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How long do you rest a New York steak?

Resting is an essential part of cooking any steak, including New York strip steaks. Allowing the steak to rest after cooking serves several important purposes. First, it allows the proteins in the meat to reabsorb any juices that were released during cooking, keeping the steak moist and juicy. Second, it allows the steak to continue cooking from residual heat and even out the temperature throughout. Finally, resting gives the juices time to thicken so they don’t immediately run out when you cut into the steak. So how long should you let a New York strip steak rest after cooking?

What is a New York Strip Steak?

Before getting into the details of resting time, it helps to understand exactly what cut of meat a New York strip steak is. New York strip steaks, also known as shell steaks, Kansas City steaks, or Manhattan steaks, are cut from the short loin primal of the cow. They contain a muscle known as the longissimus dorsi, which runs down the back of the animal. This muscle does little work, so the meat is very tender. The steak is boneless and well-marbled with fat, which gives it a lot of rich beef flavor when cooked. New York strips are classically prepared by grilling or broiling and served with steakhouse-style side dishes. A typical New York strip is 1-1 1⁄2 inches thick and 10-14 ounces.

Why Resting is Important

Now that you know what a New York strip steak is, let’s look at why resting is such a vital part of the cooking process:

Allows Proteins to Relax

When you cook a steak to medium-rare or beyond, the meat’s proteins tighten and squeeze out juices. If you cut into the steak immediately, those juices would spill out onto the cutting board instead of staying inside the steak where they belong. Resting gives the proteins a chance to relax and reabsorb some of the moisture.

Allows Meat to Continue Cooking

After you remove a steak from the grill or broiler, there is still a significant amount of residual heat trapped in the meat. This heat will continue to gently cook the steak during the resting period. Resting gives the inside of the steak a chance to catch up with the outside and equalize the temperature.

Thickens Juices

As the steak rests, the high temperatures also thicken the natural juices inside the meat through a process called carryover cooking. Thicker juices are less likely to run right out when you slice into the steak.

Enhances Flavor

Finally, resting enhances the flavor of the meat. As juices are reabsorbed during resting, the steak continues to marinate in its own natural flavors.

How Long to Rest a New York Strip

So now that you know why resting is so important, exactly how long should you let a New York strip steak rest after cooking? There are a few factors to consider:

Steak Thickness

In general, a thicker steak needs to rest longer than a thinner steak. That’s because there’s more residual heat trapped inside that needs time to evenly distribute. A good rule of thumb is that steaks should rest for at least 5 minutes per inch of thickness. For a typical 1-inch thick New York strip, that equates to about 5 minutes of resting time minimum.

Cooking Method

How you cooked the steak also affects resting time. Steaks that were cooked at high temperatures like grilling or broiling need more time to rest than steaks cooked more slowly via sous vide or reverse searing. High heat tightens those meat proteins more, so more resting time is required.

Desired Doneness

Rare steaks require less resting time than well done steaks. That’s because well done meats have been cooked longer, building up more residual heat that will continue to cook the steak during the rest period. To account for carryover cooking, a medium or well steak should rest longer than a rare or medium rare steak.

Cutting Method

Are you going to slice the entire steak and serve it whole? Or cut it into individual portions first? Slicing into portions requires cutting through more meat fibers, so you may want to add an extra minute or two of resting time if portioning.

Best Practices for Resting New York Strips

Now that you know the relevant factors, here are some best practices for resting New York strip steaks:

10 minutes

For a 1-inch thick New York strip cooked to medium rare via high heat grilling or broiling, allow the steak to rest for 10 minutes before cutting into it. This gives enough time for carryover cooking and for the proteins to relax.

Tented Foil

During the resting time, lightly tent the steak with aluminum foil to keep it warm. Make sure the foil doesn’t touch the meat directly or it could cause steaming.

Wire Rack

Rest the steak on a wire rack set inside a sheet tray, rather than directly on a plate. This allows air circulation and prevents a steaming effect.

Add Butter

Top the steak with a pat of herb butter about halfway through the resting time. This adds flavor as the steak continues to cook under the foil.

Common Resting Times for Other Cuts

While 10 minutes is ideal for a 1-inch New York strip, every cut of steak has its own unique resting time. For reference, here are some general guidelines for other popular steaks:

Cut Thickness Cooking Method Doneness Resting Time
Ribeye 1.5 inches Grilled Medium 10-15 minutes
Filet mignon 2 inches Pan seared Medium rare 10 minutes
Flank steak 1 inch Broiled Rare 5 minutes
Skirt steak 0.5 inch Grilled Medium 5 minutes
Flat iron 1 inch Pan seared Medium rare 10 minutes

As you can see, thicker steaks need more resting time, as do steaks cooked well done. Tailor your resting time as needed based on the variables.

What Happens If You Don’t Rest Your Steak?

Failing to let your New York strip steak rest has a few negative consequences:

Dry, Tough Meat

Without time to reabsorb juices, the steak will lose moisture and taste dry. The tighter meat fibers also won’t get a chance to relax, giving the meat a tougher texture.

Uneven Cooking

The inside of the steak will be rarer than the outside without time for the residual heat to distribute evenly. You’ll get overcooked outer portions and undercooked inner portions.

Leaking Juices

Cutting into an unrested steak means all those delicious juices will spill right out onto the cutting board instead of staying inside the meat. This causes both dryness and a loss of flavor.

Less Tender

The steak will be less tender overall without the natural tenderizing effect that resting provides.

Less Flavor

Finally, because the juices run out rather than get reabsorbed back into the meat, you’ll miss out on some of the enriched flavors.

Tips for Maximizing Resting Effectiveness

You now know why resting is important and how long you should rest a New York strip steak. Use these tips to maximize the effectiveness of the resting period:

Use a Probe Thermometer

Cook the steak to 5°F below your target temperature. Carryover cooking during resting will bring it to the ideal doneness.

Rest on a Wire Rack

Elevate the steak so air can circulate underneath to prevent steaming.

Lightly Tent with Foil

Cover loosely with foil to retain heat without steaming the steak.

Resist Cutting Into It!

Be patient and allow the full resting time before slicing to get the ideal texture and moisture level.

Add Butter

Top it with herb butter about halfway through resting for added moisture and flavor.

Frequently Asked Questions

Should I rest steak before or after searing?

For a reverse sear method, rest the steak after the initial low temperature oven roast but before the final sear. This helps it cook evenly.

Can I wrap steak in foil to rest it?

Tightly wrapping in foil can cause steaming which negates the benefits of resting. Lightly tenting with foil is better.

Should I rest steak on or off the heat?

Always rest steak off the cooking heat, such an on a cutting board or wire rack. Leaving it on the hot grill will overcook.

Can I rest steak in the oven?

You can, just make sure the oven is turned off and keep the door closed so the temperature drops.

Should I salt steak before or after resting?

For maximum flavor penetration, salt the steak at least 40 minutes before cooking. Do not salt immediately after cooking.


Resting a New York strip steak after cooking is absolutely vital for maximizing tenderness, juiciness and flavor. Allow at least 10 minutes of resting time for a 1-inch thick steak cooked by high heat methods like grilling or broiling. Adjust this time as needed based on thickness, doneness, and other factors. Use a wire rack, foil tent, and meat thermometer to get the most out of the resting period. With proper resting, your steak will be perfectly cooked from edge to edge and deliciously juicy every time.