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Steak with Peppercorn Sauce (Steak au Poivre)

5 from 3 reviews

A delicious Steak with Peppercorn Sauce (Steak au Poivre) which can be made in 30 minutes! Use beef fillet or filet mignon for a delicious treat with this easy and creamy peppercorn sauce.


For the Beef

For the Peppercorn Sauce


  1. Heat the oil in a large frying pan which can fit all of the pieces of beef comfortably.
  2. Season each piece of beef with salt and pepper. (See Kitchen Notes)
  3. Sear each piece of beef over medium-high heat until you have a nice golden crust on each side. This should take about 4-5 minutes per side for medium-rare meat. If you like your beef more well-done, cook it for longer. (See Kitchen Notes)
  4. Remove the beef to a plate and set aside.
  5. Turn the heat down and add the butter and shallots.
  6. Use a wooden spoon to try and scrape any caramelised bits from the pan.
  7. Add the brandy or cognac and let the mixture bubble away for a few minutes.
  8. Add the stock, cream, and green peppercorns.
  9. Simmer gently for 3-5 minutes.
  10. Meanwhile, mix the cornflour (cornstarch) with a bit of water.
  11. To thicken the sauce, pour some of the cornflour mixture into the sauce and quickly mix it in with a spoon. Add more cornflour mixture as necessary until the sauce has thickened to your liking.
  12. Taste for seasoning.
  13. Return the pieces of beef to the pan and reheat them briefly in the sauce.
  14. Sprinkle with parsley before serving.
  15. Serve with steamed greens, boiled potatoes, roast potatoes or French fries.

Kitchen Notes

I recommend any high-quality cut of beef for this dish, including beef fillet, sirloin, rump, entrecôte, and porterhouse steak.

If you like your food spicy, be generous with the freshly ground pepper. You could go one step further by coarsely crushing black peppercorns and/or toasted sichuan peppercorns in a mortar and pestle and pressing the crushed peppercorns onto both sides of the beef before searing.

For a mild heat, or if you are also serving children, a few grinds of the pepper mill should be fine.

To make this recipe dairy-free, omit the butter and substitute the cream for a plant-based soya cream. Start with half the quantity of soya cream, and add more to taste.

The best way to test the doneness of your beef is to use a digital meat thermometer. Temperatures should be as follows:
Rare 115°F (46°C)
Medium-Rare 120°F (48°C)
Medium 130°F (54°C)
Medium-Well 140°F (60°C)
Well-done 150°F (65°C)