The Butcher’s Guide: What is a Chateaubriand Roast?
- by Omaha Steaks
- Last updated Nov 3, 2023
A chateaubriand is a filet mignon roast, simply put. Chateaubriand is also the most decadent, tender beef roast and is perfect for special occasions and holidays. This roast-size filet mignon is designed to impress with mild, delicate beef flavor and incredible tenderness. Here’s everything you need to know about this one-of-a-kind cut of beef.
What’s in a Name?
The chateaubriand is known by several names – filet mignon roast, tenderloin roast, or simply beef tenderloin.
At Omaha Steaks, we refer to this decadent cut of beef as a chateaubriand. This French word is named after 19th-century French Romantic writer, François-René de Chateaubriand, who enjoyed this cut of beef. It now translates to mean “a very thick steak cut from the fillet of beef”. Whatever name you give this supremely tender roast, it’s an epicurean experience you won’t forget.
Cutting a Chateaubriand
The chateaubriand is cut from the tenderloin, which is part of the loin primal. This is the same subprimal as the filet mignon, the origin of the most tender steak cut. This highly prized cut of beef only represents 2-3% of the total animal.
When you compare a chateaubriand vs. filet mignon, they are both from the same cut of meat. The butcher can slice the tenderloin into filet mignon steaks or leave it whole and trim it into a chateaubriand roast – a roast-size filet mignon.
Why So Tender?
The secret of the chateaubriand’s tenderness is due to its location on the animal. The tenderloin is a non-weight-bearing muscle that gets very little exercise. Inactivity keeps the muscle from growing too tough through repetitive movement. At Omaha Steaks, we age beef tenderloins at least 28 days to naturally maximize that tenderness for an even better eating experience.
Although incredibly tender, a chateaubriand contains less marbling – the small streaks of intramuscular fat – compared to a prime rib roast. But cook your chateaubriand right and it’s incredibly tender – you can cut the pieces of meat with a dull butter knife.
How to Cook a Chateaubriand
Before cooking, completely thaw the chateaubriand, 4-7 hours per pound, or approximately 1-2 days in the refrigerator. Pat dry with paper towels, bring to room temperature, lightly oil and season roast generously with salt and pepper or your favorite rub. This roast is best cooked rare to medium-rare.
Preheat a large cast iron skillet or pan to medium-high, add 4 tablespoons of high smoke point oil and sear the chateaubriand for 2-3 minutes on each side or until well browned. Place the roast on an elevated rack in a roasting pan and cook in a preheated 250°F oven, referring to this roast cooking chart for exact cook times. Monitor internal temperature with a high-quality meat thermometer and remove from oven when the internal temperature is 5°F below your desired doneness. Allow 15-20 minutes resting time before slicing and serving.
Quick Roast Cooking Method:
Preheat oven to 400°F. Place seasoned chateaubriand on an elevated rack in a roasting pan. Roast uncovered, using the cooking timer from the Omaha Steaks app and monitor temperature with a meat thermometer for desired doneness. Allow 15-20 minutes resting time before slicing.
To sous vide, place the seasoned chateaubriand in a large, resealable plastic bag. Remove all the air from the bag and zip closed. Attach your immersion cooker to a water-filled container and submerge sealed chateaubriand. Set immersion circulator to 10°F below your desired doneness (120-130°F for medium-rare) and sous vide the roast for three hours. Once the sous vide is finished, remove the chateaubriand and pat dry with paper towels. Sear on all sides in a large cast iron pan over high heat about 1 minute on each side or until a golden-brown crust has formed. Rest 15-20 minutes before slicing.
Want to free up room in the oven? Check out our guide on how to smoke your chateaubriand outdoors on a grill or smoker.
Chateaubriand Recipes and Finishing Sauces
The mild flavor and low marbling of the chateaubriand roast pairs well rich sauces, like béarnaise sauce, demi-glace sauce, or red or white wine sauce. Chateaubriand is excellent when paired with flavored compound butters. Try this simple butcher’s butter recipe with fresh herbs to add rich, delicate flavors to your roast. Or serve the chateaubriand with a sweet and zesty red pepper cranberry sauce that balances the richness of the meat.
For a complete roast dinner with a savory sauce and flavorful side dish, whip up one of these recipes from Executive Chef David Rose
Serving the Chateaubriand
The chateaubriand is perfect for a special dinner or for a memorable small gathering. Omaha Steaks 2 lb. chateaubriand serves four, and our 4 lb. roast serve eight. For an extra-decadent experience, try our Private Reserve 3 lb. chateaubriand roast. It’s triple-trimmed by our master butchers and extra-aged at least 35 days for extreme tenderness.
Enjoy a decadent chateaubriand roast for your next holiday meal or special occasion. Your guests will love you!
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