How to Make Perfect Steak Tartare at Home
This is a really easy and classic Steak Tartare recipe that you can safely make at home if you follow these steps! Stop over-paying for it!
How to Make Perfect Steak Tartare at HomeJump to Recipe
Public service announcement: Steak tartare is delicious.
If you are a carnivore and love good, fresh flavors, this homemade Steak Tartare (or Beef Tartare) is something that is doable at home.
A lot of people I talked to while I was testing this post though were skeptical that it could be safely made at home. This was sort of baffling to me. In other words, many people are perfectly fine with someone they do not know (restaurant line cook) preparing raw meat for them to eat, but shudder at the idea of making it at home… when you can control everything.
But, let’s get this out of the way first and foremost: It can go very wrong. Don’t try this unless you’re willing to do it right. Don’t take shortcuts. As this very disgusting Buzzfeed roundup suggests, steak tartare can go very wrong at home.
But I disagree with that article that it should just be left to the professionals. At the end of the day, it’s humble fare that anyone should be able to make. You don’t even need a pan or a stove, after all!
So, let’s dig in and figure this out so you can have the confidence to make steak tartare at home.
Simple, Perfect Steak Tartare
- 4 ounces fresh lean beef steak I like Sirloin
- 1 tablespoon olive oil to taste
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar to taste
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt + extra
- ½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- Fresh egg yolk
- Minced shallot
- Pickled vegetables
- Start with a very good lean steak. Ask your butcher for a fresh steak and tell him you intend to eat it raw.
- Rinse steak and dry it off well. Salt liberally on all sides. Cover and let sit in the fridge for an hour or two. Don’t let it sit for longer than a few hours or it will start to cure. Rinse the steak off and dry it again.
- Trim off any large tendons or pieces of fat. If you start with a lean steak, you shouldn’t need to trim off much. Then portion out about 4 ounces. You can eyeball it.
- Mince the steak finely (or to a texture you like). Take your time here.
- Add the steak to a bowl and stir vigorously with oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper. Taste a bit of it and adjust the seasoning to your liking. I like a little more vinegar and salt in mine.
- Keep the mixture chilled until you’re ready to eat. Prepare your plate with toast, egg yolk (lightly poached if you want), pickled veg, capers, and minced shallot.
- Press the tartare into a mold on the plate so it holds its shape and make a small well in the center. Slide in the egg yolk.
- Enjoy immediately!
Did you make this?
Snap a photo and tag @macheesmo so I can see your work.
How to Make Steak Tartare
Quick Warning: If you’re pregnant or if you have a weakened immune system for some reason, you probably want to avoid eating raw meat. At a minimum, check with your doctor before diving in!
- Not into raw steak? Try out these Steak Tostada Bites for an appetizer!
Preparing the Steak
Obviously people are concerned about safety when eating raw meat, but the first and easiest way to make sure your meat is safe to eat raw is to buy a fresh, whole piece of meat. Lean meat is best so you have less trimming to do later.
Steak Tartare Guide Point 1: Do not, under any circumstances, use ground beef unless you grind it yourself from a whole piece of meat!
Ground beef always needs to be cooked because it contains beef and trimmings from many different cows. In other words, it’s more dangerous. Also, it’s gross and has the wrong texture for beef tartare.
Steak Tartare Guide Point 2: Talk to your butcher! Tell them you are planning to eat the steak as a tartare and you want the freshest cut they have.
For my money, a nice grass fed sirloin steak is about as good as it gets for tartare. It’s a lean cut so you won’t have much to trim off and it’s really flavorful.
Remember that about 4 ounces is a really good portion of tartare so a steak this size will make 2-3 portions easily.
Salting the Steak
It’s important to buy whole pieces of meat because you don’t have to worry about bacteria on the inside of the steak. While you could trim off all the outer pieces and be totally safe, that’s a lot of work and you would lose a lot of beef in the process.
Here’s how to deal with any bacteria that might be on the exterior:
- Wash your hands and rinse the steak under cold water. Dry it off well.
- Salt the steak liberally on all sides. You want a nice even layer of salt. You could do more than I did below. I’m not sure that you can overdo it actually as long as you don’t leave it on too long. Salt is a natural bacteria killer.
3. Cover the steak and let it sit in the fridge for about an hour, but not longer than a few hours. You don’t want the steak to cure!
4. Rinse the steak a second time and dry it off well.
Your steak is now good to go and ready for tartare!
Making the Tartar
The first step here is to trim off any large tendons or pieces of fat. Assuming you buy a good lean cut of meat, there shouldn’t be much to trim.
Then you have a few options. You could grind this, but personally I like to dice it by hand with a sharp knife. You can get a very exact texture this way. I usually cube the beef as finely as I can and then run my knife through it a bunch of times to mince it up.
This was my finished minced tartare.
Seasoning the Tartare
Even the best beef will taste a bit bland at this point. It needs a lot of seasoning including some fat and salt and pepper.
Some recipes call for folding in capers and shallots and stuff, but I like to serve that stuff separately. What I do like to do is simply dress the tartare with a basic vinaigrette. I just use good olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper. I start with about a tablespoon of oil and vinegar and big pinches of salt and pepper.
Most importantly, after you stir these in, taste it! Adjust the seasoning to your liking. It should be delicious at this point.
Tartare is very lean and it needs a big dose of fat to smooth it out. Enter the egg yolk. I don’t trust a steak tartare unless it comes with a nice egg yolk.
To be honest, you can just separate an egg yolk and plop it on top, but I like to take a small extra step and very quickly poach just the yolk. This makes a little balloon that’s easier to handle.
I separate the yolk and then dunk it in steaming water (gently) for 15 seconds. Done.
Plating the Steak Tartare
You can just pile the tartare up honestly (or serve it in a small bowl), but if you want to get fancy, use a cookie cutter as a mold!
Then pile the plate with minced shallot, capers, pickled veggies, and toasts.
Add the egg as the final touch, plus maybe an extra drizzle of olive oil and pinch of salt.
Steak Tartare is a classy dish, no doubt, but one that you can definitely make at home. Buy good, fresh meat, treat it well, and enjoy.
Have questions or suggestions? Ask away in the comments!
Here are a few other great steak recipes!
- Sous Vide Flank Steak
- Chili Rubbed Steak
- Sirloin Noodle Bowls
- Pan Seared Ribeye from Kitchen Swagger
93 Responses to “How to Make Perfect Steak Tartare at Home” Leave a comment
one word. YUM!
The adds make impossible to follow any recipe as they cover the instructions. So annoying. Reloading or deleting the cookies didn’t fix that.
This recipe was amazing!!! It was my first time trying and thank you so much for this recipe! It made my night since the restaurant down the street from us had closed and I haven’t had beef tartare in a while! As long as you follow the instructions anyone can make this!
WHAT CAN I SUBSTITUE FOR EGG YOLK
You can leave it out. It’s fine without.
Normally I love steak tartare but my pregnant self shouldn’t have opened this link first thing in the morning!
Great reminder September! If you’re pregnant (or have a weakened immune system) you probably want to avoid or ask your doc. I’m gonna update the post to say that also. Thanks!
Another option is a very low and slow sous vide preparation to pasteurize but not cook the beef and yolk.
I grew up in Denmark and steak tartare is still one of my favorites though I haven’t dared eat it here in the US. However, you might just have taken my fear away, Nick. One thing we do add to ours is shredded horseradish and it is usually served on dark rye bread (you know the German kind).
I love that twist on it Marianne. Thanks for the idea!
Why won’t you eat it here in the U.S.?
Beef fromthe USA has been banned in Europe due to fear of Mad Cow, as well as the fact that we treat our cows with hormones to make them grow bigger. It seems there’s a general distrust of U.S. beef overseas.
EU beef is banned from the United States for mad cow as well. I doubt it has much to do with trust.
Hi Christopher. Watch Food Inc. on Netflix or The World According to Monsanto on YouTube.
You seem surprised that US beef is banned in the EU. Are you really surprised? Why on earth would you want to stuff your cattle with hormones? Let them eat grass and grow naturally. They don’t need to be body builders!! Your beef is the equivalent of Monsanto genetically engineered seed. That is also banned in the EU and long may that last.
By all means feed your cattle GM food but don’t expect us Europeans to eat either your beef or your GM crops.
We neither need nor want them.
There are plenty of options for beef in the United States. We can buy cheap beef to free range grass fed bison to Kobe beef. Not having EU beef isn’t really an issue. The US is forth per capita in world beef consumption. We’re doing just fine without your buisness.
Dumpster alert. ( Christopher that is)I live in the divided states and refuse to eat red meat unless it is organic, grass fed, and humanely raised. Sadly, it’s quite expensive. But we get by. If it wasn’t so expensive to move to Europe, I’d be there long ago.
I certainly hope you get your wish.
Poor Christopher is a product of the failing education system we have in the US. We should quadruple the education budget so we can be an informed intelligent nation. T
Cute, at least I don’t need to act like a political douche on a site about food. Anytime you want to compare intelligence or paychecks I would be happy to embarrass you.
The bans from both US and Europe on beef are motivated by protection of farmers from competition. Mad cow and GMO concerns are an excuse.
I’m not sure if it has changed now, I certainly hope it has, but one of the reasons it was banned in the UK was that brain stem and brains was added into the cattle feed. That was outlawed here after the scare. There was a lot of anger from the States as they thought it affected them unfairly and we should just be fine with it.
I don’t know if these practices still go on in America, but I’d certainly hope not.
BSE was high risk in Europe and very low in North America. Feeding animal based feed to cows was common in Europe and rare to non-existent in North America. Soy & corn based feed are so much lower in cost than animal byproducts there was never an incentive to feed animal based byproducts to animals. There is now and has been a ban on SRM (Specified Risk Material) from cows being used as feed for animals. It must be disposed of.
Our beef supply is safe.
Tony has the right of things here. Mad Cow was a concern at one point, but is just an excuse for protectionism now, and “GMO” has and always will be just ignorant nonsense.
Also this recipe looks delicious!
I would probably only eat it if I made it, just like I will only eat a medium rare burger if I ground the meat myself in sterile conditions. (The conditions being sterile….not myself :) ) We had it made with beef tenderloin and it was almost too tender so I like your choice of cut.
Thanks Chris! Yea… I thought about using tenderloin actually but Chef Ruhlman recommended a sirloin cut and it worked really well (and is a bit cheaper).
I made this exactly as written save for the beef type… tenderloin was practically being given away so I went with that. I plan on trying with sirloin in the next few weeks. Absolutely perfect… thanks so much for sharing.
Is it served cold or warm?? Usually
Cold or chilled. Serving it warm would actually be dangerous as you would have to let it sit out to come to room temp.
I like to add a little a bit of Cognac and flambe it just for a few seconds before eating adds some flavor and makes your guests go wow.
Do you cook the meat
No. Tartare is raw. It’s important to read the guidelines on selecting meat for it!
Thankyou for your reply I will really read this but I’m not sure if I will like it if I need advice can I get back to
Looking forward to making this week as it is an all time favorite. We do eat it quite a bit during our annual holiday in the south of France. Have eaten here in NYC many times at various French Restaraunts. Would love to be able to pull this off at home. Thanks for the clear and very detailed recipe and explanation. Will let you know how I make out.
Ok I’m going to give it a go
Have you ever started with ground beef? Say, lean ground grass fed organic?
Sorry, disregard – I was speed-reading and missed that point. “do not!” (it appears that I have egg on my face…)
Ha. No worries! But yea… I wouldn’t risk it unless you are very sure of the source (like know the butcher and where they got the cuts from). Most ground beef… even grass fed organic, is a mix of a bunch of different cuts from many different cows so tough to say!
we had this al the time when I was a child (standard sunday night supper), my mother also made a delicious pasta with tiny raw beef meat balls made from scraped beef that were warmed by the hot buttered pasta-so good!
In some european countries you will be asked if you want the toast dry or pan fried in oil. I prefer dry. However it is always served with garlic cloves to rub the toast with.
Just made some and ate a whole bunch before reading the sanitation steps ooops tastes great though I used salt pepper pimento nigella seeds and some smoked paprika and home made sour kraut
Ha! You will probably be okay. :) Glad you liked it!
Does it matter what egg you use for steak tartar? I’m not put off with eating raw beef, I actually love it. But I’m a bit vary on eating raw eggs, and I’m not even sure why. Would any eggs be fine?
You could leave it out or give it a drizzle of really good olive oil. It just helps to have some fat to mix in!
Here in Europe the law is to freeze the meat – 18 C for a few hours to make it safe – same as fish for Sushi – defrost it in the fridge and cut it just before asembling to eat. I am lucky to obtain eggs layed the same day, corn fed and truly free range from a neighbor. How lucky can one get? Today for lunch its steak rartar – oh, I always put a few drops of the oil of canned anchovies, it give a slightly tangy, great flavor!
Is it inappropriate to leave a little white on the yolk and poach in boiling water to make a little white balloon instead of a yellow one?
Perfect recipe! I am so tired of over-seasoned and over-ketchup-ed tartares here in Switzerland. Made this today including your 15 sec yolk – for myseld as my 7 yo wasnt hungry – she ate it all but I managed to snatch a taster :)
So glad you liked it Masha! Thanks for the comment!
Honest fair …….
Of course you really meant “Honest FAYRE ……” didn’t you?
At least I hope that you did!!
Ha! Actually I meant FARE, but FAYRE works too! Thanks Alec!
Usually FARE refers to the money that you pay for a bus ride or train ride.
The word FAYRE, although olde English, is usually used to describe food.
Easy to differentiate then wouldn’t you agree?
But then our US cousins don’t seem to be able to spell quite a few words correctly eg THEATRE, COLOUR etc etc so maybe we’ll have to agree to disagree LOL.
Cambridge tells me that’s the old-fashioned spelling… http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/fayre
And yes… we are terrible at spelling! It’s known! Ha!
OMG. With all the misspellings online these days.
Get a Life, please.
Someone using Bus Fare to go to a restaurant with Italian Fare
I forgot to say – Nice article BTW !
I ate raw beef bibimbop in Korea. It was on a side street in a small town. I had eaten most of it before I asked what it was. I was fine and it was amazing. I think people get much to worried about these things.
You probably mean; Yuk Kwe
Yes Chris is right. In Korea Yuk Hwe(notKwe) is served on top of bibimbob mix if desired. Yuk Hwe is Korean style of beef tartare and is very popular in Korea as in European countries. Chong
Oh this is fabulous and se easy to do once you take the plunge. We came looking for this recipe as recently in Poland we saw that beer tartare was a snack to each with your beer! We weren’t brave enough to try it in a dive bar there, but we loved this! thanks for the recipe!
I have mostly used deer ,elk ,moose , antelope that I shot and butchered myself. Have always used the ground meat
That was my supper just now.I hand chopped it, but tell me, what about using a food processor????? Important part is the bread. Americans really are not BREAD-MAKERS. Lucky for me I discovered several supermarkets that import European breads. I have a fit when they run out.
Germans do not toast their slices, but we butter them generously, so does my ex-husbands families.
There was one comment above, that suggested FREEZING the chunk of meat first. That – to me – sounds like a healthy idea.
To all of you Epicureans: GUTEN APPETIT !!!!
Thanks Rotraud. Agree. Good bread is important and not easy to find state side. ;)
SORRY …. I just fired an e-mail off to you —– WRONG e-mail address….. Fingers too fast.
It is [email protected]
I’ve been a bad person. I’ve pinched off pieces of raw burger right from the store most of my life and popped it right in my mouth. Can’t stay out of it…love it. No ill effects yet and I’m 80.
HAHA this makes me laugh as my Mom always did as well…still does. She is 78!! xo
about 2o years ago, the butcher in the local market got tongue cancer from doing that; probably a lot more often that you do. His family was told that the product he put on the meat to keep its fresh looking red color is a carcinogen. I grind my own mead now.
I do that too. I love it with a little salt. Ill be 75 on Wednesday. I eat raw eggs in homemade egg nog, raw salmon for sashimi, rare steak, street food in Korea and all food in U.S. I’m good. I prefer European food.
I would love to serve this at a small party , but I’m not sure the raw egg would look to appetizing after a few guests dug in. Could I make a freash aioli in stead of an egg to provide the same fat. Maybe a spiced aioli?
I think that’s a great idea Kevin! Good luck!
I’m so glad I found this ! For years I wanted to try ST but had never been anywhere where it was served until 2014 on a trip to Italy. It was everything I had expected it would be and more. I attribute my love of very rare and raw meat to my mother who, before any of us had ever seen or heard warnings about eating raw ground beef, used to salt & pepper little meatballs of ground beef and we “pop” em when no one was looking ;) It seemed to me that the tartare I enjoyed had a somewhat drier texture, as if it might have been dry aged but I’m guessing, I didn’t bother to ask. You used sirloin, I was thinking tenderloin but would this be overkill? The price you pay for a cut doesn’t necessarily always translate to better flavor so I’d like your opinion. I really appreciate the poached yolk approach, nice little insurance policy.
Hey John! I think it’s worth experimenting with different cuts if you get into making it at home. Ultimately if you buy quality meat and treat it correctly, there’s very little risk. Whatever cut you prefer will probably be great as a tartar! I’d say go for it and good luck!
Nothing more delicious! I like it with rye bread “Schwartz brot” ,the beer is a must! I have been enjoying tartare for 50 plus years with no problem.
When I was a kid and we’d spend summers with my mom’s family in Germany, I had an aunt who made this for me regularly and I LOVED it. I actually would eat so much I was embarrassed that other family members would think I was a glutton. I hadn’t had it again until last year when we visited Washington DC. We live in a rural area in the midwest and it’s not on our local restaurant menus so I started researching if I could make it myself and came upon your recipe. I’m scared to make it myself bc it just seems too good to be true, but I’m going to try it! I’m making my husband and myself a fancy menu for our just-the-two-of-us Oscars party tomorrow night, and steak tartare is on the list. Hopefully I do it up right :) Thank you for your recipe!!
I did it! And it was fantastic! I did add some capers and minced fresh parsley to the beef, because I like those. I wish I could share my photo, LOL :)
So glad you liked it Christina! You can always add a photo on instagram or something and add #macheesmo and I’ll see it and can share it. :)
I reeaaaally want to try this at home, but everything I read that teaches you how says to get the “freshest beef possible” without really specifying what that means. I don’t have a butcher in driving distance that sells to the public, but I have a Fresh Market grocery store with nicer-than-Kroger quality meat and fish for cooking. Is that fresh enough?
That sure is annoying Adan. I’m not sure why that is happening and I reach out to my ad team about it. Thanks for letting me know!
After you salt, it says to cover it…. with?( aluminum foil?). And put in the fridge.
ANything will work. I used plastic wrap but the goal is to keep air out as much as possible! Good luck!
Hey doing my first go at steak tartare! Loving this info. Question: Do you recommend preparing the tartare right before you eat it or is there a version where it is minced, seasoned, etc. and left in the refrigerator until the next day or two days so you can have it ready for breakfast? Thanks!
Thank you for this fabulous beef tartare recipe, earlier it was turning in brown color after few hours. But after following your recipe it’s amazing.
So glad it worked for you Maneesh. Salt is the key. :)
How far in advance can you mix it all up? I’m serving this at a dinner party and would love to get it prepared in the morning and then refrigerate until dinner time.
Tried this with raw chicken breasts but it didn’t work out too well and I spent a few days in bed poorly.
In Australia we don’t add any hormones because it is illegal here!
All meat was very affordable before Australia joined the world free trade market. The same problem exists in all countries that adhere to free trade. The resellers benefit massively from this legislation & the citizens pay for this. I have no problem with free trade but the citizens should be catered for & not penalized due to offshore pricing structures. The people should be looked after first! This would probably only be a very small percentage in a country like Australia. I am not a socialist but believe that a nation should consider it’s people first!
Y’all cannot be serious… y’all are serious omg
I add mustard, worcestershire sauce and capers. Oh la la!
CANNOTT USE RAW EGG , WHAT CAN I USE INSTEAD?
Thanks for the tip about a quick poach on the egg. I made this for a private catering and they loved it.
thanks for sharing this…for free! You should patent this. I cannot wait to prepare (which is always fun) and enjoy this
Was great making this recipe thanks for it made for 50 workers at our graveyard shift. Half of them went home that morning and made it. It’s a nightly snack for us now with 15 people makeing it once week different ways. Thanks Denver Colorado fans!!!