Smoked steak is probably one of the best ways to prepare steaks. Imagine, after grilling it on your pellet grill, you’d be able to taste its juiciness and richness in flavor. You won’t have to focus more on seasonings, as the smoke will handle the flavoring.
The smoke gives your steak a unique flavor. In fact, smoking steak on a pellet grill is one of the best recipes to cook, especially when using high-quality pellets.
However, most people think that smoking steak is a lot of trouble. Little do they know that they are missing a huge part of improving the flavor, and at the same time, it’s easy! It’s one of the most basic ways to prepare your steak. You don’t need to purchase any fancy rubs or sauces to elevate the taste because smoking the meat is more than enough.
This article will teach you how you can prepare smoked steaks like a professional chef.
The Wood Pellet For Your Smoked Steak
Before anything else, you have to understand that smoke is a type of flavor. It gives a distinct taste that adds flavor to your meat. It’s a fusion of meat and smoke, and you’d be able to taste both of them together.
Since the smoke is considered an ingredient, you can choose a variety of wood to use to adjust and give your meat the right flavor you’re looking for.
There is plenty of wood to choose from, so don’t be afraid to mix and match. You can also combine specific types of wood with certain meat, creating a combination you and your family will love.
To help you out, here are some of the most basic ideas.
If you’re looking for a mild smoked flavor, cherry wood is one of the best choices. It also gives your meat a vibrant color. On the other hand, alder, pecan, or maple gives a simple, mild flavor.
But if you’re looking for a bolder smoky taste, mesquite, hickory, or oak wood are some of the top ones, as they add amazing flavor to your steak.
The Steak For Smoking
One of the best things about smoking steak is that it applies to most cuts. However, I personally recommend good quality beef, such as rib eyes, with at least 1 ½ inches of thickness.
These are just my personal preferences so feel free to use any cut you want. Please remember that if you use a thin cut, the meat will cook through faster without absorbing the smoky flavor, so using a thicker one is probably the best.
Smoking The Steak
As mentioned, smoking your steak is a straightforward process. You just need to avoid the most common grilling mistakes, such as cooking it even though it’s still frozen or wet. Here’s how you can smoke and cook your steak.
Fire up the Smoker
When your steak is ready (not frozen, cold, or wet), preheat your smoker. Set the temperature to 225ºF. As mentioned above, you can use any type of wood you prefer, depending on the flavor you want to have. Each wood type gives a distinctly smokey taste.
Season the Steaks
Make sure your meat has no moisture by patting it with a kitchen paper towel. Season it with salt and freshly cracked black pepper. Any type of salt would do, but I recommend using kosher salt.
Smoke the Meat up
Place the seasoned steak on your smoker’s grates. Make sure to close the lid and let the meat absorb the smoke until it reaches the temperature you want. If you want a rare steak, you need 115ºF. If you’re looking for a medium, you need to get between 125ºF and 135ºF. On the other hand, between 145ºF to 155ºF is well done.
You can always use a meat thermometer to measure the temperature of your steak.
Preheat a Cast Iron Skillet
Once the steak reaches your desired temperature, you can set it aside and preheat a cast iron skillet. Set the flame to high heat. When it’s all set, coat the bottom with high-heat oil, such as canola or avocado oil.
Sear the Steak
Put your steak in the preheated skillet. Then, sear both sides for about two minutes each. Once it’s already seared, you can continue cooking it depending on the desired doneness of your steak.
For a rare steak, you want a temperature of 125ºF, while between 135ºF and 145ºF for a medium one. If you prefer a well-done steak, you should get between 155ºF and 165ºF.
Let it Rest, Then Serve
After cooking your steak, don’t serve it right away. It’s best to let it rest and cool down for a bit, for about 10 minutes. After that, you can serve it right away. You can sprinkle it with additional salt and pepper if desired.
Don’t Rush: Take Your Time
Cooking your smoked steak takes time. It usually takes about an hour. Keep in mind that the cooking time will depend on the thickness of the meat and the grill’s temperature.
You may not get your desired flavor at first, but that’s alright because you’d be able to identify which wood for smoking is the perfect flavor for your taste buds. So take your time. Mix and match the meat and wood, and don’t rush things, especially when you’re smoking your steak and cooking.