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How to Cook Rump Steak

Our guide on how to cook and pair rump steak, a beloved cut known for its rich flavour and satisfying texture. Whether you’re looking to perfect the art of pan-frying, explore the nuances of grilling, or delve into the precision of sous vide, this guide will walk you through various cooking methods tailored to enhance your steak experience. Additionally, we’ll suggest a range of sides and complementary ingredients that beautifully match the robust taste of rump steak. To complete your meal, discover our curated selection of drink pairings, from bold red wines and hearty beers to non-alcoholic alternatives.

  • Rump steaks
  • Salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1. Pan-Frying

  1. Prepare the Steak: Remove the steak from the fridge at least 30 minutes before cooking to allow it to come to room temperature. This helps in cooking the steak evenly.
  2. Season the Steak: Generously season both sides with salt and pepper.
  3. Heat the Pan: Place a frying pan or skillet over medium-high heat and add a splash of olive oil or a knob of butter.
  4. Cook the Steak: Once the oil is hot or the butter has melted and is bubbling, add the steak. Cook for 3-4 minutes on each side for medium-rare, or longer depending on your preferred doneness.
  5. Rest the Steak: Remove the steak from the pan and let it rest on a plate for about 5 minutes before slicing. This helps retain the juices.

2. Grilling

  1. Prepare the Steak: As above, let the steak reach room temperature and season with salt and pepper.
  2. Preheat the Grill: Preheat your grill to high. You want it very hot to sear the steak.
  3. Grill the Steak: Place the steak on the grill. Cook for 3-4 minutes on each side for medium-rare. Adjust the timing based on thickness and desired doneness.
  4. Rest the Steak: Rest the steak as detailed above.

3. Sous Vide

  1. Season and Bag: Season the steak and place it in a vacuum-seal bag, removing all the air.
  2. Set the Sous Vide: Preheat your sous vide to the desired final temperature (for medium-rare, about 55-57°C).
  3. Cook: Place the bag in the water bath and cook for 1-2 hours for steaks up to an inch thick.
  4. Sear: After cooking, quickly sear the steak on a very hot pan or grill for 1 minute per side to develop a crust.
  5. Rest and Serve: Let the steak rest, then serve as desired.

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Garlic Butter Mushrooms

  • Ingredients: Fresh mushrooms, garlic, butter, parsley.
  • Method: Sauté sliced mushrooms in butter with finely chopped garlic until golden. Finish with chopped parsley for freshness.

Roasted Potatoes

  • Ingredients: Baby potatoes, olive oil, rosemary, salt, pepper.
  • Method: Halve the potatoes and toss with olive oil, rosemary, salt, and pepper. Roast in a preheated oven at 200°C until crispy and golden.

Creamed Spinach

  • Ingredients: Fresh spinach, cream, garlic, nutmeg, Parmesan cheese.
  • Method: Wilt spinach in a pan, drain excess liquid. Return to pan, add garlic, cream, and a pinch of nutmeg. Cook until thickened and sprinkle with Parmesan before serving.

Peppercorn Sauce

  • Ingredients: Beef stock, cream, crushed peppercorns, brandy (optional), butter.
  • Method: Reduce beef stock with crushed peppercorns and a splash of brandy. Add cream and simmer until thickened. Finish with a knob of butter for a glossy sauce.

Garden Salad

  • Ingredients: Mixed salad greens, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, red onion, vinaigrette.
  • Method: Toss the greens, sliced cherry tomatoes, cucumber, and red onion with a light vinaigrette.

Grilled Asparagus

  • Ingredients: Asparagus, olive oil, lemon zest, salt, pepper.
  • Method: Trim asparagus, drizzle with olive oil, and season. Grill until tender and finish with lemon zest.

Sweet Potato Fries

  • Ingredients: Sweet potatoes, olive oil, paprika, salt.
  • Method: Cut sweet potatoes into fries, toss with olive oil, paprika, and salt. Bake in a preheated oven at 220°C until crispy.


  • Ingredients: Cabbage, carrot, mayonnaise, vinegar, sugar, salt, pepper.
  • Method: Shred cabbage and carrot, mix with mayonnaise, a dash of vinegar, sugar, salt, and pepper to taste.

Onion Rings

  • Ingredients: Onions, flour, beer batter, oil for frying.
  • Method: Slice onions, dip in flour then into beer batter, and deep fry until golden.

Baked Beans

  • Ingredients: Canned beans, tomato sauce, brown sugar, vinegar, mustard.
  • Method: Simmer all ingredients together until thick and flavorful.

Ingredients that Pair Well

Herbs and Spices

  • Rosemary: Its woodsy aroma pairs wonderfully with beef.
  • Thyme: Adds a subtle, earthy flavour to steak.
  • Garlic: Offers a pungent kick that complements the rich beefy flavours.
  • Black Pepper: Provides a sharp, spicy contrast to the richness of the meat.
  • Mustard: Adds depth and a bit of heat, especially in marinades or sauces.

Sauces and Condiments

  • Worcestershire Sauce: Adds a tangy depth to marinades and sauces.
  • Soy Sauce: Imparts a salty, umami flavour, great for marinades.
  • Horseradish: Offers a spicy counterbalance to the fatty richness.
  • Bearnaise Sauce: A classic French sauce that’s creamy with a tarragon flavour.
  • Blue Cheese: Its bold flavour complements the savoury taste of beef.

Fats and Oils

  • Butter: Adds richness and helps in forming a delicious crust when searing.
  • Olive Oil: Ideal for dressing salads or vegetables served with steak.
  • Duck Fat: Perfect for roasting potatoes to serve as a side.


  • Mushrooms: Their earthy taste matches well with the umami of beef.
  • Onions: Caramelised onions add sweetness and a bit of texture.
  • Asparagus: Its mild, slightly grassy taste pairs well with the robust flavour of steak.
  • Tomatoes: Fresh or slow-roasted tomatoes add acidity and brightness.


  • Lemons: A squeeze of lemon adds brightness and cuts through the fat.
  • Figs: When in season, figs can add a sweet note that contrasts nicely with savoury steak.


  • Parmesan: Sprinkled over vegetables or salads, it adds a salty, umami quality.
  • Gorgonzola: Melts beautifully on top of steak for a creamy texture and tangy taste.


  • Walnuts: Toasted and tossed into salads for a crunchy contrast.

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Hot Tips

  • Dry Pat: Always pat your steak dry before seasoning to ensure a perfect sear.
  • Don't Overcrowd: Cook in batches if necessary to avoid steaming the steaks instead of searing them.
  • Thermometer Use: Use a meat thermometer to check for perfect doneness. Aim for 50-52°C for rare, 55-60°C for medium-rare, and 60-65°C for medium.


Red Wine

  • Cabernet Sauvignon: Known for its bold flavours and firm tannins, it complements the richness of steak perfectly.
  • Malbec: With smoother textures and dark fruit flavours, Malbec pairs nicely with the robust taste of beef.
  • Shiraz/Syrah: The spicy and hearty notes of this wine stand up well against a flavourful rump steak.
  • Merlot: For those preferring something softer, Merlot’s plush and velvety texture is an excellent match.

White Wine

  • Chardonnay: A full-bodied Chardonnay can complement steak, especially if it's served with a creamy sauce or buttery sides.


  • Stout or Porter: These beers offer roasted malt flavours that echo the charred exterior of grilled or pan-fried steak.
  • Pale Ale: Its crisp bitterness can cut through the fattiness of the steak, refreshing the palate.


  • Whisky: A good whisky, especially one with smoky or oaky undertones, can be a bold pairing that matches well with the strong flavours of grilled steak.
  • Bourbon: Its sweet and full-bodied nature complements the meaty, umami flavours of steak.

Non-Alcoholic Options

  • Sparkling Water: A refreshing choice that helps cleanse the palate between bites.
  • Iced Tea: A lightly sweetened or lemon iced tea can provide a refreshing contrast to the richness of the steak.