A well seasoned flavorful steak is one of the best things to eat. Cook your steak on your pellet grill for a delicious wood-fired outer sear. The high heat from the hardwood pellets creates an amazing flavor on every Traeger Steak you cook. Cooking steak on your Traeger grill will be a regular in your culinary repertoire.
Steak is a treat in our house. Most nights of the week we eat chicken, pork, or ground turkey. With 8 people for dinner, cooking up 8 juicy steaks (or even just a couple of big ones) doesn't fit into the food budget. So when it is steak night the house rejoices and we want to make sure to cook those steaks perfectly.
Since we got our Traeger grill that has been our go-to for any type of grilling, especially steak. Sometimes we smoke steak and sometimes we cook at high heat for that ideal outer crust.
Ingredients for Traeger Steak
Steak: I used a USDA prime New York strip steak. It has a nice amount of marbling. The key is to have a steak at least an inch thick. The thicker the steak, the more wood-fired flavor your outer crust will collect while still hitting that doneness target you are hoping to achieve. My steak was about an inch and a half. You can also use a ribeye or filet mignon. Whatever steaks you have on hand.
Salt: I like to use coarse sea salt or kosher salt. The larger piece of salt tends to season the steak better. I also like the texture.
Pepper: Freshly ground black pepper is my favorite. A little dusting for flavor, go a little heavier if you are looking for a kick of heat in each bite.
Pellets: I used a mixture of cherry and hickory wood pellets for this smoke. I originally attended to do it on hickory but had some cherry pellets to use up too. The combination was perfection. I loved the results.
How to Make Traeger Steak
Step One: Preheat your Traeger or pellet grill to 500 degrees F. This might take up to 20 minutes depending on how cold it is. Preheating will also give nice grill marks on the steak.
Expert Tip: I highly recommend making sure that your grill has been recently cleaned. If not, cooking at this high heat will be sure to start a grease fire that will ruin your steak and could create other safety issues.
Step Two: Once the Traeger temperature reaches 500 degrees Fahrenheit, place your well-seasoned steak into your preheated grill directly onto the grill grates. Place directly on the grate and be sure to insert the temperature probe to monitor the internal temperature of the steak. Cook at 500°F for five minutes. Then turn the steak over and continue to cook for another five minutes. Make sure you keep the lid closed when you are cooking this to allow the Traeger to maintain the high heat.
Step Three: Once the internal temp of the steak reaches 120°, remove it from the grill and allow it to rest for five minutes before slicing.
Expert Tip: The resting time will allow the steak's internal temp to rise to about 130°F. Adjust cooking time to achieve your desired doneness. I like my steaks medium rare.
Step Four: Slice against the grain and serve. Enjoy!
Dry Rubs - I chose to season this NY strip steak with just salt and pepper but if you like a dry rub on your steak you can add that before grilling. One of our favorite rubs is the smoked paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder-based rub we use on our Smoked Chicken Thighs.
Sauce - If you enjoy your steaks with a steak sauce you can use that on a Traeger steak just like any other steak. I'd encourage you to taste it plain first so you can really taste the flavor it gets from cooking on a pellet grill.
Butter - A great way to finish a steak is to top it with a pat or two of Garlic Herb Butter while it is resting.
What should I serve with Traeger Steak?
Why Cook steak on the Traeger?
If you are looking for a black and blue steak with a dark purple cool center, you need to sear that at 900°F for a minute per side. You can't get that on the Traeger. Because the Traeger grill cooks indirectly, a dark charred sear is not achievable without completely overcooking your steak. But that is ok. If you are most interested in flavor and looking to find new wrinkles of flavor, this one is for you. It doesn't get more simple than steak, salt, pepper, and your Trager grill.
Can you smoke the steak on your Traeger?
Absolutely you can. A different recipe will cover that. Here we are using the Traeger as a high heat grill. I have smoked a large ribeye steak on the Traeger smoker at low heat for about 45 minutes, and then reverse sear it on high heat in the preheated cast iron pan to give it a nice sear. This way does give more of a smoky flavor and is delicious. But it does take more time. I recommend trying to cook them both ways to determine which you prefer. I like variety, I go back and forth between both depending on the time I have and what else I am cooking.
- 1 lb rib steak
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- Preheat your pellet grill to 500 degrees F.
- Season your steak with salt and pepper.
- Place your steak directly on the grate and close the lid. Cook the steak at 500°F for 5 minutes, then flip it over and cook for another 5 minutes or until the steak reaches an internal temperature of 120°F.
- Remove from grill and let it rest for about five minutes.