Cedar-Planked Bone-In Filets with Horseradish Crab Butter

Tenderloin filet is highly desired for its extremely tender texture, but it is not as flavorful as some of the other favorite steak cuts. We tackle this on three fronts to add more flavor: we’re using wet-aged prime bone-in filets; we’re grilling the steaks on cedar planks; and we’re topping them with a compound butter. The butter combines the richness of lump crab meat, balanced by tangy horseradish and a touch of parsley. These will be VERY flavorful filets indeed.

By Russ Faulk, Kalamazoo Outdoor Gourmet
Serves 4
Image of Cedar-Planked Bone-In Filets with Horseradish Crab Butter


For the Horseradish Crab Butter

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 5 teaspoons prepared horseradish
  • Leaves picked from 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • ½ teaspoon smoked Maldon sea salt
  • ½ cup cooked lump crab meat (I used crab meat from a can)
  • 1 pinch ground cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped

For the steaks

  • 4 cedar planks, soaked for 4 hours
  • 4 bone-in tenderloin filets, about 12 ounces each
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Fine sea salt
  • Freshly-cracked black pepper

Prepare the Horseradish Crab Butter by stirring together all of the ingredients. Spread into a line on one end of a sheet of wax paper. Use the wax paper to roll and compress into a cylinder. Refrigerate for 1 hour.

Remove the steaks from the refrigerator.

Prepare the grill for direct grilling at about 600°F.

Brush the steaks with olive oil and season liberally with salt and pepper.

Brown the steaks on the tops, bottoms and all sides over the hottest part of the fire. Remove them from the fire and brush with more olive oil. Transfer to the soaked cedar planks, and place the planks over the hot fire. After 15 minutes on the planks, turn the steaks over and top each one with a pat of Horseradish Crab Butter, reserving at least half of the butter to add later if necessary. Cook the steaks to 120°F internal temperature for medium rare, about 20 to 30 minutes total time on the planks. Keep the grill closed as much as possible during this time, but beware of the planks igniting.

Note, plank grilling is normally done in the indirect zone for a longer period at lower temperatures. Our cedar-planked filets are being cooked at high temperatures for more smoke and more flavor. Keep a squirt bottle of water handy to douse the flames around the edges of the planks.

Transfer the planks to heat-resistant platters or on top of additional, unused planks, and let the steaks rest for 3 minutes before serving.