Ribeye at 133 for 1hr or 130 for 2-2.5 hrs?

I’m loving my anova and I’ve had solid results with NY strip, but so far not much with ribeye. My last cook was at 130* for 1 hour and I wasn’t too happy with the results (particularly the fat). Here’s how it turned out. I’m still working on my searing skills so that could be a a factor as well. Kenjis food lab has a ribeye sous vide recipe and it says 133 for 1 hr but I’m debating trying 133 for 2-2.5 hours. The texture of the meat is the same under 4 hours but maybe the extra time would break down fat and connective tissue. Whats your method to making the perfect ribeye?

It depends on the thickness of your meat as too how long. I myself cook at at 135F for 1 hour (as I like mine more med) and then drop the temp down to 127F (as my husband likes it more rare) and cook for at least 3 more hours. Most Rib Eyes are thick and fatty so the longer you cook the more the connective tissue and fat break down. For unseen reasons we had to leave in for about 40 hours. It was so good. could cut with a fork. I do not recommend this for pork or off the bone chicken. I have cooked on the bone chicken breasts for about 8 hours and they were oh sooo good.

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Ah yes I forgot to include that. It is 2" thick!

Wow 40 hours. Now that’s a well engineered machine.

I also forgot to say I usually use a rub on my meat instead of a marinade because its easier to seal in the food saver being more dry and the juices from the meat mixed with the rub make a great marinade.
And yes the Anova is an excellent machine. Mine is set up all the time on a little table in my dinning room. There is a container and lid that is perfect for the Anova and I use distilled water so gunk doesn’t build up in my unit. Now I just pull meat from my freezer and drop in the water when I needed. Love this machine.

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Sous vide temps aren’t going to make much of an impact on rendering fat. You might do well to sear before and after sous vide.

Grrr I’ve read so many conflicting responses. Well, what can you expect in something like cooking!

The biggest reason why you’ll get different responses is because everyone likes different results.

Medium rare steak 130F/54.4C for 2-6 hours

Time will vary according to thickness, cut, age of beast and required texture of result.

Beef fat will start to render at 130F however, much like the collagen to gelatin process for tenderness, it is a process which proceeds slowly at these temperatures. Higher temperatures will render more fat from the matrix more quickly.

Ribeye steak is naturally tender being from a low working muscle group (relatively speaking). As such it contains very little collagen than needs converting to gelatin to make it suitably tender for enjoyment. If you’re looking to cook it for fat rendering at 130F you will likely need to cook it for longer than is required for enjoyment of the meat.

So, you need to decide which is more important, the texture and moutfeel of the meat or the rendering of the fat.

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In my opinion, I think your photo demonstrates a perfectly done medium rare steak, exactly how I like it! I sous vide this cut often, at 129 degrees x 1 hour, then sear quickly on our gas bbq. Perfect every time, for us anyway. I have gone over the hour before when I wasn’t paying attention but the extra 10-15 min didn’t seem to affect the end result we always look for with rib eye; still juicy and med. rare, and we cut a lot of the fat off so that isn’t an issue for us. The fat is for the overall flavoring of ribeyes anyway. Have fun with your Anova, and keep notes! Kenji’s concise and thorough sous vide articles are always so helpful. I love the science of it all. Good luck!

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Drax, if your are concerned about so many responses consider re-reading Kenji’s epistle on steak to get a better understanding of the cooking process, particularly his timing ranges and comments for steps of doneness.

A one-hour cook barely diffuses heat throughout your 2-inch steak and can’t achieve your desired results.

The perfect rib eye is an elusive creature because of perfection’s substantial subjectivity. Better for your to decide for yourself how to achieve it. Your 133F at 2 1/2 hours might be it. If not, try 4 hours.

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Thanks for the reply Chatnoir. Could you link me the article? I’m particularly interested in the part about heat diffusion

This is how my strips come out! Just not thrilled with the consistency of the meat. Kenji is the best! I highly recommend his food lab book. It’s a little pricey but it is about 2 inches thick and 900 pages long

Drax, the Serious Eats site contains a lot of the information in Kenji’s book. The 133F x 1 hour didn’t strike me as being particularly Kenjish. The purpose of my reply was to encourage your thinking about what’s happening to your food as it cooks. That’s all.

Baldwin provides the basics of heat penetration with references on the mathematics of SV cooking. It’s as good a place to start as any. One detail to keep in mind is that there are substantial differences in meat depending on breed, age, cut, living conditions, aging, etc. You might want to start by learning the feel of raw meat as a guide to your cooking decisions. Competent cooking is a challenging journey and you’re off to a great start with Kenji.

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Thanks chatnoir! I was short on time yesterday so I tried 133* for 90 minutes and it was substantially better than my previous ribeyes. In addition I used lumpwood charcoal for the first time so that helped as well. I will definitely check out those resources

This is how I do it. Steaks 1 1/2 inch thick (about 16 oz each). Thawed or fresh from the butcher. Sous vide for 2 hours and 30 minutes at 135° F for Medium Rare steaks. 2 hours for Rare (my steak). Steaks removed from bags, seasoned, rebagged in new vacuum seal bag and returned to the fridge for the time it takes to get other things done/ready, say 15 minutes. Finished off in the cast iron over high heat with butter and garlic, salt and pepper, or on the grill, very hot to sear. Cook’s choice. Using this method I have had perfect, repeatable, results.

Time doe not impact doneness… Temperature does. Your 2 hour steak at 135F is no more rare or less done than your ‘medium’ steak at 135F for 2.5 Hours.

Hi @draxula16,

Lumpwood charcoal is an excellent way to go! I’ve purchased Mesquite lump charcoal in 50 lb (about 23 Kg) bags for years now. It burns hot, lasts long, leaves very little ash, and imparts wonderful flavor. It’s an order of magnitude better than charcoal briquettes. :slight_smile: