Looking for a wow dinner for your beef loving family and guests? Chateaubriand is the answer. Slow roasting in the oven yields a lovely pink center and no gray edge. It's the easiest technique anyone can do it. It is elegant and easy to prepare for celebration dinners like Christmas, New Year's Eve, and Valentines Day. You can do it, and I'll show you how step-by-step for a dinner that will amaze your family and guests.
Why You'll Like This Recipe
Why slow roast a chateaubriand? Because the results are amazing. I've roasted hundreds of pounds of beef tenderloin through the years catering dinner parties and special dinners.
- The beef is a beautiful pink color all the way through, no gray inner ring.
- The slices are so tender they cut like warm butter.
- Slow roasting provides superior results, plus it's so easy!
For another easy tenderloin recipe, try this roast pork tenderloin with a creamy Dijon mustard sauce.
Beef: Chateaubriand is the center cut of a beef tenderloin, the same muscle piece as a filet (the filet is the single individual piece). This center cut is even in thickness from end to end, so it roasts evenly.
If you can't get a center cut piece and there is a narrower end, try to fold the narrow end under to create a more even shaped piece when you tie the beef tenderloin roast.
Seasoning: Salt, ground black pepper, and granulated garlic (optional).
Fat: Olive oil, avocado oil, or a neutral oil like this.
Step 1: Allow the beef to stand at room temperature 1 hour before roasting to get the chill off for better results. While it's warming up, tie the tenderloin with pieces of kitchen twine at 1″ intervals.
Chef's tip: Why tie the meat? Tying helps the meat retain its shape while roasting and roast evenly.
Step 2: Drizzle and season the beef with olive oil, then sprinkle liberally with salt, black pepper and granulated garlic. Optionally, tuck tarragon sprigs or rosemary under the ties over the top and sides of the beef.
Step 3: Pre-heat the oven to 325°F. Ready a rimmed baking sheet by lining with foil or parchment. Place a wire rack in the baking sheet. If you don't have a wire rack, place the beef tenderloin directly onto the foil or parchment.
Place the beef tenderloin on the wire rack and roast until an instant-read thermometer reads to the temperature of your preferred doneness (see below). Pull the meat from the oven a few degrees short of your desired temperature range. Temperatures rises a few degrees as meat rests.
- 120°F - 130°F for rare
- 130°F - 135°F for medium-rare
- 140°F - 145°F for medium
- 145°F - 155°F for medium-well
Timing: My recent 1 ½ pound beef tenderloin took 37 minutes to reach medium. Your timing may be different because ovens vary, and because of convection versus conventional ovens.
Each time you open the oven to check the temperature the oven loses heat. While you need to check towards the end (as to not over cook this gorgeous piece of meat) be aware it may take a little longer due to that loss of heat.
Step 4: Remove the beef tenderloin from the oven when the desired temperature is reached. The temperature will continue to rise when you pull it from the oven. Cover loosely with foil to keep warm. Allow the roast to rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing.
Note - Because beef tenderloin is lean it doesn't need to rest for a long period of time (less fat).
Step 5: Slice and serve overlapping slices on a platter for a wow factor when you bring it to the table.
The first question is where to buy: local butcher shop, open butcher counter or warehouse store. When you decide and shop, ask for a center cut piece.
Butcher Shop or Counter
Beef tenderloin is a luxurious cut. The best place to buy is from a market that has a butcher counter or a local butcher shop.
- You get exactly what you want
- They are usually trimmed (or ask them to do the trimming)
- Saves you time and waste
If the cut looks good but there is still silverskin, it is easy to trim. It looks like packaging tape and does not melt (like fat) during roasting. Slice off with a sharp knife.
I don't usually buy beef tenderloin from a big warehouse store, but many people prefer that. Warehouse stores often sell whole tenderloins: from head to tail, the thick end to the skinny. They are untrimmed in vacuum-sealed packages; more work for you and not all of the weight you buy will be edible as there is waste to discard.
- With packaged pieces it's hard to tell what you are really getting
- With the top price tag of this cut, you should get what you want
- With a whole tenderloin you will need to trim the "chain" which is excess fat and tendons to be discarded.
- If you've never done it, it can be a little intimidating and time consuming.
How Much to Buy
When buying, figure 8 ounces per person of raw weight. Leftovers make a terrific steak salad or sandwich the next day so extra is good.
Set your oven for 325°F. Place the tenderloin on a rimmed baking sheet or in a shallow baking pan. Roast until its reaches the desired temperature: 130°F-135°F for medium rare and 140°F-145°F for medium.
Convection ovens may roast a little faster than conventional ovens. My last 1 ¾ pound tenderloin took approximately 30 minutes to roast to medium rare in a convection oven. Test the meat with a digital thermometer, and test early versus over-cooking. Ovens vary.
Serve: Horseradish Cream Sauce
Here is what to serve with that gorgeous beef. It is a great counterpoint to the slow roasted beef tenderloin. It's great with roast chicken too, even roast or baked salmon.
- Combine ½ cup creme fraiche and ½ cup heavy whipping cream in a bowl and whip with a hand mixer on medium-low until it is thick and creamy.
- Stir in 2-4 tablespoons horseradish, to your taste.
- Add a little fresh lemon juice (½ teaspoon or so), salt, white pepper and either chopped chives or chopped fresh tarragon (optional).
Any questions, please let me know in the comments. I'm happy to help!
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- 1 ½ pounds center cut beef tenderloin trimmed clean
- 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons sea salt
- 2 teaspoons black pepper
- 2 teaspoons granulated garlic
- 1 package fresh tarragon sprigs optional
- Allow the beef to stand at room temperature 1 hour before roasting to get the chill off for better results. Tie tenderloin with pieces of kitchen twine at 1″ intervals. Tie snugly so the meat retains its shape while roasting and roasts evenly. Drizzle the beef all over with olive oil, then sprinkle liberally with salt, black pepper and granulated garlic. Tuck tarragon sprigs under the ties over the top and sides of the beef.
- Pre-heat the oven to 325°F. Place the tenderloin on a rimmed baking sheet covered with parchment. Roast the tenderloin until it reaches your preferred temperature, 130°F-135°F for medium rare and 140°F-145°F for medium. Test at 28-30 minutes. Timing will depend on your oven, whether it is convection or conventional, and the size of the tenderloin. Remove the tenderloin from the oven a few degrees short of your desired temperature range. Temperatures rise 5°F-10°F as meat rests. Do not slice the meat right away. Resting for about 15 minutes re-distributes the internal juices, insuring moist (not dry) beef. Cut off the ties, discard herbs, slice and serve.