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What the Hawk is a Tomahawk Steak?

What the Hawk is a Tomahawk Steak?

Few culinary experiences match the indulgence of sinking your teeth into a perfectly grilled tomahawk steak. With its impressive size, rich marbling, and unforgettable flavor, the tomahawk steak is a true showstopper that deserves the spotlight at any barbecue or special occasion. In this blog post, we'll dive into what exactly a tomahawk steak is and provide you with a step-by-step guide on how to grill it to perfection.

 tomahawk on grill

Unveiling the Tomahawk Steak

Named after its resemblance to a Native American tomahawk axe, the tomahawk steak is a bone-in ribeye steak with the entire rib bone attached, creating a dramatic and visually striking presentation. This extra-long bone not only adds aesthetic appeal but also contributes to the steak's succulent, rich flavor during cooking. The generous marbling throughout the meat ensures an incredibly tender and juicy texture, making it a favorite among steak enthusiasts.

 Tomahawk on grill with steak and corn

Selecting the Perfect Tomahawk Steak

When selecting a tomahawk steak, there are certain things you want to look out for. We leave it to the pros at Certified Piedmontese with their Tomahawk Ribeye that is verified all-natural and raised without hormones. When you’re shopping for your own, keep an eye out for the following features:

  • Marbling: Look for even marbling throughout the meat. Marbling, the white streaks of fat, is a key indicator of tenderness and flavor.
  • Thickness: Aim for a thickness of at least 1.5 to 2 inches. This allows for proper cooking without overcooking the steak.
  • Color: Choose a steak with a deep red color; this indicates freshness and quality.
  • Bone: Ensure the bone is intact and cleanly exposed, enhancing the tomahawk's distinctive appearance.


Grilling the Tomahawk Steak to Perfection


  • 1 tomahawk steak
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Olive oil



  1. Preparation:
    • Remove the steak from the refrigerator 30-60 minutes before grilling to allow it to come to room temperature. This ensures even cooking.
    • Preheat your grill to high heat (around 450°F to 550°F or 230°C to 290°C).
  2. Seasoning:
    • Brush both sides of the steak lightly with olive oil to prevent sticking.
    • Generously season the steak with salt and freshly ground black pepper. The steak's thickness can handle a bit more seasoning, but remember that the marbling already contributes flavor.
  3. Grilling:
    • Place the tomahawk steak on the grill directly over the high heat.
    • Sear the steak for 2-3 minutes on each side with the grill lid closed. This creates a beautiful crust and sear marks.
    • Move the steak to a cooler part of the grill (indirect heat) or reduce the heat to medium. Continue cooking with the lid closed.
    • Use a meat thermometer to monitor the internal temperature. For a perfect medium-rare steak, aim for an internal temperature of around 130°F to 135°F (54°C to 57°C). Adjust the time based on your desired doneness.
  4. Resting:
    • Once the steak reaches your desired temperature, remove it from the grill and place it on a cutting board.
    • Tent the steak loosely with aluminum foil and let it rest for about 10 minutes. This allows the juices to redistribute, resulting in a juicy and flavorful steak.
  5. Serving:
    • After resting, carve the tomahawk steak by slicing against the grain. Serve the succulent slices with your favorite sides and enjoy the masterpiece you've created.


Grilling a tomahawk steak is not only about cooking; it's an experience that celebrates the art of barbecue. By following these steps and paying attention to detail, you'll be able to create a memorable culinary adventure that your taste buds won't soon forget. So fire up the grill, embrace the sizzle, and treat yourself to the sublime pleasure of a perfectly grilled tomahawk steak.


Hitch mounted grill

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