Montreal Steak Seasoning

Montreal steak seasoning in a bowl and on a steak

Luca Trovato / Getty Images

Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Total: 5 mins
Servings: 10 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
10 Calories
0g Fat
2g Carbs
1g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 10
Amount per serving
Calories 10
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 2095mg 91%
Total Carbohydrate 2g 1%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Protein 1g
Calcium 20mg 2%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

How Montreal became the king of spice blends is anyone's guess, but spice maker McCormick has been selling these blends for years. There are probably hundreds of recipes for this seasoning, but they are all based on the same idea: the recipe provides heat and flavor without all the floral herbs of many other blends.

Montreal seasoning hails from Montreal, Canada. It was developed from the dry rub mix that is used in making Montreal smoked meat, which is a cured and smoked beef brisket that's similar to pastrami. Once someone began using it on steaks and ribs, it became popular at delis and steakhouses in Montreal.

Montreal steak seasoning is an excellent dry rub for all cuts of steak. First, bring your steak to room temperature by taking it out of the refrigerator for 30 to 60 minutes. Add the seasoning (lightly or more to your taste) immediately before cooking. You don't want to put it on too far in advance, as the salt will draw water out of the meat.

Although it's classic to use this seasoning on steaks, consider trying it chicken, pork, or salmon. It's also a great seasoning to use on potatoes, including french fries, baked potatoes, hash browns, and tater tots. Steamed, grilled,, or roasted vegetables such as broccoli, mushrooms, and zucchini taste great with it, too. Montreal steak seasoning is also great when used in marinades.


  • 2 tablespoons black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons paprika (not smoked)
  • 2 tablespoons sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon garlic (granulated)
  • 1 tablespoon onion (granulated)
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper (use less or omit if preferred)
  • 1 tablespoon coriander
  • 1 tablespoon dill seeds (ground)

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Combine all of the ingredients and store the seasoning in an airtight container. Note the date you prepared it to label the container.

  3. Keep in a cool, dark place for up to six months. Enjoy!


To use the seasoning in a marinade, add 1/2 teaspoon of the mix to 1/4 cup oil, 1/4 cup water, and 2 tablespoons vinegar. Marinate the steak for 15 minutes or more in a plastic bag in the refrigerator before grilling. Be sure that you dispose of the marinade that has been in contact with the raw meat. Make fresh marinade if you wish to use it for basting or as a sauce.


  • You can modify the recipe as needed. If you don't want much heat, you can reduce or omit the cayenne pepper.
  • If you are sensitive to onions, you can eliminate it from the recipe and still enjoy the other flavors, which is an advantage over buying a ready-made Montreal seasoning.
  • For extra depth of flavor, substitute whole coriander seeds and toast them in a small skillet until they are browned. Then crush them or grind them in a spice grinder or coffee grinder before adding them to the seasoning mix.