Find Your Perfect Doneness

If you have ever been to a steakhouse or an upscale restaurant and ordered a steak, you have been asked the classic question of “How would you like that cooked?” It may seem like a trivial question, but choosing the perfect doneness of your steak can make or break your perfect meal. Depending on the grade and cut of beef that you are eating, certain doneness levels may be more attractive, though you want to make sure that you feel completely comfortable with the overall doneness of your meal. If you’d like to see the difference for yourself on an exceptional cut of beef, come into Stanford’s today. Here are a few facts to get you started on finding the perfect doneness for your next steak.


Rare is the least done that most restaurants will serve, with an internal temperature of 120-130 °F. Although it is entirely safe to eat meat cooked at this internal temperature, some people find the overall look and texture of this cooking level to be a bit off-putting. Rare steak will be red throughout, with just a bit of a brown exterior. Rare beef will be extremely tender with a deep mineral taste. For those who truly love the taste of beef, rare can be a delicious, though adventurous, treat.

Medium Rare

Medium rare is the recommended cooking of steak, with an internal temperature of 130-135 °F. Medium-rare steak will be pink throughout with a small ring or browning where the heat source was in direct contact with the meat. This cooking of steak is considered one of the best combinations of crust to tenderness, providing deep a deep flavor and textural experience.


Medium steak has an internal cooking temperature of between 135-145 °F. Your steak will be pink in the middle with a much larger brown ring. As the steak continues to cook, the meat will firm up, creating more of a chewy texture. Medium steak will not be tough, as the meat has not firmed up past the point of tenderness, but it will have much more of a chewy texture than lighter cooking methods.

Medium Well

Medium-well steak has been cooked to an internal temperature between 145-155 °F and will have just a small sliver of pink in the middle surrounded by a large brown ring. At this point, the beef will have begun to really firm up, making the texture much more tough. If you enjoy tender steak, this cooking method will most likely not be for you. Medium-well steak will still provide a delicious and flavorful experience; it will just be a bit tougher.

Well Done

Well-done steaks are usually cooked to an internal over 155°F and will be completely brown and gray throughout. By the time your steak has reached this internal temperature, it will have fully toughened up and become a much tougher texture than a fine steak was intended to be eaten at. For those a bit squeamish about pink coloration in their meat, a well-done steak will be perfect for you.

Find your favorite cooking temperature with a delicious steak from Stanford’s today.