How to Cook Steak Indoors Without Smoke

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Steak is often at the top of people’s favorite choices of meat, and with good reason.

These cuts of beef tend to be tender and incorporate the right balance of muscle and fat to create unique flavors, an appealing texture, and succulent juiciness.

When you want to cook outdoors, the process is simple.

All you need to do is throw the steak on the grill and watch the smoke fly as the meat gets hot and juicy.

But how to cook steak indoors without smoke setting off the alarms, giving your furniture, curtains, and carpets, smoky smells, and choking you out of the kitchen?

If you want to enjoy your favorite meal from the comfort of your own kitchen, follow these simple tips and tricks.

Your taste buds and home will thank you.

How to Cook Steak Indoors Without Smoke

There are two essential methods you should know if you want a tasty meal without having to worry about the fire department coming over for dinner or your home smelling like it's a grilling place.

The first is colloquially known as the reverse sear and involves an oven.

The second features a full cooking session with a pan, a stove, and a careful eye for detail.

Your favorite one will depend on your unique tastes, so why not try them both?

The Reverse Sear

Before trying the reverse sear method, it is essential to know that it only works well on thick steaks that are at least one to two inches thick.

If you try this method with anything thinner, you will not get the desired results.

Step One: Prepare Your Meat

As with the cooking of any steak, the first step will always be to prep your food so that it will have maximum flavor and tenderness.

You should season and marinate your steak before cooking.

If possible, allow the meat to chill in the refrigerator with the ingredients.

That is so that you can seal more of the flavor into the proteins.

You can then allow the steak to warm up to room temperature for about an hour before cooking.

If you intend to tenderize your meat, do so at this time to seal all the juiciness inside.

Step Two: Place the Steak in the Oven

You are not going to sear your steak the normal way.

Instead, you are going to preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and place your steak on a flat pan with a little olive oil, some seasoning, and aluminum foil to prevent sticking.

The trick to the reverse sear is getting the majority of the meat cooked before you sear the exterior.

The reason for such is for you not to worry about excess smoke or the interior not being cooked all the way.

For most steaks, you will want to set your timer for a period ranging from 25 to 30 minutes, and just wait while the steak bakes.

Step Three: Sear the Meat in a Pan on the Stovetop

Once your timer goes off, you are going to sear your steak in a hot pan.

This is the step that produces the most smoke, so be prepared.

Your alarms should not go off, though.

Heat up a standard, non-stick pan using the high setting of your stove and put a little oil and onion.

Once it is hot enough and the steak is done baking, place the steak down in the oil and allow it to fry for a maximum of about 20 or 30 seconds.

Using tongs, flip the steak over and sear the other side.

Step Four: Enjoy!

Your meat should be complete by now.

The steak will have a nice sear and crispy exterior, but the interior will still be pink and ready to eat.

The Slow Cooker

If you are worried about baking your steak or would simply like to have a greater opportunity to keep an eye on how well done the meat is, then you can try the slow cooking method.

This technique requires only a couple of simple ingredients and takes the same amount of time as the reverse sear, but it produces even less smoke and can seal in more flavor.

Step One: Prepare Your Meat

As with the previous method, you want to make sure you have your steak properly seasoned and marinated before progressing.

Having a room temperature or slightly chilled steak is ideal with the slow cooking method since you want the meat to cook the meat properly in a short amount of time.

In addition to your regular seasonings, coat one side of the steak with as much seasoning as you ever thought possible.

Step Two: Place It in the Pan

You do not want to preheat your pan using this method. 

Instead, lay the heavily seasoned side of your steak down and scoop in a little butter.

Turn your burner on to medium settings, never high.

In terms, most stovetops follow, do not set it to any number higher than six.

You will now allow the steak to cook on one side for roughly 10 minutes.

It is common to hear some small pops or see a little bit of smoke emerge from the surface of the pan, but this is normal.

It means the technique is working.

how to cook steak indoors without smoke

Step Three: Prep the Pan Again

After ten minutes, remove the steak and place it on a plate and set aside.

Quickly go to the trash can with your hot pan and use paper towels to remove excess butter.

Return to the stovetop and then plop your steak back in.

However, now with the other side down on the surface.

Add a little more butter to the pan and wait for another ten minutes while the other side cooks.

Again, it is common to hear some small noises or see a small amount of smoke, but it should not worry you.

Step Four: Enjoy!

After ten minutes passed, the second side of your delicious steak should be done.

You can now go ahead and eat it at your leisure and take advantage of your home being devoid of firefighters and too much smoke odor.

How to Get a Smoky Flavor

For some people, cooking a steak indoors can rob them of a taste they enjoy, which is smokiness.

If you would still like to have some smoky flavor to your meat, you have a couple of options.

Before using either of these methods, apply a little bit of liquid smoke to the steak and allow it to be absorbed by the meat.

You can also use smoked seasonings like paprika to add an extra kick.


How to cook steak indoors without smoke is not a difficult process and can be done no matter what your cooking skills are currently.

There are two basic methods available to you: the reverse sear and the slow cook using the stovetop.

Both create great flavors and generate very little smoke, which means you can enjoy your meal with clear lungs, no blaring alarms, and no fire department kicking down your door.

Just remember to season your steak accordingly and check the internal temperature of the meat so that it is well done.

And, for goodness sake, please do not use ketchup on a perfectly good cut of meat!

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