The Different Cuts of Beef You Should Try
Yes, they make a difference to your meal
7 January 2014
Whether you are an enthusiastic cook or just a novice in the kitchen it is important to know the different cuts of meat so that you can make an informed choice when making your next delicacy.
Some cuts are more tender then others and thus require less cooking. Other cuts of meat make a difference in certain dishes.
Here is a list of the cuts of beef available on the market and the dishes that they go best with.
1) Chuck steak
The chuck steak is also known as the 7-bone steak due to the shape of the bone. It contains a lot of connective tissue including collagen. This collagen will melt during the cooking process giving the dish a lot more flavour. It is used primarily in stews and other slow cooked dishes. This is also a great cut for braising or pot roasting.
In the UK, this is often referred to as braising steak. However cuts from the chuck include the chuck eye, the cross rib roast, top blade steak, under blade steak, shoulder steak and roast, and arm steak and roast.
Here are some great dishes that can be made with this cut:
- Pot roast
- Grilled chuck steak
- Beef and walnut stew
- Marinated chuck roast
The rib is arguably the best beef cut as it is juicy and tender and full of flavour.
The cuts that are derived from the rib are; rib eye steak, entrecote, short ribs and prime rib. This cut of beef is best when it is cooked dry, without any sauces or marinades. It is a great meat to barbecue or grill quickly for dinner.
Here are some dinner ideas:
- Rib eye steak
- Entrecote marchard de vin
- Cherry balsamic short ribs
- BBQ rib eye
3) Short loin
This cut of meat is the one that most steaks come from. It contains part of the spine and includes the top loin and the tenderloin. This cut is best when grilled as the juices are sealed in.
The porterhouse and T-bone steaks come from this cut. As well as the fillet steak which, I think is the softest and most tender of all steaks.
Here are some creative dinner ideas for the short loin that go beyond just grilling and are easy and fun to prepare and enjoy.
- Stuffed filet mignon bites
- Lobster Colorado
- Spinach and steak salad
- Blue cheese crusted filet mignon
The sirloin comes from the lower part of the ribs and produces cuts such as the tenderloin and top and bottom sirloin. These cuts can be slow cooked or grilled, but be aware that they tend to dry out fast so you have to watch your cooking time.
If you have a cut of sirloin in your freezer why not make one of these delicious and meaty dinners:
- Beef fajita salad
- Carne con Pappas
- Beef stew skillet
- Cola pot roast
This comes from the animal’s rump and it has less fat and is a little tougher then the afore mentioned cuts of beef. It is best when braised as moisture is retained and the meat tends to soften. The round cut tends to dry out quickly when it is grilled or roasted.
The rump steak comes from this cut and it is a favourite among men, this particular piece of round steak contains a layer of fat and can be grilled although it is not a soft as the fillet or T-bone.
The round can make a great dinner, including the following ideas:
- Chicken fried steak
- Round steak sauerbraten
The brisket is a cut from the breast or lower chest. It is full of connective tissue which makes it a tough meat to cook.
It should be braised for hours until the connective tissue gelatinizes for delicious results. It is most often braised in water and the top layer of fat is usually not trimmed as it prevents the meat from drying out.
Try these recipes with brisket:
- Sweet n sour brisket
- Slow cooked beef brisket
This cut comes from the leg and it is a tough muscle. This cut should be stewed or made into a soup. Even though it’s tough, it is loaded with amazing flavour and would make any dish a hit.
- Iron kettle beef stew
- Old fashioned beef soup
- Beef goulash
This cut is particularly fatty and tough but it yields two amazing steaks. The skirt and the hanger steaks. These are pricey cuts but are super tasty when grilled. The skirt steak is covered in a tough membrane that should be removed before cooking.
This steak may not be tender but it is full of flavour and is a favourite in:
The hanger steak is one of the more expensive cuts of meat that is prized for its flavour.
In the past butcher’s used to keep this cut for themselves rather than sell it. It is a very tough cut of meat and is best when marinated for a long period of time and cooked quickly, either grilled or broiled.
It is best served rare or medium rare as cooking it anymore would make it very tough.
This comes from the belly and is the toughest piece of beef. It must be marinated or braised, otherwise it’s inedible.
Try these dishes with this cut of beef:
- Beef Bulgogi
- German roulade
This cut is found inside the loin and is one of the finest cuts of beef. This is where we get the fillet mignon steak from. Meat from this cut should only be cooked using dry heat methods such as grilling and broiling.
Try these with this cut:
- Fillet Mignon
Beef guarantees a healthy dinner and now that you are armed with the knowledge of the main cuts of beef and how to prepare them best, have fun in the kitchen with cooking and eating some lovely yummy tasty delicious beef.