How to Grill T-Bone Steaks

by Fred Decker ; Updated September 28, 2017

For thick T-bones, expect to spend about 20 minutes of active time, 40 minutes total cook time (including rest). Thinner T-bones cook faster in about 10 minutes over higher heat.


• T-Bone steaks • Salt • Additional seasoning as desired


Before your steak sees its first flicker of flame, take some time to maximize its flavor. At a minimum, sprinkle it lightly with coarse salt 45 minutes or so before cooking. The salt dissolves and gets absorbed, seasoning the beef from within. For a more proactive approach and bolder flavors, rub the steak with a dry spice mixture or brush it with a liquid marinade.

Be Proactive

For a more proactive approach and bolder flavors, rub the steak with a dry spice mixture or brush it with a liquid marinade.


T-bones of 3/4 inch thickness or less, the kind you'd serve on an ordinary weeknight, can be cooked quickly on high heat.

Preheat your gas or charcoal grill to around 450 degrees Fahrenheit, then lay your steaks on the hot grill.

Cook them for 7 to 10 minutes total, turning them midway through. Lean Select grade cooks more quickly because the added marbling in Choice or Prime beef acts as an insulator.

To make restaurant-style crosshatched grill marks, lay your steaks at a diagonal to the grill's grate for the first minute or two, then rotate them 60 to 90 degrees for a second set of grill marks.


For T-bones of 1 to 1 1/2 inches thickness, or extra-thick steaks up to 2 inches, it's better to take a two-step approach.

Preheat your grill to 450 F and sear your steaks for approximately 2 minutes per side or until they're well browned.

Reduce the heat to a moderate setting, approximately 300 to 350 F, and continue cooking the steaks for another 8 to 10 minutes per side until they reach your preferred doneness. Always keep the leaner, faster-cooking tenderloin toward the cooler outside edge of your grill, to prevent overcooking

Hot in Here

To test your T-bone, lift the striploin side of the steak from your grill and slide an instant-read thermometer horizontally into the middle. A rare steak will read 120 to 125 F, and medium-rare is about 130 F. Aim low with thick steaks because they'll keep cooking for several minutes after they come off the grill. Shoot for a temperature about 5 degrees lower than the one you really want, then cover the steak loosely with foil and let it rest for 5 to 10 minutes before cutting into that first savory mouthful.

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About the Author

Fred Decker is a trained chef and prolific freelance writer. In previous careers, he sold insurance and mutual funds, and was a longtime retailer. He was educated at Memorial University of Newfoundland and the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology. His articles have appeared on numerous home and garden sites including GoneOutdoors, TheNest and eHow.