Reverse Seared Beef Tallow Steak sounds a little complicated, but it’s not all that hard. We’ve covered reverse searing here a bunch of times. And considering the title of this could be Reverse Seared, Wagyu Beef Tallow Steak, Finished with a Cast Iron Sear, so the current title doesn’t seem so complicated. We are going to reverse sear a steak and then show the magic of what wagyu beef tallow brings to the table. And that beef tallow is not a one hit wonder. It has some breadth to that magic. I will never make another brisket without wagyu beef tallow. And if you’ve never had beef tallow french fries you haven’t lived. And when I say magic, I mean magic. Look at these two NY Strip steaks sitting on a cast iron griddle.
Also, don’t sleep on the cast iron. Edge to edge browning is night and day better than those cross hatch diamonds.
Reverse Seared Beef Tallow Steak Ingredients:
- 3 NY strip steaks, THICK
- Your favorite BBQ rub (beef flavor preferred)
- Salt to taste (depending on the salt content of the beef rub)
- 1/2 cup South Chicago Packing Wagyu Beef Tallow
- Cast iron griddle or pan
Listen, we’re going keto friendly right here. This is no carb and has plenty of protein and some wonderful wagyu fat that tastes oh so good! For those of you going for the, “New year, new me,” mantra with some keto action, we are here to help. So start off with some thick steak. We’re talking 1.5 inches plus with as much marbling as you can afford
What is Marbling in Steak? And why is Marbling Good?
Marbling refers to the little striations of white fat that runs through a steak. Not the big globs, but this little lines or flecks that run throughout the meat. The more striations, the juicier and tastier the steak will be. The lowest grades of steak, select, have very little marbling. Choice has a little more (these were actually choice, but were more well marbled than most choice steaks). Then there’s prime grade steaks which have a lot more marbling and beyond that we have Wagyu steaks that can be insanely marbled and are graded A1-A5. Just keep in mind that there is no domestically raised A5 Wagyu in the US. It can never be graded that in the United States. It has to come from Japan. So be wary if someone is hawking A5. Also, any of the high end Wagyu needs to be cooked to at least medium rare or higher or the fat will not liquify.
And when I said thick steaks, I meant it. Reverse searing doesn’t work very well with thin steaks. One way to tell if your steak is thick enough is to see if it can stand on its own:
These will do!
I placed these steaks in the microwave to come up to room temperature. Why the microwave? Because of my counter surfing dog that would mow these things down in a heart beat as soon as I walked out of the room.
Season the steaks top and bottom. I won’t need any extra salt because my steak seasoning has plenty of salt in it:
And when we are talking about thick steaks, after seasoning the top and the bottom, make sure to season the sides:
Often when seasoning meat, a lot of the spices land on the cutting board. Use the edge of the steak to grab the seasoning as it will stick to the meat rather than cutting board:
Now we are seasoned:
Now let’s head out to our smoker, in this case a pellet cooker set to 225F, to do the first half of the reverse sear which is to smoke these steaks:
I use the built in probe thermometer from my pellet smoker in the skinniest steak, the one in the middle, to tell me when the steaks hit 100F:
Before we go any farther, let’s talk about reverse searing:
Why Should You Reverse Sear a Steak?
Traditionally, we seared our steak to get that wonderful browning (and caramelize the proteins) and then moved the steak over to the side of the grill with no direct heat and baked/smoked it till the steak got to the desired doneness. There are two problems with the traditional method. First, putting a cold steak, even one brought up to room temperature straight onto a 500+ degree grill will lead to grey bands around the outside of the beef. Also, once the outside of the steak is seared, it’s just not taking on any smoke flavor. With as much as the outside is cooked when seared, it essentially seals the steak from taking on any smoke. So smoke first, imparting that lovely smokiness and then sear to get that wonderful browning and caramelized proteins.
Now that we know why we should reverse sear a steak, that begs the next question:
How to Reverse Sear a Steak
To reverse sear a steak, season it, smoke it at 225F-300F until the steak is 10F-15F short of the desired doneness. Remove the steak from the grill and crank up the heat to above 400F and sear both sides of the steak to take it up the last 10F-15F. So if you like your steak at 160F (I don’t judge), then smoke the steak until it reaches between 145F-150F, remove the steak from the smoker and crank up the heat to north of 400F and then sear it. We are going to tweak this method a little bit from here on out.
The first part where we deviate from the typical reverse sear method is I took these steaks off at 100F according to my instant read probe thermometer (a must have for any pitmaster):
I pulled these a little early because I want to put a wicked crust on them and still keep my steak south of 130F.
I also took the two steaks on the right off first and left the thicker one on a little longer because that was still about 91F when the other two were at 100F:
Before I head inside, I crank up the heat on another grill and set a cast iron griddle on it to come up to temp.
My next step on where I will be improving the traditional reverse sear is to bust out the South Chicago Packing Wagyu Beef Tallow and spread it along the top of each steak:
Only slather the tops with the Wagyu Beef Tallow. If you do both sides, whatever side you set on the cutting board is going be a sodden mess of tallow and seasoning. We will take care of the other side on the grill.
Time to Sear our Reverse Seared Beef Tallow Steak
Back outside we have the a cast iron griddle sitting north of 600F over some wicked hot lump charcoal which we have raised up to just below the griddle to keep it hot:
Set those steaks down on the beef tallow side:
And then hit the naked top of that NY strip steak with more of that Wagyu Beef Tallow:
Them after maybe 2 minutes, give a peek at the under side of each steak:
This NY strip needs a little more time:
But this one is ready to be browned on the other side:
And this is why we do it:
Once both sides are nice and brown, don’t forget to stand them up on the side and crisp up the fat on the side:
Remove the steaks from the cast iron griddle and bring them in to rest for a couple minutes to let the juices to calm down and redistribute. I’m all for some resting, but I’m not dogmatic about it. The steak won’t dry out even if you cut it the second it comes off the grill.
And top with a little of the beef tallow, particularly if it has some of the rub in it from when we slathered the tallow on the steaks, even better:
Reverse Seared Beef Tallow Steak Recap
Our steaks start off with that amazing flavor crust on the outside, and I mean amazing. The combination of that South Chicago Packing Wagyu Beef Tallow and a wicked hot cast iron griddle. Then we have the richness of the beef tallow followed by the smokiness of the beef. Seriously, this may be the best steak I’ve ever had that doesn’t have an A4 next to it.
If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them below or send me an email.
Reverse Seared Beef Tallow Steak
- Allow the steaks to come up to room temperature
- Season the steaks with the beef seasoning and salt if necessary
- Prepare the smoker 225F
- Smoke the steaks until they reach 100F
- Smoking to 100F is if you want the steaks to be done at 120F-130F. If you want to go for more done steaks, smoke them longer.
- Remove the steaks from the smoker and crank up the heat and get a cast iron griddle or skillet to north of 400F
- Slather the top of the steaks with the South Chicago Packing Wagyu Beef Tallow
- Do not slather both sides, we will slather the other side on the cast iron griddle or skillet
- Place the steaks wagyu tallow side down
- While the steak sears in the beef tallow, slather the top with beef tallow
- Once the steaks brown up nicely, flip them over and brown on the other side
- Don't forget to stand them on their side and crisp up the fat along the outside
- Once the steaks are browned on both sides and the fat is crisped up remove from the heat and allow to rest for a couple minutes
- Add a pat of the wagyu beef tallow on top or slice and add a little of the beef tallow
- Some of the tallow with the rub in it for some compound beef tallow