Big Green Egg - EGGhead Forum - The Ultimate Cooking Experience...
Welcome to the EGGhead Forum - a great place to visit and packed with tips and EGGspert advice! You can also join the conversation and get more information and amazing kamado recipes by following Big Green Egg at:

Want to see how the EGG is made? Click to Watch

Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Instagram  |  Pinterest  |  Youtube  |  Vimeo
Share your photos by tagging us and using the hashtag #BigGreenEgg.

Reverse Sear vs Sous Vide

Last weekend a friend invited us over for sous vide beef tenderloin.  My opinion?  Meh! It was different, it was good, it was tasty, but it wasn't reverse sear good.  Sorry, JMO.  The same group had reverse seared ribeyes at our place a few weeks ago which was accompanied by a compound butter.  The overwhelming majority sided with me, reverse sear is the winner.

Happy Friday, stay safe, good luck to ya whether you are in the "mask" or "no mask" side of the equation.  

Peace out folks!
The problem with a problem is that you don't know it's a problem until it's a problem.
Holding the company together with three spreadsheets and two cans connected by a long piece of string.
«1

Comments

  • FanOfFanboysFanOfFanboys Posts: 2,536
    reverse sear is just redneck sous vide 

    I do both. 1.5" steaks or so I prefer reverse sear. Start getting to roasts and sous vide shines
    Boom
  • RajunCajunRajunCajun Posts: 940
    reverse sear is just redneck sous vide 

    I do both. 1.5" steaks or so I prefer reverse sear. Start getting to roasts and sous vide shines
    I dunno.....I do my reverse sear ribeyes at 3" bone-in.  That said, not sure how a 1.5" thick would turn out.  The flavor profile is just different, all a matter of palate, I guess.
    The problem with a problem is that you don't know it's a problem until it's a problem.
    Holding the company together with three spreadsheets and two cans connected by a long piece of string.
  • SonVoltSonVolt Posts: 3,009
    edited July 2020
    Apples & Oranges. Plus I wouldn't draw conclusions on the merits of a cooking method based on a single meal at a buddies house. That said, I still prefer reverse sear. If you're not wearing a mask, please enjoy your weekend at home. 
    South of Nashville  -  BGE XL  -  Alfresco 42" ALXE  -  Alfresco Versa Burner  - Sunbeam Microwave 
  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 27,949
    have done them all and have come back to trexing =) no mask when im grillin
    fukahwee maine

    you can lead a fish to water but you can not make him drink it
  • dmchicagodmchicago Posts: 3,094
    I was a RS fan for steaks in my early Egg days.

    That changed when I bought a Sous Vide. Now I'm 100% SV on steaks.

    I find I can control the process and timing better, especially when entertaining.

    Also, when it's a hundred and fu*k outside, I don't want to be hovering around a hot Egg when I can be inside hovering around a cold cocktail.

    I always RS a Tri-Tip for example. I wan a bit of smoke on that cut. I don't want ANY smoke on my steak. All I want to taste is beef.

    That said, a good steak and a great glass of wine regardless of cooking method is always a great meal!


    Philly - Kansas City - Houston - Cincinnati - Dallas - Houston - Memphis - Austin - Chicago - Austin

    Large BGE.

    "If I wanted my balls washed, I'd go to the golf course!"
    Dennis - Austin,TX
  • RajunCajunRajunCajun Posts: 940
    have done them all and have come back to trexing =) no mask when im grillin
    I did Trex when I got my egg 20yrs ago.  I need to revisit that method.  Opposite of reverse sear from what I recall?  While I think the mask provides some level of protection, I also think ....ah, never mind
    The problem with a problem is that you don't know it's a problem until it's a problem.
    Holding the company together with three spreadsheets and two cans connected by a long piece of string.
  • RajunCajunRajunCajun Posts: 940
    dmchicago said:
    I was a RS fan for steaks in my early Egg days.

    That changed when I bought a Sous Vide. Now I'm 100% SV on steaks.

    I find I can control the process and timing better, especially when entertaining.

    Also, when it's a hundred and fu*k outside, I don't want to be hovering around a hot Egg when I can be inside hovering around a cold cocktail.

    I always RS a Tri-Tip for example. I wan a bit of smoke on that cut. I don't want ANY smoke on my steak. All I want to taste is beef.

    That said, a good steak and a great glass of wine regardless of cooking method is always a great meal!


    Well said, cheers!
    The problem with a problem is that you don't know it's a problem until it's a problem.
    Holding the company together with three spreadsheets and two cans connected by a long piece of string.
  • rekameohsrekameohs Posts: 197
    Last weekend a friend invited us over for sous vide beef tenderloin.  My opinion?  Meh! It was different, it was good, it was tasty, but it wasn't reverse sear good. 
    I'm confused - I do both, not one or the other.  I Sous Vide a RibEye for about an hour at 129, then do the Reverse Sear in a cast iron skillet. 

    A steak fresh out of the Sous Vide does not look appetizing, but after a good char on each side, they look fantastic. 

    Raleigh, NC
  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 27,949
    have done them all and have come back to trexing =) no mask when im grillin
    I did Trex when I got my egg 20yrs ago.  I need to revisit that method.  Opposite of reverse sear from what I recall?  While I think the mask provides some level of protection, I also think ....ah, never mind

    salt sear then pepper and rest, roast 350 til the ribeye is 125/127. strip at 123.  i dont pepper or rub before the sear.  rest on a rack, putting it on a cold plate pulls more juices out. resting period is two beers
    fukahwee maine

    you can lead a fish to water but you can not make him drink it
  • RajunCajunRajunCajun Posts: 940
    rekameohs said:
    Last weekend a friend invited us over for sous vide beef tenderloin.  My opinion?  Meh! It was different, it was good, it was tasty, but it wasn't reverse sear good. 
    I'm confused - I do both, not one or the other.  I Sous Vide a RibEye for about an hour at 129, then do the Reverse Sear in a cast iron skillet. 

    A steak fresh out of the Sous Vide does not look appetizing, but after a good char on each side, they look fantastic. 

    Umm, I hear ya.  It just didn't excite my taste buds the way RS does.  Just proof that we're different is all.
    The problem with a problem is that you don't know it's a problem until it's a problem.
    Holding the company together with three spreadsheets and two cans connected by a long piece of string.
  • SonVoltSonVolt Posts: 3,009

    South of Nashville  -  BGE XL  -  Alfresco 42" ALXE  -  Alfresco Versa Burner  - Sunbeam Microwave 
  • LegumeLegume Posts: 11,680
    I use both (either, not together), depends on what I’m cooking and what else is going on.

    But I don’t think I would ever care to put a whole tenderloin in SV.  Or even a cut filet for that matter.  Tougher, grainier cuts I do, sometimes.
    I do not have any broken or spare parts for any size egg.
  • jtcBoyntonjtcBoynton Posts: 2,769
    Wrong comparison. Its not sous vide vs reverse sear. They are both part of two heat cooking of a steak. A low temp stage and a high temp stage. Reverse sear refers to low heat first then high heat which is the reverse of the traditional high heat first then finish with low heat. Sous vide is one way of doing the low heat portion of the cook. You need to compare sous vide to other low heat methods. 
    Southeast Florida - LBGE
    In cooking, often we implement steps for which we have no explanations other than ‘that’s what everybody else does’ or ‘that’s what I have been told.’  Dare to think for yourself.
     
  • TheophanTheophan Posts: 2,651
    With a steak that's at least 1 1/2" thick and preferably thicker, I like to use a little hickory wood during the low-and slow part of a reverse sear, and I definitely can taste the smoke after the final sear.  I love it.  Makes me think of camp fires, cooking over a wood fire.  

    I use my sous vide once in a while, but in general, I think meat cooked over a live fire just tastes better than meat mostly cooked in a plastic bag.
  • GregWGregW Posts: 2,489
    edited July 2020
    Sous Vide is similar to using a photo copier to duplicate the Mona Lisa. It may make a technically perfect copy, but it doesn't have the soul of the original.
    Sous Vide can cook a technically perfectly cooked steak, but it fails to deliver the flavor of traditional cooking methods.

    I will use Sous Vide when mass producing beef tenderloin for a large crowd. I cook them the day before and refrigerate, The day of serving I rewarm in the Sous Vide and finish on a hot grill.

    Typically the unclean masses are perfectly happy with the SV tenderloin and wouldn't appreciate a reverse sear. All they know is the tenderloin was perfectly cooked to their desired temperature.  
    Birmingham, AL
  • JohnInCarolinaJohnInCarolina Posts: 20,774
    So, a couple of comments from someone who routinely does them both.

    1) There is not just one "sous vide".  With SV, time and temperature are choices, just like ingredients of a rub or a sauce, and different choices produce different outcomes.  Sometimes those differences are subtle, other times they are very obvious.  So I would advise against concluding anything based on a single cook that was SV.   

    2) For thick steaks and beef tenderloin, I prefer reverse sear.  Not because I like the tenderness or consistency of the end product, but because I like the flavor the smoke imparts.  It is difficult to get that with a SV followed by a sear, at least not without using something like liquid smoke, and, well...

    3) That being said, one of the very best SV steaks I have ever had was a thick filet cooked by @henapple.  So now I am very much biased towards that approach with that particular cut, because it was just that good.  
    "A generation of the unteachable is hanging upon us like a necklace of corpses." - George Orwell 

    "I've made a note never to piss you two off." - Stike

    Ruining the forum, one post at a time.  

    Living large in the 919
  • dmchicagodmchicago Posts: 3,094
    GregW said:
    Sous Vide is similar to using a photo copier to duplicate the Mona Lisa. It may make a technically perfect copy, but it doesn't have the soul of the original.
    Sous Vide can cook a technically perfectly cooked steak, but it fails to deliver the flavor of traditional cooking methods.

    I will use Sous Vide when mass producing beef tenderloin for a large crowd. I cook them the day before and refrigerate, The day of serving I rewarm in the Sous Vide and finish on a hot grill.

    Typically the unclean masses are perfectly happy with the SV tenderloin and wouldn't appreciate a reverse sear. All they know is the tenderloin was perfectly cooked to their desired temperature.  
    I disagreed 'cause I just stepped out of the shower, so...
    Philly - Kansas City - Houston - Cincinnati - Dallas - Houston - Memphis - Austin - Chicago - Austin

    Large BGE.

    "If I wanted my balls washed, I'd go to the golf course!"
    Dennis - Austin,TX
  • YnoYno Posts: 393
    I have used sous vide for a lot of things - it has its place in my kitchen. But the only time I have used it for something that is going on the Egg is for a beef chuck destined for over the top chili. That would just take too long for the other ingredients. When I am using the Egg I don't plan to be in a hurry, and I like the results whether it is a nice thick ribeye, a tri-tip, or a standing rib roast. To me, the time spent with the Egg (and a few glasses of wine) is all part of the enjoyment.
    XL BGE in San Jose, CA. Also a Pit Barrel Cooker, a Cal Flame P4 gasser, and lots of toys including the first ever Flame Boss 300 in the wild. And a new Flame Boss 500.
  • ColbyLangColbyLang Posts: 1,433
    Using my sous vide tomorrow night on a whole tenderloin. 

    130° for 2.5-3 hours and then a hot a fast sear on the gasser at the lake house. Women folk will get the tail at medium/medium well. We men will lay waste to the medium rare portion. 
  • GregWGregW Posts: 2,489
    edited July 2020
    dmchicago said:
    GregW said:
    Sous Vide is similar to using a photo copier to duplicate the Mona Lisa. It may make a technically perfect copy, but it doesn't have the soul of the original.
    Sous Vide can cook a technically perfectly cooked steak, but it fails to deliver the flavor of traditional cooking methods.

    I will use Sous Vide when mass producing beef tenderloin for a large crowd. I cook them the day before and refrigerate, The day of serving I rewarm in the Sous Vide and finish on a hot grill.

    Typically the unclean masses are perfectly happy with the SV tenderloin and wouldn't appreciate a reverse sear. All they know is the tenderloin was perfectly cooked to their desired temperature.  
    I disagreed 'cause I just stepped out of the shower, so...
    Think nothing of disagreeing, speaking the truth frequently runs me afoul of the unclean masses, or clean in some cases.
    Birmingham, AL
  • xfire_ATXxfire_ATX Posts: 984
    I don't SV very often... I have to borrow one. For Mother's Day I did 10 reverse sear Rib Eye/ Sirloins and 1 each in SV. Once the RS steaks were ready for first pull I also pulled the SV and then Seared them all. I tried both when they came off and rested and the SV was far better- I was shocked how much.
    LBGE, Charbroil Gas Grill, Weber Q2000, Old Weber Kettle, Yeti 65, RTIC 20, Too many drinkware vessels to mention.

    Not quite in Austin, TX City Limits
    Just Vote- What if you could choose "none of the above" on an election ballot? Millions of Americans do just that, in effect, by not voting.  The result in 2016: "Nobody" won more counties, more states, and more electoral votes than either candidate for president. 
  • Meeeshigan22Meeeshigan22 Posts: 301
    I just don’t get the sous vide thing, I want to as I bought one. But it just doesn’t compare to reverse sear for me. It’s not terrible, but I wouldn’t call it good. 

    I do like it for veggies, eggs, and re-warming meat cooked on the egg. 


    Highland, MI

    L BGE, Primo, and a KJ Jr
  • ColbyLangColbyLang Posts: 1,433
    I just don’t get the sous vide thing, I want to as I bought one. But it just doesn’t compare to reverse sear for me. It’s not terrible, but I wouldn’t call it good. 

    I do like it for veggies, eggs, and re-warming meat cooked on the egg. 


    This. Once you see the versatility, it’s a useful tool. I originally got mine just to do steaks. Found a ton of recipes and other things to cook and rarely do steaks anymore in it. I’m doing it for the whole tenderloin due to the set and forget for a few hours. 
  • jtcBoyntonjtcBoynton Posts: 2,769
    I just don’t get the sous vide thing, I want to as I bought one. But it just doesn’t compare to reverse sear for me. It’s not terrible, but I wouldn’t call it good. 

    I do like it for veggies, eggs, and re-warming meat cooked on the egg. 


    Except sous vide is reverse sear.  You may prefer another low temp mechanism than sous vide, but sous vide cooking of a steak is one form of reverse sear. Therefore reverse sear cannot be better than sous vide. 
    Southeast Florida - LBGE
    In cooking, often we implement steps for which we have no explanations other than ‘that’s what everybody else does’ or ‘that’s what I have been told.’  Dare to think for yourself.
     
  • jtcBoyntonjtcBoynton Posts: 2,769
    Why do so many people not recognize that sous vide cooking of a steak is reverse sear?  It probably is the original reverse sear method.
    Southeast Florida - LBGE
    In cooking, often we implement steps for which we have no explanations other than ‘that’s what everybody else does’ or ‘that’s what I have been told.’  Dare to think for yourself.
     
  • SciAggieSciAggie Posts: 6,472
    SV is a tool in your toolbox, nothing more. I personally prefer reverse sear - but here’s the thing - you have to eat when the steak is ready, not when you decide your are ready. When the food is reason for the gathering I like reverse sear. With a good steak or dry aged steak I’ll do a reverse sear every time. 

    Sometimes though I need a flexible cook window. Sometimes the food is a sideshow. Maybe the kids or relatives are in. We decide to go fishing or maybe we’re having a dove hunt. I can throw steaks in the SV at noon and cook ‘em whenever we get ready. I can do apps and we can have all the adult beverages we want. When we decide it’s time to eat, all I have to do is sear the steaks. SV also has other cooking applications. It’s great for veggies, desserts, and reheating vac sealed leftovers. 

    For me personally it isn’t an either/or choice. I just align the tool to the job at hand and the outcome I’m looking for. 
    Coleman, Texas
    Large BGE & Mini Max for the wok. A few old camp Dutch ovens and a wood fired oven. LSG 24” cabinet offset smoker. There are a few paella pans and a Patagonia cross in the barn. A curing chamber for bacterial transformation of meats...
    "Bourbon slushies. Sure you can cook on the BGE without them, but why would you?"
                                                                                                                          YukonRon
  • The Cen-Tex SmokerThe Cen-Tex Smoker Posts: 21,540
    edited July 2020
    have done them all and have come back to trexing =) no mask when im grillin
    I did Trex when I got my egg 20yrs ago.  I need to revisit that method.  Opposite of reverse sear from what I recall?  While I think the mask provides some level of protection, I also think ....ah, never mind
    I’ve gone back to that. Sear first then bring up slowly. It’s way easier to control than reverse sear Leave the dome open for the sear and it won’t heat up the ceramics as much. Temp settles right in after I drop in my indirect setup after the sear. 

    And for the record, sous vide is essentially reverse sear, just with more control. SV First then sear. 

    I don’t use SV for steaks but there really shouldn’t be a lot of difference with using a BGE or Sv for the first part of a reverse sear process
    Keepin' It Weird in The ATX
  • RajunCajunRajunCajun Posts: 940
    Last weekend a friend invited us over for sous vide beef tenderloin.  My opinion?  Meh! It was different, it was good, it was tasty, but it wasn't reverse sear good.  Sorry, JMO.  The same group had reverse seared ribeyes at our place a few weeks ago which was accompanied by a compound butter.  The overwhelming majority sided with me, reverse sear is the winner.

    Happy Friday, stay safe, good luck to ya whether you are in the "mask" or "no mask" side of the equation.  

    Peace out folks!
    By no means did I intend to create a somewhat controversial topic.  SV works for some and not so much for others, I can respect that.  I commit to giving it more time and will experiment further with it.  You drive a Dodge and I bleed the bowtie, it's all good.  Have a nice weekend ladies and gents.
    The problem with a problem is that you don't know it's a problem until it's a problem.
    Holding the company together with three spreadsheets and two cans connected by a long piece of string.
  • cdnewmancdnewman Posts: 88
    Sous vide makes weeknights manageable. I’m not going to work 12-14 hours in a picu, come home, light the grill, get it to 225, put on the steak, get it to 125, crank the heat, sear the steak, rest, serve. I’m going to get home, light the grill on full torch mode, pull the steak from the water bath, let it dry while the grill heats, then sear it and serve. On a weekend, I’m willing to put in the time for that little bit of additional smoky flavor. But on a weeknight sous vide has made so many things possible (sous vide e que St. Louis ribs, etc. ) that just wouldn’t be doing a two stage grilling technique. I also think that filet is so delicate that the precision of the sous vide trumps the smokiness as well. 
  • Meeeshigan22Meeeshigan22 Posts: 301
    I just don’t get the sous vide thing, I want to as I bought one. But it just doesn’t compare to reverse sear for me. It’s not terrible, but I wouldn’t call it good. 

    I do like it for veggies, eggs, and re-warming meat cooked on the egg. 


    Except sous vide is reverse sear.  You may prefer another low temp mechanism than sous vide, but sous vide cooking of a steak is one form of reverse sear. Therefore reverse sear cannot be better than sous vide. 
    Sure, but I think those of us on the BGE forum are eluding to reverse sear on the egg. And it’s a completely different flavor and texture profile. 

    Highland, MI

    L BGE, Primo, and a KJ Jr
Sign In or Register to comment.
Click here for Forum Use Guidelines.