Parisian Steak Frites

Everything you need to know to make this classic French bistro staple at home! You feel like you’re in Paris when you eat my Parisian Steak Frites.

Steak Frites on a blue and white plate

Take me back to Paris! BMW and I have visited Paris several times, both individually and together as a couple. Obviously, we love food and we love to travel to eat good food, so naturally, Paris was a perfect fit for part of our honeymoon. We ate some incredible meals and drank some excellent wine and enjoyed walking around those beautiful streets. It’s hard not to fall in love, or more in love in our case, in Paris. On our most recent trip, we hit up some amazing bistros, and a favorite dish of ours was of course Steak Frites!

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Parisian Steak Frites

Once we got back home from our wedding and honeymoon, we started settling into our routine again, and cooking up a storm. One recipe we knew we wanted to recreate was steak frites! When we dined in Paris, we had it served sometimes with sauce and sometimes without. This version doesn’t have a sauce per se, but I did whip up a horseradish aioli that pairs quite nicely with both the steak and the frites!

What Type of Steak to Use for Steak Frites

Steak Frites is most commonly served as a filet. We have also served it with a bone-in ribeye, served sliced on a large platter, and it was quite a hit with guests. However, if you want your steak frites to be more authentic, then I recommend serving it with a filet.

Steak filtes cooking in a cast iron skilletHow to Cook a Filet for Steak Frites 

Cooking a filet for steak frites is very similar to cooking a steak in a cast iron. Ok, it’s like really, really similar. But to refresh, you want to get your skillet nice and hot, sear the steak on both sides, and most importantly, let it rest.

First, let the skillet get nice and hot. Typically, we will place our well-seasoned cast iron skillet over the highest flame for about five minutes before cooking. Meanwhile, let the filets come to room temperature and then season with salt and pepper. I recommend using fresh cracked black pepper for a little extra flavor!

Pepper mill grinding over steak filets

How Long to Cook Your Filet for Steak Frites

How long you sear the filet depends on how you like your steak cooked and how thick the filet is. Generally speaking, for a filet that is 2-3 inches thick, you will want to cook for about 2 to 3 minutes on each side for medium rare. For medium, it will be more like 3 to 4 minutes on each side. You will want to pull the steak off the skillet before it reaches your desired temperature as the filet will continue to cook after it is off the skillet. Wrap the filet in foil immediately after removing from the skillet and let it rest for at least 5 minutes, up to 10 minutes and then serve.

I highly suggest using an instant read thermometer (yes, this a pricey one but it’s the best brand out there and you get what you pay for. We’ve been using ours for years!) so you don’t over cook your steaks. For rare, pull your filet at 90-95 degrees F, wrap and let rest for at least 5 minutes. For medium rare, pull your filet at 110 degrees F, wrap and let rest for at least 5 minutes. And you get the idea for medium or fully cooked.


Bowl of french fries on a white and blue plate

Traditional French Frites

What goes better with steak than frites! In fact, it pairs so well, I wrote an entire post about how make the crispiest, best french fries. You can make the fries as thick or as thin as you want. I love a thin, almost shoestring, crispy fry to accompany my steak!

Many French bistros serve sauce with their steak frites, many do not. It’s really up to you. I love serving my steak frites with a horseradish aioli. It has so much flavor and pairs well with both the frites and the steak for dipping!

Steak Frites on a blue and white plate

What Wine to Drink with Steak Frites

Ah now for the most important part! It wouldn’t be very French of us to talk about a meal without discussing the type of wine with which it should be served. I suggest pairing your Parisian Steak Frites with a big, bold French wine of course. A Bordeaux or Côtes du Rhône will work nicely with this meal. I like to chill my wine for a bit before my guests arrived and then pour the wine into a beautiful decanter to be served at the table.

Steak Frites on a blue and white plate

Parisian Steak Frites Recipe

Serves Two



2 small beef filets, 7-8 ounces each

1 teaspoon black pepper

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 tablespoon butter, unsalted



2 large russet potatoes

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste

4-5 cups of vegetable or peanut oil for frying


Horseradish Aioli: 

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1 large tablespoon prepared horseradish

1 large tablespoon garlic paste, or pressed garlic cloves

2 teaspoons lemons juice, preferably fresh squeezed

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon black pepper




  1. Season steaks with salt and pepper and let come to room temperature, 10-15 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, heat cast iron skillet on high flame for about 5 minutes.
  3. Sear steaks on first side for 2-3 minutes, then flip and add butter on top and let melt.
  4. Remove steaks from heat once they reach 10-15 degrees below desired temperature. Wrap in foil and let sit at least 5 minutes before serving.


See recipe here!

Horseradish Aioli: 

  1. Whisk all the ingredients together until well combined.
  2. Do a little taste test and see if it needs more salt or horseradish depending on your preferences for salty and spicy!

Have you had Steak Frites in Paris?! Drop your stories in the comments!



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Natalie Paramore

The places I go, the things I do and what I eat.



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