Crab imperial filet mignon is a sponsored post on behalf of Certified Angus Beef ® brand. All opinions and statements are 100% my own.
Looking for a way to spice up a special dinner or even just feel like switching it up and making something nice? Filet mignon served Oscar style is an excellent way to do just that.
This beef with crab imperial recipe is the perfect surf and turf combination that everyone will love! A fancy meal that is actually pretty easy to prepare and always garners a few jaw drops.
What's In This Article
Filet Mignon with Crab Topping (Oscar Style)
I really struggled naming this dish. In a nutshell it is filet mignon topped with a crab imperial, but so many restaurants use so many different names for this “style” of serving that you aren’t quite sure what people expect.
Steak Oscar (Filet Oscar or Oscar Style Steak) filet mignon topped with shrimp, crab or lobster, many times asparagus and smothered in a sauce, usually hollandaise sauce or béarnaise sauce. For mine, I find these both to be too overpowering with so much egg yolk especially if made with fresh tarragon, so I opt for a lighter Beurre Blanc, just plain melted butter or even lemon juice.
Asparagus spears are also customary for Oscar-style steak. They can be served either on the side or on top, but isn’t necessary. If you want them on top, simply pan fry tender asparagus tips and spoon them over after baking the crab imperial. Bacon wrapped asparagus and garlic parmesan asparagus are my favorites.
What is filet mignon? Filet mignon means “tender filet”, “delicate filet”, or “fine filet”. It comes from the smaller end of the beef tenderloin, sometimes referred to as “tenderloin steaks” or the “short loin”.
I was making Mini Beef Wellington for New Year’s Eve and had tenderloin leftover that I didn’t want to go to waste. It was just hubby and I on a Friday night, so I decided, what the heck!
Let’s have a fancy dinner… in our pajamas… while we binge watch Netflix. I mean, who doesn’t want an excuse to eat filet mignon? Edited: this was long before we had kids!
My choice for beef is always Certified Angus Beef ® brand. I don’t have to mess around with checking out the texture and marbling, just seeing the label means it has already been scrutinized and presumed worthy by the brand itself. Being the author of a beef cookbook, I am kind of an expert.
Guide to Blue Crab Meat
One thing you might want to stop and spend a few more minutes on is shopping for crab meat. Aim to get a non-pasteurized meat, but if that isn’t available, no worries.
For crab imperials, most people use a blue crab as opposed to King or snow crab. The little lumps are perfect for this type of recipe. Lump or jumbo lump are ideal, but more expensive.
- Claw– dark meat that comes from the claw, a little more stringy than other varieties.
- Special– smaller pieces, comes from small little crevices or the “special” sections of the crab, good for flavoring and dips.
- Backfin– some larger lumps coming from, you guessed it, the back of the shell, whiter meat, does well in crab cakes, feathery texture.
- Jumbo lump– large, lumps of meat, the beauty is the large pieces used for crab meat cocktails or delicious to pop in your mouth plain, very tasty and moist.
You can also opt for a backfin or claw, but it won’t be in chunks. You don’t need much, so you can either freeze the rest or buy it from the seafood section in ounces instead of in a can.
What Else You’ll Need
In addition to the two big ones: beef and crab, these are the other items you’ll need to make your amazing meal.
- Coarse kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper– for seasoning
- Vegetable oil– this is only needed if you aren’t using a cast iron pan. Vegetable oil has a higher smoke point than butter or olive oil, so it is ideal for this type of pan searing. Use a minimal amount, just enough to prevent sticking, not a whole pool.
- Mayonnaise & Egg White– Both serve as a binder, but mayo also helps keep the imperial topping super moist and creamy.
- Bread crumbs– Helps hold it all together and also gives a slight texture. They will plump up with the liquids. Seasoned, unseasoned and panko all work.
- Flat Parsley– Also known as Italian parsley, gives a tiny bit of herby flavor and color.
- Lemon juice– Use fresh lemon juice for the brightest flavors.
- Worcestershire sauce– A little goes a long way with this robust flavor.
- Old Bay Seasoning– A Maryland institution as far as seafood goes, we use nothing else, but any salt seafood seasoning works.
Can I make the same crab topping for other cuts of beef? Sure! Any cut of seared beef like a NY strip steak or even veal (veal oscar), can be made oscar style. You can even put it on chicken, which is called Chicken Chesapeake. You can even use salmon or other fish.
How to Make It
There are three stages, four if you count garnishing, to making Crab Imperial Filet Mignon.
- Sear the steaks. A cast iron skillet is your best friend for this task. And if you use an oven safe skillet, then you don’t need a separate baking dish. Just sear the outside of both sides of the filet in a hot skillet to below your desired temperature because they will cook more in the oven and while resting. This is really just to get a nice brown on the outside.
- Make the Oscar Style Topping- Mix together all of the ingredients except the crab meat until well blended, then fold in the lump crabmeat by hand being careful to not break up the large chunks. Evenly divide and then put a scoop of creamy crab oscar on top of each filet.
- Cook. Place the whole thing into the oven and cook until just browned on top. All of the ingredients are already cooked the time it goes in, so you are really just looking for it to heat all the way through. Using a meat thermometer and test the doneness for your desired temperature. Yes, there is egg white, but most grocery store bought eggs are pasteurized and you don’t need to worry. Cook it and let it rest before serving. Don’t skip the resting!
- Top. Cook’s choice here as how to top it. You can go with just plain fresh lemon juice, melted butter, clarified butter or beurre blanc sauce. Some store also sell their own lemon butter sauce or white wine sauce. All are great, you just won’t want something that will overpower the buttery crab meat. Some folks also enjoy a sprinkle of parmesan cheese or chives.
What to Serve it With
Any typical steakhouse side dish is perfect, but it is also a lot of food, so no need to make a lot. A veggie and starch are all you need. Here are my favorites:
Make Ahead & Storage
You can prepare the crab topping ahead of time, but it is really best enjoyed fresh from the oven.
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. It can probably go longer, but I’m always careful with seafood. Reheat in the oven or microwave.
More easy beef recipes:
Oscar Style Steak (Crab oscar)
For the Filet:
- 4 8-ounce filet mignon
- coarse kosher salt & freshly ground pepper
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil , optional* see notes
For the crab imperial:
- Season the beef with the salt and freshly ground pepper. Set aside at room temperture while preparing other ingredients.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F degrees and line a baking dish with aluminum foil, unless you are using a cast iron or oven safe skillet, then this is unnecessary.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, bread crumbs, egg white, parsley, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce and Old Bay seasoning. Gently fold in the crab meat. Place in the refrigerator until ready to use.
- If using a well-seasoned cast iron pan, no additional oil is needed, but if using stainless steel or another type of pan, heat the oil over medium-high heat. When hot, carefully add the beef. Depending on preference, sear for 2-4 minutes on each side. Remember, the steak will continue cooking in the oven, so you want it to be undercooked, just nicely seared on the outside. If you like your steak well done, cook for longer.
- Remove the steaks and place onto prepared baking dish. Top each generously with crab imperial mixture. Place in the hot oven for 12 minutes, or until crab imperial turns golden brown on top.
- Remove and spoon clarified butter or beurre blanc sauce over each filet mignon. Top with parsley and serve with lemon wedges, if desired.
- If you liked this recipe, come back and let us know how you liked it in the comments or star ratings.