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10 Steakhouse Chains With the Best Petite Filet Mignon

Here's where to head when you want a little less of the best steak money can buy.

Steakhouses are an all-American restaurant genre typified by the notion that bigger equals better. In some cases, like with tomahawk chops, that's true. But even at a steakhouse where bone-in ribeyes can outsize most house cats, smaller can be better. That's true, at least, of the petite filet, a comparatively dainty cut that emphasizes quality over quantity while offering a more demure option for diners not looking to break their budgets or their belts.

Often regarded as one of the healthier menu options in a steakhouse, the petite filet can sometimes be a vague moniker for a cut below the rest—whatever that means. "It literally translates to 'small filet,' and that's exactly what it is," says John Manion, chef-owner of Chicago's El Che Steakhouse & Bar and Brasero. "I would think 4 ounces would be the standard 'petit' size, 2 ounces would be a filet nugget, and 6 ounces is veering towards an adult portion of protein." He notes that most petite filets are cut from the tapered ends of the whole muscle, no matter how many ounces you opt for.

Troy Guard, owner and executive chef of TAG Restaurant Group in Denver, where he serves a "filet flight" at Guard and Grace, likes to stick with petite filets around 4 ounces while noting that they can reach up to 8 ounces. "I like to portion mine to be around 4 ounces to save room for everything else on the table," he says. "Then I can still enjoy some seafood, sides, and even save room for dessert."

Both chefs stress that quality and proper cooking are key, no matter the size. "Like any steak, when sourcing a filet, you want to look for the ones that have good marbling," Guard explains. "You also never want to cook a good steak past medium rare, and definitely not a petit filet, since it will shrink, and it's already a smaller cut."

With that in mind, these are 10 steakhouse chains that pack big flavor into petite filets.

Ruth's Chris

Filet mignon at Ruth's Chris Steak House
Ruth's Chris Steak House/Facebook
Nutrition (Per 8-oz. Serving):
Calories: 340

Ruth's Chris has been experiencing quite the glow-up of late. After struggling in recent years, it's rebounded enough to be voted America's favorite restaurant chain, distinguished by its customer service, affordable menu, and consistently quality meat. This helped earn Ruth's Chris a reputation for T-bones and surf and turf, as well as portions that skew smaller. The petite filet, for instance, clocks in at a none-too-skimpy 8 ounces, offering a quality option that won't leave you, or your wallet, reeling.

 10 Steakhouse Chains With the Best Bone-In Ribeye

LongHorn Steakhouse

longhorn steakhouse flos filet
LongHorn Steakhouse
Nutrition: (Per 6-oz. Serving):
Calories: 330
Fat: 15 g (Saturated Fat: 5 g)
Sodium: 330 mg
Carbs: 2 g
Protein: 37 g

It's a little too easy to make unhealthy choices at LongHorn Steakhouse. But that's where the petite filet comes in handy, offering a healthy-ish reprieve from the parmesan-crusted chicken, baby back ribs, and chicken-fried steak. But for those who don't want their steak dredged in batter or accompanied by barbecue, there's the adorably dubbed Flo's Filet. A menu fixture since LongHorn's inception in 1981, it's a tender center-cut filet that arrives sizzling from the grill at 6 ounces.

Texas Roadhouse

texas roadhouse Filet Medallions
Photo: Texas Roadhouse
Nutrition: (Per 9-oz. Serving):
Calories: 760
Fat: 30 g (Saturated Fat: 10 g)
Sodium: 2,510 mg
Carbs: 56 g (Fiber: 5 g, Sugar: 5 g)
Protein: 74 g

Just because you're ordering a petite filet doesn't mean you want to skimp. That's the ethos at Texas Roadhouse, the steakhouse titan that somehow defies expectations by offering petite filets in hulking portions. For those looking to treat petite filets like chicken tenders, the restaurant offers a filet medallion trio totaling 9 ounces, which ensures consistency and tender texture. It's served with your choice of peppercorn or portobello mushroom sauce on a bed of seasoned rice.

 The #1 Healthiest Order at Texas Roadhouse, According to a Dietitian

Fleming's Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar

fleming's lobster tail topped steal
Photo: Fleming's Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar / Facebook
Nutrition (Per 8-oz. Serving):
Calories: 440

Among the best regional steakhouse chains in the country, the California-founded Fleming's Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar may not have the name recognition (yet) of a Texas Roadhouse or a Ruth's Chris. Still, what it lacks in storefronts, it makes up for in quality. Along with a dedicated menu section for USDA Prime cuts, the petite filet stands out among the classics. It's also on the heftier side, at 8 ounces, which makes it a solid choice for big flavor on a smaller budget.

Saltgrass Steak House

Saltgrass Steak House Bacon Wrapped Filet
Saltgrass Steak / Facebook
Nutrition (Per 6-oz. Serving):
Calories: 550

Saltgrass Steakhouse is another regional chain that exhibits dexterity in the beef department, whether served chicken-fried or atop salad. Among the curated offerings is Maudeen's center-cut filet, available as a 6-ounce petite filet or a 9-ounce not-so-petite filet. Either way, it's as filling as it is flavorful, served with soup or salad and sides like mashed potatoes, flash-fried green beans, and smoked macaroni and cheese.

 10 Restaurant Chains That Serve the Best Steak Salads

STK Steakhouse

stk filet mignon with accoutrements on a plate.
STK / Facebook
Nutrition information unavailable.

Among the fastest-growing steakhouse brands in the country, STK Steakhouse is one boutique chain specializing in smaller portions. Billed as a "vibe dining" concept fusing a modern steakhouse with a posh lounge, the whole conceit is hinged on shareable and smaller plates. That means customers have a few cuts for "small" steaks, like a 6-ounce filet, an 8-ounce skirt steak, and an 8-ounce ribeye. There are also "medium" and "large" steaks. By keeping things petite, you leave more room for sides like parmesan truffle fires, sweet corn pudding, and cider-glazed Brussels sprouts.

 10 Steakhouse Chains With the Best Bone-In Ribeye

Smith & Wollensky

Twin petit filet mignon wrapped in prosciutto at Smith & Wollensky
Smith & Wollensky/Facebook
Nutrition information unavailable.

It may be best known for its enormous 44-ounce Wagyu steak, a steak so mighty that it arrives dangling from hook and is carved table-side, but not all the steaks are herculean at Smith & Wollensky. This elegant mini-chain puts as much diligence into sourcing and cooking its smaller cuts as its larger tentpoles. One example is the petite filet mignon duo, an otherwise modest pairing—made from some of the highest-quality prime beef on the market—that gets an added boost when wrapped in salty, buttery prosciutto.

 10 Steakhouse Chains With the Best Tomahawk Chop

Joe's Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab

Filet mignon at Joe's Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab
Joe's Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab/Facebook

Another chain that tends towards the larger "petite" side is Joe's Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab. The smaller chain has locations in cities including Chicago and Miami, and top-tier quality is key to everything this surf and turf temple does. It's enough to earn rave reviews from chefs, who flock here to feast on seafood towers and chops. It's also lauded for its petite filet, which weighs in at 8 ounces and stuffs a ton of flavor into a relatively small package.

Steak 48

Filet mignon at Steak48
Nutrition information unavailable.

Steak 48 is an upscale mini-chain with locations in Charlotte, Philadelphia, Houston, and Chicago. No matter the area code, it's championed for its unique cuts and top-notch Wagyu beef. It's also one of the best steakhouses for petite filets—responsibly farmed, wet-aged for 28 days, and hand-carved in-house by a master butcher. Packed with flavor, it arrives as an 8 ounce filet with optional enhancements like truffle butter, burrata, and black truffle sautéed lobster.

 9 Steakhouse Chains That Serve the Best Wagyu Beef

Shula's Steakhouse

shula's filet mignon with garnish.
Nutrition information unavailable.

It may be known for its old-fashioned stylings, but there's nothing outdated about the enduring quality and craft of Shula's Steakhouse. This icon of nostalgic Americana has locations from Chicago to Walt Disney World. The institution is known for its tried-and-true recipes and loyal customers who keep coming back for more. Fortunately, with a smattering of sizes and options, like a succulent 7-ounce petite filet, it's easy to keep Shula's in the steady rotation.

Matt Kirouac
Matt Kirouac is a travel and food writer and culinary school graduate, with a passion for national parks, all things Disney, and road trip restaurants. Read more about Matt