How to Grill the Perfect Steak

How to Grill the Perfect Steak

Feasting is our column dedicated to cooking, grilling, eating and discovering what’s on the menu across America and the world.

Grilling season is here again, so we’re cleaning off the grates and stocking up on some must-have essentials to make the most out of our time cooking outdoors. And while we love grilling everything from vegetables to nice, plump sausages, nothing beats the smoky, meaty taste of a perfectly grilled steak. If you’re a seasoned grill master, then you probably have your steak cooking skills down pat. But if you just bought your first grill or are looking for some red meat pointers, we’re here to help.

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We enlisted the expertise of Dusmane Tandia, the executive chef at Mastro’s Steakhouse in NYC for some pointers on how to grill the perfect steak. Chef Tandia cranks out juicy, tender cuts of meat daily, so he knows a thing or two about how to get it right at home. Check out his tips before firing up the grill.

Season, Season, Season
Be sure to generously salt your steak in advance and let it sit, uncovered, for a few hours or overnight (if possible) in your fridge. This helps to season the meat all the way through. It also draws out some of the moisture in the meat, which will result in an even better sear.

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Make Sure the Meat is Dry
After salting the meat and letting it sit, pat it dry with paper towels to remove any excess moisture.

Make it Hot
Preheat the grill to medium high/high to make it HOT! The grill needs to be hot to avoid sticking and to get the perfect sear.

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Don’t Cut Into the Steak to See If It’s Done
To see if a steak is finished, press on it with the palm of your hand.

Rare: Squeeze the pad at the base of your thumb. It should feel spongy with very little resistance.

Medium: Press on the middle of the palm of your outstretched hand. It should feel firm.

Well Done: Squeeze the base of your small finger. It should feel firm with no give. Please don’t ruin your steaks by cooking them this long.

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The Cast Iron is Your Friend
If you aren’t confident in your grilling skills or don’t have an outdoor space and you want that fool-proof steak, cook your meat in a cast iron skillet. It’s one of the best surfaces for getting a perfect sear and crust.

Let it Rest
After cooking, let the meat rest before cutting and serving. This lets all of the juices settle so the beef stays moist.

Now that you know how to cook the perfect steak, it’s time to put that knowledge into action. Here, Chef Tandia shares his recipe for the ultimate bone-in ribeye to make at home.

Mastro’s Bone-In Ribeye

Serves 4

Two 22 oz. Bone-In Ribeye Steaks
Steak Rub (Mastro’s uses a blend of fine sea salt, spices, starch and papain extract)
1 oz Hot Melted Butter
1 tsp Chopped Parsley


1. Remove the steaks from the refrigerator and let them rest at room temperature for 30 to 60 minutes.

2. Prepare a charcoal or gas grill, or preheat the broiler and position a rack 4 inches from the element. Lightly spray the grill rack with vegetable oil cooking spray. The coals should be medium-hot for the charcoal grill. The burners should be on HIGH for the gas grill.

3. Season the steaks by dredging them on both sides in the steak rub, and shake off the excess.

4. If using a charcoal grill, cook on one side for 10 minutes. Turn using tongs, and grill the other side for 10-12 minutes for medium rare, or until the desired degree of doneness.

If using a gas grill, grill for 7-8 minutes. Turn using tongs, and grill the other side for 6-7 minutes for medium rare, or until the desired degree of doneness.

If using the broiler, broil 4 inches from the heat source for 8 minutes. Turn using tongs, and broil the other side for 6-7 minutes for medium rare or until the desired degree of doneness.

5. Remove the steaks from heat and let sit for 10 minutes. To serve, slice the steaks into .75 inch thick slices, place on a hot plate and drizzle with melted butter and fresh chopped parsley, if desired.

6. Eat that perfectly cooked masterpiece and give yourself a pat on the back.