Grilled ribeye steak with cowboy butter

Photos for this recipe are from Erin Hungsberg (IG: erin_hungsberg)

Trust me it doesn’t get any better than a grilled ribeye steak with cowboy butter. In this ribeye steak recipe I will show you how to get the perfect crusty exterior with juicy and tender beef on the inside. When you try it with the cowboy butter you’ll understand why this is the best thing ever! This recipe really pulls out all the stops and is one you should learn right away. 

Ingredients you will need to make this recipe 

16 oz ribeye steak (or 2 8oz ribeyes)

Olive Oil 

Salt and Pepper or Homemade Beef Rub

Ingredients for Cowboy butter

What is cowboy butter 

Cowboy butter is a compound butter that is made up of ingredients such as lemon juice, red pepper flakes, fresh herbs, black pepper, horseradish and softened butter. When mixed together, they form the most delicious butter that goes perfect on grilled steak.

I like to put this butter on the steak right before I remove it from the grill so it starts melting on top of the steak.  Then as it rests, the butter mingles with the juices from the meat. When you slice in, the flavors really intensifies and man is it good! For more details check out my Cowboy butter recipe

Tomahawk steak with cowboy butter

How to make cowboy butter

Simply mix all the ingredients for the cowboy butter into a small bowl and combine well. You can leave the butter in the bowl and spoon it out later when serving the steak or you can roll it into a log and cut slices from it as needed.

Cowboy butter with toast

To do that spoon the butter out and place it into the center of parchment paper or plastic wrap then fold one end over and roll the oppostite ends tight until you have a log. Refrigerate until it hardens and becomes a log of butter.

What is the best method to grill a thick steak? 

When cooking a thick steak, I highly recommend the reverse sear method. If you take a thick steak and put it directly over charcoal and try to flip it back and forth, it will end up cooking uneven and probably burnt on the outside. 

Grilled tomahawk steak

Reverse searing allows you to cook the steak over indirect heat so the steak does not burn on the outside and it also ensures the steak cooks even all the way through. Once the internal temperature of the steak is close to your preferred doneness, you place the steak over direct heat and sear on both sides to finish. 

How to make grilled ribeye steaks with cowboy butter 

For this recipe I’m using a tomahawk steak which is essentially just a ribeye steak with a long bone in it. It makes for a beautiful presentation and is sure to impress but any ribeye will do. Just pick one with good marbling and a nice fat cap. 

I make sure the steak is at room temperature then I coat it lightly with olive oil and season it generously with kosher salt and pepper on both sides of the steak.  I use kosher salt because I like the big flakes and I like to see them on the meat as I season.

I’m using my Big Green Egg and I get it up to temperature around 250°F. I place a ceramic heat deflector under the grill grates to block the direct heat which allows for the indirect cooking I referenced earlier.  

If you are using a different type of charcoal grill, you can bank all of your charcoal to one side and place the steak on the oppostite side. Or if you are using a gas grill, leave the burners directly under the steak off and place it as far from the heat source as you can. 

Once the steak reaches an internal temperature of 120°F I remove the heat deflector from the Green Egg and sear the steak directly over the hot coals.

Tomahawk steak searing on a charcoal grill

Just a few minutes and a couple flips should do. Continue searing your steak until you have a nice crust on both sides. Just before removing the steak from the grill I like to put a few pats of that cowboy butter on top to start melting. 

The importance of resting your steak

It is crucial to rest your steak after cooking. In other words, don’t cut right into it after it’s done. Otherwise the juices will not have a chance to redistribute back into the meat and will spill out onto your cutting board.

For best results, rest the steak for at least 10 minutes with a little foil tented on top. The bigger the cut of beef, the longer you should rest. Because I used a big thick tomahawk, I allowed a 20 minute rest before slicing in. For most ribeyes that are under an inch thick, a 10 minute rest will do. 

Putting it all together

Slice your steak across the grain and watch as the cowboy butter drips into all the pieces. This literally is the perfect steak! I serve the steak with a little extra butter on the side as a dipping sauce and let my guests have at it. This grilled ribeye steak with cowboy butter is one of my favorites and I hope you enjoy it as much as I do. 

Medium rare tomahawk steak

Looking for other beef recipes? Try these:

Smoked beef short rib sliders 

Grilled beef galbi 

Coffee crusted ribeye with grilled corn 


Do I have to use a ribeye steak? 

No you can use any cut of steak that you want. This butter goes great with all types of beef. 

Can the cowboy butter be used on anything else? 

Yes, it goes great on potatoes, dinner rolls, and just about anything else you would normally use butter on. 

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Grilled ribeye steak with cowboy butter

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  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x


  • 1 16 oz Ribeye steak or 2 8 oz steaks
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil 
  • 1 tablespoon Salt and pepper (Or homemade beef rub) 

Cowboy butter

  • 1 stick of unsalted softened butter
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 3 gloves of garlic minced
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika 
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parlsey
  • 1 tablespoon minced thyme 
  • 1 tablespoon of prepared horseradish 
  • 1/2 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt 
  • 1/2 teaspoon of ground black pepper 


  1. Cover ribeye steaks with olive oil as a binder and season both sides with salt and pepper. My homemade beef rub works great here as well. 
  2. Reverse sear your steak by cooking it at 250°F on indirect heat until you reach an internal temperature of 120°F. 
  3. Sear on direct heat for a few minutes and add cowboy butter on top of the steaks for a few seconds before removing from the grill. 
  4. Allow the steak to rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing across the grain. 
  5. Serve steak with extra cowboy butter and enjoy! 
  • Author: Jordan Hanger
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Category: Main
  • Method: Grilling
  • Cuisine: American

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