seared flank steak

How to Air Fry a Frozen Steak

Whether you forgot to thaw your steak (#relatable) or you have a sudden-onset craving for steak and don’t have one thawed, knowing how to cook one from frozen is a handy skill. Time to break out the air fryer.

Thanks to this fantastic appliance, you can go from “I want steak” to cutting into one in under 30 minutes.

The trick to seasoning an air-fried frozen steak

One thing to note about air frying a frozen steak: You can’t marinate it, and the seasonings don’t have as much time to penetrate, so it requires more seasoning than you may be used to.

Salt and pepper can stay the same, but for other herbs and spices, or rubs, plan to use about 50% more than you would with a thawed steak. Also, after slicing, sprinkle the steak with coarse sea salt to make sure you get a little hit of salt in every bite.

Air fryer steak

Air Fryer Frozen Steak

5 from 4 votes
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Protein: Beef
Diet: Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Low carb
Course: Main Course
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 1 (can be doubled)


  • 1 ButcherBox strip loin steak, flatiron or ribeye  about 10 ounces
  • 1 tbsp avocado oil
  • Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Steak rub, garlic powder, dried rosemary or other seasoning optional
  • Flaky sea salt


  • Preheat an air fryer on 400ºF for 5 minutes.
  • Remove the steak from the packaging. Brush all over with the oil. Season generously with salt and pepper, and any other seasonings. Use at least 50% more seasoning than you normally would for a thawed steak.
  • Place the steak in the air fryer and cook until an instant-read thermometer stuck into the thickest part reads 120ºF to 125ºF for medium rare, 8 to 12 minutes, flipping the steak halfway through. 
  • Turn off the air fryer and open the door so that there’s about a 1-inch opening; let the steak rest for 5 minutes. Transfer the steak to a cutting board and slice against the grain. Sprinkle the steak with flaky sea salt and serve.
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Beth Lipton is a Brooklyn-based recipe developer and writer specializing in food and wellness. Her work has appeared in Clean Eating, Paleo magazine,, Well+Good, Outside, and more. Beth's latest cookbook, Carnivore-ish, featuring 125 animal protein-forward recipes, is available now.