Rump steak is a cut of beef that comes from the hindquarter that covers the hip bone.
Most chefs, including myself, prefer cooking rib-eye, t-bone, NY strip, or fillet steak because they are more tender. Rump is packed with flavor; however, most people find this cut of meat tough and chewy.
Luckily you can make this cut of meat tender, juicy and delicious. Read along to learn more about how to cook rump steak. I’ll show you how to pick the best quality steak. I’ve also included a section about the steak doneness guide.
How To Cook Rump Steak In a Frying Pan
Rump steak is a delicious cut of meat. It’s better not to overseason it since it’s packed with flavor. For this cooking method, you’ll need only a few ingredients, most of which you’ll probably have in your kitchen.
Most people complain that the rump is a chewy cut of meat. It’s not as tender as a rib-eye or a fillet mignon. However, you can make it more tender by dry brining it.
Keep in mind to cook a rump steak in a pan, you’ll need to have a heavy-based frying pan. Most lightweight aluminum nonstick pans cannot withstand the high heat required for steak searing. You’ll need to preheat the pan to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and more to get a nice crust on the outside of the steak.
I’m using this HexClad 12 Inch Hybrid Stainless Steel Frying Pan. It has a thick bottom that can withstand high heat. It retains heat exceptionally well, which is essential when cooking a steak. It also distributes heat well so the meat browns evenly. This Hexclad is an excellent all-around investment for your kitchen.
However, searing steak on a cast-iron skillet is another excellent alternative if you’re on a budget. Cast iron both retains and distributes heat well.
- Frying pan;
- Cutting board;
- Probe thermometer;
- Paper towel;
- Sharp knife;
- Rump steak (grass-fed preferably);
- Fresh herbs (thyme and rosemary);
- Cooking oil (light olive oil, canola, or grapeseed);
- Kosher salt;
- Freshly ground pepper.
- Season. Take the steak out of the fridge for about an hour before cooking it, and season the meat with a generous amount of kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. Salt will help to tenderize the meat. You can do it even for up to 12 hours before cooking it. The brining method will tenderize meat even more so;
- Mise en place. Prepare everything you need in advance. Make sure the herbs are washed. Peel the garlic. Take butter out of the fridge. Have all the utensils you’ll need for cooking on a countertop. Since steak cooks fast, it’s crucial to have everything ready and within hand reach;
- Pat dry the steak. Using a paper towel, remove moisture from the outside of the steak. It’ll help to get a better crust;
- Preheat the pan. Place the frying pan over medium-high heat until it becomes scorching. Pour three to four tablespoons of cooking oil;
- Cook the steak. Gently place the rump steak in a frying pan and cook it to your liking. I’m cooking it until medium-rare. It’ll take two minutes on each side twice since the steak is an inch thick;
- Baste. Halfway through cooking the steak, add butter, herbs, and garlic. Use a tablespoon to baste the steak in hot butter;
- Check the doneness. Use a probe thermometer or your index finger to determine whether the steak is cooked to your liking;
- Rest. Take the steak out of the frying pan and leave it to rest at room temperature for around eight minutes. Resting will help to reduce the amount of flavorful juices that you lose when cutting into the meat. The longer you’ll leave the steak to rest, the more juices it’ll retain, resulting in more tender and flavorsome meat.
Note: Since rump steak has a chewy texture, you can use steak marinade to tenderize the meat and infuse it with different flavors.
Steak Doneness Guide
- Rare steak: 125° F;
- Medium rare: 135° F;
- Medium: 145° F;
- Medium well: 150° F;
- Well done: 160° F.
The steak’s internal temperature continues to rise for another few minutes after taking the steak out of the frying pan. If you want to get a nice medium steak, take it out when the internal temperature reaches 140° F.
To get the most accurate internal temperature of the steak, you can use a probe thermometer. However, it’s not ideal since sticking a thermometer into the meat will lose some of the juices.
Another method often used by chefs is the “finger test” method. With a finger test approach, you’ll learn when the steak is cooked to your liking by simply touching the thickest part of the steak.
How To Buy a Good Rump Steak
One of the primary factors affecting the quality of rump steak is the diet of the cattle from which it is sourced. The two main dietary categories are grass-fed and grain-fed. Grass-fed cattle are raised on a diet primarily consisting of grass and forage, while grain-fed cattle are given a diet rich in grains, such as corn and soy.
Grass-fed beef is generally leaner. Some consumers also prefer the taste of grass-fed beef, describing it as more “natural” or “earthy.” On the other hand, grain-fed beef often has a higher fat content, resulting in a more marbled appearance and a richer, more buttery flavor. Ultimately, the choice between grass-fed and grain-fed rump steak comes down to personal preference.
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) grading system is a reliable indicator of beef quality. The USDA grades beef based on factors such as marbling, firmness, and color, with the highest grades being Prime, followed by Choice and Select.
Rump steak with a USDA grade of Prime will typically have the most marbling, resulting in a tender and flavorful cut. Choice and Select rump steaks will have less marbling but can still provide a satisfying eating experience. When shopping for rump steak, consider the USDA grade as an indicator of quality, and choose the grade that best meets your preferences and budget.
The color of rump steak can provide valuable information about its freshness and quality. Fresh rump steak should have a bright red color, indicating it has been properly oxygenated. Over time, exposure to oxygen may cause the color of the steak to darken, which is not necessarily an indication of spoilage, but rather a natural progression. However, if the color appears gray or brown, it may be a sign that the meat is no longer fresh.
The smell of rump steak is another important factor to consider when evaluating its quality. Fresh rump steak should have a mild, slightly sweet aroma. Any off-odors, such as a sour or rancid smell, may indicate spoilage or bacterial growth, and such steaks should be avoided.
I have a detailed guide explaining the nuances of picking good steak. Read it to learn more.
How long does it take to fry a rump steak?
To cook rump steak to rare takes around 4 mins. To medium-rare around 5-6 mins. To medium takes around 7-8 mins. To medium-well takes about 9-10 mins. To be well done takes about 11 mins.u003cbru003e
How do you tenderize rump steak before cooking?
The best way to tenderize rump steak is by using dry brine. Season the steak with a generous amount of kosher salt and leave it to rest for an hour to twelve hours. The salt will help break some of the proteins leaving the meat tender.
Why is my rump steak tough and chewy?
Rump steak is tough and chewy if you do not leave it to rest at room temperature before and after cooking. It can also be chewy if it isn’t dry brine, which helps to tenderize the meat.
Is rump steak tough or tender?
Rump steak is considered a tough cut of beef compared to sirloin, rib-eye, or fillet.