6 Best Store-Bought Steak Seasoning Picks – Enhance Your Meals

Enhance your meals with the 6 best store-bought steak rubs, featuring flavorful blends like Montreal Steak and Ancho Espresso Coffee for juicy, tender steaks.

best store bought steak rub

It doesn’t matter how beautiful a piece of steak looks when it comes off the grill. If it is not well seasoned, all of that effort was for nothing!

Salt and pepper are a must, as well as minced garlic and onion. Herbs like rosemary and parsley often adorn a sirloin or New York strip.

But what if you’re not as confident in the kitchen? The best store bought steak rub will provide the tasty flavors you are looking for without the need to invest in an extensive spice cabinet.

The best store-bought steak rubs incorporate a perfectly-balanced amount of sugar to assist with caramelization once your meat hits the grill.

Store-bought steak rubs are your friend during grilling season and for summertime flavors year-round. These six best store-bought steak rubs elevate your next flank and Porterhouse steaks effortlessly.

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McCormick Grill Mates Montreal Steak

McCormick Grill Mates Montreal Steak Seasoning, 11.62 oz

McCormick spices stand as a leading seasonings producer for the home cook. Anyone who has shopped for spices at the grocery store has browsed McCormick spices.

The iconic red bottles contain the best store-bought steak rub with this Montreal steak seasoning. 

McCormick Montreal steak seasoning features paprika, onion, garlic, and sunflower oil. Use this steak seasoning on skirt steak for a quick steak fajita recipe.

Montreal steak rubs get their name from the French-inspired ingredients of this blend. Montreal is a metropolitan city in Canada with a thriving French-Canadian culture.

Some of the first explorers to North America were French fur traders, which explains the enduring influence today.

Lane’s Ancho Espresso Coffee Rub

Lane's Ancho Espresso Coffee Rub - Coffee Rub for Meat | Incredible Crust | Coffee BBQ Rub for Deep Rich Flavor | Ancho Chili Rub | 100% Natural | Gluten-Free | NO Preservatives | NO MSG | 10.7oz

Gastronomical adventurers will enjoy Lane’s Ancho Espresso Coffee Rub. In addition to a hefty dose of ancho chile spice, garlic, coriander, and brown sugar, the bitter flavors of coffee balance this assertive steak rub.

This store-bought steak rub pushes the envelope when it comes to seasoning that prime cut of beef.

Effortlessly tenderize and caramelize your meat with this spicy, sweet, and tangy steak rub. This rub will produce a tasty, light crust on the outside of your steak while keeping the meat tender and juicy. 

Like many of the rubs on this list, it’s important not to overdo it with steak rubs. Aim for a light coating on the outside of the meat. Make sure it covers the entire piece of steak to achieve a delicious crust.

Texas Beef Rub

Kosmos Q Dry Rub Texas Beef BBQ Dry Rub, Bottle of 13.8 Oz

Use this Texas Beef Rub to turn your steak’s fat into “beef butter.” That is just one claim from this Texas-style seasonings company.

While everything is bigger in Texas, this best store-bought steak rub brand values simplicity in its blend. Onion and lemon are the dominant flavors in this rub, with a secret blend of spices rounding it out.

In addition to steak rubs, this company provides premium rubs for all cuts of meat. Explore rubs for an extra-special Christmas ham or Thanksgiving turkey.

Sugar-free rubs and seasoning mixes friendly to those on keto diets are all part of the Kosmos Q seasoning company.

Jack Daniels Steak Seasoning 

Jack Daniel's Steak Seasoning 6 oz (Pack of 3)

Jack Daniels whiskey is not just a good accompaniment for a steak in the form of an old-fashioned cocktail. Jack Daniels now manufactures one of the best store-bought steak rubs on the market.

This coarse steak rub is low-sodium and gluten-free but packed with flavor. This granular spice rub contains dehydrated garlic, onion, and bell peppers, along with salt and a signature blend of spices.

Let this spice rub absorb for at least 30 minutes to fully incorporate the robust Jack Daniels flavors into your steak.

Weber Chicago Steak Seasoning

Weber Chicago Steak Seasoning 28 Oz

Unlike the French Canadian McCormick steak rub described above, this Weber steak seasoning offers the American answer. Weber Chicago Steak Seasoning captures the succulent flavors of a traditional American steakhouse.

This Chicago steak rub prioritizes pepper above all else. This seasoning features a signature secret pepper blend, blending white, black, and whole peppercorns.

Garlic and onions join the seasoning. These flavors remind you of the side dishes you would get at an American steakhouse, like garlic mashed potatoes.

Killer Hogs Steak Rub

Killer Hogs Steak Rub | Championship BBQ and Grill Seasoning for Beef, Steak, Burgers, and Chops | Salt, Pepper, Herbs, and Spices | 16 Ounces by Volume (11oz Net Weight)

Unlike other steak seasonings, Killer Hogs Steak Rub began with open-air meat cooking in mind (their roots are in brisket seasonings and ribs). Reach for this rub when you want to take your grilled and smoked meats to another level.

Find Killer Hogs Steak Rub at big box stores and in the grilling section of national chain hardware stores too.

A unique ingredient for this rub is Worcestershire sauce powder. Worcestershire sauce delivers a tangy, sour flavor that is common in sauces from traditional steakhouses.

Onions, garlic, brown sugar, and signature spices combine for this award-winning recipe.

Difference Between Steak Seasoning and Steak Rub?

The largest difference between steak seasoning and steak rub is the texture. A steak rub maintains a much coarser texture.

For example, kosher salt may be combined with bits of diced garlic or minced onion, turning into a crust-like substance on the meat. Steak rubs provide a hearty dose of flavors forming on the outside of the meat to counterbalance the rich steak. 

Steak seasonings are finely ground spices and herbs. The final product of a steak seasoning is applied liberally on both sides of the meat before the steak is applied to heat.

Steak seasoning is a mostly homogenous mixture, and you typically cannot tell the different elements apart.

Steak seasoning can appear during and after cooking to boost the final flavor profile the cook intended. Steak seasoning can also be used to evoke a rich, meaty flavor in other dishes.

A steak rub is a less versatile spice blend. Steak rubs must only adorn raw meat.

Frequently Asked Questions

Still have questions about the best store-bought steak rubs? Continue reading to learn the answers to readers’ most frequently asked question

Who makes the best beef rub?

The leading manufacturer of charcoal grills also makes the best beef rub. Weber Chicago Steak Seasoning perfectly evokes classic steakhouse flavors when grilling at home (it works well for burgers too).

How long should a rub be on the steak before cooking?

The minimum a rub should rest on the steak before cooking is 15 minutes. Any less time than this risks the rub not influencing the flavor of the meat. Ideally, cooks set aside two hours or more for the steak rub to marinate before cooking.

Is Chicago Steak Seasoning the same as Montreal steak seasoning?

No, these seasoning blends are different. Montreal steak seasoning uses a French-inspired mixture of rosemary, thyme, dill, garlic, coriander, and other spices. Chicago steak seasoning tastes like an All-American steakhouse, featuring onion, garlic, and peppercorns.


Steak rubs impart unbeatable flavor into a delicious steak. When given enough time to absorb, steak rubs tenderize the meat and help turn that sirloin or NY strip into a decadent, home-cooked dinner.

Apply a light coating of the steak rub seasoning to the outside of the meat before the cooking process to achieve a flavorful crust. Be sure to wait at least 15 minutes, ideally up to two hours, for the seasonings to absorb. Never add steak rub during or after the cooking process.

The best store-bought steak rubs deliver on both tradition and innovation. Experiment with steak rubs that capture the best of North American steakhouses. Or branch out to steak rubs that push the envelope with flavor profiles.

More FAQs

What brings out the flavor of steak?

Seasoning steak with salt is essential as it not only enhances the taste of the meat but also contributes to its juiciness and tenderness. By applying salt to the steak before cooking, it draws out moisture from the meat’s surface, yet this process does not diminish the steak’s juiciness.

How long should dry rub be on steak before cooking?

The dry rub should be left on the steak before cooking for a minimum of 15 minutes up to several hours, depending on the available time.

Should you pat steak dry after seasoning?

After seasoning, it is advisable to pat the steak dry to remove any excess juices and moisture caused by the salt. Although the surface of the steak may appear slightly dry, this step helps enhance the overall cooking process.

How long is too long to dry rub steak?

The ideal duration to dry rub a steak is determined by personal preference and can range from as short as 30-40 minutes to as long as overnight. Allowing the rub to marinate overnight in an airtight container in the refrigerator will effectively infuse the steak with the desired flavors.

Does a dry rub tenderize steak?

A dry rub does not tenderize steak; instead, it primarily adds flavor. Unlike marinades, which typically contain liquid components and help tenderize meat, dry rubs consist of spices like brown sugar, salt, paprika, and cumin without any liquid component.

Do you put seasoning or oil first on steak?

The answer to the question “Do you put seasoning or oil first on steak?” is as follows: When preparing steak, it is recommended to start by coating the meat with a small amount of olive oil. Following this, generously sprinkle coarse salt onto the steak just before cooking. This method helps to maintain the natural flavors of the meat and creates a delightful surface texture.

What is the best seasoning for steak before cooking?

The best seasoning for steak before cooking is typically a combination of kosher salt and black pepper, although certain recipes may suggest using a steak rub, onion powder, paprika, cayenne pepper, thyme, and various other herbs and spices.

Should you season steak just before cooking?

Undoubtedly, life can be challenging, and timing is no exception. In situations where meticulous planning is not feasible, it is generally recommended to cook your steak immediately after seasoning it – ideally within a minute – to prevent the salt from extracting moisture from the steak.

Should you put a lot of seasoning on steak?

It is recommended to generously season steak with a substantial amount of seasoning. It is important to sprinkle an ample amount of salt, even more than you may initially think is necessary, to ensure complete coverage of the steak. For more uniform seasoning, sprinkle the salt from above. Although it may appear excessive, it is advised to continue salting generously.

What do you put on steak before grilling?

You should put a generous amount of kosher salt and coarse, freshly ground black pepper on steak before grilling. Additionally, some individuals prefer to enhance the flavors by incorporating rosemary, cayenne powder, garlic powder, or garlic cloves into the seasoning mixture.

What is the difference between steak seasoning and steak rub?

The difference between steak seasoning and steak rub is that rubs are typically coarser and applied more generously. To achieve optimal results, it is recommended to brush the steak with cooking oil before adding the rub. Spread the rub on a clean plate and place the steak on top, ensuring both sides are coated by gently pressing the steak onto the seasoning plate.

Is it better to marinate or dry rub steak?

It is better to marinate or use a dry rub on steak. Both methods provide a burst of flavor. If you prefer a strong flavor like ginger or teriyaki, then marinating the steak would be the best option. On the other hand, if you want a complementary underlying flavor that enhances the taste of the steak, using a quick dry rub is the route to take.

What do chefs season steak with?

Chefs season steak with a combination of sea salt, coarse ground black pepper, and minced garlic to achieve the ultimate caramelization and a thick crust that is beloved by many.

Should you pat steaks dry before seasoning?

You should pat steaks dry before seasoning to enhance the flavor and achieve a rich, brown crust. By drying the steak, it prevents the salt from dissolving and inhibits the formation of steam when cooking, which is essential for achieving a perfect sear.

Do you need to marinate dry rub?

The need to marinate dry rub depends on the desired flavor, texture, and usage. Dry rubs are distinct from marinades in terms of the taste they infuse, the coating they create on the meat, and the application method. If time is limited, dry rubs serve as an excellent and convenient option for quickly seasoning meats.

Do you cover steak after seasoning?

The steak should be covered after seasoning. If you’re starting early, pat the meat dry with a paper towel, season it, and then transfer the steak to a rack set over a baking sheet. Afterward, cover the steak with plastic wrap and place it in the fridge.

What can I put on steak if I don’t have steak seasoning?

If you don’t have steak seasoning, you can create your own by mixing a quarter cup of smoked paprika with two tablespoons of chili powder and a tablespoon each of kosher salt and ground cumin. If you prefer a spicier flavor, you can also add cayenne to the mixture. Once the seasoning is prepared, rub it onto the steak and add a tablespoon or so of canola oil to help it adhere to the meat.

Why use steak rub?

The reason for using steak rub is to enhance the flavor of meat, poultry, and game, particularly when grilling. Whether you opt for a dry rub or a wet rub, which can be made into a paste by incorporating liquids, our tips and techniques will assist you in expanding your culinary skills by adding a touch of spice to your dishes.

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