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The Best Cuts of Steak for Grilling

Three Ways

When you’re grilling a steak, the meat (and not the marinade) should be the star. Hence, selection is especially important. The best bets for the grill: porterhouse, rib eye, and sirloin. One appeal of a porterhouse is that it actually consists of two cuts: filet mignon and New York strip. A porterhouse will likely come super-thick (more than two inches tall), in which case you should cook it at a high flame for two minutes to achieve a good sear, move it to a moderate heat for the remainder of the grilling time (see guide at right) to cook it through, and then flip and repeat. Smaller but equally luxurious is the rib eye, known for its beautiful marbling (those glorious, flavor-giving veins of fat) and its juiciness. Sirloin, which tends to be chewier, is the hip cut in several senses: It comes from the animal’s hindquarters, it’s a bit less expensive than other premium steaks (and thus ideal for a party), and it’s increasingly popular at high-end steakhouses. With all these cuts, the key to preparing them to your liking is internal temperature, not color. Finally, remember that all steaks need time to rest after they come off the grill—they’ll be juicier that way.
  • Keep in mind you may need to adjust these directions based on the type of fuel, the heat of the fire (400 degrees is standard), the weather, whether there’s still a bone intact, and other minutiae. All steaks should rest for five minutes before being sliced or served.


  • 1 1-inch steak
  • 1 2-inch steak


1-inch steak

  1. Medium-rare: 4–5 minutes per side/internal temperature: 145°F
  2. Medium: 6–7 minutes per side/internal temperature: 160°F
  3. Medium-well: 8–9 minutes per side/internal temperature: 165°F<

2-inch steak

  1. Medium-rare: 7–8 minutes per side/internal temperature: 145°F
  2. Medium: 8–9 minutes per side/internal temperature: 160°F
  3. Medium-well: 10–11 minutes per side/internal temperature: 165°F
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