 

Cooking steak

Insert the thermometer into the thickest part of the steak, and cook until it reaches the desired internal temperature.

How Can You Really Know If A Steak Is Cooked Perfectly Without Cutting Into It?

The best way to know if a steak is cooked perfectly without cutting into it is to use a meat thermometer. This will help you to avoid overcooking or undercooking your steak.

Time can also help you to gauge if a steak is cooked perfectly. For example, a 1-inch thick steak should be cooked for 2 to 3 minutes per side for medium-rare doneness. 

Another method is the Hand Technique. If your steak feels similar to the soft section of your palm, it is most likely rare.

Touching your thumb to your middle finger is equal to medium-rare. And touching your ring finger to your thumb is well-done. 

What Temp To Cook Steak Medium Rare?

The best way to cook a steak is at a temperature of medium-rare. This will ensure that the steak is cooked through, but still juicy and full of flavor.

To achieve a steak that is medium rare, you should cook it for two minutes per side at an internal temperature of 130 degrees Fahrenheit. 

What Temperature Steak is Safe for Children to Eat? 

If you are planning to introduce your child to steak, make sure it reaches an internal temperature of 145F.

This will be a medium to medium well-done steak.  This will ensure that any bacteria has been killed and prevent food poisoning.

The reason this is a greater concern for young children is due to the repercussions of food poisoning in children. They are more likely to become very sick due to E Coli.

What Temperature Steak Is Safe During Pregnancy?

Pregnant women should err on the side of caution when consuming steak as well. Ensure the steak is cooked medium to medium-well and reaches an internal temperature of 145F.

This will prevent any barteria or germs from being presnet in the meat and prevent the development of any illnesses like food poisoning, listeriosis, and toxoplasma gondii.

Final Thoughts

Whether you like your steak rare, medium-rare, or well-done, be sure to cook it to your liking.

Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of the steak, and err on the side of caution if you are unsure.

With a little practice, you’ll be a pro at cooking perfect steaks in no time!

You might want to check out our Amazing New York Steak Strip In Air Fryer.

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