How Long To Let Steak Rest Before Cooking

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Are you ready to elevate your steak game to the next level?

Before you fire up the grill, pause for a moment and consider the importance of letting your steak rest before cooking.

Like a well-deserved break after a long day, allowing your steak to rest not only enhances its tenderness and juiciness, but also unlocks layers of flavor that will leave you craving more.

In this article, we will guide you through the science behind resting steak and provide recommendations for optimal rest times, ensuring you achieve steak perfection every time.

Key Takeaways

  • Resting enhances tenderness and juiciness
  • Resting allows juices to redistribute
  • Resting time depends on steak thickness
  • Resting ensures a juicy and flavorful steak

The Science Behind Resting Steak

The science behind resting steak is that it allows the juices to redistribute and the meat to become more tender. Temperature control plays a crucial role in this process.

When you cook a steak, the heat causes the proteins in the meat fibers to contract, pushing the juices towards the center. By resting the steak, you allow the fibers to relax and the juices to spread evenly throughout the meat. This ensures that each bite is moist and flavorful.

Furthermore, temperature control during resting is important to prevent overcooking. If you let the steak rest in a warm environment, the residual heat will continue to cook the meat, resulting in a dry and tough texture.

It is recommended to rest your steak for about 5-10 minutes, loosely covered with foil, to achieve the perfect balance of tenderness and juiciness.

Resting Time Recommendations for Different Cuts of Steak

For different cuts of steak, it’s recommended to give them a chance to rest. Resting time for steaks varies depending on the cooking method used.

For a quick sear on high heat, such as grilling or pan-searing, a resting time of about 5 to 10 minutes is sufficient. This allows the juices to redistribute and ensures a more tender and flavorful steak.

However, for slower cooking methods like roasting or sous vide, a longer resting time is needed. For medium-rare to medium steaks, a resting time of 15 to 20 minutes is advisable.

To determine the ideal resting time for your steak, use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature. Once it reaches your desired doneness, remove it from the heat and let it rest.

Benefits of Letting Your Steak Rest

To fully enjoy the benefits, make sure you give your steak enough time to rest after cooking. Resting your steak allows for flavor enhancement and texture improvement. When you take your steak off the heat, it continues to cook internally due to residual heat. This process, known as carryover cooking, helps to distribute the juices evenly throughout the meat, resulting in a more flavorful and tender steak. By allowing your steak to rest for the recommended time, you allow the juices to redistribute themselves, ensuring a juicy and succulent bite. The exact resting time will depend on the thickness of the steak. Here is a table to guide you:

Steak Thickness (inches) Resting Time (minutes)
1/2 5
1 10
1 1/2 15

Tips for Properly Resting Your Steak

One important tip is to allow enough time for your steak to cool down after it’s cooked. Resting your steak is crucial for achieving a juicy and flavorful result.

But the resting technique doesn’t just apply to steak; it can be used for other types of meat as well.

When it comes to resting your steak, there are a few common mistakes to avoid. First, avoid cutting into the steak immediately after it’s cooked. This will cause all the juices to escape, resulting in a dry and less flavorful steak. Instead, let it rest for about 5-10 minutes to allow the juices to redistribute.

Another mistake to avoid is placing the steak on a cold plate or cutting board. This can cause the steak to cool down too quickly and lose its desired temperature. Instead, use a warm plate or cutting board to keep the steak warm while it rests.

Achieving Perfectly Juicy and Tender Steaks

If you want your steak to be perfectly juicy and tender, make sure you give it enough time to cool down after cooking. Achieving steakhouse quality steaks requires proper resting techniques.

Here are some tips to help you achieve the best results:

  • Resting Time: Let your steak rest for about 5-10 minutes after cooking to allow the juices to redistribute. This will help retain the moisture and ensure a tender bite.

  • Tenting: Cover your steak loosely with aluminum foil while it rests. This will keep the heat in and prevent the steak from drying out.

  • Slicing: Wait until the resting period is over before slicing your steak. This will help maintain the juiciness and tenderness of the meat.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I skip the resting step when cooking a steak?

Skipping the resting step when cooking a steak is possible, but not recommended. Resting allows the meat to relax, resulting in a juicier and more tender steak. It is one of the key benefits of the cooking process.

Does the size of the steak affect the resting time?

The resting time for different cuts of steak may vary, but it is essential for all sizes. Letting the steak rest allows the juices to redistribute, resulting in a moist and flavorful steak.

What happens if I don’t let my steak rest before slicing it?

Not letting your steak rest before slicing it can result in a less tender and juicy steak. Resting allows the juices to redistribute, resulting in a more flavorful and tender meat. That’s why resting steak is important.

Can I let my steak rest for too long?

Letting your steak rest for too long can result in a loss of flavor and tenderness. However, there are benefits to resting steak such as allowing the juices to redistribute, resulting in a more juicy and flavorful steak.

Does the resting time differ for different cooking methods (grilling, pan-searing, broiling, etc.)?

Resting time varies based on cooking techniques. For grilling, pan-searing, broiling, and other methods, it’s important to let the steak rest at room temperature to reach the optimal temperature for even cooking.


In conclusion, remember to always let your steak rest before cooking. By allowing it to rest, you are giving the meat time to redistribute its juices and become tender and juicy.

The recommended resting time varies depending on the cut of steak, but generally, it is best to let it rest for about 5-10 minutes. Resting your steak not only enhances its flavor and texture but also ensures a more enjoyable dining experience.

So, next time you’re grilling or searing a steak, don’t forget to give it the time it needs to rest and deliver a mouthwatering meal.