Grilled Texas T-Bone Steaks with Charred Onion Rings

The true secret to grilling the perfect steak is choosing the right cut. You can't beat a T-bone, which is actually two steaks in one: a flavorful New York Strip and a meltingly tender piece of filet mignon. A T-bone can also handle assertive seasonings such as the spicy rub used here.Plus: More Grilling Recipes and Tips

Grilled Texas T-Bone Steaks with Charred Onion Rings
Photo: © William Meppem


  • 2 cups mesquite or hickory chips

  • 4 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped

  • Kosher salt

  • Four 1-pound T-bone steaks, about 1 1/4 inches thick

  • 2 tablespoons ancho chile powder

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano

  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

  • 2 tablespoons Tabasco sauce

  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

  • 2 large sweet onions, such as Vidalia or Walla Walla, each cut crosswise into four 1-inch slices

  • 2 tablespoons pure olive oil

  • Vegetable oil, for the grill

  • Lime wedges, for serving


  1. Soak the mesquite chips in water for 30 minutes and drain. On a cutting board, sprinkle the garlic with a pinch of kosher salt and crush with the side of a knife until a smooth paste forms.

  2. Lay the steaks in a large, shallow baking dish. Rub both sides of the steaks with the garlic paste. In a small bowl, combine the chile powder with 2 teaspoons of salt, the cumin, oregano and pepper. Sprinkle half of the rub on both sides of the steaks.

  3. In another small bowl, combine the Tabasco with the Worcestershire sauce and spoon over the steaks; then pat the liquid into the spice rub so it forms a paste. Refrigerate the steaks for 30 minutes or for up to 4 hours.

  4. Light a grill. Thread the onion slices onto skewers and brush with the olive oil, then sprinkle both sides with the remaining spice rub.

  5. If using charcoal, scatter the wood chips over the coals. If using a gas grill, place the chips in the smoker box or on a 12-inch square of foil; fold the foil into a 6-inch square and poke 12 holes in the top. Place the package near the flames and heat until smoking. Lightly brush the grate with vegetable oil.

  6. Set the steaks on the grill and cook over a medium-hot fire for 4 to 6 minutes per side for medium rare. Grill the onion slices until tender and nicely charred, 6 minutes per side. Transfer the steaks to plates and serve with the onion rings and lime wedges.

Suggested Pairing

An inexpensive, juicy Shiraz or Zinfandel with bright berry and spice flavors, not too much oak and low alcohol will stand up to the spicy, smoky flavors of the steak.

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