Reverse Sear Steak


Reverse sear steak method.  Reverse sear steak smoker.

Most of my friends take a perfect steak and throw it on some heat and cook it until it has reached the doneness they want in the middle.

Not when I cook one.  I have a better way, the perfect way to cook a steak, once you have had it this way, I promise you will always cook your steaks this way.  A perfect edge to edge pink medium rare with an elegant sear on the outside.

Below, I will show you how to cook a perfect steak.  Dry brine, smoke, rest and then reverse sear a smoked ribeye.  This method is much better than anything you can get at any restaurant.


  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Dry Brining Time: 2-4 hours
  • Cook Time: 1.5 to 2 hours
  • Smoker Temp: 225-240°F
  • Meat Finish Temp: 130°F
  • Recommended Wood: Cherry

Items needed

    • Ribeye steaks (1 per person), ¾ inch or thicker is best (other steak cuts will also work ok)
    • Salt
    • Pepper
    • Large cast iron skillet, griddle or a hot fire
    • Vegetable oil

Dry Brine

Lay the steaks on a plate or open container and sprinkle salt on the

m. Be generous but don’t go overboard. Here’s a picture to give you an idea:


¾ inch steaks, I just coat one side. For thicker steaks, I recommend coating both sides.

You then place them in the fridge uncovered.

The salt immediately begins to pull the juices to the surface where it mixes with the salt and becomes a slurry. Over the course of time, the salty meat juices are drawn back into the steak and if you wait long enough it will absorb all the way to the center.

Same 2 steaks after about 45 minutes:


The thicker the steak, the longer they need to sit in the fridge. I left these ¾ inch steaks for about 2 hours and they were perfect. 1-½ inch steaks would have stayed in there 4 hours or better.

Rinse the steaks when they are finished to make sure there’s no salt residue on the outside.

I recommend adding little pepper at this point since they salt is already seasoning the inside.

Both sides should be seasoned with pepper.



Allow the steaks to sit at room temperature for about 30-60 minutes.

Set up your smoker for cooking at about 225°F if possible.

Use indirect heat and if your smoker uses a water pan, fill it up.

The smoke can be any good smoking wood but I recommend cherry and some hickory if you have it.

Once the smoker is ready, place the steaks on the smoker grate.

For electric, gas and charcoal smokers, keep a light wood smoke going for at least an hour but more is ok as long as you have plenty of airflow into and out of your smoker. Wood smokers will continue smoking the entire time by default.

Be sure to use a digital probe meat thermometer so you’ll know the very second when the steak gets done so you can remove it from the heat.

I recommend letting it go to about 120°F since we are going to sear them later and the carry over heat plus the searing should bring it on up to a perfect medium rare.

Once the ribeyes reach the set temperature, move it from the heat immediately.



Let the steak rest away from the heat, tented with foil for about 10 minutes to allow the juices to return to center.


Place a cast iron skillet over a high heat burner. Use a little vegetable oil in the center of the pan and get it super hot.


Once the pan is ready, place the steak in the pan and rotate the steak with your tongs to spread the oil around a little.

About a minute each side should do it.

You’ll see lots of smoke and this is how it should be. If you have a side burner on the grill, that is a better choice than using a burner in the house.

If you must use the burner in the kitchen oven, just make sure to turn the exhaust hood fan on and perhaps open a couple of windows during this process.

You can also use a really hot fire to do this but it’s a little less predictable and requires more finesse to get the job done right.. your choice.


Let the steaks rest for a few minutes without foil over them.

These steaks are delicious.  Enjoy.   Let me know what you think of reverse sear steaks.

What are your thoughts on the reverse sear steaks?  Do you have any other recipe for us to try and comment on?

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