Filet Mignon with Red Wine Sauce

Filet mignon steak, pan seared and served with a sauce of a red wine reduction with butter.

As with any recipe that calls for a substantial amount of wine, use a wine that you enjoy drinking. The sauce in this recipe is just a concentrated version of the wine with some butter and pan juices. So, if you don't like the wine to start, it will not make a good sauce. Pick a wine you like.

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 2-4.

Ingredients

  • 2-4 filet mignon steaks, 1 to 2 inches thick*
  • Salt
  • Canola or grape seed oil
  • 3-4 Tbsp unsalted butter, divided
  • 2 cups full bodied red wine (we used a favorite Zinfandel)
  • Black pepper to taste

*If you have thicker steaks, you can butterfly them and cook on the stovetop as directed here, or you can sear them on the stovetop and finish them in a 350°F oven for 10 minutes or more, until the center of the steaks are done to your liking.

Method

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1 Your steaks should already be trimmed of the tough silverskin. If not, cut away any gristly bits. If your steak has the chain attached and you don't want to serve it, cut it away and save for another purpose.

2 Allow the steaks to come to room temperature for at least 30 minutes and up to 90 minutes, depending on the thickness of the steaks. Just before getting ready to cook, pat the meat dry with paper towels, then coat with the canola or grape seed oil. Salt well.

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3 Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a cast iron pan on high heat for 1 minute. Swirl to coat the pan. Put the steaks in the hot pan and immediately turn the heat down to medium to medium high (depending on your stovetop, medium on a high BTU gas range is about medium high on most electric ranges). Sear untouched for at least 3 minutes, up to 6 minutes for a 2-inch thick steak.

4 Flip the steaks and cook for another 2-5 minutes, depending on how thick the steak is and how rare or well done you like your meat. You can use the finger test to test the doneness of your steak. Or you can use a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the steak (120°F to 125°F for rare, 130°F to 135°F for medium rare, 140°F to 145°F for medium). Remove from the pan, loosely tent with foil and allow to rest while you make the sauce.

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5 Pour the wine into the pan and turn the heat to high. Boil this furiously until it is reduced by 3/4, about 10 minutes. Add any juices the steaks have released while resting. Turn off the heat and wait until the wine has stopped bubbling. When it has, add the tablespoons of butter, one tablespoon at a time. Swirl each tablespoon into the sauce until it is completely incorporated before adding the next tablespoon of butter. Add salt to taste and serve the sauce with the steak. Sprinkle freshly ground black pepper over the meat when you serve it.

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Comments

  1. Yoko

    wow, this recipe could not have come out at a more perfect timing. will be making this for friends tonight :) love the heart-shaped steak!

  2. Patricia

    wonderful idea for the husband – I don’t eat red meat and will be looking forward to a taste of the biitersweet chocolate cake I found on this site. Oh, and happy birthday!

    Thank you Patricia! ~Elise

  3. Olga

    I made this tonight with a prime NY strip and it was delicious. I froze the leftover sauce in an ice cube tray for future adventures in red wine reduction.

  4. Chef Connie

    Wondeful post. This site is great for showing home cooks how to make great dishes from scratch. I love that you show how to break down a whole filet. I love to get those from Costco.

  5. Cindy Love

    This recipe is like the one I make but adding some high quality blue cheese crumbles really puts it over the top. Point Reyes Blue is wonderful. Go to Corti’s a buy a wedge. You won’t but pre crumbled ever again!

  6. kathy

    too bad franco is off red meat….i shall do it for myself and cook him some fish! Too bad he wont know what he’s missing since I can see, just looking at the recipe, that it must be delicious….only substitution being olive oil.

    didnt realize until i saw Patricia’s comments that it was your birthday so can i also add a
    Happy Birthday wish to a talented Acquarius!

  7. Marie M.C.

    Boy, oh boy, does that ever look good. I didn’t know what I wanted for dinner but now I do! Elise — Happy Valentine’s and Happy Birthday, too!

    Thanks Marie! ~Elise

  8. Julie

    Making two filets tonight! I have them almost at room temp and the salt and meat mallet crushed peppercorns (I broke my grinder the other day) all set. I usually touch them to check the doneness but the finger test you linked to was really interesting.

  9. Kasley

    Thanks you so much. I don’t eat meat and I’d no idea how to cook steak. My husband said this is the best steak he had since many years ago.On side note, he doesn’t drink alcohol but he totally loved the red wine sauce and medium well steak. Thanks again.

  10. Michelle

    Thanks, Elise…I adore you recipes and many have made it into my regular rotation. I made this sauce the other night and it came out way too tart and acidic and ended up semi rescuing it only after adding a lot of honey. I used a very good Malbec (Altos Las Hormigas) and drank a glass of the wine while cooking (no problem with the wine). What might I have done wrong?

    Hi Michelle, that’s weird. The only thing that I’m thinking it could be is the wine. Perhaps that particular wine just doesn’t reduce well. There’s no acid in the recipe other than in the wine. ~Elise

  11. Eva-marie

    Just found this website. I love your style and you know what you’re talking about!!! Great filet mignon btw super

    easy and delicious!

  12. Eva-marie

    Just found this website. I love your style and you know what you’re talking about!!! Great filet mignon btw super

    easy and delicious!