Take it from a chef: when it comes to cooking a filet, nothing beats a pan-seared filet mignon. Seared stove-top in garlic herb butter and finished in the oven yields a juicy, tender, perfectly cooked steak every time.
With my easy recipe, you don’t have to wait for a special occasion at your favorite steakhouse to enjoy a delicious buttery pan-seared filet mignon.
My pan-seared filet mignon is the perfect steak for your next date night, dinner party, or just to turn a weeknight into a special occasion.
A good steak is a thing of beauty, and this filet was flavorful, juicy, and very tender.
Because filet mignon is a lean cut of meat, it is important to cook it properly so it doesn’t dry out. Ask any chef, and they’ll tell you, never cook a steak past medium to preserve its tenderness and juiciness because it lacks marbling; a filet mignon cooked longer than medium will be dry.
Ingredients to make Pan Seared Filet Mignon
Let’s start by gathering the ingredients we need to make my recipe. In Chef Speak, this is called the Mise en Place, which translates into Everything in its Place.
Not only does setting your ingredients up ahead of time speed the cooking process, but it also helps ensure you have everything you need to make the dish.
Let’s start by gathering the ingredients we need to make Pan Seared Filet Mignon. In Chef Speak, this is called the “Mise en Place,” which translates to “Everything in its Place.”
Not only does setting up your ingredients ahead of time speed up the cooking process, it also helps ensure you have everything you need to make the dish.
Can I add other seasonings to my Pan Seared Filet Mignon?
Absolutely! Depending on your taste preference, you can add other herbs to the butter. Tarragon, fresh oregano, and sage will add an interesting twist to the flavor profile of my filet mignon recipe.
Cracked black pepper pressed into the steak is one of my favorite seasonings to add, and if I’m being completely honest, I love Montreal steak seasoning. It’s one of my favorite seasonings for beef, pork, and lamb. You can also use cajun seasoning or jerk seasoning to change up the flavor profile.
What is a Filet Mignon?
Filet mignon is a cut of beef that comes from the smaller end of the beef tenderloin (the muscle that runs along the spine of the steer). This particular cut of meat is prized for its tenderness. The tenderloin muscle does very little work, making it one of the most tender cuts of beef.
Due to the limited amount of tenderloin on each animal, the cost is much higher than other cuts of beef.
How to make Pan Seared Filet Mignon
- Take steaks out of the refrigerator about 30-60 minutes before you plan to cook them to allow them to come to room temperature.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Pat the filet mignon steaks dry with a paper towel, then liberally season both sides of each steak with salt and pepper.
- Add the butter, garlic, rosemary, and thyme to a cast iron pan over medium-low heat and let the garlic and herbs cook for 2-3 minutes. Swirl the pan frequently to prevent the garlic, herbs, and butter from burning.
- Increase the stove to medium-high heat, and when the pan is hot enough, place the seasoned steaks into the hot pan.
- Sear the steaks for 2-3 minutes per side, spooning the herb butter over the steaks during the cooking process. Keep swirling and spooning the butter over the steaks as they cook to keep everything from burning. *Don’t move the steak until it’s time to flip it. This will ensure a good sear.
- Flip the steaks over and repeat the process, searing the other side for 2-3 minutes.
I use butter to add flavor to the steak, but you can use olive oil if you’d rather not use butter.
Cook to temperature: When cooking filet mignon or any piece of meat, a lot of factors go into how long the cooking process actually takes. Cooking times will vary, so the best way to ensure your steak is cooked to the temperature you prefer is to use an instant-read meat thermometer.
Keep in mind that the pan-seared filet mignon or any piece of meat you cook will continue to cook after being removed from the oven, and the temperature will rise from 5 to 10 degrees.
- Insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the steak and transfer the pan with the steaks to the middle rack of the preheated oven.
- When the internal temperature reaches 125-130° F the steak will be medium rare. Very carefully remove the pan from the oven and remove the steaks from the pan. The internal temperature will continue to rise by about 5 degrees.
- Place the steaks on a wire rack or plate and let them rest for 5 minutes before slicing. This gives the juices time to reabsorb and redistribute into the beef.
Letting the pan-seared filet mignon rest after removing it from the heat source is the last and very important step in creating the perfect filet mignon.
Letting the steak rest for 5 minutes before cutting is critical is a critical step and accomplishes two very important things. First, when you remove the steak from the heat, it gives it time to finish the cooking process. Secondly, It also allows the juices to redistribute throughout the meat, yielding a juicy and delicious steak!
Pan-Seared Filet Mignon Cooking Temperatures
- Rare: cool red center 115-120° F
- Medium rare: warm red center 125-130° F
- Medium: warm pink center 130-135° F
- Medium well: slightly pink center 140-145° F
- Well done: little or no pink – 155° F and up
*Steak temperatures will continue to rise(about 5 degrees) after removing from the oven.
Serve the pan-seared filet mignon with green beans or your favorite green vegetable and my roast potato wedges or buttery smashed potatoes or your favorite side dishes. And if you’re not opposed to consuming a little more butter, spoon some of the herb butter from the pan over the steak.
Store leftover tenderloin steak in an airtight container, refrigerated for 3-4 days. Leftover steak can also be frozen for up to 3 months.
For added flavor, top the steak with compound herbed butter, bearnaise sauce, red wine sauce, or my chimichurri sauce.
No, you don’t. Any oven-safe pan will work, I have also used a stainless steel pan. But cast iron does something magical to the surface of meat and seafood.
If you don’t have an oven-safe skillet, you can transfer the seared filet to a baking sheet fitted with a wire rack to finish the cooking process. The wire rack keeps the meat off the surface of the baking sheet, allowing the heat to circulate around the meat.
The best way to reheat a steak is by placing it on a baking sheet with a wire rack in a 250-degree preheated oven. Let the steak reheat for 15 to 20 minutes or until reheated to your desired temperature.
Ensure your steak is dry by patting it with paper towels. A dry steak will sear better. Also, get your pan very hot before adding the steak. Using a cast iron skillet can help achieve a good sear.
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This is one of my all-purpose favorite cast iron pans.