The sous vide cooking method has started gaining popularity due to its accurate cooking rate. It’s a win-win situation to have your food cooked in a temperature-controlled water bath without any intervention from your side. If you’re wondering what’s the best steak for sous vide and how to cook it, read on to find out!
With steak, the sous vide cooker lets you perfectly control the level of doneness of your meat. That way, you can avoid the risk of burning, undercooking, or overcooking your steak.
The immersion circulator provides your steak both controlled timing and precise temperature to give you consistent results that never fail.
What is the Best Steak for Sous Vide?
Practically, you can cook any type of steak using the sous vide method.
You can choose to cook tender cuts, such as the tenderloin, strip, rib eye, or t-bone steak. You can also opt for butcher’s cuts, such as hanger, slap, or skirt steak. If you’re a Wagyu fan, you can also cook different types of Wagyu steaks to sous vide.
Japanese Wagyu is known for its buttery, delicious texture. It has a high-fat content that’s evenly distributed so it won’t need oil additions. It would also be ready faster than other types of steak.
A Wagyu A5 Ribeye or an A5 Japanese Wagyu Striploin would give you rich tasty results with sous vide cooking.
You can also go for a more affordable alternative, such as American Tajima Wagyu Ribeye and American Wagyu Top Sirloin.
Regardless of the steak you choose, you need to put the steak’s thickness into consideration. Best results with Sous-vide cooking are achieved if the cut is thicker than usual.
A thin cut will reach overcooked levels at an accelerated rate. It is nearly impossible to achieve that pink “medium” look that you would want to go for if the meat is too thin. All you will get is a piece of grayish rubber sole.
In short, cooking a thick steak will give you the desired contrast between the exterior and interior that people love steak for. It’ll also help you in achieving a crust later and enjoy it being cooked from edge to edge.
When cooking sous vide (as demonstrated in some cookbooks reviewed by us), opt for a steak thickness of 1 ½ inches or more.
How to Sous Vide a Steak?
The process of cooking using sous vide is incredibly simple. Let’s dive right in!
Start by putting your steak in an air-tight bag. If your steaks are big, it’s better to put each in a separate air-tight bag.
If you’re cooking small steaks, you can put 2 pieces in the same bag without sides touching. To make things easier, you can also use a separate sous vide rack to make sure each steak is separated and will be thoroughly cooked.
When packaging your steak, you can use a vacuum sealer or the displacement method to make sure there’s no air in the bags. We have also compared a couple of the best chamber vacuum sealers, so you might want to check out or post.
The bags should never float on the water in order for your steak to be cooked properly.
If you can’t use any of these two methods, you can add sous-vide weights inside the bags to keep them submerged during the whole cooking time. These are safe weights that are specifically designed for sous vide. If you are just starting out, or are worried about food safety, then these are highly recommended!
Add whatever seasoning you prefer. It can be just salt and pepper or your choice of herbs with garlic and maybe some oil.
Afterward, attach the bags in the water container to which your sous vide cooker is connected.
Set the temperature according to the level of doneness you want. Wait for the water to reach the desired temperature before you put the sealed bags inside.
If you aren’t sure if the bags are perfectly sealed, you can clip the bag to the container edges. Just make sure that the whole steak is covered underwater.
Then, it’s time to leave your steak to get cooked on its own. If you happen to cook a previously-seasoned frozen steak, just add an extra hour to your cooking time.
People who like the grill marks on their steak can add the reverse sear step.
All you need to do is take your cooked steak out of the bag and sear it on a skillet or grill. You can also use a sear torch to give your steak delicious bronzy edges.
How Long Does It Take to Sous Vide a Steak?
When cooked well done, all types of steaks usually take from 1 to 3 hours at a temperature of 156 F (69 C) and up. However, time and temperature differ when it comes to other levels of doneness.
For example, tenderloin steaks cooking time and temperature aren’t the same as other types of steaks. Because tenderloin steaks are lower in fat, it gets cooked faster than other fatty steaks.
Sous vide cooking has a specific chart when it comes to cooking steak. To stay on the safe side, you can cook using average time and temperature degrees.
With time, you’ll be able to choose your exact preferred cooking degree.
Strip, Rib Rye, T-bone, or Butcher’s Cuts Steak:
|Level of Doneness||Time||Temperature|
|Medium-well||1 to 3 ½ hours||145 to 155 F (63 to 68 C)|
|Medium||1 to 4 hours||135 to 144 F (57 to 62 C)|
|Medium-rare||1 to 4 hours||129 to 134 F (54 to 57 C)|
|Rare to very rare||1 to 2 hours||120 to 128 F (49 to 53 C)|
|Level of Doneness||Time||Temperature|
|Medium-well||45 minutes to 3 ½ hours||145 to 155 F (63 to 68 C)|
|Medium||45 minutes to 4 hours||135 to 144 F (57 to 62 C)|
|Medium-rare||F45 minutes to 4 hours||129 to 134 F (54 to 57 C)|
|Rare to very rare||45 minutes to 2 ½ hours||120 to 128 F (49 to 53 C)|
Sous vide can let you cook and enjoy the taste of every kind of steak you want. There’s no going wrong with it, whatever the level of doneness you prefer.
The next time you invite family or friends for dinner, you won’t have to worry about how good you’re at cooking steak. You’ll just use this hands-off method and enjoy different types of savory steaks.