How do you cook a big tomahawk steak?

How to Cook the Perfect Tomahawk Steak

If you’re a meat lover, you’ve probably already heard of the tomahawk steak. This massive ribeye on the bone is known for its impressive size and exceptional flavor. It’s essentially a cut of meat that’s fit for a celebration! If you’re planning on cooking one for your next dinner party or special occasion, this article will provide you with all the tips and tricks you need to create a mouth-watering masterpiece.


Before we get started, let’s do a quick overview of what makes a tomahawk steak so special. The main thing that sets it apart from other steaks is that it has an impressively long-bone left intact, which adds to both presentation and flavor. Additionally, because it comes from the rib section of beef, it’s known for its tenderness and marbling.

The process of cooking this behemoth may seem daunting at first; however, with some patience and attention to detail, you’ll be sure to impress everyone around your table.

Before You Start

Choosing the right type of meat is crucial when preparing any dish. When selecting your tomahawk steak, make sure to choose high-quality beef with ample marbling. This ensures that your finished product will be tender and full of flavor.

If you’re purchasing frozen meat, defrosting properly is essential. Make sure to put it in the fridge at least 24 hours before cooking time for every 5 pounds of beef. Avoid using hot water as this can lead to unwanted bacterial growth in meats.

Start The Grilling Process

A great place to start when preparing your tomahawk steak is with seasonings. There are many spices available in grocery stores worldwide which can perfectly match this beef variant — such as crushed black pepper, garlic powder or paprika melts butter spread during resting times.

After applying seasonings generously onto both sides of the steak, let it rest for a while to absorb. Then shake off any excess before you grill.

When preparing the grill, use high-quality briquette coals or hardwood charcoal and keep the temperature at 500-600°F on one side and indirect heat settings on the other side for searing steaks.

To ensure proper cooking within every part of meat, aim to achieve sear marks on both sides by flipping after no more than 3 minutes per side using tongs and resist poking or puncturing since this will result in loss of flavor.

Achieve Greatness Through Proper Techniques

Searing only briefly is crucial when grilling tomahawk steak; transferring the beef onto an oven rack is also helpful for achieving the perfect finish. With that said, one key element that can make all the difference is getting those attractive crosshatch grill marks. To achieve these like an expert, place your steak at a 45-degree angle from your grill grate. After around three minutes, give your steak a quarter-turn to continue cooking while achieving horizontal sear lines on your food.

Doneness Is Key

Although appearance plays its role in suggesting well-done beef apart from rare or medium-rare ones, determining doneness through temperature readings will guarantee you end up with perfectly cooked meat.

For rare beef, take it out when internal heat reaches about 120°F (49°C). Medium-rare tomahawk steaks will start reaching their potential at roughly 130°F (54°C), medium cooking levels should hit temperatures around 140°F (60°C), and anything beyond that can be classified as well-done or over-cooked.

If you’re unsure about cook times, an instant-read thermometer can help you to monitor interior temperatures without having to cut into your beautiful work fully.

Rest And Enjoy!

It’s always essential to let your grilled tomahawk steak rest adequately before serving them. The duration of resting time should also vary depending on the thickness and desired cook temperature, ranging typically between 10 to 20 minutes.

When it’s finally time to dig in, slice steaks down into thin sections across the grain for optimal chewiness; decorate your dish by placing a sprig of fresh herbs and make your sides simply tasty which is perfect pairs to accentuate its flavor.


With the right selection of meat, seasoning, grill techniques, and cooking times, anyone can elevate a tomahawk steak from good to extraordinary. We hope our guide helps you master this classic beef cut with confidence at your next family gathering or social event.

Remember never over-complicate things! Simply stick to the basic guidelines we’ve provided in this article; you’ll surely impress everyone around your table while enjoying a delicious meal that’s hard to forget.


  1. What is a tomahawk steak? A tomahawk steak is a large, bone-in ribeye steak that gets its name from the resemblance of the long bone to a tomahawk. It typically weighs between 2-4 pounds and is meant to serve several people.
  2. How do I prepare a tomahawk steak before cooking? First, take the steak out of the fridge and let it sit at room temperature for about an hour. This will allow it to cook evenly. Season it generously with salt and pepper, or any other seasoning of your choice.
  3. What’s the best way to cook a tomahawk steak? For the perfect big tomahawk steak, you should use high heat and sear each side for about 2-3 minutes per side, then transfer it to indirect heat and continue cooking until desired doneness is reached (about 10-15 minutes for medium-rare). Don’t forget to let it rest for at least 5 minutes before slicing!
  4. Can I grill a big tomahawk steak? Absolutely! Grilling is one of the best ways to cook a big tomahawk steak. Make sure your grill grates are hot before placing the steak on them, and rotate it occasionally to ensure even cooking on both sides. Use a meat thermometer to check for doneness as needed.

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