Do You Need Cast Iron for Steak?

There are few meals that can compare in deliciousness and stunning presentation than a wonderful steak dinner. Pair it up with some potatoes, asparagus, a salad, or whatever else tingles your taste buds, it is the perfect way to indulge and relax after a long day, not to mention how simple it is to make at home.

While you can visit professional steakhouses to get your meaty fix, surely it is easier to learn how to do it like the pros do? 

Sure, you can technically use any pan, or really any method to cook up a steak, but just because it is cooked, doesn’t mean it will be any good. Amazingly, and to our horror, there are even some people out there who will still cook a succulent slither of sirloin in the oven. Don’t do this, this draws all the juices out, and you get left with a dry and unsatisfying hunk of beef. 

When you cook a steak, it should be over a burner in a pan, with oils or butter. The best pan to use is cast iron, you can use a cast iron pan, or if you do not have that, you can always use a cast iron skillet. Of course, you could technically use any pan you have in your cupboards, but cast iron is the best of the best. 

If you are desperate for a good piece of steak you could just chuck your steak into any old frying pan and get a decent result, however, if you are a steak supreme fan, someone who loves their meaty meals, you will probably want to use cast iron.  

When you are cooking steak on cast iron, your steak should be in the pan for no more than five minutes, if that, depending on how you like your steak done. Preparing your meat for cooking will take a little more effort, but the cook itself is a short and sweet activity. This is because you use extreme heat to cook a steak in cast iron. So, if you still have potatoes and vegetables to cook, do those first and then cook your steak. 

Cooking a steak using cast iron, cooks your steak perfectly, and with speed. One of the most common levels of doneness in steak is medium-rare, we are not surprised, it is delicious. When you cook steak, whether you use cast iron, or just any old pan, you should use a meat thermometer to get a good idea of your steak's cooking time.

If you are using a cast iron pan or skillet, get your thermometer and test the steak, if you want it to be medium-rare then it should be around 135 °F, If you like it medium then 140 °F, and medium-well should be 145 °F. This means if you like rare, aim for 130 °F. Do remember that your steak will continue to cook for a minute or two even after it is removed from the pan, so remove it when it’s a few degrees shy of the goal temperature.

You can use any pan to cook a steak, however cast iron is the best, and if you haven’t already tried this, you should definitely give it a go. 

Is cast iron steak good?

Have you ever been to one of those restaurants where you have ordered a steak, and it came out still  sizzling on an iron plate? There are few things quite as fantastic, who could resist. Despite how many cooking methods there are for cooking a steak, you could grill it, fry it up, broil it, but cast iron pans remain as the tried and tested favorite among steak enthusiasts and chefs everywhere.  

Cast iron pans are seen as one of the must-have items in your kitchen today. It is no surprise that cooking a steak up in an iron pan is anything less than brilliant and delicious. Cast iron pans are inexpensive and don’t cost much either, so you and your wallet can sleep easily.

They are made from a dense metal that distributes and retains heat better than any other frying pan type, or any metal pot you can think of, while it does this, that means that it cooks your meat evenly throughout. This means that it allows for meats such as steak to brown and sear much better, this searing creates that crusty complex flavor foundation in your steak and is definitely the number one enhancement of flavor for this particular style of beef. 

If you have ever got into an argument with a frying pan when your meat and food has stuck to it, even though it swears to be ‘non-stick’, you should chuck that in the trash and get a cast iron pan. Cast iron is naturally non-stick, so no worry that your food will stick to it, and since it is naturally this way, you don’t have to worry that it’s non-stick claims are a lie.

You may be wondering how it is possible for a pan to be non-stick naturally. Well, a well seasoned cast-iron pan begins with oiling the inside cooking surface and heating it. Heating the pan up to a high temperature bonds the oil to the cat iron pan for the life of the pan. This produces a fantastically protective layer that is hard, and non-stick.

This also means you do not have to use much oil when you cook, so you can say goodbye to over oiled steaks, no oil dripping off your meat, and you will also have more oil in your kitchen since you won’t be using it all the time to save your steak from getting stuck.

However, the heat of cast iron also means that your steak will taste brilliant, it's easy cooking, speedy cooking, and the non-stick, next-to-no oil needs, means that using cast iron for steak produces beautiful steaks, that taste brilliant, and are super easy to cook, so you can get home from a busy day, quickly whip up a beautiful piece of steak and enjoy your evening, without having to spend hours in the kitchen just to get a tasty meal. 

Why is cast iron better for steak?

There are many ways to cook a steak, you do not need to use any one particular way to do it, however, some ways are better than others. Cast iron pans are a brilliant way to cook, and they are definitely one of the top dogs when it comes to the best ways to cook up a steak. 

Cast iron pans are one of the best ways thanks to their stellar heat conduction. Grill grates concentrate heat wherever they touch, however, cast iron surfaces help temper those hotspots. The cast-iron will also distribute heat for more of an even cooking experience throughout, as well as a consistent crust over the steak surface. 

Grilling steak on a cast iron skillet allows for your steak to cook through evenly to prevent scorching, as this means that the juices are not dripping through the grates, which would cause flare-ups. Because your steak’s juices are not dripping through the grates, this means that they are also constantly bathing your steak in its own juices and flavors. The cast-iron surface will further bring out your steak's flavors. This means you do not lose any of the flavors, so your steak will taste better overall. 

Even more so, when you have a cast iron pan that is well-seasoned, it will have a nice non-stick surface. You will be able to prepare your foods with less oil and therefore less guilt about using so much oil. You will therefore also have fewer synthetic and potentially harmful materials that are leaking out into it than for other types of non-stick pans. Your food will be healthier, and less harmful. 

These also retain heat much better than other cookware, so there is a smaller cooking time, and you can get your dinner on the table much quicker. Cooking with iron cookware will also boost your intake by leaching iron in the food, which is very helpful for anyone who requires a higher iron intake in their diet. 

If you enjoy cooking with cast iron often, or if you have steak as a regular part of your diet, you will also be happy to know that cast iron has a long life. The more you cook with it, the better and tastier your food will get.  

Cast iron gives your food much better flavors, and gives you a much better cooking experience. Cast iron doesn’t just retain flavors, it makes cooking faster due to heat retention, and you also reduce the amount of unhealthy oils in your food. 

While you might like your grill, or your frying pan, a cast iron pan can give you much more in terms of a great cooking experience. It is brilliant for anyone who enjoys steak, or wants to up their cooking game. A cast iron pan can change your life.