how to cook filet mignon in a skillet

1. What is filet mignon?

Filet mignon is a tender and flavorful cut of beef that comes from the smaller end of the tenderloin muscle. It is known for its exceptional tenderness and melt-in-your-mouth texture, making it one of the most highly prized cuts.

2. Where can I buy filet mignon?

Filet mignon can be purchased at your local butcher shop, high-end grocery stores, or online meat suppliers. Look for well-marbled cuts with a good thickness to ensure a juicy and tender steak.

3. What ingredients do I need to cook filet mignon in a skillet?

To cook filet mignon in a skillet, you will need:
– Filet mignon steaks
– Salt and pepper
– Olive oil or clarified butter
– Fresh herbs (optional)

4. How should I season filet mignon before cooking?

Season your filet mignon generously with salt and pepper on all sides. This will enhance the natural flavors of the meat and create a flavorful crust when seared in the skillet.

5. Is it necessary to let the filet mignon come to room temperature before cooking?

Yes, it is recommended to let the filet mignon come to room temperature before cooking. This helps ensure even cooking throughout the steak. Remove the steaks from the refrigerator and let them sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes before cooking.

6. Should I tenderize or pound the filet mignon steaks?

No, filet mignon is already a tender cut, so there is no need to tenderize or pound the steaks. Doing so may result in a loss of its natural tenderness.

7. How do I properly preheat the skillet for cooking filet mignon?

To properly preheat the skillet, place it over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes. Add a small amount of olive oil or clarified butter and swirl it around to coat the bottom of the pan evenly.

8. How long should I cook filet mignon in a skillet?

The cooking time for filet mignon in a skillet depends on the desired level of doneness and the thickness of the steak. As a general guideline, cook a 1-inch thick filet mignon for about 4-5 minutes per side for medium-rare. Adjust the time based on your preference and the thickness of the steak.

9. How can I achieve a perfect sear on filet mignon?

To achieve a perfect sear on filet mignon, make sure the skillet is hot before adding the steaks. Sear the steaks in the hot skillet for about 2-3 minutes on each side without moving them. This will help develop a caramelized crust.

10. Should I flip the filet mignon steaks multiple times while cooking?

No, it is best to flip the filet mignon steaks only once during cooking. Flipping them multiple times can prevent the steaks from achieving a nice sear and may result in uneven cooking.

11. Can I use an alternative cooking fat instead of olive oil or butter?

Certainly! You can use alternative cooking fats like grapeseed oil or vegetable oil if you prefer. However, olive oil and butter add a rich flavor to the filet mignon.

12. What should I do if my filet mignon is thicker than 1 inch?

If your filet mignon is thicker than 1 inch, you can adjust the cooking time accordingly. For every additional 1/2 inch in thickness, add about 1-2 minutes to the cooking time per side.

13. Should I cover the skillet while cooking filet mignon?

No, it is not necessary to cover the skillet while cooking filet mignon. The high heat and open nature of skillet cooking allow for proper searing and browning of the steaks.

14. How can I test the doneness of filet mignon without cutting into it?

To test the doneness of filet mignon without cutting into it, you can use the touch test. Gently press the center of the steak with your fingertip. If it feels soft and yields to pressure, it is rare. If it feels slightly firm with a little resistance, it is medium-rare. As it gets firmer, it will reach medium, medium-well, and well-done.

15. Should I rest the filet mignon steaks before serving?

Yes, it is important to let the filet mignon steaks rest for about 5 minutes before serving. This allows the juices to redistribute, resulting in a juicier and more flavorful steak.

16. Can I add sauces or toppings to filet mignon?

Absolutely! While filet mignon is delicious on its own, you can enhance its flavor by serving it with sauces like peppercorn sauce, red wine reduction, or mushroom sauce. You can also top it with sautéed mushrooms, caramelized onions, or compound herb butter for added richness.

17. What side dishes pair well with filet mignon?

Filet mignon pairs well with various side dishes such as roasted potatoes, steamed asparagus, sautéed green beans, creamed spinach, or a fresh salad. The choice of side dishes depends on your personal preferences and the occasion.

18. Can filet mignon be cooked to well-done?

Yes, filet mignon can be cooked to well-done if desired. However, be cautious as cooking it beyond medium can make it less tender and potentially dry. It is recommended to cook it to medium-rare or medium for the best flavor and texture.

19. Can filet mignon be cooked in a cast-iron skillet?

Yes, filet mignon can be cooked in a cast-iron skillet. In fact, the cast-iron skillet’s ability to retain and distribute heat evenly makes it an excellent choice for cooking filet mignon and achieving a beautiful sear.

20. How can I add a flavorful crust to filet mignon?

To add a flavorful crust to filet mignon, sear it in a hot skillet with a bit of olive oil or clarified butter. Allow the steak to develop a caramelized crust by cooking it undisturbed for a few minutes on each side. This will enhance the taste and texture of the steak.

21. Can I use a non-stick skillet to cook filet mignon?

Yes, a non-stick skillet can be used to cook filet mignon. However, keep in mind that non-stick skillets may not provide the same level of searing and browning as traditional skillets. Ensure the skillet is hot and follow the same cooking instructions, but be mindful of the reduced browning effect.

22. What should I do if my filet mignon is frozen?

If your filet mignon is frozen, it is best to thaw it in the refrigerator overnight before cooking. Thawing it slowly in the refrigerator helps maintain the quality and texture of the meat. Once thawed, you can follow the same skillet cooking instructions.

23. Can I use a marinade for filet mignon?

Traditionally, filet mignon is not marinated, as its natural flavor and tenderness are already desirable. However, if you prefer to infuse additional flavors, you can use a simple marinade made with olive oil, garlic, herbs, or a combination of your choice. Marinate the steaks for a short time, around 30 minutes, to avoid overpowering the natural taste.

24. How thick should the filet mignon steaks be for skillet cooking?

For skillet cooking, filet mignon steaks should ideally be about 1 to 1 ½ inches thick. This thickness allows for a proper sear on the outside while maintaining a juicy and tender center.

25. Can I reheat leftover cooked filet mignon in a skillet?

Yes, you can reheat leftover cooked filet mignon in a skillet. Heat a skillet over medium heat, add a small amount of oil, and gently warm the steaks for a few minutes on each side until heated through. Be cautious not to overcook the steaks, as they are already cooked to the desired doneness.


I'm William from America, I'm a food lover, often discovering and making new recipes. I started my blog to share my love for food with others. My blog is filled with delicious recipes, cooking tips, and reviews about restaurants and products. I'm also an advocate for healthy eating and strive to create recipes that are easy to make and use fresh ingredients. Many of my recipes contain vegetables or grains as the main ingredients, with a few indulgences thrown in for good measure. I often experiment with new ingredients, adding international flavors and finding ways to make dishes healthier without compromising on flavour. I'm passionate about creating simple yet delicious recipes that are fun to make and can easily be replicated at home. I also love sharing my experiences eating out with others so they can get the best out of their dining experiences. In addition to cooking and writing, I'm also an avid traveler, often visiting new places to discover local delicacies and explore different flavors. I'm always looking for a new challenge – whether it's trying an exotic food or creating a new recipe using unusual ingredients. My blog is a reflection of my passion for food and I'm always looking for new ways to share it with the world. Join me on my culinary journey and let's explore delicious foods together!

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