How to Cook Wagyu Beef on the Grill: The Ultimate Guide

Grilling wagyu beef may seem intimidating, but with a few simple techniques you can achieve incredible results right at home. Here is a complete guide to grilling wagyu steak to perfection.

What is Wagyu Beef?

Wagyu refers to a breed of cattle originally from Japan prized for its exceptional marbling, tenderness and flavor. The high fat content makes it perfect for grilling.

There are a few types of wagyu:

  • Japanese Wagyu – Considered the purest bred in Japan. Includes Kobe beef.

  • American Wagyu – Crossbred cattle with some percentage wagyu genetics. Very high quality.

  • Australian Wagyu – Also crossbreds with partial wagyu ancestry.

For grilling, look for highly marbled wagyu steaks cut at least 1-inch thick. Popular grilling cuts include ribeye, strip steak, filet mignon and sirloin.

Benefits of Grilling Wagyu

Grilling is a fantastic cooking method that really allows the flavor of wagyu beef to shine:

  • Enhanced flavor – Grilling adds great smoky, savory notes.

  • Fat renders perfectly – The high heat melts fat evenly through the meat.

  • Forms crust – Grilling gives wagyu a beautiful crispy caramelized crust.

  • Quick cooking – The thin steaks cook fast over direct high heat.

Follow these simple steps and tips for grilling wagyu beef just right every time.


  • Wagyu steaks, 1-2 inches thick (ribeye, strip, filet, sirloin)
  • Kosher salt and coarsely ground black pepper
  • Neutral high smoke point oil (avocado, rice bran, grapeseed)

Equipment Needed

  • Charcoal or gas grill
  • Instant read digital thermometer
  • Basting brush
  • Tongs

Step 1 – Bring to Room Temp

  • Take steaks out of fridge at least 45 minutes before grilling.

  • Letting meat warm slightly before cooking allows for more even cooking.

Step 2 – Pat Dry and Season

  • Blot steaks with paper towels to remove excess moisture.

  • Season liberally on both sides with salt and pepper.

  • For wagyu, simple seasoning is best to let the flavor shine.

  • Optionally, brush lightly with oil to help seasoning adhere.

Step 3 – Preheat Grill Properly

  • Preheat grill to 500°F or highest temperature.

  • Use direct high heat for optimal sear.

  • Clean grates well and oil lightly to prevent sticking.

Step 4 – Sear Over Direct High Heat

  • Place steaks on hot grill grates over direct high heat.

  • Grill 1-3 minutes per side, until a nice crust forms.

  • Use tongs to flip steaks; do not puncture meat.

  • Rotate steaks 45 degrees to get crisscross grill marks.

Step 5 – Finish Over Indirect Heat

  • Move steaks to indirect heat on the grill once seared.

  • Close grill lid and continue cooking to desired doneness.

  • Use a digital thermometer to monitor temperature.

  • For medium-rare, pull at 130°F. Medium at 140°F.

Step 6 – Baste and Rest

  • Transfer steaks to a plate and lightly brush with oil.

  • Loosely tent with foil and rest 5-10 minutes.

  • Resting allows juices to redistribute through meat.

  • Serve whole or thinly slice across the grain. Enjoy!

Grilling Tips for Wagyu Beef

Follow these handy tips when grilling wagyu steaks:

  • Preheat grill properly – Use high heat up to 500°F+ for best results.

  • Pat steaks very dry before seasoning – Moisture causes flare-ups.

  • Watch for flare-ups – Wagyu’s fat content makes it prone to flaring.

  • Move to indirect heat if flaring – Put out flames by covering grill.

  • Use two-zone fire – Sear over direct heat, finish indirect.

  • Turn steaks only once – For better crust formation.

  • Cook to 125-135°F for medium rare doneness.

  • Check temperature often – Wagyu cooks very fast.

  • Let rest before cutting – Allows juices to redistribute.

Best Wagyu Cuts for Grilling

These premium cuts offer the ultimate grilled wagyu experience:

  • Ribeye – Most flavor and marbling. Juicy and tender.

  • Strip Steak – Full flavor, tender texture. More affordable.

  • Filet Mignon – Extremely tender though less fat.

  • Sirloin – Budget-friendly. Solid wagyu choice.

  • Skirt or Flank Steak – Thin cuts good for marinating.

Side Dishes

Pair wagyu steak with these flavorful accompaniments:

  • Roasted or grilled vegetables – asparagus, mushrooms, peppers, etc.

  • Garlic herb butter

  • Salad with balsamic dressing

  • Loaded baked potato

  • Grilled shrimp, scallops or lobster tails

  • Sauteed mushrooms

Let the amazing flavor of the wagyu beef take center stage. Sides should complement, not compete.

Is Wagyu Worth the Hype?

Wagyu beef commands premium pricing for good reason – no other steak compares for rich flavor and sheer decadence. While not cheap, grilling wagyu at home delivers an incredible dining experience. The melt-in-your-mouth tenderness must be tried to fully appreciate. Fire up the grill and experience luxury steak at its finest!

How to Grill AMERICAN WAGYU Steak


What is the best way to grill Wagyu beef?

Dual-zone grilling is the key to grilled Wagyu, much like it is for abundantly marbled USDA Prime steaks. Dual-zone setups are different depending on the type of grill you use, but the idea is always the same: create direct, high heat on one part of the grill, and indirect, lower heat on the other.

Should I grill or fry Wagyu?

Some would argue that the grill is the best method for cooking Wagyu. Especially if it’s a charcoal grill, it gives the meat a wonderful smoky flavor you can’t achieve indoors. And as long as you keep an eye on the steak and check the temperature regularly, you’re likely to get a tender, evenly cooked cut of meat.

How long to cook Wagyu beef on each side?

Rest and season your Wagyu, as described above. Add fat to your pan, using the steak’s own fat cap or a bit of butter, oil, or beef tallow. Cook approximately three to four minutes on each side, depending on your preferred doneness. Let the steak rest so the juices can redistribute and settle.

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