Is anything more wonderful than walking home to a delicious aroma waltzing from your kitchen? I bet you can think of several meals that can spin your head, but you’re doing something wrong if steak tips aren’t one of those dishes. Unless you thrive on a reclusive lifestyle, you’ve surely gone to parties and cookouts where steak tips have been served. I’m sure the memory of that tender, flavored meat melting in your mouth will remain with you for years.
Your only regret is that you can’t make steak tips, not because you don’t want to, but because you don’t know how to. Well, you’re in luck because as you read on, you will know how to prepare steak tips and enjoy this dish from heaven as often as you want. I can see you rubbing your hands and smacking your lips in anticipation. However, before we dive right into the process of cooking steak tips, let’s begin with the basics for those that don’t know what it is.
What are Steak Tips?
Steak tips, as the name suggests, are tips of pieces of meat cut across the muscle fibers into long, thick strips. These meat pieces are usually grilled or skewered. Typically, the steak is cut from the sirloin tips, but it can also come from the tenderloins, skirt steak, flank steak, and other parts of the animals’ round.
Steaks are in varieties – fish steak, beef steak, etc. It’s gotten from various animals, including cattle, buffalo, camel, turkey, deer, ostrich, etc. For fishes, we’re talking about marlins, swordfish, and sharks. So you see, there are endless options to get your delicious steak from. Now, to the part you’ve been waiting for. Check out this helpful related article about why it’s important to let steak rest when cooking it.
What’s the Best Steak Option for Steak Tips?
Easy. The sirloin steak is in a different league from the others. Ribeyes and beef tenderloins are not bad options, but sirloin steak tips are highly recommended. If you’re settling for beef steak, it should come from grass-fed meat.
How to Cook Sirloin Steak Tips Using a Skillet?
A skillet is one of several cooking tools that you can use for cooking sirloin steak tips. The process is simpler than you think. Below are the things you’ll need for the sirloin tip steak:
- Two or three pounds of sirloin steak
- Two tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce – This is the best sauce for cooking steak tips because it brings out the beefy flavor and softens the meat during marination. You can also use soy sauce
- A quarter teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
- One teaspoon of kosher salt or a half teaspoon of table salt
- A half teaspoon of garlic powder or minced garlic – gives your meat a nice, but not overwhelming garlic flavor
- Two tablespoons of cooking oil – the choice of oil comes down to your preference, but we recommend avocado oil because of its high smoke point. Olive oil can be used but it burns easily and gives your meat a distinct taste you may not like. Other recommendations are canola and vegetable oil.
To the process itself:
- Get a sharp knife and slice your sirloin tips into 1-1.5-inch portions, then cut these into cubes
- Put these cubed pieces into a mixing bowl
- Season the steak tips with the Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, salt, and pepper in the appropriate portions
- Use tongs to coat the mixture of these ingredients on the meat, then let the steak tips rest in the marinade for 15 or 30 minutes
- Switch on your gas and set it to high heat and place your skillet on it
- Then pour your preferred oil (again, we recommend avocado oil) into the skillet
- Insert the steak tips with care into the heated oil. If the skillet is big enough, it could take all the steak tips at once, but if it can’t, don’t force it. You can fry it in batches. Stir the tender steak tips within intervals of 30 seconds to 1 minute so that it will cook evenly. The perfect steak tip should cook in the skillet for 5 minutes at most
- Remove the steak tips from the skillet with tongs or a slotted spoon and transfer them to a plate
- Don’t serve it yet. You wouldn’t want to ruin the experience of eating a delicious steak because it’s too hot. Give it 5 minutes to cook on the plate and cool down, then serve.
How to Cook Steak Tips Using an Air Fryer?
Let’s stick to the same list of ingredients and initial steps, including cutting the top sirloin steak and marinating in the combination of the sauce and other condiments. Then do the following;
- Heat your air fryer to 204 degrees Celsius for about 5 minutes
- Add the real steak tips to the basket and cook it for 6 minutes max. Unlike the skillet, this equipment saves you the need to stir the steak tips
- Remove the steak tips, leave it to cool for a short while, then serve.
How to Cook Steak Tips Using an Oven?
Before I take you through the steps, you should know certain tips that will help you get the best out of your oven-cooked steak tip. They include:
- Use a marinade that will tenderize your meat: Season your steak tips with your choice of ingredients and marinate it in citrus juice, pineapple puree, or vinegar. This will make your steak tips tender. Remember, if your steak doesn’t melt in your mouth and makes you close your eyes to savor the flavor, you didn’t do it right.
- Pan-sear your steak for a brief period: If you want your steak to come out of your oven deliciously, heat it in the pan for two minutes, giving a minute to each side. This will give your meat that mouth-watering crust that the oven can’t achieve on its own.
To the process:
- Cut and marinate your steak tips like in the above methods
- Preheat the oven to 204 degrees Celsius, which is medium-high heat
- Remove the steak tips from the marinade
- Pat dry the steak tips with excess marinade
- Get a skillet that can be used in the oven, preferably a cast-iron pan
- Heat it on your gas stove and add a high-temperature fat. Garlic butter can be a substitute for this, but that means you won’t use garlic in the seasoning of the steak
- Pan-sear the steaks as we described earlier
- Transfer the skillet with the steak inside to your preheated oven and leave it for 3-5 minutes or until the steak tips themselves reach a temperature of 52 degrees Celsius. You can check this with a meat thermometer
- Switch off the oven, remove the skillet, and transfer the steak to the serving dish
- Leave it on the dish for five minutes to cool down, and then serve. Enjoy!
Tips to Store and Serve Steak Tips
I’m sure you don’t just want to be a steak lover; you also want to know how to cook the steak like an expert with an exact cooking time. However, beyond cooking, you should also know a thing or two about storing and serving steak tips. This is where I come in, so read and digest the following:
Properly Defrost your Steak
To cook good steak tips, ensure your cut of meat is properly stored in an airtight container and thawed when it’s time to cook. To defrost it, get a bowl of room-temperature water and put your frozen meat inside. The process should take an hour or less. You may need to change the water if it becomes very cold after 30 minutes. This is the best way to thaw your steak; don’t use the gas stove or microwave to defrost your meat. That drastic temperature change can change the way your meat tastes. In summary, avoid cooking a cold steak.
Cook Dry Steak Tips
After dipping your tender steak tips in a marinade to enhance their flavor, it’s expected that your steak tips will drip with moisture. However, that doesn’t mean that you should cook like that, especially if the meat is still oozing some blood. First, get paper towels to dry your steak before putting them on a charcoal grill, gas stove, or in your oven. To pat dry your steak tips, you can place them on a stack of paper towels and cover them with another stack. Then, press them down gently while using the towels to dry the sides of the meat.
Use the Right Oil
This can’t be over-emphasized. Go for cooking oil that has a high smoke point to avoid using oil that burns easily. You wouldn’t want your kitchen to be choked with smoke while cooking your steak tips. That’s why I don’t recommend olive oil. Avocado oil, canola oil, soybean oil, vegetable oil, and clarified butter are good options.
Avoid Overseasoning the Steak
If you paid close attention, you’ll notice that my list of ingredients was short. There’s no need to use an army of condiments or spices, thinking it will give your steak that delicious taste. Some people use only salt, but you can add pepper and garlic. These are enough. The aim is not to bring out the natural flavor and taste of the steak, not overwhelm it. Even if you decide to stick to salt alone, it will drain the moisture from the meat and enhance the natural flavor of the meat.
Select the Right Pan for the Job
When it comes to cooking steak tips, everything should be done right. This includes your selection of pan. An infrared boiler is one of the best options because it ensures your meat cooks at the right temperature and the heat is evenly distributed.
However, for the benefit of those steak lovers that cannot afford sophisticated kitchen equipment, your cast-iron skillet is more than capable of doing the job. It can disperse the heat evenly; cook your steak tips at medium-high heat and give it that golden brown look.
Don’t Overcook the Steak
There’s a specific time for cooking your steak tips. Anything beyond that is overcooking. How fast your steak tips cook depends on how thick the meat is and the temperature of the cooker. Some people tend to cut into the meat to check if it’s ready to be brought down. Don’t do this because you’ll be releasing the juices. Use a meat thermometer instead. If you want to cook and serve medium rare steak, aim for a temperature of 52-54°C. Once it reaches that, transfer it to a serving dish. The meat will continue to cook on the plate, and then it will simmer down.
Cut the Meat Against the Grain
Who doesn’t like a chewy steak? To get this, you should cut it properly before cooking. Either you cut it along the muscle fiber, or you cut it against the grain. Slicing through the meat will make it too tender.
FAQs – Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What’s the best type of meat for steak tips?
A: Though this depends on the region you reside, sirloin is the best meat for steak tips. It’s also the most popular.
Q: What are steak tips best used for?
A: You can serve steak tips as a standalone meal or with mashed potatoes, brown/white rice, etc.
Q: Where did steak tips originate from?
A: New England. Families there have been using it for backyard barbeques.
Q: Are steak tips healthy to consume?
A: Yes, it is. Steak tips are among those pieces of meat that have the leanest servings of fat.
Q: Can I stir-fry steak tips?
A: Well, we recommend stir-frying only if the steak tips are cut into thin strips. Otherwise, stir-frying won’t cook it properly.
Steak tip is a dish that evolved from the need to make the most of what was generally considered leftover or unwanted meat pieces. Now, businesses have been built from cooking steaks because these delicious treats do wonders for the taste buds and people can’t seem to get enough. After reading through, I’m pretty confident that you know a thing or two about how to prepare, cook, and serve steak tips. Remember, don’t overseason or overcook it. Use the right pan, pat dry before cooking, pan-sear it before placing it in the oven, and let it rest in the dish before you serve. Bon appetit!