Cooking steak in an air fryer is a quick and easy way to make a delicious steak dinner! You can quickly make tender air fryer steaks that have a crisp crust, juicy meat, and are full of flavor.
This method of cooking lets you make perfect steak with minimal ingredients and without many steps. It is a simple recipe, so you can get delicious, dependable results even if you aren’t an experienced cook.
All you have to do is season the steak with salt and pepper, add a little butter or olive oil, and flip it over halfway through the cooking time. I include a detailed steak cooking time chart below so you can make juicy, tender steak cooked exactly how you like it!
What Makes an Air Fryer the Perfect Choice for Steak?
If you usually grill steak, cook it a sous vide, or sear it in a cast iron skillet, you are probably wondering, Why make steak in an air fryer?
- Advantages over the grill – Unlike a grill, the air fryer is consistent. You don’t have to worry about flare-ups or how much charcoal to use. You don’t have to watch over the grill, which makes this a hands-off way of cooking. And the weather doesn’t matter because it is never too hot, cold, rainy, or snowy to air fry.
- Advantages over sous vide – I love sous vide steak. But while it is delicious, it isn’t fast. If I have a few hours, I might use my sous vide and then sear the steak in the air fryer. But when I want dinner on the table in 20 minutes, the air fryer works best.
- Advantages over cast iron skillet – A skillet has the same issues as the grill of not being consistent or hands-off. Plus, I don’t have a great range hood, so I have to worry about setting off my smoke detector!
For exact amounts needed see the recipe card below
Steak – Select your choice of cuts, such as sirloin steak, porterhouse, or rib eye steaks. The most crucial factor in air frying steak is not the type. It is the thickness. Chose ones at least 1 inch thick so the outside will sear while the inside cooks. Thinner steak will lead to overdone meat.
Seasoning – I usually season this simply, with lots of black pepper and a little salt. But you can use a spice rub, such as Montreal Steak Seasoning, Lemon Pepper, or another seasoning mix.
Butter – The butter helps brown the outside. Using garlic butter gives the dish an amazing flavor. Olive oil will also work. You can reduce the amount of butter or olive oil, but even a little bit will make the meat taste delicious.
How to Cook Steak in the Air Fryer
Set the air fryer at 400 degrees F and preheat the basket for 5 minutes. While it preheats, pat the steak dry with a paper towel and season it with salt and pepper. You might need to cook the meat in batches, depending on the size of your air fryer.
2. Air Fry
Add the steaks to the basket, ensuring they are not touching or overcrowded. They cook so quickly that it doesn’t add much cooking time to make multiple batches. Additionally, cooking in batches makes it easier to accommodate different preferences in degree of doneness.
Put the butter on top of the steak, or drizzle on a little bit of olive oil.
Air fry at 400 degrees F for the time shown in the chart below for your desired level of doneness. Then flip the meat over and cook it on the other side for the time shown below. (The meat will continue to cook as it rests, so the times shown below are 5 degrees below the final, desired temperature.)
|Thickness||med-rare (130°F)||medium (140°F)||med-well (145°F)||well done (155°F)|
|1 inch||5 min/side||6 min/side||7 min/side||8 min/side|
|1 ½ inch||6 min/side||7 min/side||8 min/side||9 min/side|
|2 inches||7 min/side||8 min/side||9 min/side||10 min/side|
This chart is a starting point; you still need to check the temperature with an instant-read thermometer before taking it out! Air fryers vary, so for best results check the temperature and don’t just go by time. Steak is expensive, and meat thermometers are cheap!
The temperature will continue to increase by about 5 degrees F as the meat rests.
Take the meat out of the air fryer and let it rest for 5 minutes before slicing and serving. This allows the juices to reabsorb and makes for a tender and juicy steak.
Top the meat with garlic herb butter or fresh herbs for extra flavor. I love to serve potatoes with a steak dinner, whether it is garlic mashed potatoes, baked potatoes, or roasted red potatoes. Add some asparagus, eggplant, or a green salad for a vegetable side dish.
How to Store
Store leftover steak in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. You can use it on a salad, a sandwich, or stir fry. You can also reheat it in the air fryer at 380 degrees F for 3-5 minutes.
Tips for Juicy Air Fryer Steak
Be sure to check out the step by step instructions
- Buy a tender, well-marbled steak at least 1 inch thick. Quality cuts of steak will give better results than a cheap cut.
- Add a little butter or olive oil on top to help the meat brown.
- Verify the internal temperature with a meat thermometer, don’t just rely on time.
- Let it rest for 5 minutes before serving. This makes it juicier.
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Air Fryer Steak Recipe
- 2 1-inch thick steaks such as porterhouse, ribeye, sirloin, or your favorite cut
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 tablespoons butter or olive oil
- Preheat the air fryer at 400 degrees F for 5 minutes. Pat the meat dry and season it with salt and pepper.2 1-inch thick steaks, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon black pepper
- Place the meat in the air fryer basket. Depending on the size of your air fryer, you may have to cook in batches.
- Put a small pat of butter on top of each piece.2 tablespoons butter or olive oil
- Air fry at 400 F for the following times, assuming the steak is 1 inch thick. Add about 1 minute to the times for each additional 1/2 inch of thickness.medium-rare: 5 min/sidemedium: 6 min/sidemedium-well: 7 min/sidewell-done: 8 min/side
- Flip the steaks and air fry on the other side for the time given above.
- Use an instant-read thermometer to verify that the meat has reached your desired temperature.
- Allow it to rest for 5 minutes before serving.
- Buy a tender, well-marbled piece of meat at least 1 inch thick. A thicker steak like ribeye, porterhouse, or NY strip will yield better results than a thinner one.
- Add a little butter or olive oil on top to help the meat brown.
- Verify the internal temperature with a meat thermometer, don’t just rely on cooking time.
- Let the steak rest for 5 minutes before serving. This makes it juicier and lets it finish cooking.
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Nutrition facts are estimates.