Do Sous Vide Steaks Need to Rest?

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There are many things that you can prepare by using the sous vide method. However, it is most popular for cooking steaks. Some details add to the results in significant ways. Do sous vide steaks need to rest? Know all about it to prepare delicious steaks with this technique.

Do Sous Vide Steaks Need to Rest?

Sous vide steaks do not require resting time and can be served immediately after cooking. When you prepare steaks using the traditional methods, they require some time for the meat to rest. Resting enhances the flavor and juicy texture of steaks. However, for sous vide steaks, you can skip this step.

Close-up of raw steak meat with black pepper and herbs placed on a black wooden table

Traditional cooking differs from this special French cooking technique, including vacuum-sealed bags with the meat submerged in warm water. The even heat from all sides cooks the steak until the center. When you take the steak out, slight searing can give it a charred taste, and the food will be ready to serve.

Why Is It Necessary to Rest Steaks After Traditional Preparation?

The heat does not spread evenly through the meat when you cook steak on a grill or in a pan. Moreover, the fat in the meat oozes out and does not cook the meat from the center. This fat from the meat will glaze the surface. However, the center of the steak might not get as hot as it needs to be for complete cooking.

When you rest the steak, the heat transfers to the parts that get less heat while cooking, called carryover temperature. That gets evenly distributed and tempers the meat. The carryover temperature will allow the steak to cook while it is off the pan or grill.

Another reason to rest the meat is to let the juices settle in between the meat tissue. Usually, steaks are served after cutting; if you cut a steak immediately after removing it from the heat, all the juices will squeeze out. However, resting will ensure that the juices get settled so that you have a succulent steak ready.

Why Don’t These Steaks Need Resting?

When you make steaks using this special technique, they do not require resting because there is no carryover temperature. Moreover, the cooking temperature for beef tenderloin steaks is around 165⁰ Fahrenheit, which is the temperature at which is round about the same temperature at which ‘piping hot’ food is served.

There will be no need to rest the steak after cooking it with this special technique because the whole meat portion is at the same temperature, and the cooking is complete. There will be no areas of the steak that did not get heat or have been left uncooked.

As for the juices in the steak, the French cooking style will ensure that the meat remains juicy. How? Juices are squeezed out of the meat when the temperatures are very high. You may have observed how a thin slice of beef or pork shrinks when you fry it at high flame, and that doesn’t happen with sous vide.

How Long to Wait before Searing the Meat After Sous Vide?

The steaks cooked with this special technique do not have brown glazing or seared look like other steaks. Chefs and cooks prefer to sear the steak a little to give it some color. As soon as the steak is cooked, you can take out the vacuum bag and open it. This step will stop the meat from cooking.

  1. After opening the bag, take the meat onto a plate and season it
  2. Let the temperature drop, and the seasoning will get incorporated into the meat as it cools
  3. Preheat stainless steel skillet and add butter or fat of choice
  4. Let the steak sear for a few minutes on each side to get the brownish glaze on the edges

Searing must last for at most 90 seconds on each side. Many gourmet chefs need to consider this step more. However, some people might find colorless steaks unappetizing so this has become a common practice among chefs in restaurants who use sous vide.

Well-done steak with vegetables and sauce served on a white plate on a white table

What Happens if I Rest Sous Vide Steaks?

Nothing significant will happen if you let the sous vide steaks rest after taking them out of the bag. These steaks will already be evenly cooked, and there will be no portion that needs an extra few minutes to heat up and cook.

Steaks prepared through this method only need those extra few minutes to rest. However, you would need to take the steak out of the vacuum bag immediately after the cooking completes. This is done so that the meat does not keep cooking.

Removing the steak from the vacuum bag is contrary to the resting step for traditional steaks. This is because the traditional steak needs extra minutes to cook evenly, while the sous vide steak does not require additional cooking.

Related Questions

Home cooks and chefs should read what experts have to say about resting steaks when prepared with different cooking techniques. The way experts answer questions from novice cooks will help you understand the discussion even more.

How Long Should I Leave the Steak Before Searing It?

You can let the sous vide steak sit for a few minutes after opening the silicone bag for sous vide or vacuum bag and searing the steak. You can season the steak during this time so that the spices or herbs can incorporate and blend into the steak.

Will Steak Become Tender if I Do Not Open the Bag?

Yes, if you wait to open the bag immediately after taking it out of the water, it will keep cooking in the hot, melted fat and juices. The texture of this steak can become extremely soft and the meat portion may even begin to break.


Do sous vide steaks need to rest? Find out how you can maintain the juicy and delicious texture and taste of the steaks prepared with this special cooking technique. Once you know what to do with the steak after it has cooked, you will be able to get excellent results every time.

Nathaniel Lee is an avid cook, drawing on his decades of home cooking and fine dining experience. He is a contributing chef at Mashed, and his recipes and contributions have been featured in Tasting Table, Edible Arrangements, Insanely Good Recipes, and The Daily Meal.