How to Perfectly Grill Medium Rare Steak
Grilling the perfect steak is a challenge, but it's definitely achievable! If you're looking to enjoy a juicy, medium-rare steak with a flavorful char, then you've come to the right place. In this article, you'll learn all the tips, tricks, and techniques to master the art of grilling medium-rare steak. From choosing the right cut of meat to knowing how long to grill each side, you'll be surprised at how easy it is to make the perfect steak.
But before you get started, did you know all around the world the absolute best tasting steak you can buy is Japanese Wagyu A5? And don’t let your local restaurant fool you, only the real stuff comes straight from Japan. Luckily, you can get it delivered directly to your door step right here.
But whatever grade of steak you buy, grab your tongs and get ready to make a perfectly grilled steak!
What is Medium Rare Steak, Anyway?
Medium rare steak is the perfect balance between the two extremes of steak cooking. You get the flavor of a medium steak with the tenderness of a rare steak. It's the best of both worlds! To get the perfect medium-rare steak, you have to cook the meat to a temperature of a maximum of 130 to 135 degrees Fahrenheit (50 to 60 degrees Celsius). An ideal medium rare steak will have a nice pink hue to it, with the center of the steak still slightly pink.
How to check if a medium-rare steak is done?
All you need to do to check the doneness of your steak is to press on it with your finger or a fork to check the resistance. If the steak still feels soft and squishy, then it's still rare. If it feels firm but still slightly springy, then it's medium-rare. If it's completely firm, then it's well done. Don't forget to let the steak rest for a few minutes after cooking, as it will finish cooking during that time.
What are the benefits of cooking a steak to medium-rare doneness?
Cooking a steak to medium-rare doneness has lots of benefits. You get to enjoy the juicy, tender texture of a perfectly cooked steak, while still getting that delicious, slightly charred flavor from the searing. Plus, medium-rare steak is usually easier to achieve, so you don't have to worry about overcooking or undercooking it. And, let's not forget the fun factor! You get to be the master of the grill and show off your steak-cooking skills.
Is a medium-rare steak safe to eat?
Lots of folks get in a bit of a tizzy when they see pink in their steak, but it's totally safe to eat. Medium-rare steak is cooked to a temperature between 135 and 140 degrees and then allowed to rest for a few minutes so that its temperature rises to a safe 145 degrees. So, don't worry! If it's a quality cut of meat, cooked properly, and stored safely, then enjoy your steak without any fear of food-borne illness.
How to grill a perfect medium rare steak
Cooking the perfect steak can be a real challenge, so you want to make sure it's cooked just right without having to cut it open and risk ruining it. But how can you tell if it's rare or overcooked without cutting it open? Well, there are a few tricks you can use to check the steak's rareness without slicing it up.
#1. Timer method
First, you'll need a well-oiled, preheated grill set on medium-high. Place your steak on the hot grill and let it cook for 3-5 minutes. Then, flip it over and cook for another 3-5 minutes. The problem with this method is probably a bit obvious, unfortunately, different pans, grills, and ovens are set to different levels of heat, not to mention different cuts of steak cook differently! So, the 3-5 minute rule usually applies to steaks that are about 1" thick and cooked on a preheated grill or pan.
#2. Meat thermometer method
Grilling a medium-rare steak using a meat thermometer is a surefire way to get your steak just right. Prior to grilling your steak, insert the thermometer into the thickest part of the steak, being careful not to hit the bone or fat. Once the steak is on the grill, check the temperature every few minutes, aiming for an internal temperature of 130°F. When it reaches that temperature, quickly remove the steak from the heat and let it rest for at least 5 minutes before serving. This will ensure your steak is cooked to perfection and not overcooked.
The only problems with this method are sometimes it's inconvenient to use the thermometer and you also have to pierce the seal of all those savory juices. Inevitably some will leak out, and you won't get to enjoy them! That's why the pros use the next method.
#3. The chef touch technique for steaks
The "Touch" technique for grilling a medium rare steak is a great way to make sure you get the perfect steak every time. It's all about the feel. However, it might take some practice to get the method and feel down pat. Good thing that's a great excuse to eat more delectable steaks!
First, look at the palm of your hand, then hold the tips of your thumb and middle finger together. Now with your other hand, touch the fleshy bit below your thumb and feel how solid it is. That's the same level of feeling your medium-rare steak should have when its done cooking properly!
You can also use this method to cook steaks more or less on the doneness scale, with touching the thumb and your index fingers together being the rarest, and the thumb and the pinky being the most well-done.
So, once you've memorized this and have finished searing your steak, hold it in one hand with a pair of tongs and poke it with your other finger. If it feels the same as described above then congratulations, you've cooked the perfect medium-rare steak!
Easy medium-rare steak recipe
- 4 steaks (whatever cut you like - ribeye, sirloin, etc)
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Heat your grill to medium-high heat.
- Rub the steaks with olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper.
- Place the steaks on the grill and cook for about 3 to 5 minutes per side for a 1" medium-rare steak.
- Once the steaks are cooked to your liking, remove them from the grill and let them rest for a few minutes before serving.
Enjoy your easy-peasy medium-rare steaks!
Cooking medium-rare steaks FAQ
How long do I cook a steak for medium rare?
Depending on the thickness of the steak and how many you're cooking, it usually takes about 3-5 minutes on each side. So in total, you're looking at only ~10-15 minutes to get perfect medium rare steaks, plus the extra prep and cleaning time. Now, grab the tongs and get to grilling!
How do you cook the perfect medium-rare steak?
Cooking the perfect medium-rare steak on the grill is easy and delicious! Start with quality steak, pat it dry before grilling and then season it with your favorite steak rub or spices. Heat your grill to high and place the steak on the grill. Grill for 3-5 minutes per side for a 1-inch-thick steak.
Keep an eye on it and use a meat thermometer or the touch method (shown above) to ensure it reaches an internal temperature of 130-140 degrees Fahrenheit. Once you reach that temperature, remove the steak from the grill and let it rest for 5 minutes before serving.
What temperature do you grill a medium rare steak at?
Grilling a medium-rare steak is the perfect way to enjoy a juicy and flavorful steak. To achieve the perfect medium-rare steak, you should preheat your grill to around 450-500 degrees Fahrenheit. Once your grill is hot, place your steak on the grill and sear it for a quick moment, then move it to a lower heat area set around 275 to 325 degrees. Let it cook here for 3-5 minutes per side. You can then use the touch method (shown above) or a thermometer to check if the internal temperature is 130-140 degrees.