How to Properly Carve a Steak

How to Properly Carve a Steak

Enjoy fine dining at home with top-quality steaks that are sliced to perfection

Steak night is always an occasion for fanfare, whether you’re cooking for your family, for a romantic dinner pour deux, or simply for yourself. 

No matter who is sitting down at the table, you want to present them with a tantalizing and delectable piece of meat that is juicy, tender, and perfectly prepared. 

And just what makes a steak “perfectly prepared?”

One that at every stage of preparation is handled with the utmost care and attention to detail, from selecting a gorgeous cut of meat to cooking it to just the right state of doneness (it doesn’t get any better than medium-rare, if you ask us). 

Now, once your steak is off the grill or out of the pan, you need to carve it. 

After all the finesse you’ve put into cooking your meat, this is not the time to fumble the ball. 

That’s why we’ve put together this quick how-to guide to properly carving a steak—so you can dazzle your hungry diners and yourself. 

Let your meat rest before carving to hang on to the juices

Step one: take a break. 

No, seriously. Put the knife down and step away from the carving station. 

Once your steak comes off the grill or out of the pan, you need to hold off on carving it right away. 

Giving the meat a chance to rest lets the juices flow back into the fibers so that when you cut into it, you end up with tender, juicy slices instead of a pool of liquid on your cutting board. 

The rule of thumb is to allow one minute of rest for every 100 grams of meat. So if you’ve got a 16-oz steak, let it rest for five to ten minutes. You can keep it warm by placing it under a tent of aluminum foil. 

Pro tip: for fine dining at home, this is also a great time to crack open a bottle of red wine and give it a chance to breathe before serving. 

Take care to cut on the bias to make each bite extra tender

Now that your steaks are cooked and rested, it’s time for the moment of truth. What happens next is what separates steak amateurs from steak aficionados. 

An inexperienced home cook may look at the grill lines and decide to cut along them for maximum visual appeal. Don’t make this rookie mistake. 

What you want to do is cut against the grain of the steak, which may or may not line up with the grill marks. 

Take a close look at the muscle fibers in the meat and find the lines that run parallel to each other. That’s the grain, and that’s what you want to be cutting against. 

Position your knife so the cuts will run perpendicular to those lines, forming a “T” with the grain. This creates slices that have short fibers—incredibly tender, easy to chew, and out-of-this-world succulent. 

You’ll know you’ve done it right when you see gorgeous slices with an irresistibly warm pink center and short parallel lines running vertically through them. You’ll also know it when you take that first bite and it practically melts in your mouth. 

That’s it! You’re all set to wow your family, friends, and yourself at your next steak night at home. 

Happy carving! 

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