If you are learning how to play poker (or video poker), it’s essential to grasp the relative hand strengths (poker hand rankings) quickly so that you know which hands beat you – and which hand is the best hand (also known as “the nuts”) in every possible poker situation.
The odds of hitting specific hands in Texas hold’em poker can vary depending on the specific situation. For example, the odds of being dealt a specific starting hand (such as pocket aces) are fixed, but the odds of making a specific hand (such as a full house) on the flop, turn, or river can change based on the cards that have been dealt and the actions of the other players.
In general, the odds of hitting big hands in Texas hold’em, such as straights, flushes, full houses, and quads, are relatively low. The specific odds can vary, but as a rough approximation, the odds of hitting a straight are about 1 in 220, the odds of hitting a flush are about 1 in 50, the odds of hitting a full house are about 1 in 40, and the odds of hitting quads are about 1 in 650.
Of course, these odds are just estimates, and the actual odds of hitting specific hands can vary based on the specific situation. Additionally, the odds of hitting a big hand can be affected by factors such as the number of players in the hand, the cards on the board, and the betting actions of the other players. As such, it is important to consider all of these factors when trying to calculate the odds of hitting a specific hand in Texas hold’em.
Use our printable Texas Holdem Hand Rankings sheet to learn poker hand rankings for games like Texas Hold’em and Pot Limit Omaha (PLO)
Poker Hand Rankings – from Best to Worst
- Royal flush
T ♥ J ♥ Q ♥ K ♥ A ♥
The best possible hand in poker – a Royal Flush is made up of the top five ranked cards – suited, and in consecutive order. The highest five cards in Texas Hold’em poker are known as “broadway cards” : Ten, Jack, Queen, King, and Ace – (which combine to make an ace high straight, or an ace high flush – AKA royal flush). If you have this hand you have a 100% unbeatable hand (“the nuts”) – which is rare to see.
- Straight Flush
3 ♣ 4 ♣ 5 ♣ 6 ♣ 7 ♣
The 2nd best hand in Texas Hold’em poker – a straight flush consists of 5 consecutive cards of the same suit. A lot of players like to go all in with a straight flush on the river where there is a possible flush for their opponent, in case the opponent has an Ace high flush, and cannot find a fold due to the tiny likelihood that their opponent has the second best hand in poker!
- Four of a Kind (AKA “poker”, “quads”)
9 ♠ 9 ♥ 9 ♣ 9 ♦ X x
“Poker” or “Quads” is four cards of the same rank. The third best possible hand in PLO and Hold’em, this hand is tough to beat. Should more than one player showdown the same four of a kind hand (E.g on a 55559 flop) – the pot will be won by whichever player still in the hand highest “kicker card” in their hand, otherwise the pot is “chopped” between players due to them having identical holdings.
- Full House
A ♠ A ♥ A ♣ K ♦ K ♥
A full house is a poker hand comprised of a pair and 3 of a kind combined. The suits of the cards are of no relevance. a full house in poker may also be referred to as a “full boat”.
8 ♠ A ♠ 9 ♠ T ♠ K ♠
In poker a flush is a combination of five cards of the same suit. In this example, our hand an Ace High Flush – as the highest card making up our poker hand is the Ace of spades. The only flush that beats this hand is a straight flush.
4 ♠ 5 ♥ 6 ♣ 7 ♠ 8 ♦
A straight is a run of five consecutive cards – which are not all of the same suit (otherwise, that would be a straight flush).
- 3 of a kind
2 ♠ 2 ♥ 2 ♣ 9 ♠ 7 ♦
As the name implies, three of a kind involves having three cards of the same rank, and any two non paired cards. Three of a kind should not be confused with “trips” – which is when one card from your hole-cards is used to make a 3-of a kind in combination with 2 board-cards (effectively there is no difference).
- Two Pair
K ♠ K ♣ J ♣ J ♠ 2 ♦
In this example the player has a pair of Jacks and a pair of kings with a deuce kicker – two pair.
K ♠ K ♣ 4 ♠ 9 ♠ 3 ♦
In this example the player has a pair of kings – two cards of the same rank, and any other 3 non-paired cards.
- High Card
A ♠ 7 ♣ 8 ♠ 9 ♠ 6 ♦
Sometimes in poker you won’t even hit a pair post-flop – and your opponent might not hit either. In the case of getting to a river showdown you play your highest hole-card – in this case Ace high. If you opponent has a lesser hand at showdown (like King high, or a missed draw) – you win chips in the pot.
Note: This poker chart is printable.