How to Sous Vide Porterhouse

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Known for its massive size — this cut could easily take up your whole plate — porterhouse steak includes a portion of tenderloin and a portion of strip steak. It’s a two-for-one deal that steak enthusiasts can’t get enough of, and for good reason: The beefy taste is one that will certainly keep you coming back for more.


But, with a bone running through the center of the steak, is porterhouse right for sous vide cooking? Our answer is absolutely. Like most cuts of steak, you can sous vide porterhouse to get an even cook with super tender results. Follow along with this guide to learn how to sous vide porterhouse like the pros.

Preparation for Sous Vide Porterhouse

To sous vide porterhouse, you’ll need a precision cooker. This appliance gives the most accurate results, allowing you to set a water bath for a precise temperature to cook with. Gather sous vide bags and your choice of herbs and spices to add to the bags, like rosemary, thyme, and garlic. You’ll also need some salt and pepper, one tablespoon of olive oil, and a cast-iron skillet.

Cooking Time

Because porterhouse is very tender to start with, it doesn’t need extra time using sous vide to help it achieve the ideal level of tenderness. Use this rule of thumb: Cook for 1-1 ½ hours for every inch of steak. So, a porterhouse that’s 2 inches thick will need 2-3 hours. Stick with the lower end of the time range for medium-rare and medium steaks and the upper end for medium-well or well-done steaks.

Final Temperature

The following chart details the temperature to set your precision cooker on depending on your preferred doneness level and the final temperature range your steak should reach.   

Steak DonenessCook TemperatureFinal Temperature
Medium-rare130°F130°F-135°F
Medium140°F140°F-145°F
Medium-well150°F150°F-155°F
Well-done160°F160°F-165°F

Cooking to Medium Rare

Portherhouse steak cooks in about two hours to medium-rare, the ideal level of doneness for sous vide steak. Start by seasoning steaks with salt and pepper. Then, place them in sous vide bags with your choice of herbs, and seal the bags. Submerge them in your preheated water bath (130 degrees) and cook for 1 ½-2 hours, depending on thickness. Remove steaks from the bags, pat them dry, and sear in a cast-iron skillet for 2-3 minutes on each side.

Porterhouse Sous Vide Tips

Read through the tips below to learn how to sous vide porterhouse with the best results.

Use Food Storage Bags If Needed

Don’t worry if you don’t have vacuum-sealable sous vide bags for your porterhouse steaks. Regular food storage bags with zipper closures work, too. Just be sure to get all the air out of the bags before sealing them to allow the bags to submerge fully in the water rather than float.

Pat Them Dry

After you finish sous vide cooking your porterhouse steaks, remove them from their bags, allow them to cool for a couple of minutes, and pat them dry thoroughly. This removes excess moisture to help you get the best sear in the skillet. 

Add Flavor

Don’t skimp on the seasonings when you sous vide porterhouse. In addition to sprinkling each steak with a generous portion of salt and pepper, you can also add fresh herbs and spices, like rosemary, thyme, and garlic, to the bags. Or, go full-flavor by adding a spice rub to the steaks before placing them in their bags.

Choosing the Right Cut

When choosing porterhouse steak to look for sous vide, go with a quality cut. Look for steaks labeled as Premium Angus, USDA Prime, or Wagyu for the best results. These steaks are labeled based on their marbling, color, and other quality standards, and they can give you a better outcome with sous vide. Aged steaks — they’ll be marked as wet-aged or dry-aged — also have optimal tenderness and flavor, giving you an excellent cut to start with.

Sous Vide Porterhouse Instructions

Walk through the following steps to learn how to sous vide porterhouse. Then, refer to the recipe below for ingredients and instructions.

Step 1: Prepare to Sous Vide

Heat your precision cooker using the temperature chart above. For instance, porterhouse cooked to medium-rare should be in a precision cooker set to 130 degrees. Sprinkle a generous amount of salt and pepper on both sides of the steak. Then, place them in sous vide bags, one steak per bag, with your choice of fresh herbs. Seal the bags, being sure to remove the air from them.  

Step 2: Cook with Sous Vide

Transfer the bags to the cooker, carefully lowering them into the water bath. Make sure they’re fully submerged in the water. Cook for 1 ½-2 hours. Thicker steaks might need a little more time, as will steaks you’d like to cook to medium, medium-well, or well-done. 

Step 3: Sear and Rest 

Preheat a cast-iron skillet with a drizzle of oil. Use tongs to remove the bags from the cooker. Open them carefully and remove the contents. Pat steaks dry completely on all sides. Then, sear for 2-3 minutes on each side. Finally, rest on a foil-tented plate for 5-10 minutes before serving.   

Sous Vide Ribeye Porterhouse

Serves: 2

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 2 ½ hours

Ingredients:

  • 1-1 ½ pounds of porterhouse steak
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Thyme, rosemary, or other fresh herbs
  • Olive oil

Instructions:

  1. Heat the precision cooker to 130 degrees for medium-rare steak. Sprinkle salt and pepper on both sides of steak. Then, place them in sous vide bags (one steak per bag) with a sprig of thyme or rosemary.
  2. Seal the bags. Submerge them completely in the water. Cook for 1 ½-2 hours, depending on steak thickness.
  3. Remove steaks from the bags and pat them dry. Sear in a preheated cast-iron skillet with a drizzle of oil for 2-3 minutes on each side. Rest for 5-10 minutes. 

Sous Vide FAQ’s

Is porterhouse good for sous vide?

Yes, porterhouse is good for sous vide. It’s already quite tender, but sous vide helps cook porterhouse steak evenly, which is helpful for this particular cut that includes both a tenderloin and a strip steak. 

How long do you sous vide a porterhouse?

Most porterhouse steaks need between 1 ½-2 ½ hours to cook. Generally, you’ll want to cook porterhouse using sous vide based on its thickness. Cook between 1-1 ½ hours per inch of steak, so 2-3 hours for a two-inch porterhouse. Use the upper end of the time range for medium-well or well-done steaks.

What temp should porterhouse steak be?

A medium-rare porterhouse steak should reach 130°F-135°F after the resting period. Cook to 140°F-145°F for medium, 150°F-155°F for medium-well, and 160°F-165°F for well-done.

How do I cook a medium porterhouse with sous vide?

Cook with the sous vide method in a 130°F water bath, sear for 2-3 minutes on each side, and rest for 5-10 minutes. Then, your steak should come to 130°F-135°F for medium-rare.

sous vide porterhouse steak

Sous Vide Ribeye Porterhouse

Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 2 hrs 30 mins
Course Main Course
Servings 2 people

Ingredients
  

  • 1 1.5lbs porterhouse steak
  • thyme, rosemary, or other fresh herbs
  • salt
  • pepper
  • olive oil

Instructions
 

  • Heat the precision cooker to 130 degrees for medium-rare steak. Sprinkle salt and pepper on both sides of steak. Then, place them in sous vide bags (one steak per bag) with a sprig of thyme or rosemary
  • Seal the bags. Submerge them completely in the water. Cook for 1 ½-2 hours, depending on steak thickness
  • Remove steaks from the bags and pat them dry. Sear in a preheated cast-iron skillet with a drizzle of oil for 2-3 minutes on each side. Rest for 5-10 minutes