Griddle vs Skillet for steak
If you are looking for the best way to cook steak without putting it directly on a grill, the search for answers can be a bit overwhelming.
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Should you use a griddle or a skillet? What about a griddle pan? What is the difference between a griddle and a griddle pan? Do you want grill marks to give your steak the look of coming off the grill or are you looking for that browned crust that is a hallmark of a great sear?
What’s the difference between using a griddle versus a skillet for cooking steak?
If you are using a griddle pan, they tend to be rectangular in size and have ridges running across the pan that can leave grill-like marks, while skillets are flat on the bottom and have high walls. Griddle plates are flat surfaces with no walls.
If you are looking to get grill marks on your steak without firing up a grill, a griddle pan is for you.
If you want to sear your steak while also being able to baste it with butter, a skillet is the best solution. A griddle plate will allow you to get a great seared crust without the added benefits of a skillet.
Is a griddle pan best for steak?
If your idea of a perfect steak means it is crisscrossed with grill marks, a griddle pan will help deliver on that.
A good griddle pan will have tall ridges that will ensure your steaks will have those mouth-watering grill marks.
If you are unable to grill outdoors for any number of reasons, a griddle pan can help replicate the look of a grilled steak. A properly preheated cast-iron griddle pan will properly distribute heat to cook the steak evenly while leaving caramelized marks on the exterior.
However, due to the ridges that are a hallmark of most griddle pans, you cannot add extra fat to the steak during the cooking process like a butter-basted steak in a skillet.
Can you make a steak on a griddle?
A griddle is a great option for searing steak. Whether you are using a griddle plate on your stovetop or an outdoor griddle like a Blackstone, Camp Chef, Char-Griller Flat Iron, or any other on the market, you can get a beautiful crust on your steak.
The beauty of using a big griddle plate or an outdoor griddle is that you can prepare side dishes on the same surface while you cook your steak.
Can you cook steak in a skillet?
Skillets are perfect for searing steak on the stove or on the grill. Using a skillet can allow you to sear the steak and then transfer the steak into an oven to finish cooking to your desired internal temperature.
A skillet is also the perfect way to have a butter-basted steak that combines a deep brown sear with the richness of butter. The tall sidewalls of a skillet allow you to safely melt butter in the skillet while also flipping your steak to keep building the crust.
You can add herbs and garlic to the butter while basting the steak to add more flavor beyond what you seasoned the steak with originally.
Is a griddle better than a skillet?
It depends on what you are looking for in a steak, but a skillet does allow for more versatility while cooking.
Both cast-iron skillets and griddle pans can be used in an oven to help ensure the steak reaches your desired internal temperature, but ridged griddle pans are only going to be good at getting grill marks.
Skillets can be used to simply sear and finish in the oven or you can use butter, garlic, and herbs to further improve the flavor and crust of your steak.
Should you cook steak on a griddle or on a skillet?
Even if a skillet has more versatility than a griddle pan, there is no wrong answer for you depending on what you are looking for. There are chefs and home cooks who swear by either option. They both offer different positives, and if you are looking for a specific end result, there is a pan.
Do you want grill marks while cooking inside? A griddle pan is what you want to reach for. Are you looking for a great sear and the ability to spoon bubbling-hot butter over your steak to help it taste even better? Then a skillet is what you want.
While almost everyone can agree that a beautifully cooked steak is one of the best ways to eat meat, how you get there is up for debate.
If you are looking for grill marks without needing or having an outdoor grill, a ridged griddle pan will give you the grill marks you desire on your stovetop.
If you want to use your flattop griddle or a griddle plate, you can achieve an excellent sear on those.
A cast-iron skillet will give you a beautiful crust and give you the flexibility of adding butter and herbs or finishing in the oven to your desired internal temperature. Regardless of what you choose, you can make a wonderful steak.
This article was written by Robert McCall, the founder of bbqdropout.com. Robert also owns and operates the BBQ dropout YouTube channel where he demonstrates his first-hand experience cooking all kinds of meats and strives to provide helpful, authoritative content for people looking how to barbecue.
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