Rib Steak vs Ribeye: What’s the Difference?

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Ribeye is a pretty common well favored cut of steak, but a rib steak is less popular. When you’re done reading this post, you’ll know to be on the lookout for rib steak. The reason is pretty simple. There’s just not much of a difference between rib steak vs ribeye.

A rib steak is simply a ribeye with the bone-in. It’s also commonly called a bone-in ribeye, or cowboy ribeye.

Rib steak next to a ribeye steak. Both cuts are labeled with "vs" between them both.

Cooking Rib Steak vs Ribeye

Both of these cuts are highly versatile and cook well no matter what your preferred method of cooking steak is. Whether the bone is attached to the ribeye or not, the cuts benefit from generous marbling, which protects from overcooking.

The biggest thing to be aware of when cooking a rib steak vs a ribeye is the meat will cook meaningfully more slowly by the bone (temp difference of 5-10 degrees).

For this reason, when using a meat probe or thermometer to check for doneness, be sure to check the temp at the thickest portion by the bone in a rib steak.

If you’re like me and enjoy a medium rare steak, you could run into trouble finding a temperature where you like the doneness both by and away from the bone.

One way to solve this is to sous vide ribeye or rib steak, which will cook the steak perfectly to your preferred temperature hassle free.

Taste of Rib Steak vs Ribeye

There’s a lot of debate on the topic of bone in vs boneless ribeye taste. Bone in advocates claim yellow marrow from the bone, which is as nutritious as it is delicious, seeps into steak with the bone in. Detractors say there’s no chance that happens while cooking.

The recent studies I’ve seen seem to indicate having the bone in doesn’t affect taste. At the end, some of this just comes down to personal preference. Both are among the most tender cuts of steak.

If you’re looking for the most tender bite of a ribeye or rib steak on repeat, you need to get to know the ribeye cap steak.

Related Reading: New York Strip vs Ribeye – Which to Choose?


What’s better rib steak or ribeye?

I would say a ribeye is better than a rib steak simply because there’s generally less excess fat on the cut and it cooks more evenly. This really comes down to personal preference though. Both are great cuts of steak with the simple difference of bone in vs boneless.

Is rib steak a good cut?

Yes, a rib steak is a good steak. In fact, I’d call that an understatement. Rib steaks are among the most tender cuts of steak and are buttery, which makes them relatively easy to cook.


  • Rishi

    Rishi is an avid home chef and the owner-operator of Top Sous Vide. He's been cooking sous vide for over 7 years and loves experimenting with new foods. Whether it's a simple family dinner for his wife and 3 kids or an elaborate meal for a group of friends, his food is always a crowd pleaser!

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