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Can you cook frozen steak in a sous vide bath? Yes – you can sous vide frozen steak! And you’re going to love doing it! It’s super easy to cook frozen steak sous vide style and get the same results as cooking fresh steak.
This method is one of my favorite sous vide meal prep ideas. With many of you asking me about this on Instagram, I wanted to share with you the details on how to sous vide frozen steak.
Quick personal note – it’s been a complete dinner life-saver to sous vide frozen steak.
Since we moved to the ‘burbs and had a baby, it’s no longer easy or convenient to swing by the grocery store at a moments notice. Before we got into the habit of sous vide cooking frozen steak / beef, my husband and I would be falling asleep when one of us would pop up from bed and realize: we forgot to take out food to defrost for the next night.
Now I know better. I buy meat in bulk or order from an online meat delivery service, meal prep steak for sous vide cooking, then freeze it until the day we’re eating it.
What is the texture of sous vide steaks from frozen?
To me, and most sous vide enthusiasts, there’s no obvious difference in texture when sous viding frozen steak.
With an additional 60 minutes of cook time in the sous vide bath, the steak completely thaws and cooks to desired temp. The texture of frozen sous vide steak is just as tender and juicy as fresh steak.
The major difference in frozen vs fresh steak sous vide is that cooking from frozen is wayyyy more convenient.
My tips on seasoning sous vide steak
My preference is to season steak before freezing it.
This is key for busy days in my house. When I get an order of beef in the mail, or stock up at the store, I’ll take a moment to vacuum seal the steaks in individual bags with seasonings. At a minimum I’ll use salt and garlic.
No need for butter in the bag – most sous vide enthusiasts agree that the beef comes out tender enough cooking in it’s own juice and adding butter may actually just dilute the beef flavor.
How long does it take to sous vide frozen steak?
All you need to remember is to add 60 minutes on to the cook time.
Sous vide steak takes 45 minutes – 4 hours. So you could sous vide frozen steaks in as low as 1 hour 45 minutes.
Personally, I usually sous vide steaks around 2.5 hours, which more than covers the time needed when cooking steaks from frozen with the sous vide machine.
However, if you’re cooking a piece of beef that is thicker than 2-3″ – like a sous vide brisket – the defrost time will be much longer.
What’s the best temperature for sous vide frozen steak?
When cooking from frozen, use the same sous vide temperature that you prefer for fresh steak. So, for medium, program the sous vide bath to 140 degrees. The only difference is that the steak will cook for an additional 60 minutes.
Sous vide steak time and temperature chart
- Rare steak – sous vide at 120-128°F
- Medium rare steak – sous vide at 129-134°F
- Medium steak – sous vide at 135-144°F
- Medium well steak – sous vide at 145-155°F
- Well done steak – sous vide at 156-162°F
How do you sous vide steak medium rare from frozen?
The range you can cook steak in the sous vide bath at 129-134 for 2-4 hours. Usually I do about 2.5 hours at 134.
Any difference if you sous vide ribeye from frozen?
So many people seem confused whether or not ribeye takes longer to sous vide from frozen. Maybe the fact that there is a bone in the steak throws people off.
But actually, you sous vide frozen ribeye the same way you sous vide any frozen steak.
Turn a steak dinner into a surf and turf meal with my easy recipe for Sous Vide Lobster Tails.
What do you need to vacuum seal and sous vide beef from frozen?
My go-to equipment for when I sous vide frozen beef:
- Foodsaver 4400 vacuum sealer (see my popular Foodsaver 4400 video review)
- Vacuum sealing bags
- Anova precision cooker
- Sous vide bath container (this one comes with a lid)
- Aromatics – Fancy garlic peeler (I’m a huge fan of fresh garlic)
- Seasonings – garlic salt, BBQ salt, smoked sea salt
Learn what to buy and freeze from Costco to make meal prep a breeze.
Mail order steaks: should you thaw, season, then re-freeze them?
When you order steaks online and they’re shipped to your house, the steaks usually arrive frozen.
If that’s the case, I wouldn’t bother thawing them just to season and then freeze them again.
Instead, cut the frozen steaks out of their bags, season them as desired (use salt, pepper, or any other dry seasonings, plus add some fresh garlic or shallots if you have them on hand).
Then seal the steaks in vacuum sealed bags.
I like to write the date on the freezer bags, too.
Where can you order steak online?
There are just some periods in life when frozen food hacks are a must. Especially as a new parent, I’m feeling lots of frozen meals these days. This guide to making amazing pizza with frozen premade pizza crust is a go-to for busy nights, too.
Readers love these sous vide recipes
- Sous Vide T Bone Steak
- Sous Vide Wings
- Sous Vide Turkey Breast
- Sous Vide Pulled Pork
- Sous Vide Onions in Beer
- Sous Vide Cookbooks for Beginners
- Sous Vide Pork Chops
- Sous Vide Brussels Sprouts
- Sous Vide Beef Kebabs
- Sous Vide Shrimp Kebabs
- Sous Vide Lobster Tails
Tools to help with sous vide cooking
- A big sous vide bucket to hold the water “sous vide bath” that the food cooks inside.
- Vacuum sealer and bags or plastic gallon bags to cook food.
- A sous vide machine like the Anova, Joule, Instant Pot Slim
- A big sous vide bucket or stock pot to hold the water the food cooks in
- Egg bites and desserts need small mason jars to cook in and the kind that does *not* curve (like this particular mason jar) – is my favorite because it makes it easier for the egg bites to pop out.
- Metal tongs to remove food from the sous vide bath.
- Protect natural stone countertops from the heat of the water bath with a cutting board.
Casseroles and steak are a perfect combination.
See my potatoes gratin with pesto recipe — it’s easy, quick, and you can make it ahead!
Check out my sous vide cookbook on Amazon: The Home Chef’s Sous Vide Cookbook.
Get the recipe for sous vide whole chicken – it’s a beautiful dish.
It’s like farm-to-house service…
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How are your knives?
Get a quick sharpen (by mail!!) with Knife Aid. Maybe you heard of them – they were featured on Shark Tank. Use code SBG10 at checkout for 10% off sharpening services. See my documentary-style video on mail-in knife sharpening.
Share your cooked from frozen sous vide steak
If you’ve tried this recipe and made your own sous vide steak from frozen this way, don’t eat it it till it’s photographed– you need to share that beauty with the world!
Tag me @sipbitego on Instagram – I’d love to see your pic.
How to Sous Vide Frozen Steak Recipe (Sip Bite Go)
- 4 steaks any cut 1” to 2.5” thick
- 1 tsp garlic diced
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 2 tsp olive oil
- Season already frozen or fresh steaks with garlic, salt, and pepper. Seal steaks in a flat layer in vacuum seal bags. Freeze until it’s time to cook.
- To sous vide frozen steak, set sous vide machine to 130ºF for medium-rare or 140ºF for medium. Add 60 minutes to your desired cook time. Steaks sous vide between 45 minutes - 4 hours, so at a minimum, the cook time should be 1:45 hours. My go-to cook time is usually about 2.5 hours.
- Once sous vide bath is complete, remove steak from vacuum sealed bag and pat dry.
- Heat a large cast iron pan on the stove to medium-high with olive oil. When olive oil is shiny and hot, add steaks to the cast iron pan. Sear the flat sides of the steak for 30-90 seconds, until a brown crust forms on the outside. Sear the edges of the steak, then transfer to a cutting board and let steak cool for 10 minutes before slicing.
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