Smoked NY Strip Steak: Elevate Your Grilling Game with Flavor

Written by: Samir P.



Time to read 9 min


If you're a grill enthusiast looking to take your outdoor cooking to the next level, smoked NY strip steak is a game-changer. This delightful technique infuses the rich flavors of hardwood smoke into the succulent strip steak, creating a culinary masterpiece that will leave your taste buds begging for more. In this blog, we'll explore the art of smoking NY strip steak, offering step-by-step instructions, expert tips, and mouthwatering recipes to elevate your grilling game. Prepare to embark on a flavorful journey as we unveil the secrets of creating tender and smoky perfection with your trusty grill.

1. Understanding the Art of Smoking

Understanding the art of smoking is a culinary journey that unlocks a world of flavors and textures. Smoking is a time-honored cooking technique that dates back centuries, originating to preserve food. Today, it has evolved into a popular grilling approach, appreciated for its unique taste.

Smoking involves slow-cooking food over low, indirect heat while infusing it with the alluring aromas and flavors of burning hardwood chips or chunks. The key to successful smoking is selecting the right wood, as each type lends distinct characteristics to the food. Hickory delivers a robust, smoky flavor, while fruitwoods like applewood offer a milder sweetness.

Smoking is a labor of love that demands patience, as low temperatures and long cooking times are essential to allow the smoke to penetrate and transform the food's taste profile. This process tenderizes the meat, imbuing it with a unique smokiness that enhances its natural flavors.

Whether you're smoking a tender NY strip steak or a succulent rack of ribs, understanding the art of smoking is about achieving a delicate balance between temperature, smoke, and time. It's a skill that elevates outdoor cooking to a culinary art form, satisfying both the chef and the lucky diners with a taste sensation that is rich, complex, and utterly irresistible.

Understanding the art of smoking

2. Selecting the Perfect NY Strip Steak

Selecting the perfect NY strip steak is the first step towards creating a memorable and delicious smoked new york strip steak. Key factors contribute to finding the ideal cut that promises tenderness, juiciness, and exceptional flavor.

Begin by choosing a reputable source or butcher known for offering high-quality meats. Look for well-marbled strip steaks with a deep red, as marbling indicates a well-aged and flavorful cut. USDA Prime or Choice grades are excellent for a marbled and tender NY strip steak.

Next, consider the thickness of the steak. Aim for a cut that is approximately 1 to 1.5 inches thick. This thickness ensures the steak will cook evenly and provides enough surface area for a seared delectable crust.

Evenness in thickness is also crucial to ensure uniform cooking. Avoid steaks with uneven thickness, as this may lead to undercooked or overcooked sections.

Lastly, examine the appearance and texture of the meat. A fresh, quality NY strip steak should have a firm texture with minimal discoloration or bruising.

By considering these factors and selecting a high-quality NY strip steak with marbling, even thickness, and vibrant color, you lay the foundation for a mouthwatering and unforgettable smoked strip steak. When grilled, seasoned to perfection, and served alongside your favorite sides, the perfect NY strip steak will be a star on your plate and a delight to your palate.

selecting the perfect new york strip steak

3. Preparing the NY Strip Steak

Properly preparing the NY strip steak is a crucial step in unlocking its full potential and ensuring a delightful smoked NY strip steak dining experience. Follow these essential steps to prepare your steak to perfection:

  1. Thawing and Seasoning: If your NY strip steak is frozen, thaw it in the refrigerator overnight or according to the packaging instructions. Once thawed, remove the steak from the refrigerator and let it rest at room temperature for about 30 minutes. This allows the meat to temper, resulting in more even cooking. Before cooking, pat the steak dry with paper towels to remove any excess moisture, allowing the seasonings to adhere better.
  2. Seasoning: Generously season the NY strip steak with kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper, and any desired herbs or spices. The simplicity of salt and pepper enhances the natural flavors of the meat. Optionally, you can add additional spices or herbs, such as garlic powder, rosemary, or thyme, to elevate the taste according to your preference.
  3. Bringing to Room Temperature: Allow the seasoned NY strip steak to sit at room temperature for another 10-15 minutes before cooking. Bringing the meat closer to room temperature ensures more even cooking and reduces the risk of overcooking the exterior while achieving the desired internal doneness.

By properly preparing the NY strip steak with the right seasoning, temperature, and cooking technique, you ensure a succulent and delicious smoked NY strip steak. With these essential preparations, you're on your way to savoring a delectable NY strip steak that will impress your taste buds and delight your guests.

preparing the new york strip steak

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4. Choosing the Right Wood for Smoked NY Strip Steak

Choosing the right wood is critical in achieving the perfect flavor when smoking NY strip steak. The type of wood you select will directly influence the taste profile of the finished dish.

Popular hardwood options for smoking include hickory, mesquite, oak, cherry, applewood, and pecan. Each wood imparts distinct flavors to the meat, allowing you to experiment with various taste experiences.

Hickory delivers a robust and smoky flavor, perfect for those who enjoy a bold taste. Mesquite offers an intense smokiness, best suited for shorter smoking times due to its potency. Cherry and applewood provide a mild and slightly sweet flavor, ideal for complementing the natural taste of the NY strip steak.

To choose the right wood, consider your preferences and the desired taste outcome. Pairing the perfect wood with your seasoned NY strip steak will elevate the grilling experience, infusing your meat with delectable flavors and creating a truly unforgettable culinary delight.

choosing the right wood for smoking

5. Setting up the Smoker

Setting up the smoker correctly is a crucial step in smoking NY strip steak to perfection. Properly preparing the smoker ensures a consistent and controlled cooking environment, allowing the hardwood smoke to infuse the meat with its delightful flavors.

  1. Choose the Right Smoker: There are various types of smokers available, including charcoal, electric, propane, and pellet smokers. Each type has its advantages, but all can produce excellent results with the right technique.
  2. Preheat the Smoker: Before adding the wood chips or chunks, preheat the smoker to the desired cooking temperature, typically between 225°F to 250°F (107°C to 121°C). This low and slow cooking temperature allows the meat to absorb the smoky flavors gradually.
  3. Soak the Wood: If you're using wood chips or chunks, soak them in water for about 30 minutes before adding them to the smoker. Soaking prevents the wood from burning too quickly and helps produce a steady stream of smoke throughout the cooking process.
  4. Place the Wood: For electric and propane smokers, place the soaked wood chips in the designated smoker box or on a piece of foil. For charcoal smokers, add the wood chunks directly onto the hot coals.
  5. Water Pan (Optional): Some smokers come with a water pan, which can help maintain a moist cooking environment. Placing a water pan in the smoker can help regulate the temperature and prevent the meat from drying out during the long smoking process.
  6. Monitor the Temperature: Throughout the smoking process, keep a close eye on the smoker's temperature using a built-in thermometer or an external meat thermometer. Adjust the vents or burner settings as needed to maintain a steady cooking temperature.

By properly setting up the smoker, you ensure a successful smoking session that infuses the NY strip steak with the enticing flavors of hardwood smoke. This methodical approach allows for a controlled and consistent cooking environment, ensuring a delectable smoked NY strip steak that will impress everyone at the table.

setting up the smoker

6. Smoking the NY Strip Steak

Smoking the NY strip steak is a culinary adventure that infuses this delectable cut of meat with the alluring flavors of hardwood smoke. After properly preparing the smoker and choosing the right wood, it's time to embark on the smoking process.

  1. Preheat the Smoker: Ensure the smoker is preheated to the desired temperature, typically between 225°F to 250°F (107°C to 121°C). This low and slow cooking temperature is essential for gently infusing the meat with the rich flavors of the wood smoke.
  2. Add the Wood: If you're using wood chips or chunks, place them in the designated smoker box or on a piece of foil. For charcoal smokers, add the wood chunks directly onto the hot coals.
  3. Place the Steak: Carefully place the seasoned NY strip steak on the smoker's cooking grate, away from direct heat. This indirect cooking method ensures the steak is exposed to the flavorful smoke without being overcooked by direct flames.
  4. Monitor the Smoking Process: Throughout the smoking process, maintain a consistent cooking temperature, and keep an eye on the smoker's smoke production. Adjust the vents or burner settings as needed to control the amount of smoke and maintain a steady temperature.
  5. Smoking Time: The smoking time will vary depending on the thickness of the NY strip steak and the desired level of doneness. On average, it may take around 1 to 2 hours to achieve the desired internal temperature.
  6. Testing for Doneness: Use an instant-read meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of the smoked NY strip steak. Aim for around 135°F (57°C) for medium-rare or adjust the temperature to your preferred level of doneness.

By embracing the art of smoking, you transform the NY strip steak into a tender and flavor-packed delight. The slow and low cooking process infuses the meat with the enticing aromas of hardwood smoke, resulting in a memorable and mouthwatering culinary experience that will have everyone eagerly anticipating the next smoky masterpiece.

smoking the ny strip steak

7. Monitoring and Testing for Doneness

Monitoring and testing for doneness is crucial when smoking NY strip steak to ensure it reaches the perfect level of tenderness and flavor. Throughout the smoking process, it's essential to keep a close eye on the steak's internal temperature using an instant-read meat thermometer. Insert the thermometer into the thickest part of the meat, away from any bones or fat, to get an accurate reading.

Aim for an internal temperature of around 135°F (57°C) for medium-rare doneness. Remember that the temperature will continue to rise slightly during the resting period, so it's best to remove the steak from the smoker when it is a few degrees below your desired final temperature.

Testing for doneness is essential, as overcooking the NY strip steak can result in a loss of tenderness and juiciness. By carefully monitoring the internal temperature and removing the steak at the right moment, you'll achieve a perfectly cooked smoked NY strip steak that is moist, tender, and bursting with a smoky flavor.

monitoring and testing for doneness

8. Resting and Slicing the Steak

Resting and slicing the smoked NY strip steak are the final steps in creating a memorable dining experience. After removing the steak from the smoker, it's crucial to rest for about 5-10 minutes before slicing. Resting allows the meat's juices to redistribute, ensuring a tender and flavorful result.
Place the steak on a cutting board and loosely tent it with foil to rest it. This helps retain the steak's heat while preventing it from continuing to cook.

Once the resting period is complete, it's time to slice the smoked NY strip steak. For optimal tenderness, slice the steak against the grain. This technique cuts through the muscle fibers, making the meat easier to chew and enhancing its tenderness.

It's ready to be served with the steak perfectly rested and expertly sliced. Whether enjoyed on its own or paired with your favorite sides, the smoked NY strip steak will surely be a showstopper, impressing everyone with its tantalizing smoky flavor and melt-in-your-mouth texture.

resting and slicing the strip steak


Smoking NY strip steak is a culinary adventure that adds depth and complexity to an already delicious cut of meat. By understanding the art of smoking, selecting the perfect steak, and mastering the cooking process, you can create a delectable dish that will delight your family and friends. Prepare to impress with the enticing flavors of hardwood smoke, elevating your grilling game to new heights. Whether you're a seasoned griller or a novice, embracing the world of smoked NY strip steak will undoubtedly make your outdoor cooking sessions a mouthwatering success.

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