Monday, February 11, 2013

How to Make the Perfect Filet Mignon

I have an idea.  How about instead of going out to dinner for this Valentine's Day, you stay home and make a super fast, super simple steakhouse worthy dinner right at home?  YOU CAN DO IT.  I promise. It's so easy.  This entire meal, from start to finish, took about 30 minutes and was outrageously good.  I've never made filet mignon at home, but it came out absolutely perfect. Let me show you how. 

I went to Whole Foods and got 2, 6 ounce pasture raised, grass fed tenderloin steaks.  If you're going to go all out, do it right.  The steaks came to $26 total.  A piece of filet at a Chicago steakhouse would be 30-40 dollars EACH (with no sides) so this is actually pretty reasonable for us. 

Start by patting the steaks off with a paper towel so they are very very dry.  Next, rub both sides with a drizzle of olive oil so the seasoning has something to stick to.  Generously, GENEROUSLY season both sides with sea salt and fresh cracked pepper.  I am obsessed with Cyprus White Flake Sea Salt and used that, so if you're wondering why there are big chunks of salt, that's why. The seasoning helps create that crust so don't be shy.  If you are a salt freak like I am, invest in that salt. I put it on absolutely everything.   


Heat 3-4 Tbs of olive oil in a pan and heat on high until the oil begins to smoke.  You want the pan to be screaming hot to ensure the meat sears evenly, doesn't stick, and creates a beautiful crispy crust.  Sear on each side for two minutes.  I used a cast iron pan and loved the results.  On that note, use a pan that's oven safe. 

The photos a little fuzzy, but you get the idea.  CRUST.  Amazing. 

After the meat sears on each side, place in a 400 degree oven for 4-5 minutes.  4 minutes will give you a medium rare steak where a 5 minute cooking time will give you closer to medium.  If you want to ensure the right temp, you want 135 ish for medium rare and 145 ish for medium.  If you like it cooked more than that, there is something wrong with you. 

This came out...omg...just so good.

I just finished eating this and yet my mouth is straight up drooly paloozy staring at these pics.

Simple.  Delicious.  And romantic.  Just my kind of Valentine's Day.

Here are the ingredients and the exact steps you need to make this complete meal in 30 minutes (or less!) for two. If you aren't super comfortable with multi tasking in the kitchen yet, I would recommend making both of your sides first so you can focus on your steaks after. 

6 Medium Yukon Gold Potatoes, quartered
1/4 Cup of Sour Cream 
4 Tbs of Unsalted Butter 
Sea Salt & Freshly Ground Pepper 

2, 6 Ounce Tenderloins 
Sea Salt & Freshly Ground Pepper 
Olive Oil 

Haricot Vert (Fancy skinny green beans): 
2 Handfuls of Haricot Vert or trimmed green beans 
2 Tbs of Olive Oil 
3 Cloves of Garlic, smashed 

Quarter the potatoes and simmer them in salted water for 12-14 (I left the skins on to save time).  While potatoes are cooking, season the steaks and sear in the pan.  Put in the oven.  Drain and mash the potatoes and whisk in the butter, seasonings and sour cream.  Set aside.  Remove steaks from oven and place them on a dish to rest.  Heat up olive oil and smashed garlic in a pan.  Add haricot verts and cook on medium high heat.  Remove the garlic and cover, cooking for 2-3 more minutes or until cooked, but still very crispy.  Plate and watch your husband or wife's mouth hit the floor.  

You know what would go really great with this?  LOADED mashed potatoes.  Ok. Someone stop me. 

I'm done.  Stay hungry and stay tuned to see what's for dessert on Wednesday...oh my. 


  1. Oh MY YUMMM! That looks so so good! And seems fairly simple! I think $26 is a heck of a deal!

  2. Something is wrong with me then... The outside of the steaks look amazing, though.

    1. entire family loves steak but they all eat it medium, medium well. They cringe when I order it medium rare!

  3. I just loled at "If you like it cooked more than that, there is something wrong with you." I'm a girl who likes her steak rare.

  4. This was so delicious
    here's a pix of my result

    Thanks for sharing

  5. Making this again tonight
    But this time I have the Williams-Sonoma Cyprus finishing sea salt

  6. Well I am one of those weirdos that like them done well...or just a little pink. Can I still use this recipe and keep them in the oven a few more minutes to get it cooked that way??

  7. I don't have cast-iron. Will any non-stick pan be oven-safe?

  8. I just cooked this for my husband and myself and it was absolutely PERFECT... I did cook mine a little longer, but we both are happy with the results.. Thanks sooo much

  9. I just cooked this for my husband and myself and it was PERFECT... I cooked mine a little longer, but we both are very happy!!! Thanks so much for the directions!!!!!!!!!!!!


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