I think that title is a bit misleading, because I can cook a steak on a gas grill using any of the same techniques that I use for charcoal grills – direct, sear/roast, reverse sear, or even sous vide. In fact, the only method that I can think of that you can do on a charcoal grill but not a gas grill would be the caveman technique, where you put the steak directly onto the live coals. Thanks to advanced grilling technology like the TRU-Infrared system on my Char-Broil Professional gas grill, today’s gas grills aren’t as much different from charcoal grills as they used to be. So, a more appropriate title is “One Way How To Cook A Steak On A Gas Grill” and the method I am using is called the “hot tub” method.
I learned about the “hot tub” method many years ago in an online BBQ forum full of hardcore grillers and smoking enthusiasts. Story goes, someone put steaks in a zip top bag and dropped it in a hot tub before grilling it. Food safety aside, the technique works as sort of a redneck version of the French method of sous vide cooking, just without the expensive equipment. The warm water bath gently raises the temperature of the entire steak evenly to almost being done and then you sear the heck out of the steak.
Honestly there isn’t much of an advantage to doing it this way. It does give you an extra tender, juicy, and evenly cooked steak but an accomplished grill master can get the same results using the other techniques too. But the technique absolutely works and it is fun to do for something different.
Of course, I use a pot of hot water on my grill’s side burner instead of a yucky bacteria infested or over-chlorinated hot tub. Today, I did the hot tub steaks using my shallot steak seasoning but you can use whatever steak seasoning you wish, even just salt, pepper and garlic.
- 2 boneless ribeye steaks, at least 1” thick
- 2 tablespoons steak seasoning
- 4 cups sliced baby bella mushrooms
- 2 tablespoon coarse chopped garlic
- 1 shallot peeled and sliced
- 2 tablespoons butter cut into pieces
- ¼ cup red wine
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 1/4 cup green onion for garnish
- 2 gallon zip top bags
- 18” x 24” piece of aluminum foil
- Put a large pot of water on your grill side burner and heat it to 125°f to 130°f.
- Season your steaks with most of your steak seasoning, reserving about a teaspoon or so for later. Place each steak in a zip top bag and press as much air out of the bag as possible, then seal it. You want the warm water touching the steaks, not air.
- Place the steaks in the warm water for 1 hour. Stir occasionally (about every 15 minutes) to circulate the water. Turn the burner back on as needed to keep the heat between 115° and 125°f.
- After the water has been on for 30 minutes, turn one half of the grill on high heat and the other side on medium heat.
- Meanwhile fold the foil in half so you have an 18” x 12” double piece of foil. Put the mushrooms, shallot, garlic, butter, salt and pepper on it. Fold it in half again, covering the veggies, and seal up the two edges to form an envelope (see pics). Add the wine and Worcestershire sauce and then seal the last open side.
- After the water has been on for 40 minutes, place the foil pack on the medium side of the grill and shut the grill lid.
- After the steak has been in the hot water for 60 minutes, remove them from the zip bags and pat the steaks dry. Discard the bags and water. Re-season the steaks with the 1 teaspoon of reserved seasoning.
- Place the steaks on the hot side of the grill, you almost can’t get it too hot for this part. Grill the steaks for 45 seconds and give them a quarter turn. Grill them for another 45 seconds and then flip the steaks.
- Grill for 45 seconds on this side and then give them a quarter turn, letting them cook another 45 seconds (so that’s a total of 90 seconds per side).
- Temp check your steak, it should be about 127-130°f and it will coast up to a perfect medium rare. Remove the steak and mushrooms from the grill.
- Let the steaks rest on a raised rack for 5 minutes while you CAREFULLY open the foil pack. Use forks or steam proof gloves to open the foil pack. Toss the contents with their sauce and serve with the steaks.
So if you want to try something different with your steaks on the gas grill – give the old hot tub method a spin!