What Is Tenderloin Steak? (Juicy and Rich Flavored Meat)

Timothy Woods
Published by Timothy Woods
Last Updated On: December 5, 2023

For many meat lovers, steak is their favorite meal, whether you make it at home and pride yourself on preparing it perfectly or you treat yourself at a nice fancy restaurant. According to culinary experts, tenderloin steak is one of the most sought-after meat cuts regardless of how expensive it is.

Quick Summary

  • Tenderloin steak is a tender cut of meat from the back of an animal.
  • This cut of meat is expensive, has the least amount of fat, and is often referred to as filet mignon.
  • Tenderloin steak can be consumed in various ways and is often quick to cook and tastes best when seasoned simply.

There are mainly two characteristics that make a steak great: the tenderness of the steak and the flavor. Tenderloin steak has these two characteristics as the steak is pleasant to eat and is not chewy like many tougher cuts tend to be. The tenderloin steak is also juicy and rich in flavor.

What Is A Tenderloin Steak?

sliced fresh meat

The tenderloin steak often referred to as a filet mignon, is a highly-priced cut of meat found on the animal's back area.

The tenderness of the tenderloin steak is off the charts, and amazingly enough, the fat content is pretty low compared to other cuts of meat.

Tenderloin steak is a cut that is cut perpendicular to the muscle fiber of the animal.

Tenderloin steak cooks quickly as copious amounts of time are not needed to break down the cuts muscle fiber.

We recommend sourcing your meat from ButcherBox where the cows are grass-fed and organic.

Therefore, the desired level of meat tenderness is reached relatively quickly because the tenderloin steak has the least amount of connective tissue, making it tender from the get-go [1].

What Are The Different Ways Tenderloin Steaks Can Be Eaten?

cooked steak

The chances of you getting bored with tenderloin steaks are nonexistent as this protein can be prepared and consumed in several exciting ways.

Tenderloin steaks can be roasted as a whole or cut into smaller roasts.

The grill comes in handy in this situation, or you can simply roast the cut in the oven.

You can also use this cut of meat to make a tasty beef wellington.

I'm sure you have seen how some contestants choose to make tartare on food network channels.

Well, you can make a steak tartare with a tenderloin steak. You simply need to finely chop the steak and add your choice of ingredients to make a tenderloin steak tartare.

The tenderloin steak can also be thinly sliced with a sharp knife to get a good consistency.

Place the thin slices of meat and commence pounding for a Carpaccio. Use a roller pin to pound the slices, or use a meat mallet. Pounding the slices is an excellent way to work out your anger or lingering frustration without being sent to jail for battery.

Lastly, tenderloin steaks can be sliced into fillet mignon steaks and braised or grilled in a pan on medium-high heat.

Although generally making a stew out of this tender cut of meat is not popular according to pro chefs, as cuts of meat that are tender, like tenderloin steaks and ribeye, are better grilled on the stove, some may argue that tenderloin steaks make delicious stews. It is really up to you [2].

Where Is The Tenderloin Steak Cut From?

knife with fresh meat

The tenderloin is incredibly tender because it is one of the least used muscles on the animal.

The shortloin is where the tenderloin and the striploin are contained.

To cut out the tenderloin, make sure that your knife is sharp, as you will need to carefully work along the vertebrae.

Make a straight clean cut so that the meat easily comes off of the bone. You will make the most out of the tenderloin meat by doing this.

You'll notice that there is a lot of fat on top of the tenderloin cut. Simply trim that fat and silverskin to expose the tenderloin cut in all its tender glory [3].

Tips On How To Cook The Perfect Tenderloin Steak

marinating meat and cooking meat

We all know there are various ways to cook tenderloin steaks. However, these tips will wow your family, friends, and even picky eaters like kids.

  • First, always season your steak on both sides with salt and pepper before cooking. Depending on your preference, how much salt and pepper you use is up to you. It could be hot black pepper, or it could be white pepper. The tenderloin is a deceptively simple dish and does not require many spices.
  • A nice trick to use to ensure that the seasoning goes all the way inside the meat is to use your hand to press the steak down a little bit. Do this on both sides so that both sides are nicely seasoned.
  • Cook the tenderloin steak on medium heat as high heat is too harsh for this tender cut of meat.
  • Use both an oil of your choice as well as butter. Using both ensures that the butter does not burn before the steak cooks.
  • Generally, for a 1 cm steak, you will cook each side of the steak for 3 minutes. However, if the steak is thicker, the cooking time on each side increases.
  • Always rest the meat directly after cooking it. It is imperative to keep the juices of the meat from running out [4].

What Types Of Sauces Go Well With Tenderloin Steak?

bowl of red wine sauce

Although tenderloin steak can be eaten by itself, many people prefer serving the steak with sauce.

There are generally three different sauces that are a favorite. The first is a shallot and red wine sauce.

To make this, simply add thinly sliced shallots, red wine, and balsamic vinegar and allow the sauce to reduce.

Another sauce that goes well with tenderloin steak is a mushroom sauce.

You will need your choice of mushrooms, tarragon, shallots, beef stock, white wine, garlic, and butter for a thick, velvety texture. Adding cream will make the sauce creamier.

The last sauce that goes well with tenderloin steak is a peppercorn sauce. You simply need black or green peppercorns, butter, cream, and flour for texture. Adding brandy will enhance the flavor [5].

Related Articles:


  1. https://www.thespruceeats.com/tenderloin-steak-definition-336261
  2. https://www.cookinglight.com/food/recipe-finder/beef-tenderloin-recipes
  3. https://www.beefitswhatsfordinner.com/cuts/cut/2773/tenderloin-boneless#:~:text=A%20long%2C%20narrow%2C%20and%20lean,T%2DBone%20and%20Porterhouse%20Steaks.
  4. https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/howto/guide/how-cook-perfect-steak
  5. https://www.yummly.com/recipes/french-sauces-for-beef-tenderloin
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About the author

Timothy Woods
CEO / Co-Founder
Timothy Woods holds a Kinesiology and Exercise Science degree from Jacksonville University and is CCC & GMU Certified. He's also the main man behind Carnivore Style. This food aficionado combines science and experience to spread the word about the carnivore lifestyle.
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