Filet mignon is one of the most tender, buttery cuts of beef you’ll ever enjoy. When it’s seared on the outside and juicy on the inside, it’s like an elegant steakhouse-style meal—but you can recreate this dish at home, usually for a fraction of the price. And it can be just as nutritious as it is delicious. Of all the red meat options, filet mignon is one of the leanest cuts. It has a healthy amount of fat needed for an optimal diet, but not too much, like some of the fattier cuts. It’s also filled with health-supportive protein and vitamin B12, a vitamin that is only found in animal products and supplements and is crucial for brain and nervous system functions.
For the most health benefits, opt for organic, grass-fed, and local labels when selecting your meat. You can bump up the benefits of your meal even further by serving this filet with a side salad or steamed vegetables, which will alkalize the body and aid in digestion.
Basic Filet Mignon: How to Recreate this Steakhouse Favorite
1 (6–ounce) filet mignon
Freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Place a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Once the skillet is warm, brush with a light coating of oil. (If you maintain a well-seasoned cast iron skillet, you may be able to skip the oil.)
- Pat your filets with a paper towel to remove any excess moisture. Season generously (to your liking) with salt and pepper.
- When the skillet is hot, add the filet. It should sizzle! Sear for about 4 minutes on each broad side and quickly sear the side edges for 1 to 2 minutes each.
- Using oven mitts, place the skillet into the oven. Cooking time will depend on the size and thickness of the cut, as well as your personal preference. The internal temperature should register at 130 to 135°F for medium rare, 135° to 140°F for medium, and 150°F for medium well. (NOTE: According to the FDA, meat is safe when cooked to 145°F with 3 minutes to rest.)
- Remove from the pan and let sit for 5 minutes. The meat will finish cooking and the juices will reconstitute.
- Grilled Filet Mignon. Use a cast-iron grill pan so your finished meat has those sought-after grill marks.
- Greek-Style Filet Mignon. Add dried oregano when you salt and pepper your filet. Proceed as directed.
- Mediterranean Filet Mignon Salad. Prepare a Greek salad with romaine lettuce, spinach, Kalamata olives, diced tomatoes, and feta cheese. Toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Place the rested filet on the salad and serve with lemon wedges.
If you try to flip the meat and it sticks to the skillet, it may not be fully seared. Fully seared meat will release with ease. This goes for outside grilling as well.
In moderation, filet mignon is an excellent source of protein. Protein is a macronutrient that the body requires to maintain healthy hair, nails, bones, tissue, and muscles.
Cuts of meat can vary greatly. A 6-ounce portion can be small and thick, or wide and thin. If cooking for more than one person, try to purchase pieces that are relatively equal in size and thickness, so they cook evenly.