The perfect steak has a rich flavor with its juicy and crispy crust on the outside and tender center making every bite luxurious. You may not know it yet but salting your steak plays an important role in helping to achieve that.

This is why there's a huge debate on whether to salt steak before or after grilling as well as just what the exact time, during each period, should be.

According to professional cooks, there are three ideal periods you can choose to salt your steak, determined after considering how the osmotic properties of the salt can impact the features desired in the steak.

They are:

1. At Least 40 Minutes Before Grilling

This is the best way to season meat. Salting your steak at least 40 minutes before grilling will help the salt melt into a brine that breaks down the muscle fibers and is absorbed by the meat. Through osmosis, meat juices seep out and mix with the marinade and salt before being absorbed again. Thanks to this amazing science, every cut of the steak will be juicy and extremely delicious!

2. Just Before Grilling

If you're in a hurry and can't wait the required 40 minutes, season your generously with salt just before placing it on the grill. Although the salt remains on the surface of the meat without dissolving, it makes for a delicious combination with the juices trapped within the meat. However, you must keep the temperature of the grill at a very high notch, so that it forms an evenly distributed and crispy brown crust.

3. After Grilling

There are situations that may cause you to season your steak after grilling. It may be that you forgot to do so before cooking or that you just simply prefer it that way. Whatever it may be, you can still enjoy your meal by seasoning it with a dash of salt and pepper right after it's off the grill. This is not the best option on the list and should be regarded as simply, seasoning to taste.

Tip: Don't season the steak during grilling, this will create a mess on the grill and call for extensive cleaning afterward.