RecipesSous VideSteak

How to Perfectly Cook a Tomahawk Steak

Cooked sous vide to perfection then seared off on a smoking hot grill and served with a delicious chimichurri compound butter. This is the best way to perfectly cook a tomahawk ribeye steak.
sous vide tomahawk steak chimichurri butter horizontal

This is not your typical “meat and potatoes” kind of dinner. It’s a steak that would turn heads if served at a top steakhouse. Over 2 pounds, and with a giant rib bone still attached, the Tomahawk Steak is something you have definitely seen if you have ever watched a grilling show or browsed through Instagram. 

close up of sous vide tomahawk steak on plate 2

A tomahawk ribeye steak is not something you want to just throw on the grill and hope it comes out perfect. A little more technical cooking and some technology is required.

There are really two ways to properly cook a tomahawk ribeye. One is to sous vide, then sear it (like we do in this recipe). The other is to reverse sear it. We’re covering the sous vide method which guarantees success, but if you want to try the reverse sear method, I cover that in my post on reverse-sear steak. Or head over to Amazing Ribs for an awesome tutorial on How To Grill Better-Than-Steakhouse Steaks.

How to Sous Vide a Tomahawk Steak

Cooking perfect tomahawk steak ain’t no thing. No seriously, it ain’t and you can do it perfectly too. Here’s a step by step guide.

prime tomahawk ribeye steak

1. Start with a high-quality prime grade Tomahawk Ribeye Steak (affiliate) that is between 2 1/2 and 3 lbs and 1 1/2″ to 2″ thick. Really any size will work though because we are cooking it sous vide. Preheat your sous vide water bath to the desired doneness. See the temperature chart for reference.

prime tomahawk ribeye steak with fresh thyme

2. Season liberally on all sides with kosher salt, add some fresh thyme and a pat of butter to each side.

vacuum sealed tomahawk ribeye steak

3. Vacuum seal the steak.

tomahawk ribeye steak in sous vide machine horizontal

4. Completely submerge in the pre-heated water bath for 2 to 3 hours. Use clips to secure it to the container or weights to keep it down.

cooked sous vide tomahawk steak

5. Remove from the bag and pat as dry as possible with paper towels to prep for searing. Season again with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.

grill searing tomahawk steak horizontal

6. Preheat the grill or a skillet on high heat. Sear on all sides for 1 to 2 minutes to brown. If using a skillet, add some high-smoke-point oil like canola to the skillet before searing.

grill seared tomahawk steak on sheetpan

7. Carve it off the bone, slice and serve with the chimichurri compound butter.

sous vide tomahawk steak chimichurri butter vertical

Tomahawk Steak Doneness Temperature Chart

You know how you like your steak cooked. Just set you immersion circulator for the desired temperature and time and it will come out perfect.

Rare125° F / 51.6° C2 to 3 hours
Medium Rare130° F / 54.4° C2 to 3 hours
Medium140° F / 60° C2 to 3 hours
Well Done160° F / 71° C2 to 3 hours

A note about tomahawk steaks: These steaks are delicious, showy and so much fun to throw on the grill over an open fire. However, if you are looking for value, then the tomahawk steak is not where you want to put your money. You are paying a premium for a big bone, and last time I checked, the bone itself isn’t really edible. If you are looking for a showpiece steak that is something to talk about, then definitely go with a tomahawk cut for the special occasion.

The Chimichurri Compound Butter

Chimichurri sauce and steak are just meant for each other. So are butter and steak. This is the amazingness that happens when you combine the three into a chimichurri compound butter.

To make the compound butter, you will make a simple chimichurri sauce and combine the desired amount with softened butter. Form a log within plastic wrap and place it in the freezer to harden. Just slice off what you need and it will melt all over your delicious hot sizzling steak.

There will be plenty of chimichurri left that doesn’t get used to to make the butter. Serve this up with the steak, grilled chicken, and just about any other grilled dish.

close up of sous vide tomahawk steak on fork

What to Serve With the Steak

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sous vide tomahawk steak chimichurri butter horizontal

Sous Vide Tomahawk Steak

Print Pin Rate
Course: Main
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours 5 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 10 minutes


  • 1 to Tomahawk Ribeye Steak (2 to 3 lbs and 1 1/2" to 2" thick prime grade preferred)
  • kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 bunch fresh thyme
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter

Chimichurri Compound butter

  • 1/2 cup packed fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 cup packed fresh Italian parsley
  • 2 coarsely chopped garlic clove
  • 1 Fresno chili seeded and diced fine
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/8 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 1 small shallot chopped
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter at room temperature


To sous vide the steak

  • Heavily season the tomahawk steak with kosher salt on all sides, add fresh herbs, 1 T butte per side, vacuum seal the steak.
  • Pre-heat sous vide water bath to 130° F / 54.4° C for medium-rare, or to the desired temperature.
  • Sous vide the steak for 2 to 3 hours.
  • Remove the steak from the bag and pat dry with paper towels to remove moisture on the outside. Season the steak again with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper before searing.

To sear the steak

  • Pre-heat grill or skillet to high.
  • Sear for 1 to 2 minutes per side (including the sides) to brown.
  • Slice off the bone and serve with slices of the chimichurri compound butter or with the fresh chimichurri sauce.

To make the chimichurri compound butter

  • While the steak is cooking sous vide, make the chimichurri butter. Add the cilantro, parsley, garlic, chopped Fresno chili, olive oil, red wine vinegar, red pepper flakes, shallot and salt to a blender or food processor.
  • Pulse until the ingredients are well chopped, but not completely puréed. Use a spatula to scrape down the sides to process evenly. Transfer the chimichurri to a container.
  • To make the compound butter, combine 2 to 3 tablespoons of the chimichurri and the softened butter in a small bowl. Use a spatula to combine until smooth. Place the butter on a piece of plastic wrap, forming a log and completely wrapping. Transfer to the freezer to harden before slicing and serving.


  • This recipe for the chimichurri compound butter makes plenty of extra chimichurri sauce that can be served with the steak or with other dishes. Completely cover and refrigeratore or freeze it for a lter use.

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tomahawk ribeye steak in sous vide machine vertical

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