While the name might sound like something out of Lord of the Rings, the tomahawk steak is actually one of the most delicious and visually impressive cuts of beef you can find in any butcher shop or grocery store. Tomahawks are thick steaks that average around two pounds in weight and feature their signature bone handle, making them easy to grill and serve whole at your next barbecue or dinner party. With this simple how-to guide, we’ll show you how to grill the perfect tomahawk steak and earn the envy of everyone at your next event.

What is a Tomahawk Steak?

If you’re not familiar with it, a tomahawk steak is a hefty piece of meat (usually a ribeye) sliced and served like a bone-in ribeye. It’s always served with its butcher block-like handle intact. The steak got its name from its long, T-shaped bone, which does sort of resemble Indian clubs used in hand-to-hand combat. Its extra fat and flavor come from an added round bone that runs through part of it – similar to how prime rib gets much of its flavor from a deckle cut across part of it. Of course, there are many other qualities that give tomahawks their high value: They offer tenderness and juicy taste because there’s plenty of intramuscular fat; they can be quite large (30 ounces or more); and they’re visually impressive on the plate, making them ideal for presentation.

Preparing Ribeye Steaks for Reverse Sear

A prime ribeye steak is a premium cut of beef, so you want to ensure it is well prepared. And the best way to do that is by reverse searing – essentially starting out on high heat and then finishing low and slow – for a beautifully caramelized exterior and an evenly cooked interior.

Step #1 – Salting and Dry Brining:

After allowing your steak to come to room temperature, it’s time for a good dry brine. Rub your ribeye steaks with salt on all sides, massaging them into the meat. This will get rid of excess moisture in preparation for high heat cooking. If you have time, leave them for 12 to 24 hours uncovered in your refrigerator. When ready, remove from refrigerator and let come back up to room temperature before grilling.

Step #2 – Seasoning:

Seasoning is perhaps one of the most important steps to achieving a flavorful steak. Combine sea salt, black pepper, paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder in a bowl. Smear about half of your mix onto each steak with your hands, making sure to get it into all of the nooks and crannies. Place back in the refrigerator for about 15 to 20 minutes or until ready for grilling.

How to Cook a Tomahawk Ribeye Steak?

A big, thick tomahawk steak is a delicious centerpiece for a holiday feast, but grilling it means you have to be really careful about temperature and timing—otherwise, you’ll have an overcooked steak on your hands. A better option: reverse sear it in a low oven for a while first, then finish it on top of a grill.

Follow these step-by-step instructions, and your next BBQ will be even more impressive.

1. Preheat your oven to 200˚F (93 ̊C).

2. Place your steak on a baking sheet, then put it in your oven for 40 minutes.

3. While your tomahawk rib steak is in the oven, make sure the grill is set to medium-high.

4. After 30 minutes in the oven, check the internal temperature of your steak with an instant-read thermometer to establish the desired doneness.

·        If you like your steak rare, make sure the internal temperature is ~120˚F. The result will be bright red all over and very juicy.
·        If you like your steak medium-rare, make sure the internal temperature is ~125 ̊F.
·        Medium rare is for those who want a slightly more cooked steak with a dark pink hue. If you like your steak medium-rare, make sure the internal temperature is ~135 ̊F.

5. Now it’s time to remove your steak from the oven and place it on your grill for about two minutes on each side, or until you get that nice grilled sear on your meat.

6. Finally, before you carve your steak, let it rest for 5 minutes so that all those tasty juices stay inside instead of running out onto your plate. You’ll be glad you did!


Grilling steak is an easy way to impress your friends and family. If you’re looking for a mouth-watering cut of meat, try grilling up a tomahawk steak today!