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Porterhouse vs. T Bone Explained

Porterhouse vs. T Bone Explained

Unfortunately, most people will try to convince you that there is no difference between a porterhouse steak and a T-bone steak.

After all, they believe that since both cuts of meat feature a T-shaped bone with meat on both sides, they are the same steak.

The truth is these people could not be more wrong.

Every steak lover knows every cut of steak is distinct and unique.

Porterhouse vs. T Bone

A porterhouse steak is different from a T-bone steak. As you will see below, a porterhouse steak is not just a glorified T-bone steak.

Both cuts are different, from size to nutritional values and cooking methods.

Yes, both cuts of beef are carved from the carved the same section of the animal, the short loin.

The characteristic T-shaped bone runs through two different cuts of steak: the New York strip steak and the tenderloin.

Both of these cuts are heavily coveted. The strip steak has a similar flavor to ribeye, while the tenderloin is very lean and tender.

Both cuts of steak are shaved away from the bone and served on their own. 

However, when these cuts of steak are left on the bone, you get porterhouse or T-bone steaks. 

Nutritional Value

A pound of porterhouse steak will send you into a steak coma as it can rack as much as 1000 calories.

 This is why it’s important to monitor how much porterhouse steak you consume. This is also why it is encouraged to share porterhouse steak with friends or loved ones.

One serving of steak is about 3 ounces. Although 3 ounces seems like a measly portion, you will be consuming 200-250 calories.

In addition to this, if you add a baked potato or mashed potato and leafy vegetables such as kale, you can still have a satiating meal that does not go over the calorie range.

Even though the T-bone is smaller than its counterparts, it still should be consumed in moderation. 

There are 467 calories in 1 T-bone steak. 

467 seems like a drastic reduction from 1000 calories, but remember, this does not account for additional ingredients such as butter or oil.

The steak itself is 467 calories. Therefore, you should only consume 3 ounces of T-bone steak.

Nevertheless, porterhouse and T-bone steaks are great sources of phosphorous, vitamin B6, minerals, zinc, iron, riboflavin as well as other nutrients that the body needs.


The main difference between porterhouse and T-bone steaks is the size of the tenderloin fillet. Porterhouse steaks contain more of the fillet than T-bones.

In a way, porterhouse steaks are T-bone steaks. However, the USDA set specific size guidelines on what qualifies as a porterhouse steak.

 For a T-bone steak to be considered a porterhouse steak, the USDA says it must be a minimum of 1.25-inches in thickness. 

A steaks thickness is measured at the widest point of the fillet. Porterhouse steaks come from the back portion of the short loin, where the thickest part of the tenderloin is located.

Therefore, it is a large steak that can range up to 24 ounces or 1 1/2 pounds.

T-bones do not pass the 1.25-inch standard, so they must be labeled a T-bone steak.

 Nevertheless, a T-bone steak must be 0.25 inches in thickness to be sold as a T-bone steak. 


The price differences of both steaks will be determined by the weight, quality, and the store you purchase them from.

For example, if you purchase porterhouse steaks from a butcher, you are going to pay more because of the quality of the meat than if you were to purchase them from a grocery store.

If Porterhouse steaks or T-bone steaks are labeled with USDA prime, they will be the most expensive cut.

Nevertheless, T-bone steaks are usually cheaper than their larger counterparts.

You should also pay attention to the steak you are purchasing.

Some steaks that are labeled porterhouse steaks are thick in the tenderloin section and thin in the strip section, so be warned.


Porterhouse steaks can be cooked similarly to T-bone steaks since they are fabricated from the same part of the animal and have the same texture.

The primary difference lies in the cooking time. Since a porterhouse steak is larger, it will take longer to cook.

Nevertheless, you can use the same cooking method to prepare both steaks. 

Porterhouse steaks and T-bone steaks are best cooked in a hot cast-iron skillet. 

This allows you to sear the steak perfectly and cook it to a perfect medium-rare.

Remember to use an infrared thermometer to monitor the internal temperatures of the steaks.

It is the only way to tell if the porterhouse steak or T-bone steak is done.

Since the ideal temperature for porterhouse and T-bone steaks is medium-rare, cook your steak to a temperature between 130°-140°F.

It may be best to remove the steak from the skillet 5-10 degrees before it reaches your desired temperature.

The porterhouse or T-bone steak will continue to cook as it rests, so it will come up to 140°F and still be medium-rare.

Alternatively, you can also cook the steak in the oven and tent it with foil to prevent it from overcooking.

You can also fire up your kamado grill or natural gas grill and cook the steak.

However, if you are going to cook the steak on your grill, it’s best to cook them, sear them on the direct cooking side and allow them to slowly come up to temperature.

Which Is Better, a T-bone or Porterhouse?

Whether porterhouse steak or T-bone steak is better depends on the occasion. Both steaks are pretty expensive. 

However, if your budget is on the lower end, a T-bone steak is best. 

On the other hand, if there is a lot of wiggle room in your budget, you can splurge on a porterhouse steak.

Since porterhouse steak has more of the tenderloin is better if you are cooking for 2 people.

In addition to this, you will get to fire up your portable pellet grill and grill a large cut of meat.

You can cut the porterhouse into smaller portions so everyone gets a taste of the beefy flavor of the New York steak strip and the succulent, lean, and tender tenderloin.

On the other hand, if you’re eating alone, a T-bone steak is better.

hey are a much smaller, more manageable cut of meat. You probably won’t end up with leftovers that will go bad in 1-2 days.

As for taste and texture, that depends on your individual tastes and preference. In my opinion, the flavor of both steaks is the same because they come from the same area.

 Nevertheless, the final flavor of each steak will differ depending on the seasonings used and how it is cooked. 

For example, if you season your T-bone steak with a BBQ rub and grill it on your hibachi grill, it will have a different flavor than if you seasoned your porterhouse steak with salt and black pepper and seared it in a hot cast-iron skillet.

T-bone steaks are best for grilling, while porterhouse steaks are best for stovetop or broiling.

Therefore, if you want to have a backyard BBQ, it’s best to purchase T-bone steaks. Best of all, you won’t have to take the extra time to cut the steak into small pieces.

Your guest can just grab a T-bone steak and enjoy it!

What Can I Substitute for Porterhouse Steak?

The best substitute for porterhouse steak is T-bone steak. These cuts of steak are nearly identical in flavor and texture.

In addition to this, the T-bone steak is much cheaper, so you’ll save a few pennies.

You can also use fillet mignon if you want more of the tenderloin portion of the porterhouse steak.

You can also use New York strip steak as a substitute for porterhouse steak.

What Can I Substitute for T Bone Steak?

In the same way, you can substitute a T-bone steak for a porterhouse steak; you can replace a T-bone steak with a porterhouse steak.

However, you will spend more money since the porterhouse is bigger and thicker than its counterparts.

You can also use New York strip steak since the T-bone contains a larger portion of the strip.

Additionally, Top sirloin is also a good substitute for T-bone steak. Both New York Strip steak and top sirloin are affordable, delicious options.

Final Thoughts

If you are a steak enthusiast, then you know that porterhouse steaks and T-bone steaks are pretty high on the list of the top 10 ten steaks.

However, just because they have a characteristic T-shaped bone does not mean they are the same cut of steak.

T-bone steaks can be converted into porterhouse steaks, but porterhouse steaks cannot be made into T-bone steaks.

Nevertheless, if you are feeding two people, a porterhouse steak might be better.

On the other hand, if the price is a high priority, the T-bone steak might be better. I recommend trying both steaks at least once in your lifetime.

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