Filet Mignon seared in garlic herb butter on the stove top and then finished in the oven is the absolute best way to cook a tender steak. This recipe turns about perfect every time! I have never made, nor have I ever enjoyed, a more delicious steak than this one.
See below for all the information you need including recipe variations and cooking tips to create the most perfect filet mignon.
Why This Recipe Works So Well
This is quite possibly my favorite dinner. Ever. That's a pretty bold statement from a girl who lives and breathes recipes.
- Perfectly cooked: Each bite will deliver a crisp browned flavorful outside with a moist and tender middle.
- Best flavor: Fresh garlic and herbs infuse into the butter and all that flavor gets cooked into the steak.
- Accurate doneness: You can cook each steak exactly how you want: rare, medium rare, medium, or (gasp) medium well and well done. This is completely controlled by using an accurate meat thermometer.
- Better than a restaurant: Because filet mignon is expensive, it is most often enjoyed for a special occasion like date night or Valentine’s day. Even though the price of filet steaks at your local butcher is still very expensive, the cost will pale in comparison to what high-quality steakhouse filet mignons will cost.
The exact quantities are listed in the recipe card below.
To make these tender juicy steaks, you will need a couple of filet mignon steaks, butter, garlic, rosemary, thyme, as well as salt and pepper.
How to Cook the Best Filet Mignon
The absolute best way to cook this tender cut of meat is to sear the steaks in high-quality butter with fresh herbs and garlic. Once the steaks get a nice sear on both sides you will finish them off in a hot oven until they've reached the desired internal temperature.
Prepare tools and ingredients:
Set your steaks out at room temperature. Preheat your oven. Add the butter, smashed garlic cloves, and sprigs of fresh herbs to the pan. Generously coat both sides of the steaks with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper.
Melt and infuse herbed butter:
Heat a sauté pan or cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. It needs to be an oven-safe skillet. You want the butter to melt and foam but not burn, so continue to move everything around to prevent burning. Once the butter reaches this point, add the steaks to the hot skillet.
While the steaks are searing, use a spoon to continually pour the melted garlic and herb-infused butter onto the top and sides of the steak. You want to infuse all of that flavor into the meat.
Finish in oven:
Once you've seared both sides to perfection, finish cooking the Filet Mignon steaks in the preheated oven.
If you're wondering how long it takes to cook a Filet Mignon, the total amount of time depends on a few factors:
- How thick are your steaks?
- What is the starting temperature of the meat (i.e. did you pull it straight from the fridge to the pan or did you let it come to room temperature first)?
- How hot can you get your garlic herb butter and pan without burning the butter? There are a few tips and tricks to this step... keep on reading to find out.
All in all, the total cook time is about 15 minutes, start to finish, including the 2-3 minutes it takes to give each side a good sear and the 6-7 minutes to finish them off in the oven. It truly is an easy dinner recipe.
Internal Temperature Guide for Filet Mignon
Remove the filet mignon steaks from the oven when the internal temperature is about 2-5°F below your desired doneness. Place steaks on a plate and loosely tent with foil.
|Rare||Cool red center||120-130°F|
|Medium Rare||Warm red center||130-135°F|
|Medium||Warm pink center||135-145°F|
|Medium Well||Slightly pink center||145-155°F|
|Well Done||Little or no pink||155°F and up|
Remember: Allowing the steaks to rest in the hot pan will continue to cook them and the internal temperature will likely continue to rise more than 5°F.
Cooking Tips for Perfect Results
- Bring steaks to room temperature: Prior to cooking, take the steaks out of the refrigerator at least an hour before they hit the pan. If the steaks are cold when you cook them, the outside will cook much faster than the inside resulting in steaks that are usually overcooked on the outside and undercooked on the inside.
- Choose the right pan: A high-quality stainless steel pan or cast iron skillet will give you the best sear.
- Prevent burning: When the steaks are added to the pan, they will reduce the temperature of the pan and help prevent your butter from burning. You still need to keep an eye on it and move the butter around so that it doesn't burn.
- Cook according to temperature, not time: Be sure to test with an accurate thermometer to guarantee that the steaks are cooked to your liking. Pull the steaks out of the oven a few degrees before they've reached their final desired internal temperature and allow them to rest in the pan for at least 5 minutes prior to serving.
- Thickness matters: For best results, buy steaks that are the same size and thickness. This will ensure they cook at the same rate. Otherwise, you will need to test the temperature of each steak and possibly remove them from the oven at different times.
- Avoid accidental overcooking: If you accidentally cook them too long and take the temperature too far, you will still need to allow the filet mignon to rest before cutting into them. Take them out of the hot pan to rest and transfer to a cutting board or plate. This will slow further cooking which would result in an overly done filet mignon.
What is so special about filet mignon?
Beef tenderloin steaks are expensive.
But they are absolutely worth the cost every so often for a special treat or for a holiday dinner. If you really want to go above and beyond, pair these steaks with some broiled lobster tails for the ultimate Surf and Turf dinner.
Filet Mignon is expensive because it is arguably the most tender cut of beef. It is super tender because it is not a weight-bearing muscle and contains less connective tissue, thus making it more tender.
Tender beef is desirable beef. Desirable beef is expensive beef. The fact that beef tenderloin is a relatively small cut compared to other beef cuts adds to the hefty price as well. If you're looking for a less expensive steak, T-Bone Steaks are another great option.
Worth it. So worth it.
Side dish recommendations:
- You can't go wrong with perfectly cooked Baked Potatoes (hint: they are outstanding when you make them in the Instant Pot)
- Don't want baked potatoes? Go the extra mile and make Garlic Herb Mashed Potatoes
- You can't enjoy Filet Mignon without a dark green vegetable. What's more perfect than Garlic Parmesan Oven Roasted Asparagus?
- You can't go wrong with serving up an every day salad alongside your steak.
Did you make this recipe? Please leave me a comment below! I love to hear from my readers.
Full Recipe Instructions
CLICK TO PLAY RECIPE VIDEO
- 16 ounces filet mignon (2 steaks, about 2 inches thick, room temperature)
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper (freshly ground)
- 2 tablespoons butter (Kerrygold recommended)
- 2 cloves garlic (smashed)
- 2 sprigs rosemary
- 2 sprigs thyme
- Prepare steaks: Take steaks out of refrigerator about an hour before you plan to cook them to allow them to come to room temperature. Coat both sides with salt and pepper. Preheat oven to 400°F.
- Prepare infused butter ingredients: Add butter, garlic, rosemary and thyme to an oven safe stainless steel or cast iron pan.
- Infuse butter: Heat butter, garlic cloves, and fresh herbs over medium-high heat. You want the pan to be as hot as you can get it without burning the butter. Allow butter to melt, swirling frequently to prevent burning. The more you move the butter around, the less it will burn. (Optional: Infuse the butter over a very low heat for an hour or more. It won't burn and will create even better flavor. If choosing this method, you can remove the garlic and herbs at the end when you are ready to sear the steaks and use them as a garnish when serving. The heat will need to be increased when you are ready to sear the steaks).
- Sear steaks: Add both steaks to the hot pan. Sear for 2-3 minutes on both sides, constantly spooning the hot butter onto the steaks, and only turn them once after they get nicely browned. Do not let the butter burn - keep it moving. Insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the steak and transfer the pan to the hot oven. Alternatively, you can test with an instant read meat thermometer.
- Finish cooking in hot oven: After 5-15 minutes, remove when internal temperature reaches 115-120°F for rare, 125-130°F for medium rare, and 130-135°F for medium. Total time in oven will vary depending on desired doneness as well as the starting internal temperatures of the steaks. Allow the steaks to rest on a plate, loosely tented with foil to keep them warm, for at least 5 minutes (temperature should rise another 5 degrees).
Cooking tips for perfect results:
- I can't stress enough how important it is to let your steaks come to room temperature before cooking. These are thick cut and if they're super cold in the middle, you risk over cooking the outside before the middle is done. Prior to cooking, take the steaks out of the refrigerator at least an hour before they hit the pan.
- When the steaks are added to the pan, they will reduce the temperature of the pan and help prevent your butter from burning. You still need to keep an eye on it and move the butter around so that it doesn't burn.
- Be sure to test with an accurate thermometer to guarantee that the steaks are cooked to your liking.
- For best results, buy steaks that are the same size and thickness. This will ensure they cook at the same rate. Otherwise you will need to test the temperature of each steak.
- Pull them out of the oven a few degrees before they've reached their final temperature and allow them to rest in the pan for at least 5 minutes prior to serving.
- If you accidentally took the temperature too far, you will still need to allow them to rest before cutting into them, but take them out of the hot pan to rest. This will slow further cooking which would result in an overly done filet mignon.
- The best type of pan is either cast iron or a high quality stainless steal. Just be sure it is oven safe.
This post was originally published in January 2019 and has been updated with more information and cooking tips. Don't worry - I would never touch the recipe!