Filet Mignon

Whether you prize it or think it's completely overhyped, filet mignon makes you picture an expensive, candlelit dinner at a high-end restaurant (cliché points if it's Valentine's Day). But there's a reason this cut of beef comes with a hefty price tag: it cooks up incredibly tender and comes in limited supply. Unlike muscley brisket, filet mignon comes from the tail end of the much smaller tenderloin. You won't have to do much (and shouldn't) to a filet mignon to get an almost buttery piece of meat. It's lean without a ton of beefy flavor, so it's often served with sauce or wrapped in bacon to keep it from drying out. F&W's guide has all the recipe ideas you'll need to cook up an extra-special dinner.

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Creamed Spinach–Stuffed Filet Roast
Ultratender filet of beef gets rolled around creamed spinach in this fun and delicious play on a classic steakhouse pairing.
Wok-Seared Steak Majong with Shishito Peppers
Rating: Unrated 1
For this brightly flavored stir-fry, chef George Chen of San Francisco’s China Live combines crunchy, spicy shishito peppers and pieces of tender beef the size of mah-jongg tiles.   Slideshow:  More Chinese Recipes 
Shaking Beef
Rating: Unrated 5117
Cubes of beef tenderloin are supertender in this wonderfully spiced and elegant Vietnamese classic. It’s called “shaking beef” because you shake the pan to toss the beef while cooking it. More Fast Asian Recipes
Beef Tenderloin Sandwiches with Norton-Shiitake Sauce
Rating: Unrated 4763
Riddle's Penultimate Cafe & Wine Bar in St. Louis mentions many of the local farmers who supply the ingredients on its quirky menu. Chef and owner Andy Ayers loves the organic shiitakes from Ozark Forest Mushrooms's farm in Salem, Missouri, because they add an intensely earthy flavor to these meaty, garlicky sandwiches with their wine-spiked sauce. More Steak Sandwiches