Grilled Steaks with Cowboy Rub

crazy by Editorial Staff | Updated on August 13th, 2022

No matter the occasion, a grilled steak is always a good idea. Whether you’re hosting a dinner party with guests or cooking for your family, it’s important to have a reliable recipe you can always count on.

This meal is easy to make and will give you great results every time.

Grilled Steaks with Cowboy Rub

The Cowboy Rub is the perfect complement to this dish as it goes well with any cut of beef, but we find that it pairs particularly nicely with grilled steak. You’ll LOVE this!

Coffee and Chili Powder Give a Barbecued Steak Recipe Big Flavor

Rubs, the seasoning mixtures applied to foods a short while before they go on the grill, are a great, quick way to add flavor to main courses cooked outdoors.

When it comes to grilling steak, one of the all-time favorite choices for a backyard barbecue, a rub is an ideal seasoning because there’s no need to marinate the beef in advance, plan, or do much fussing at all.

The rich-tasting rub in this grilled steak recipe is inspired by “redeye gravy,” a favorite old cowboy chuck wagon preparation made using black coffee to deglaze the pan ham steaks had cooked.

The black coffee in this particular rub doesn’t give the beef any discernible taste—just a distinctive richness that enhances the flavors of good beef and mild chili powder. (If you plan to make this recipe, refrigerate a splash of coffee from your morning brew to use in the rub.)

Speaking of the beef, any good steak will work well with this recipe. It’s especially good with rib-eye steak, T-bone steak, or New York steak. Flank steak works well with it, too.

Cowboy-Style Grilled Steak Recipe

person barbecuing meat

Serves 4


  • 4 rib-eye, T-bone, or New York steaks, 10 to 12 ounces each
  • 2 tablespoons mild to medium-hot pure chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon onion salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons brewed strong black coffee
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted


  1. Preheat the grill. Meanwhile, trim excess fat from the steaks and set them aside at room temperature.
  2. While the grill is heating, make the rub. In a small bowl, stir together the chili powder, onion salt, cumin, sugar, and black pepper. Add the coffee and butter and stir with a fork to form a smooth paste.
  3. Rub the paste into both sides of each steak, lightly massaging it into the meat with your fingertips. Leave the steaks at room temperature.
  4. When the fire is hot, carefully oil the grill rack, place the steaks on the rack, and cook, turning once, until done to your liking, 16 to 20 minutes total for medium-rare.


  • Try the same rub on pork chops. Use hot pure chili powder instead of mild or medium-hot chili powder for spicier results.
  • In a pinch, substitute 2 teaspoons of instant coffee crystals or granules if you don’t have brewed coffee available.

Serve the steaks with baked potatoes or French fries, if you like. They’ll be so juicy and flavorful that there’s no need for a sauce.


Editorial Staff

The editorial staff at Crazy Coffee Crave is a team of coffee enthusiasts & Baristas who enjoy the one thing we all think about as soon as we get up in the morning. Trusted by thousands of readers worldwide.