How To Make Steak Tender In Air Fryer

Welcome to our ultimate guide on how to make the most tender and flavorful steak using an air fryer! If you’re a steak lover, you know that achieving the perfect level of tenderness can be a challenge. But fear not, because with the help of your trusty air fryer, you can achieve restaurant-quality results right at home.

When it comes to cooking steak, the air fryer is a game changer. Its hot circulating air helps to cook the steak evenly, while also giving it a delicious crispy exterior. The best part? It takes just a fraction of the time compared to traditional cooking methods, making it perfect for those busy weeknights when you’re craving a juicy steak.

So, how do you make your steak tender in an air fryer? The key lies in the preparation. We’ll walk you through the steps of marinating your steak, choosing the right cuts, seasoning it to perfection, and cooking it to your desired level of doneness. Whether you prefer a well-done steak or a juicy medium-rare, we’ve got you covered.

Get ready to impress your family and friends with your newfound steak-cooking skills. With our step-by-step instructions and tips, you’ll soon be enjoying tender, succulent steak straight from your air fryer. Let’s get started!

How to Make Tender Steak in Air Fryer

Air fryers have become increasingly popular for their ability to cook food quickly and with less oil than traditional frying methods. One dish that you might not think to make in an air fryer is steak, but it can actually be a great way to cook a tender and delicious steak.

Choosing the Right Cut

When it comes to cooking steak in an air fryer, the right cut of meat is essential. Look for cuts that are tender and well-marbled, such as ribeye, sirloin, or T-bone. These cuts will have enough fat to keep the steak juicy and flavorful during cooking.

Preparing the Steak

Before cooking the steak, it’s important to properly season it. Sprinkle both sides of the steak with salt, pepper, and any other desired seasonings, such as garlic powder or rosemary. Let the steak sit at room temperature for about 20 minutes to allow the seasonings to penetrate the meat.

Preheating the air fryer is also important for achieving the best results. Set the air fryer to 400°F (200°C) and allow it to preheat for about 5 minutes before adding the steak.

Cooking the Steak

Once the air fryer is preheated, place the steak in the basket in a single layer. Cook the steak for about 4-6 minutes per side, depending on the thickness of the steak and desired level of doneness. For a medium-rare steak, aim for an internal temperature of about 135°F (57°C), while a medium steak will have an internal temperature of around 145°F (63°C).

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Remember to flip the steak halfway through cooking to ensure even browning on both sides. If you prefer a more well-done steak, you can cook it for a few minutes longer on each side.

Resting and Serving

Once the steak is cooked to your desired doneness, remove it from the air fryer and let it rest for a few minutes before slicing. This allows the juices to redistribute within the meat and ensures a tender and juicy steak.

Serve the steak as is or with your favorite side dishes, such as roasted vegetables or a baked potato. Enjoy your tender and delicious air fryer steak!

Tip: Experiment with different seasonings and marinades to add additional flavor to your steak.

Choosing the Right Cut

When it comes to making tender steak in an air fryer, selecting the right cut of meat is crucial. The cut of steak you choose will greatly impact the final texture and tenderness of the dish.

Here are a few cuts of steak that are well-suited for cooking in an air fryer:

  • Ribeye: Known for its marbling and rich flavor, ribeye steak is a popular choice for air frying. The high fat content helps keep the steak tender and juicy.
  • Sirloin: Sirloin steak is a leaner option compared to ribeye, but it still offers great flavor. It’s important not to overcook sirloin as it can become tough.
  • Tenderloin: Also known as filet mignon, tenderloin is one of the most tender cuts of steak. It has minimal fat and is perfect for those who prefer a leaner option.
  • New York strip: New York strip steak is known for its excellent balance of tenderness and flavor. It’s a versatile cut that works well in the air fryer.

When choosing a steak, opt for cuts that are around 1-1.5 inches thick. Thicker cuts tend to yield juicier results in the air fryer. Additionally, look for steaks with a bright red color and minimal surface blemishes.

Keep in mind that different cuts of steak may require different cooking times and temperatures in the air fryer, so be sure to adjust accordingly.

Marinating for Maximum Tenderness

Marinating steak before air frying is a simple yet effective way to enhance tenderness. The acidic ingredients in a marinade help break down the tough muscle fibers, resulting in a more tender steak.

To marinate your steak, start by choosing a marinade that suits your taste preferences. You can opt for a classic combination of olive oil, garlic, and herbs, or try a marinade with soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, or balsamic vinegar for added flavor.

Next, place your steak in a zip-top bag and pour the marinade over it. Make sure the steak is fully coated in the marinade, then seal the bag and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or up to 24 hours. The longer you marinate, the more tender and flavorful your steak will be.

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When you’re ready to cook your steak, remove it from the marinade and pat it dry with paper towels. Discard the marinade as it may contain raw juices from the steak.

By marinating your steak before air frying, you’ll ensure that each bite is juicy, tender, and bursting with flavor. So don’t skip this important step when preparing your steak in the air fryer!

Air Frying for Perfect Texture

Air frying is a fantastic method for achieving a perfectly tender texture in your steak. The circulating hot air in the air fryer cooks the steak quickly and evenly, ensuring that it retains its juices and stays tender.

Here are some tips to help you achieve the perfect texture when air frying steak:

  1. Choose the right cut: Opt for cuts that are known for their tenderness, such as ribeye, filet mignon, or striploin. These cuts have a good amount of marbling, which helps to keep the steak moist and tender.
  2. Preheat the air fryer: Preheating the air fryer before cooking your steak helps to ensure that the heat is distributed evenly. This will help to prevent any unwanted hot or cold spots, which can affect the texture of the steak.
  3. Season properly: Season your steak with your favorite seasonings, such as salt, pepper, and garlic powder. This will not only add flavor but also help to enhance the texture of the meat.
  4. Avoid overcrowding: To ensure that your steak cooks evenly, avoid overcrowding the air fryer basket. Leaving enough space between the steaks allows the air to circulate freely, resulting in a more tender texture.
  5. Use a meat thermometer: To achieve the desired level of doneness and avoid overcooking, use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of the steak. For medium-rare, aim for an internal temperature of 135°F (57°C).
  6. Rest before serving: After air frying your steak, allow it to rest for a few minutes before serving. This allows the juices to redistribute throughout the meat, resulting in a juicier and more tender steak.

By following these tips, you can achieve a perfectly tender and juicy steak using your air fryer. Experiment with different cuts and seasonings to find your favorite combination for a delicious and satisfying meal every time.

Resting and Serving the Steak

After cooking, it’s important to allow the steak to rest for a few minutes before serving. This resting period helps the juices redistribute throughout the meat, resulting in a more flavorful and tender steak.

Remove the steak from the air fryer and transfer it to a cutting board. Cover the steak loosely with aluminum foil and let it rest for about 5 minutes. This will also help the steak retain its moisture.

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Once the steak has rested, you can proceed to slice it. Use a sharp knife and cut the steak against the grain for maximum tenderness. Cutting against the grain helps to break up the muscle fibers, resulting in a more tender bite.

Serve the steak immediately while it’s still warm. Pair it with your favorite sides, such as roasted vegetables, mashed potatoes, or a fresh salad. You can also drizzle some steak sauce or butter on top for added flavor.

Storage and Reheating

If you have leftovers, allow the steak to cool completely before storing it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Properly stored, the steak should stay fresh for up to 3-4 days.

To reheat the steak, preheat your air fryer to 350°F (175°C). Place the steak in the air fryer and heat for about 3-5 minutes, or until warmed through. Remember to check the internal temperature to ensure it reaches a safe temperature of 145°F (63°C).


What is an air fryer?

An air fryer is a kitchen appliance that cooks food by circulating hot air around it, similar to a convection oven. It is a healthier alternative to deep frying as it requires little to no oil to cook the food.

Can you make tender steak in an air fryer?

Yes, you can make tender steak in an air fryer. The hot circulating air helps to cook the steak evenly and quickly, resulting in a tender and juicy piece of meat.

What type of steak is best to use in an air fryer?

Any type of steak can be cooked in an air fryer, but cuts like ribeye, sirloin, or tenderloin are usually the most tender and flavorful choices.

How do you make steak tender in an air fryer?

To make steak tender in an air fryer, you can marinate the steak before cooking to help tenderize it. You can also season it with salt and pepper, or use a meat tenderizer to break down the muscle fibers. Cooking the steak at the right temperature and for the right amount of time is also important to achieve tenderness.

What temperature and cooking time is recommended for making tender steak in an air fryer?

The recommended temperature for cooking steak in an air fryer is usually around 400°F (200°C). The cooking time depends on the thickness of the steak and the desired level of doneness, but a general guideline is 10-12 minutes for medium-rare, 12-14 minutes for medium, and 14-16 minutes for well-done.

Elizabeth Green
Elizabeth Green

Elizabeth Green is a seasoned home chef and culinary expert who has a passion for all things kitchen-related. With her extensive knowledge of the latest kitchen products and appliances, Elizabeth provides insightful reviews and recommendations to help consumers make informed purchasing decisions. Whether you're looking for a new refrigerator, blender, or cookware set, Elizabeth is your guide to finding the best kitchen products available in the UK.

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