Easy Steps for Grilling Filet Mignon
Filet mignon is a tender, boneless strip of meat and is a popular menu item at steakhouses everywhere. But how can you cook a perfect filet mignon on your home grill? Learning how to grill filet mignon is simple when you have the right tools. Follow the simple recipe below for a perfect, mouth-watering steak.
Preparing the meat
Filet mignon is not cut from a bone, nor does it contain much marbling or fat. Because of this, many people like to use a rub, seasoning or spice to compensate for any perceived lack of natural flavors. But it’s not that filet mignon doesn’t have any natural flavor. It’s that the longer this cut of meat is cooked, the more of that natural flavor it loses. So if you prefer your steaks well done, you may want to use a marinade or some spices because by the time it reaches the correct temperature, many of the natural flavors have escaped. If you like your meat closer to medium, use only salt and pepper for preparation as your filet mignon will still have plenty of natural flavor (and you won’t want to mask it). No matter your preference, a little bit of oil rubbed on the steaks will help prevent the outsides from sticking to the grill. Also, take the meat out of the refrigerator about 20 minutes before cooking. Letting the meat come to room temperature allows it to cooker faster and more evenly.
Preparing the grill
Whether you’re using a gas or charcoal grill, you’ll want to allow plenty of preheating time before cooking your steaks. Allow 15-20 minutes on a gas grill. For a charcoal grill, wait for the coals to ash over. You’ll also want to set up a high heat side and a low heat side of your grill. This can be done on a gas grill simply by adjusting the burners. On a charcoal grill, just move your coals to one side.
Grilling your filet mignon
Having a high heat side and a low heat side allows you to first perform a quick sear of the meat before transferring to lower heat to finish the job. A 2-4 minute sear on each side gives the steak a crispy crust and those restaurant-style grill marks. Once seared, transfer the steaks to the low-medium heat portion of the grill. Cooking on lower heat allows the heat to penetrate to the middle of the steak without overcooking the outside. This is especially true for thicker cuts of filet mignon.
Use a meat thermometer to monitor the progress of the steaks and flip the meat once about halfway through cooking. The desired temperatures are as follows: Rare = 120°F Medium rare = 130°F Medium = 140°F Medium well = 150°F Well done = 160°F
Remove the meat when it’s about five degrees away from the desired temperature. The meat will continue to cook upon being removed from the grill. Let the steak rest for 5-10 minutes before cutting into it to help preserve the moisture.
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