Pan-Seared Sirloin Steak
Sirloin steak is one of the quickest and easiest cuts of meat to cook to your liking, meeting the needs of a couple of people. I like my steak medium-rare, and my husband prefers his well-done.
This one calls for an overnight dry-rub that produces a flavorful, tender steak that is difficult to eat slowly (I want to savor every bite while its warm, but I also want to just chew to get to the next piece). I love pan-seared steak because it is so juicy, unless well-done, then it just gets tough. To each his own. We’ll be preparing a quick mushroom pan sauce to drizzle on the steak, but if you don’t like mushrooms, you can modify the gravy with just a few tips.
If you have a meat market, select your meat from the butcher. Typically, their steak will be sliced thick, about 1 ½” thick. Choose a top sirloin. We like sirloin steak for it’s leanness. It is a healthier red meat option, though if you prefer a more tender cut of beef, you can use this recipe on your best cut of ribeye steak. You can get two 8-oz cuts, but you’ll have too much gravy left over, so just get either two 1# portions or one big 2-pound steak.
Since my husband likes his steak well-done, if we get one big 2# sirloin, I’ll cook the whole thing the way I like it, that way it’s seared all around. Then, I’ll cut it in half and add his back to the pan with the gravy to cook his twice.
You can cook this in a non-stick skillet or a cast iron frying pan. If your non-stick skillet tends to stick, use a bit of oil to coat the pan first. For a cast iron pan, coat your pan with oil and cook at a higher heat to sear the surface and sides for 1 – 2 minutes, then reduce heat to finish cooking to your preferred level of done-ness.
I don’t have actual measurements, but these are just a guess at how much of each seasoning I typically use. Use your best judgement for your preferred taste, but do try it with at least 6 of the 7 ingredients before changing it up too much. Each flavor complements the other and is a great mix for most beef recipes like briskets and ribs, and even some grilling fish such as salmon, cod or snapper.
- onion powder
- garlic powder
- brown sugar
If you don’t like mushrooms, you can make this a beef gravy by deglazing the pan. Deglazing means scraping the bits of meat and juices from the bottom of the pan.
Using 1 C. beef broth, just cook the broth for 10 minutes while scraping the pan. If you want to thicken your gravy, you can whisk a bit of flour into it, but you must cook it a few minutes or it will just taste like flour. A better way to thicken it is with corn starch. Use 1 Tbsp. with a bit of water to make a paste, then add it to the gravy. Simmer it a minute or two and then let it sit, stirring occasionally while it thickens.
You can add extra seasoning if you prefer as well, with a splash of red wine, thyme or crushed rosemary.
Pair this steak with a baked potato, steak fries, a quick arugula salad or even rice. Try it with my zucchini-carrot medley.
Pan-Seared Sirloin Steak
- 2 lb trimmed sirloin at least 1" thick
- 1 T salt
- 1 T pepper
- 1 t garlic powder
- 1 t onion powder
- 1 t cayenne pepper
- 1 t paprika
- 1 T brown sugar
- 1 c beef broth
- 1 T butter
- 8 oz whole mushrooms, sliced thinly
- Mix the dry rub ingredients in a freezer bag
- Place the thawed steak in the dry rub bag, coating the steak. Seal and refrigerate overnight
- When ready to prepare, heat pan to medium-high heat and pan fry sirloin about 8 minutes each side for medium-rare. Use grilling tongs to ensure the edges of the steak are seared and any fat is rendered.
- I add a dash of soy sauce and a dash of Worcestershire to one side, and a dash of A1 & olive oil to the other side.
- Medium-rare steak will reach an internal temperature of 120° – 130° F and be light red in the center, with red juice droplets on the surface of the steak.
- Remove from pan, and tent with foil while resting for 5 – 10 minutes.
- Add butter & mushrooms to hot pan and sautee until soft
- Add the broth and simmer 10 minutes, mixing and deglazing the pan
- If one person wants their steak well-done, add their steak to the gravy mix and cook 8 minutes each side on medium-high. A well-done steak will reach an internal temperature of 160° – 170° F and be firm, not spongy.