Pan-Seared Steak in Cast Iron (Oven-Finished)

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Pan-Seared Steak in Cast Iron (Oven-Finished)

If you’re making steaks inside, you’ve come to the right place. This technique for cooking steak in a cast iron skillet is unbeatable. What sets it apart? It starts on the stove in a cast iron skillet, but you’ll finish the steak in the oven. The stovetop-to-oven method produces steaks with a deeply caramelized crust and a tender, perfectly cooked interior.

Why This Recipe Works

We love this oven-finished steak recipe for a lot of reasons. To name a few:

The Cast-Iron Skillet

The skillet is the star of the show. Why? Cast iron absorbs and retains heat like no other surface. It heats up fast and cooks evenly. A hot cast iron skillet puts a quick sear on steaks, creating a beautiful caramelized crust, without overcooking the center of the steak. Also, the cast iron skillet goes from stovetop to oven with ease.

The Choice of Steak

This recipe calls for beef top-sirloin steaks. Choose steaks that are at least 1-inch thick. If the steak is too thin, the inside will overcook before the beautiful caramelized crust can form on the outside. Of course, this stovetop-to-oven technique works well for more expensive cuts, too.

Allrecipes community member Ken Turnbull loves the technique for thick steaks with nice marbling: “I learned this method from a good steak house almost 50 years ago and always have the best results,” he says.

The Simple Marinade

This simple steak recipe calls for marinating your top-sirloin steaks in a simple marinade made up of common ingredients you likely have on hand: Orange juice, cider vinegar, olive oil, and Worcestershire sauce.
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The ideal steak marinades are simple mixtures of acid (OJ and cider), fat (olive oil), and seasonings (Worcestershire sauce). The acid tenderizes the meat and delivers a tangy flavor foundation; the fat binds the marinade and helps prevent steaks from sticking; and the seasonings, well, they add flavor.

The Resting Time

Let the steaks sit for 5 to 10 minutes before serving to allow the juices to redistribute. As your steaks rest, they will also continue to cook slightly. For best results, use a meat thermometer to test for doneness. Here is what you’re aiming for:

Rare: 125 degrees F (52 degrees C)
Medium Rare: 130 degrees F (54 degrees C)
Medium: 140 degrees F (60 degrees C)
Medium Well: 150 degrees F (65 degrees C)
Well Done: 160 degrees F (70 degrees C)

Allrecipes Community Tips and Praise

“The outside had a perfect crust and inside it was extremely juicy and tender,” says Jeffrey Klotzbach. “I would recommend it to anyone.”

“A 1-inch thick steak is as thin as you want to go,” says Ken Turnbull. “For medium rare, I find that between 1 and 2 minutes per side is all that is needed for the sear and that 5 minutes in a 425 degree oven is enough, if not too much, for a 1-inch steak.”

“I used a 1-pound petite sirloin and splashed a little Pinot Noir in the pan drippings while the steak was resting,” says rennhr. “Then I reduced the sauce and finished with unsalted butter. Will definitely make again.”

Editorial contributions by Carl Hanson

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