Also known as butcher’s steak, hanger steak is a cut of beef taken from the diaphragm of the cow. It is known for its flavorful taste and tender yet chewy texture. While many people are familiar with more popular cuts like ribeye or sirloin, cooking up the perfect hanger steak is a skill every home cook should learn.
Follow this guide on how to cook hanger steak with any cookware you have and become a pro in no time!
How To Cook Hanger Steak
Hanger steak is a long, flat cut of meat that is rich in flavor but can toughen quickly if overcooked. Here are some tips to ensure tender and juicy results:
- Bring the steak to room temperature before cooking so it cooks evenly.
- Heat up your pan, grill or broiler well before adding the steak.
- Cook over high heat for just 3-5 minutes per side for medium-rare doneness.
- Let the steak rest for 5-10 minutes after cooking.
- Slice against the grain.
Hanger Steak Recipe – Best Fir Pan-cooked, Broiled, or Grilled
- 1 lb hanger steak trimmed
- 3 cloves of garlic minced
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 teaspoon of dried rosemary
- 1 teaspoon of dried thyme
- 1 lemon zested and juiced
- 1 tablespoon of unsalted butter for pan-cooking method
- Marinate the Steak: In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, minced garlic, salt, pepper, dried rosemary, dried thyme, and the zest and juice of one lemon. Place the hanger steak in a dish or zip-top bag and pour the marinade over it. Let it marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, or up to overnight.
- Prepare for Cooking: Remove the steak from the refrigerator about 30 minutes before cooking to let it come to room temperature. This helps it cook more evenly.
- Pan-Cooked Method: Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the butter and let it melt. Add the steak and cook for about 4-5 minutes on each side for medium-rare, or until it reaches your desired level of doneness.
- Broiled Method: Position your oven rack about 6 inches from the top and preheat your broiler. Place the steak on a broiler pan and broil for about 4-5 minutes on each side for medium-rare, or until it reaches your desired level of doneness.
- Grilled Method: Preheat your grill to high heat. Grill the steak for about 4-5 minutes on each side for medium-rare, or until it reaches your desired level of doneness.
- Rest and Serve: Regardless of the method used, let the steak rest for about 5 minutes after cooking to let the juices redistribute. Slice it against the grain and serve.
How To Cook Hanger Steak In A Pan
Pan-searing is a quick and easy way to cook hanger steak for a weeknight dinner:
- Take your steak out of the fridge and let it come to room temperature, about 30 minutes. Pat it dry.
- Season generously with salt and pepper. You can also use a dry steak rub.
- Heat a stainless steel or cast iron skillet over high heat until very hot. Add just a teaspoon of oil.
- Add the steak and cook undisturbed for 2-3 minutes per side, flipping just once, for medium-rare.
- Use tongs to hold it on its side to cook the fatty edges.
- Remove from pan and let rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing against the grain.
The hot pan gives you a great sear while keeping this thin steak nice and juicy. Just be sure not to overcook it.
How To Cook Hanger Steak In Oven
Cooking hanger steak in the oven is an easy hands-off method:
- Let the steak sit out for 30 minutes to reach room temp. Pat dry and season all over.
- Preheat your oven to 450°F. Place a rack in the middle.
- Heat an oven-safe skillet or pan over medium-high heat on the stove.
- Sear the steak for 1 minute per side just to get color on the outside.
- Transfer the pan to the oven and roast for 7-10 minutes for medium-rare, flipping halfway through.
- Rest the steak for 5-10 minutes before slicing and serving.
The initial sear gives you a nice crust, while the oven cooks the steak evenly without overdoing it.
How To Cook Hanger Steak In Cast Iron Skillet
Cast iron is perfect for getting a flavorful crust on hanger steak:
- Take the steak out of the fridge 30 minutes before cooking. Pat extremely dry.
- Generously season both sides with salt and pepper.
- Heat your cast iron skillet over high heat until smoking hot.
- Add just a teaspoon of avocado oil and swirl to coat the pan.
- Lay the steak in the pan. Let cook untouched for 2 minutes to sear.
- Flip and sear another 1-2 minutes. Flip again if needed for even cooking.
- Check for your desired doneness after 4-5 minutes total.
- Rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing against the grain.
The cast iron provides even heat for a perfect crust, while retaining moisture.
How To Cook Hanger Steak On The Grill – BBQ Style
The grill adds delicious smoky flavor to hanger steak. Follow these tips:
- Let the steak sit out for 30 minutes to reach room temperature before grilling.
- Prepare your charcoal or gas grill for direct high-heat grilling, around 450°F.
- Season the steak all over with salt, pepper and your choice of dry rub.
- Place the steak directly over the heat. Grill for 4-5 minutes total, flipping once halfway through.
- Check for your desired doneness with a meat thermometer. 125°F for medium-rare.
- After grilling, let the steak rest for at least 5 minutes before slicing against the grain.
The grill’s dry heat gives you great char while cooking this thin steak quickly. Avoid flare-ups.
Best Way To Cook Hanger Steak
While the oven, grill and skillet all work well, the cast iron skillet and the grill tend to produce the best results. The cast iron crust is unmatched, while the grill gives you smoky charred flavor.
Whatever you choose, let the steak reach room temp before cooking and resist the urge to poke or move it too much for perfect medium-rare results. Check the internal temperature with a meat thermometer for accuracy. Resting before slicing makes all the difference in doneness and juiciness.
Hanger Steak Marinade – Hanger Steak Recipe
Hanger steak is packed with flavor, but marinades and sauces can enhance it even further. Here are some tasty ideas:
- Chimichurri – A blend of parsley, garlic, oregano, olive oil and vinegar provides a fresh, herby sauce.
- Teriyaki – A classic Japanese-inspired marinade with soy sauce, honey, garlic and ginger.
- Red wine marinade – Wine, garlic, rosemary and pepper for a robust flavor.
- Steak sauce – Brush on your favorite brand during the last few minutes of grilling for a sandwich-shop taste.
- Compound butter – Blend softened butter with herbs and minced garlic. Top the cooked steak for an easy upgrade.
- Salsa verde – Chopped parsley, capers, anchovies and olive oil offer a bright, briny sauce.
Mix up your favorite marinade or whip up a quick sauce to complement the savory beefiness of hanger steak.
Best Dishes To Pair With Hanger Steak
Playing up the rich meatiness of hanger steak with robust sides takes the meal over the top. Here are some tasty pairings:
- Loaded baked potatoes – Top with cheese, bacon and scallions for comfort food at its finest.
- Crispy Brussels sprouts – Roasted or sautéed, Brussels sprouts balance the steak beautifully.
- Roasted asparagus – High heat and olive oil bring out asparagus’s nutty flavor.
- Creamed spinach – The creamy spinach cuts the steak’s richness.
- Mushroom risotto – Earthy mushrooms and creamy risotto are a match made in heaven.
- Garlic mashed potatoes – Butter, cream, and roasted garlic make the ultimate side.
- Mac and cheese – Ooey, cheesy noodles are an American classic.
From veggies to potatoes to risotto, pick one or two hearty sides to complement your perfect hanger steak dinner.
Can you sours vide hanger steak?
Yes, sous vide is a great way to cook hanger steak since it tenderizes the meat while retaining moisture and flavor.
What is hanger steak best for?
Hanger steak is best for quick-cooking methods like grilling or pan-searing, and is often used in dishes like fajitas and tacos due to its robust flavor.
Is hanger steak tough or tender?
Hanger steak is moderately tender with a rich, beefy flavor, but it can become tough if overcooked, so it’s best cooked to medium-rare or medium.
Does hanger steak need to be soaked?
No, hanger steak does not typically need to be soaked, but marinating it can help tenderize the meat and enhance its flavor.
How to cook hanger steak, UK style?
In the UK, hanger steak is often quickly seared on a high heat and then finished in the oven to medium-rare, served sliced against the grain with traditional accompaniments like chips and peas.
How to cook hanger steak for tacos?
For tacos, hanger steak is typically marinated in a spice blend, then quickly grilled or pan-seared, and finally thinly sliced against the grain to ensure tenderness.
Cooking up the perfect hanger steak requires high heat and careful timing, but the results are well worth it. Follow the techniques in this guide to achieve tender, juicy steak with a big beefy flavor.
Hanger steak offers a satisfying meal that usually costs less than more popular cuts. Mastering this underrated gem will make you feel like a real butcher!
- Hanger steak: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hanger_steak
- Sous vide: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sous_vide
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