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What is Spencer Steak? Steak 101

Mehgan Zheng
cooked spencer steak with a sprig of rosemary to show what is spencer steak

Spencer steak is a boneless ribeye steak. Different regions in the United States have different names for the same things, and this cut of steak is one of them. 

 

What is a Spencer Steak, AKA Rib-Eye Steak?

A Spencer Steak is simply a boneless ribeye steak. It is a juicy, tender, and flavourful cut marbled with just the right amount of fat. Ribeye steaks are some of the most popular steak cuts and as a pitmaster, you are likely to have had it regularly in your home. 

The ribeye steak is often also referred to as the beauty steak, scotch fillet, market steak, and Delmonico. You can opt to have the bone-in when you purchase this steak.

Preparing your steak with the bone in may take a while longer than your boneless counterpart. However, keeping the bone maximizes the flavor and moisture.

What Cut of Meat Does the Spencer Steak Come From?

The Spencer Steak is cut from the beef rib primal cut which is located at the front quarter of the beef cut on the cow’s back. This cut of meat only contains the ribeye muscles that run from the cow’s shoulder blade to the hip bone.

As the ribeye muscles are barely exercised throughout the lifetime of the cow, they can develop intramuscular fat and are very tender. If you're curious, you can read more about all the different cuts of beef.

The Spencer Steak is one of the most expensive and sought-after steaks on the market as the meat is tender and packs a lot of moisture and flavor due to the marbling. 

How to Prepare a Spencer Steak

Like many other steaks before it, the Spencer Steak can be prepared differently to suit a variety of palettes. If you need to cut your Spencer Steak to serve several guests, be sure to use the correct cutting board. We recommend our medium walnut wood board for cutting steak. Here are five ways that are bound to be a hit every time.

Pan-Seared

This is perhaps the easiest way to prepare your steak and there’s very little that could go wrong. To make your Spencer Steak this way:

  • Heat your stainless steel pan or cast iron skillet on a stovetop till hot (We recommend using a cast iron skillet.)
  • Add a generous amount of butter along with your seasoned steak.
  • Let the steak sear to a golden color and then flip.
  • Begin to baste with butter.
  • Add garlic and herbs to the pan while basting (optional).

Grilling

Grilling is perhaps the most popular way to enjoy a steak of this caliber and rightfully so. You enjoy the goodness of a juicy steak accompanied by charring and smoky flavors from time on the charcoal grill. To make this steak,

  • Heat your charcoal grill.
  • Place your seasoned Spencer Steak (try this garlic truffle steak seasoning) on the hottest part of the grill.
  • Move your steak to a cooler part to allow it to cook through.
  • For a juicier steak, you can reverse grill your steak. Keep in mind that this may need more patience and you’ll have to be waiting for your steak for more than a few minutes longer.
  • Place your steak on the cooler side of the grill.
  • Allow steak to cook until it reaches the desired internal temperature.
  • Move to the hotter side for charring and browning.

 

steak on a grill

Oven to Pan

Making your steak in the oven is a wonderful way to enjoy your steak however you may miss out on the golden crust that we can all agree elevates the steak. Fortunately, this recipe ensures you keep the nutrients without losing the crust

  • Place your seasoned steak in a 350F oven.
  • Keep checking your steak with a meat probe to determine doneness.
  • Transfer steak to the pan and sear until golden brown.

Things to Consider when Choosing a Spencer Steak

Marbling

Every steak lover can agree that marbled steak is unmatched. To understand marbling better, you must be familiar with the USDA grading system. This system is created based on age and fat marbling. The most sought-after is the prime steak, followed by choice and lastly select. 

Bone-in or Bone-out

Just because some consider boneless steak to be superior, doesn't mean you have to conform to the standards (or 'sink to their level')! You are at liberty to opt to request to have your bone-in.

The presence of the bone may add to the cooking time, but several pit masters could swear leaving the bone in adds a little oomph to the flavor.

Thickness

Always look at the thickness of your steak as it affects the preparation method. The thicker the steak the higher temperatures it can withstand without losing its moisture and flavor. An average thickness of 1 inch is advised. If you plan on preparing multiple pieces within one session then you can spend more time trying to find more equal cuts to avoid messing with the cooking time.

 

Final Thoughts

Now that we’ve covered the ins and outs of a Spencer Steak, you can now go forth and be the steak master of your friend group. We hope this article is a good starting point for you. If you're looking for more great cuts of beef, try out beef flanken ribs! You won't be disappointed.

 

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