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6 Best Steaks to Cook On A Smoker

6 Best Steaks to Cook On A Smoker - Proline Range Hoods

So, you’ve made the investment, got yourself a smoker, and you’re ready to sizzle some steaks. The question is, which steaks should you cook? We’re ready to answer that question for you!

We’ll discuss the three ways to prepare your steak and the six best steaks to smoke on your pellet smoker. Let’s get into the meats, shall we?

How To Season Your Steak

Seasoning your steak before cooking it is imperative. Some people prefer to cook their steaks plain, and add A1 or another steak sauce. Personally, I season my steaks with either a dry rub or a marinade. The dry rub can be the base for your marinade as well!

Dry Rub

You can find many dry rubs at the grocery store, so pick one you think you’ll like! Some of my favorite types to get are smoky flavored rubs. They add an extra kick to your steak and make it taste fantastic.

You can also make your own dry rub pretty easily! Use equal parts salt, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika and pepper to create a basic dry rub. Add some cracked chili pepper to give it some extra spice!

There’s no real amount to apply to your steak. Just coat it completely. Keep in mind that a tri-tip steak requires more seasoning than a filet mignon steak.


Oftentimes, your dry rub can be used for a marinade and the directions are pretty simple. Take 1 tablespoon of your rub, add two tablespoons of water, and two tablespoons of olive oil. That’s it!

Then you marinate your steak for ideally 30 minutes or longer. I prefer to marinate them overnight! I substitute olive oil for red wine, which is a great way to add in some unique flavors.

If you’ve got a bigger steak, you may want to double the recipe to ensure it covers the steak evenly.


So, this will only apply to the filet mignon steak that appears later on. The reason you may not need to season this steak is because it’s one of the most tender parts of the cow. Historically, marinades help to soften the meat to make it tender and juicy.

With a filet mignon, you don’t need to soften it! This is a great chance for you to try out some delicious steak sauces. And please note this – you can cook any steak however you want.


Tri Tip steak - best steaks to cook on a smoker

Perhaps my favorite steak to cook of all time and one of the best steaks to smoke, the tri-tip steak is unique. It’s a big hunk of meat, generally as small as a pound to over three pounds!

Because of this, it can be perfect to feed one hungry person, or a group of people. If you’re cooking tri-tip, people know you’re the real deal, essentially since it’s a traditional west coast cut of meat.

The reason this cut of meat is so good on a smoker is because it’s derived from the sirloin, so it’s already very tender. Once you marinade it for multiple hours or longer, the steak becomes juicy and delicious.

Once cooked to your desired temperature, wrap it in aluminum foil for 5-7 minutes and slice it against the grain. Since a tri-tip often varies in thickness, with one tip being much thinner than the other two, you'll have a variety of “cooked-ness” on your tri-tip. Just a fair warning if you’ve never cooked one before!


two ribeye steaks, uncooked

A ribeye steak comes from the back of the cow and is generally regarded as one of the better cuts of meat, if not the best. It’s tender as is, and is easy to cook since it’s generally uniform in size.

This can generally feed one to two people, so you’ll need a few of these steaks if you’re planning on more than just a romantic date night with your significant other. The best option for a ribeye steak is to have it bone-in. Once you’ve cooked it to perfection, it’ll be one of the best steaks you’ve ever had!

New York Strip

two New York strip steaks

This has many names, including the Kansas City strip, strip loin, and top loin steak; no matter what you call it, this cut is incredibly fine, nearly as excellent as the ribeye in my opinion.

They pack some intense flavor, and this flavor will be magnified through your dry rub or marinade and exfoliated through a few hours of time on the smoker.

Porterhouse Steak and T-Bone Steak

Porterhouse steak

These steaks are similar to each other and for good reason. They’re cut from the same part of the cow, and have meat on both sides of the T-shaped bone. The difference is pretty simple: porterhouse steaks are cut from the rear end of the short loin and t-bone steaks are cut closer to the front.

Porterhouse steaks include more tenderloin steak, and t-bone steaks include a smaller section of tenderloin. Since the porterhouse is bigger, it’ll cost you more at a restaurant, but if you’re able to find it at a store, you’ll pay less!

These steaks are about an inch in thickness each, ensuring you can get an even temperature across the whole cut of meat. You’ll find the tenderest meat alongside the bone.

Filet Mignon

Filet mignon and red wine

Now, this cut of meat is a little tricky on a smoker, but possible, there’s a few things to know about a filet mignon steak. First, they’re regarded as the most tender cut of meat. You can often cut right through the steak with the blunt edge of a fork!

Second, because they’re so tender, you won’t need to marinade it if you don’t want to. Try a steak sauce! Lastly, since they have almost zero fat content, you want to make sure you cook it just right. Cook it too long and you’ll dry it out.

Cooking it in a cast iron skillet is one of the best ways, but a smoker is a great option if you’ve got a little more time and more filet mignons to cook!

Flank Steak

Flank steak cooked

Flank steak is best cooked after marinating for a few hours. It’s cut from the belly, a little bit towards the rear, and is tougher than some of the other steaks we’ve mentioned here. That’s why you should marinade it for a few hours!

It’s a nice thick steak, so it’ll do well on a smoker. Cook it right to 120 degrees, and slice it against the grain, similar to the tri-tip steak. This is great if you’re looking to feed a crowd since they’re generally larger in size!

That’s all from us today. Get ready to grill!

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