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The Tournedos come from the Short Tenderloin and are round-shaped, first cuts of the middle portion of the Tenderloin taken from just to the rear of the Small End from which we derive Filet Mignon and before the second middle cuts which are technically called Filet Steaks. Tournedos, like other names for cuts of the Tenderloin, may be liberally misused for almost any cut taken from the Tenderloin. Be aware when you are purchasing them, of exactly what you are buying. Also the term Tournedos usually applies to beef, but it can be used loosely when referring to tender, circular entrees made of pork, veal, poultry, or fish.

Proper Tournedos are usually about half an inch thick (1.27 cm) to 1 ¼ inches thick (3.18 cm). Each Tournedos should weigh between 2 & 5 ounces (56.7 g to 141.7 g) and they are generally 2 inches (5 cm) in diameter. If the Tournedos are much smaller, they are often served as a pair of Tournedos.


Beef Tournedos are available year long.


The production of beef is carried about by three primary types of operations: Cow & Calf Operations, Weaner Calf & Yearling Operations, and Dry-Lot Feeding Operations (also known as “Backrounders”) which are the most expensive operations in the Beef Industry. To learn more about Beef Producers just follow the link to Smart Kitchen’s Page on Beef Producers. The Beef Producers are represented by the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association.

American cattle production has remained almost stagnant between 1985 and 2009, growing just 6.4%, while the amount of beef imported has nearly tripled in that time, according to an analysis of USDA figures conducted by R-CALF USA, another the trade group that represents cattle producers.

Once raised, Beef is typically sold to Meat Packers who slaughter, inspect, and butcher the animals to provide Primal Cuts to butchers and portion cuts to consumers.

The Meat Packing Industry is in a period of consolidation. In 1999, the 10 largest beef-packing firms accounted for more than 90 percent of all Steer and Heifer slaughter in the U.S. In 2011, according to the Western Organization of Resources Councils three major companies controlled Beef market. Visit Smart Kitchen’s Meat Packers Resource Page to learn more.


When shopping for Tournedos of Beef, look for Tournedos of Beef that has a clear, red exterior color known as the “Bloom,” that come from exposure to oxygen and not the more normal purplish-red color of vacuum packed beef. Your purchase should be cold, firm to the touch and, if packaged, free of any punctures or rips. Notice the “sell-by” date on the label and make sure you are buying product that is well within its dates of safe use as specified by the sticker.


Raw Tournedos of Beef should last for up to 4 days in the refrigerator. Add an extra day of cold storage time if the Tournedos of Beef is Marinated or oiled. Raw Tournedos of Beef will keep for 2-3 months in the freezer without any appreciable deterioration in quality.

Cooked Tournedos of Beef should be refrigerated for up to 1-3 days.

Culinary Uses

Tournedos of Beef is a tender Portion Cut of Beef. On Smart Kitchen’s Home Plate it should be Cooked, it is Tender, it can be Thin or Thick depending on how it is cut, it is Moist, and Lean. Using the Home Plate we would call it Cooked, Tender, Thin or Thick, Moist, and Lean or noted in the home plate shorthand Tournedos of Beef would be (C, T2T3-T4, M, L).

Tournedos are typically Sautéed or Grilled. Many chefs use both techniques in combination for Tournedos, first Searing on a char-grill briefly (& carefully so as not to char the Tournedos) and then sautéing to Finish Cook. Tournedos are very lean. Chefs often wrap them in an additional external fat, like bacon or lard, before cooking to help prevent them from drying out and to add flavor.

Sautéing Tournedos allows a chef to use the lingering Fond to create spectacular pan sauces, Jus, or Glazes, which are then served with the Tournedos. One of P Chef’s favorite French preparations of Tournedos with a pan sauce is Tournedos Robert. Tournedos Robert is unsurprisingly based on Sauce Robert.

Portion Size

Allow 6 to 9 ounces (170 g to 255 g) per person of trimmed Tournedos of Beef as a Serving Size.

Gluten Free


Low Fat


Low Calorie