When you go to a steakhouse and you're looking at the menu, there are several cuts that are generally offered. Two of the most popular steakhouses cuts are the porterhouse steak and the t-bone steak. Both of these cuts of meat are filling, a bit expensive, but delicious in all retrospect. Steak lovers often order both on a menu when looking for a nice steak experience. Both porterhouse steaks and t-bone steaks are very popular for steakhouses and home chefs but have differences in their look, taste, and overall consistency.

Close up of a succulent tender grilled porterhouse steak seasoned with pepper and rosemary on a wooden board with fresh halved tomatoes, mushrooms, corncobs and bell peppers
Porterhouse steaks are known as the “king” of all steaks.


What is a Porterhouse

Porterhouse steaks come from the short loin section of the cow. It's an extremely large cut in comparison to other cuts of steak. It is a combination of two types of steaks, a tenderloin and a strip steak that is separated by a bone. The tenderloin is a very tender, soft piece of steak and smaller than the strip section. The strip section is extremely flavorful. For the steak to be a porterhouse steak, it has to have specific measurements and sizes.

What is a T-Bone

A T-bone steak comes from the short loin section of the cow, much like a porterhouse steak. This is why the two are sometimes confused for each other. Like a porterhouse steak, it is two cuts of meat on one steak, separated by a bone. T-bone steaks are also made up of a tenderloin and a strip steak separated by the bone in the middle; hence its name.

Raw Porterhouse or T-bone beef meat Steak with herbs on a wooden cutting board. wooden background. Top view
Porterhouse steaks have to measure a specific size.

©Mironov Vladimir/Shutterstock.com

Size Differences

Sizes of steaks can vary depending on where you are ordering or purchasing the steak from. However, in order to tell the two steaks, a porterhouse and a T-bone, apart it comes down to the size of the tenderloin part of the steak. In order for the steak to be a T-bone steak, the steak's tenderloin should be 0.5 inches wide or less. If it is bigger than 0.5 inches, then it is not a T-bone but instead, a porterhouse steak.

Prices Differences

Both porterhouse steaks and T-bone steaks are on the pricier side. Due to the strip and the tenderloin portion of the steaks, they tend to be expensive. Many steakhouses offer different sizes of each, such as a porterhouse for two. The bigger the steak, the more expensive. However, between a porterhouse and a T-bone, porterhouse steaks tend to be more expensive because of the size of the tenderloin. All in all, you get more meat on a porterhouse steak than a T-bone, hence the higher price.

Cooking Differences

The two steaks come from the same portion and section of the cow, therefore they cook relatively similarly. However, the porterhouse will take longer to cook because of the size of the filet. A larger steak ultimately takes a longer time to cook. Many like to use a cast iron skillet when cooking these cuts of meat, although a grill can work as well.

How to Choose

When choosing between a porterhouse and a T-bone steak, it all comes down to how much you want to spend, and how much you want to eat. A T-bone steak is a better choice if you want to keep the cost a bit lower and you also are not going to eat a huge meal. Porterhouse steaks are good to share with a partner, as they're much bigger, and also if you're celebrating because of the price point.

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