How to tell when your beef is done
What you need to know
What are the degrees of doneness?
We all have a preference for how we enjoy our beef: rare, medium rare, medium, medium well or well done. These are the degrees of doneness, and they're determined by your beef's colour, juiciness and internal temperature when cooked.
Before you start cooking
Consider factors that might affect cooking time, including:
- Cut size, shape and thickness
- Temperature of the meat before cooking
- Accuracy of your oven
- Shape and type of cooking dish
- Cooking method
Be guided by cuts, weights and temperatures
Follow our roasting chart, or download the SteakMate app and take the guesswork out of cooking your steak to the degree of doneness you prefer. The SteakMate app is available from Apple App Store and Google Play.
Use a meat thermometer
The easiest and most accurate way to determine the degree of doneness is to use a meat thermometer. Always measure the temperature at the centre of your beef cut, regardless of its size.
Many modern meat thermometers feature degree-of-doneness temperatures on their displays. However, we recommend the following temperatures for perfect results:
- Rare 60°C
- Medium rare 60–65°C
- Medium 65–70°C
- Medium well done 70°C
- Well done 75°C
Need help with buying and using a meat thermometer? Discover our expert tips and advice here.
Master the touch test
Towards the end of cooking time, press the outside centre of your beef lightly with tongs or your clean pointer finger to judge its degree of doneness.
- Soft = within the rare range
- Springy = medium
- Firmer = within the well done range
Rest your beef before serving
Resting beef after cooking helps to retain the juices, making it moist, tender and tastier. As a guide, you should rest a roast for 10–20 minutes before carving and steaks for about 3–5 minutes before serving. Explore more about why and how to rest beef here. Did you know that beef continues to cook while resting? For the juiciest result, check the temperature and remove beef from the heat about 3°C to 6°C shy of your doneness goal temperature.
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