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Steakhouse-Quality Pan-Seared New York Strip Steak

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Want in on the secret to preparing steak at home like those served at fancy steakhouse restaurants?

Cooking in cast iron delivers a perfect pan-seared NY Strip Steak every time — without any special marinade and without firing up the grill!

Simply seasoned with sea salt and cracked black pepper, this cast iron steak gets a nice char from cooking first on top of the stove and gets its finish in a 400-degree oven.

Literally, all you need for this delicious steak dinner is a couple of steaks seasoned with sea salt and cracked black pepper, a touch of olive oil, and a hot cast iron skillet. Pretty simple, don’t you agree?

a pan-seared new york strip on a slate plate with sauteed mushrooms on a wooden table.

Why you’re going to love it!

  • Simple ingredients. Basically just a good cut of meat, salt, and pepper.
  • Just as good as dining out. And a lot more economical!
  • No special tools required. All you need is a cast iron skillet.

Pan-Seared NY Strip Steak: behind the recipe

My guy is the meat-and-potatoes type. There’s nothing he enjoys more than manning the grill — we certainly do our fair share of grilling whenever the weather cooperates. Given a choice, he’d ask for beef for dinner almost every single time.

Given that, I’d say it’s a GOOD thing we both enjoy a GOOD steak! Most times, we prefer to cook at home rather than dining out — especially when we find a recipe that works for us as well as this pan-seared NY steak!

Not only is this meal delicious, it’s much more economical than dining out at a decent steak house. Plus, we get to enjoy time cooking together in the kitchen. Believe it or not, cooking together can be romantic!

Key ingredients and substitutions

  • Steak — When cooking steak indoors, I prefer boneless strip steaks. For the best flavor, choose steaks with good marbling.
  • Extra virgin olive oil — Often my go-to choice, but you may use a high smoke point oil like canola oil instead.
  • Sea salt — The coarse grind not only adds flavor, but texture to the finished steaks.
  • Freshly ground black pepper — Grinding peppercorns just before using ensures a fresher and spicier flavor.
two uncooked new york strip steaks on a plate.

How to choose a great steak

If you’re going to cook at home, start with a quality steak for the best dining in experience.

  • Choose steaks that are 1 1/2-inch or thicker for the best results.
  • If you purchase pre-packaged meat always check the sell-by date, avoid any with excessive liquid, and make sure the package is cold with no holes or tears.
  • If you purchase your steaks at the butcher counter, always ask to see the underside of the steak to make sure it looks as good on both sides.
  • Choose steaks that are firm to the touch with a bright red color. The steaks should look moist, but not be wet.
  • Marbling (little ribbons of fat) add flavor, so choose a steak with small to medium flecks of fat. You don’t want a steak that is completely riddled with fat throughout.

Special supplies needed

  • A well-seasoned cast iron skillet — cast iron holds the heat well, plus it’s great for searing the steaks quickly.
  • Long-handle tongs — to make turning these steaks easier and safer!
  • Digital instant read thermometer — Use the touch test (see details below) to determine when your steak is cooked to the desired temperature, OR take out the guess work by using a thermometer.

How to cook a steak in cast iron

STEP 1 | Bring to room temperature

  • There’s no need to marinate the steaks, but you do want them to come to room temperature before you start cooking. About 20 to 30 minutes should do it. The theory is that a cold steak won’t cook as evenly.
  • Use this waiting time to preheat the oven. It’s important that the oven has reached the correct temperature before it’s time to finish the steaks.

STEP 2 | Season and sear

  • Season the steaks with sea salt and cracked black pepper, rubbing it in on both sides, and then baste with a small amount of olive oil.
  • Heat a cast iron skillet on top of the stove. Once the cast iron skillet is hot (not smoking), you’re ready to sear the steaks, just 2 minutes on each side.
  • The goal is to get a good crust, so don’t be tempted to flip the steaks before the 2 minutes is up!

STEP 3 | Finish in the oven

  • Pop the cast iron into the oven and cook to the desired internal temperature. Use the touch test or an instant read thermometer to check for doneness.
  • Keep in mind the steaks will continue cooking as they rest, so take them out of the oven a little early.

tip

  • Because we like sautéed mushrooms with our steaks, I add a cup of sliced mushrooms with a little extra butter to the skillet just before it goes into the oven.

STEP 4 | Let it rest

  • Remove the steaks from the oven and tent the pan with aluminum foil.
  • Tenting with aluminum foil for a couple of minutes will help keep the steaks warm while sealing in the juices,
two new york strip steaks in a cast iron skillet on a wooden table.

Touch test guide

You can gently press tongs into the cooked steak to determine its doneness with this touch test guide. To be totally accurate, use a quick read digital thermometer.

  • RARE: 120°F – cool, bright red center and soft to the touch
  • MEDIUM RARE: 130°F – warm, red center and beginning to firm up with red juices
  • MEDIUM: 145-155°F – slightly pink center, completely firm with brown juices
  • WELL DONE: 155-160°F – very little or no pink, firm to the touch

Frequently asked questions

What is a strip steak?

Strip steaks are cut from the short loin, a lean and tender portion of beef. When the butcher cuts the tip for filet mignon steaks, what remains is the long strip. With the bone in, this cut is known as T-bone steak.

When the bone is removed, it is known as New York Strip. Leave the filet and strip intact and you have a Porterhouse steak.

Why is it called New York strip steak?

Also known as the ambassador steak or Kansas City strip, the most common nickname for the strip steak is New York Strip. This name was coined after famous New York city steakhouses helped make this cut of beef extremely popular.

two new york strip steaks in a cast iron skillet on a wooden table.

What to serve with your pan fried steaks

a new york strip steak on a slate plate on a wooden table.

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Yield: 2 servings

Pan-Seared New York Strip Steak

Pan-Seared New York Strip Steak

No fancy marinades required for this Perfect Pan-Seared New York Strip. Seasoned with sea salt and cracked black pepper, these steaks get a nice char in a hot cast iron skillet.

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Additional Time 2 minutes
Total Time 47 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 1-inch to 1-1/2-inch thick cuts New York Strip Steaks, fat trimmed
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • Sea salt
  • Cracked black pepper
  • 1 clove garlic, sliced
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons butter, unsalted

Instructions

  1. Thirty minutes before cooking, remove steaks from refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature.
  2. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  3. Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium high heat until it is hot, but not smoking.
  4. While skillet is heating up, season both sides of steak with sea salt and pepper. Drizzle steaks with olive oil and gently rub in the salt and pepper.
  5. Place seasoned steaks into hot skillet and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, without turning, to get a nice sear. Turn steaks using tongs and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes to sear other side.
  6. Remove cast iron skillet from heat and add sliced mushrooms, garlic, and butter. Immediately place skillet in preheated oven and roast for 4 to 7 minutes, or until desired temperature is reached. Use touch test* or use a digital thermometer to gauge steak temperature.
  7. Remove steaks from oven and tent with foil, allowing steaks to rest for a couple of minutes before serving.

Notes

You can gently press tongs into the cooked steak to determine its doneness with this touch test guide. To be totally accurate, use a quick read digital thermometer.

  • RARE: 120°F – cool, bright red center and soft to the touch
  • MEDIUM RARE: 130°F – warm, red center and beginning to firm up with red juices
  • MEDIUM: 145-155°F – slightly pink center, completely firm with brown juices
  • WELL DONE: 155-160°F – very little or no pink, firm to the touch

Recommended Products

As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

2

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 366Total Fat: 31gSaturated Fat: 14gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 81mgSodium: 335mgCarbohydrates: 5gFiber: 2gSugar: 2gProtein: 19g

Did you make this recipe?

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sheila thigpen in her kitchen

Sheila @ Life, Love & Good Food

Recipe Developer, Food Photographer, Home Cook, Wife, Mom, Nana

Sheila Thigpen is the publisher of Life, Love, and Good Food — a Southern food blog — and the author of Easy Chicken Cookbook and The 5-Ingredient Fresh and Easy Cookbook. After 20+ years in the publishing industry, she retired in 2018 to focus on her own creative endeavors full time. She and her husband live near the beautiful Smoky Mountains and have a precious little granddaughter who has stolen their hearts. As an influencer, Sheila has collaborated with brands like Kroger, HERSHEY’S, Hamilton Beach, Garafalo Pasta, OXO, Smithfield, Valley Fig Growers, and more.

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