Cooking filet mignon is relatively easy using a grill, broiler or roaster. Some recipes call for cooking filet mignon steaks in a pan on the stovetop, especially recipes that call for sauce reductions, where mushrooms or other vegetables can pick up extra flavor from the pan juices after the steaks are taken off of the heat.
Also Known as Beef Tenderloin...
Filet Mignon steaks are cut from the center of a beef tenderloin, a long muscle that sits just under the rib cage along a cow’s backbone, where the muscles don’t get an extreme workout, allowing the meat to be well marbled and extremely tender. The best filet mignon is USDA Prime, graded for its high marbling content.
When ordering from an online butcher shop, request USDA Prime steaks and roasts to ensure the highest quality filet mignon. Although it is more expensive, home cooks should also order filet mignon or beef tenderloin that is fully trimmed, or prepared “PSMOs” ("pismos"), which means that the butcher has trimmed excess fat (peeled) and removed the silver skin, but left the side muscle on.
Online butcher shops such as Omaha Steaks and Kansas City Steaks will ship fresh or frozen steaks directly to your door, making party preparations easier. Another advantage to ordering online is the fact that frozen steaks will be properly wrapped to maintain their quality for months in your freezer.
When picking up filet mignon cuts at your local grocery store or butcher, look for USDA Prime or USDA Choice cuts. Prime cuts are higher quality, but only about 3% of all beef is graded Prime, so Choice grades, which are about 54% of all graded beef, are easier to find without pre-ordering. The difference in grade indicates a higher amount of marbling (fat) in the steaks graded Prime. You may also find USDA Select beef tenderloin at local grocers. This grade is leaner, therefore less tender and juicy, but it is also more economical than Choice or Prime grades.