The secret of the filet mignon’s tenderness is due to its location on the animal. The tenderloin is a non-weight bearing muscle and remains relatively unused. Inactivity keeps the muscle from growing too tough through repetitive movement.
Although incredibly tender, filet mignon contains less marbling – the small streaks of intramuscular fat – compared to popular steaks like the New York strip or ribeye. But cook your filet mignon right and it’s more tender than any – you can cut it with a dull butter knife. The mild flavor and low marbling of the filet make it a great platform for seasonings, sauces, or a bacon wrap, and best cooked rare to medium-rare.