How to Cook Filet Mignon to Absolute Perfection


Here are some tips on how to cook filet mignon to absolute perfection on any type of grill (or inside on your stovetop and in your oven).

filet mignon

There is nothing better than a tender, juicy filet mignon. You don’t always have to go out to have a fancy, tasty dinner. Here is how to make one of my favorite cuts of meat in the comfort of your own home!

What is so fancy about a filet mignon?

A filet mignon is one of my all-time favorite cuts of meat because it is tender, juicy, and lean. A filet mignon is cut from the tenderloin, making it the priciest and most desired portion of the animal. This part of the animal is not exercised or stressed often, causing it to be tender and not as tough as other cuts of meat.  Whole beef tenderloin can be cut into “steaks” to make filet mignon.

Tips on how to cook filet mignon perfectly.

  • Season first. If you marinate your filet, be sure to allow at least 8 hours for best results. Add dry seasonings (kosher salt, pepper, or special rubs) before searing so that they will infuse the steak with flavor when the steak hits the hot skillet or grill.
  • Pat dry. To ensure a good sear, pat the steak dry before it hits the skillet or grill.  A dry surface with minimal seasonings will brown the best.
  • Let it sit.  After removing the steak from the fridge, let it stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before cooking.  A cold piece of meat won’t cook as evenly as one that is closer to room temperature.
  • Keep it hot. For the best browning, use a very hot skillet or grill. Keep each side of the steak on the heat until a good sear/crust develops. Flipping the steak too many times will keep it from getting the golden sear.
  • Leave it alone. Always allow steak to rest for a few minutes before serving so the juices can redistribute themselves throughout the meat. I let my steak sit at least 15 minutes before cutting into it.

Should I wrap bacon around a filet mignon?

Some recipes say to wrap a slice of thick smoked bacon around the steak, which adds flavor and moisture. For best results, I like to partially cook the bacon before wrapping it around steak.  If you wrap a thick piece of raw bacon around a steak, it may not cook fully before the steak itself is done.

How to cook a bacon-wrapped filet mignon.

First, partially cook the bacon in a microwave on a plate loosely covered with paper towels. When the bacon begins to render fat and lightly brown, remove it from the microwave. Sprinkle the bacon with a bit of sugar if you want it to caramelize and turn a lovely golden brown. Secure the bacon to the steak with toothpicks. Then cook the filet according to your preferred method.

What is the best method to cook filet mignon?

There are several ways to cook a filet, but one of the easiest and best ways to cook a filet is by first searing it on the stovetop and finishing it in the oven. If you prefer a smoky flavor, then I suggest using the grill toward the end of the cooking process. A gas grill will not impart a smoky flavor, so I suggest using a pellet grill, a Big Green Egg, or a charcoal grill. 

Why sear a steak before cooking it in the oven?

The purpose of searing a steak is to begin the cooking process on the outside of the steak. Once you attain the beautiful, golden-brown color on the outside, the steak can be finished off in the oven to reach the desired internal temperature of your steak.

Filet Mignon

What do I need in order to cook filet mignon at home?

The key to a perfect pan-seared filet mignon is a good cast-iron skillet. This is a staple in my house, and I explain in this blog why it is an absolute kitchen necessity and why it is one of the best kitchen essentials you’ll ever buy. You’ll also need a meat thermometer to measure the internal temperature of your steak.

What is the best marinade for steak?

Some people prefer minimal seasonings for steak; I am a HUGE fan of a marinade. I think that the right marinade takes a steak from good to great as far as flavor and tenderness.   My favorite marinade recipe for filet mignon is the Kensington Club Steak Marinade which is a copycat recipe from Steak and Ale Restaurant. This was a favorite dining spot for Zane and me as newlyweds. We would eat there almost every Sunday after church. We both ordered the Kensington Club steak and the brandied mushrooms. My copycat for the Kensington Club marinade is VERY close to the real thing and can be found here in this blog post.

How to cook filet mignon in a skillet only.

Many people prefer an indoor “skillet only” method of cooking a filet mignon. This is one of the easiest and simplest ways to cook a filet mignon. The steps are below.

  • Season steaks generously with coarse salt and freshly cracked black pepper.
  • Heat a large, heavy skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat for at least 2 minutes.
  • Add steaks to the skillet, being sure not to crowd them.
  • Cook until the underside is nicely browned, 3 to 4 minutes.
  • Flip the steaks and continue cooking to your desired doneness, 3 to 4 minutes more for medium-rare, longer for medium.  
  • During the last minutes of cooking, add 1 to 2 pats of unsalted butter to the top of the steak.
  • Remove the steaks from the skillet and let rest for 15 minutes. Pour pan sauce over the steaks before serving.

How to cook filet mignon in a skillet + an oven.

  1. Marinate the steaks (if desired); season with salt, pepper & desired dry rub.
  2. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit 
  3. Lightly coat cast iron skillet with olive oil or cooking spray
  4. Heat the skillet for 2 minutes on medium-high heat.
  5. Place marinated steaks on the skillet.
  6. Sear steaks for 2-4 minutes on each side (or until each side gets a good golden sear).
  7. Transfer the steaks to the preheated oven (in the skillet) and cook to the desired internal temperature is reached. 
  8. Let your steaks cool after taking them out of the oven to let the flavor set. Remember they will continue to cook for a few minutes even when out of the oven. 
  9. Use your meat thermometer to make sure the internal temperature is to your desired preference. 

How to measure the doneness of a filet mignon steak.

  • Rare125°F – Center is bright red; pinkish towards the outside
  • Medium-Rare135°F – Center is very pink; slightly brown towards the outside
  • Medium145°F – Center is light pink; outer portion is brown
  • Medium-Well155°F – Center is slightly pink; outer portion is brown
  • Well165°F – Uniformly brown throughout


How to cook filet mignon steak on a pellet grill.

A pellet grill is basically “an oven with smoke.” This makes it easy to determine the exact temperature at which to cook anything, A pellet grill also has probes to measure the internal temp of meat, which makes it easy to cook a steak to the desired temperature.

You can cook a filet on a pellet grill ONLY, or you can use BOTH the stovetop (to sear) and the pellet grill (to cook to your desired internal temperature).

  • Rub desired seasonings on both sides of filets. Let the meat sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes.
  • Preheat your grill to the desired temperature (450 F to 500 F).
  • Place steaks directly on the grill, insert the temperature probes, and cook for 5 to 8 minutes on each side, or until the filets reach the desired internal temperature.

How to cook filet mignon on a Big Green Egg

  • Set the Big Green EGG to a direct cooking temperature of 550 degrees F to 600 degrees F.
  • Cook steaks for 2 minutes, flip, cook 2 more minutes, then flip one last time and cook for 2 additional minutes.
  • Check internal temperature with a food thermometer for doneness.
  • Remove to a platter, top with butter, and allow steak to rest for 15 minutes.

How to cook filet mignon on a Charcoal Grill

  • Sear the steaks for 2-4 minutes on each side (to get the good sear).
  • Move steaks to an area of the grill where there is no flame.
  • Cook for approximately 6-12 minutes to the desired internal temperature.

What to serve with filet mignon.

I have very specific sides that I make to serve with filet mignon. These are the sides that my whole family loves. They are the perfect compliments to filet mignon in flavor, texture, and appearance.

I hope this helps you make the BEST filet mignon EVER!!! As always, thanks so much for stopping by my site. Be blessed, and stay savvy!!

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