Bulent’s Guide to choosing the Best Cuts of Beef

If you love beef, you’ll know that there are different cuts that vary in texture, taste, toughness and cooking times for all types of dishes. Here are some handy tips and tricks below to help you choose the best cuts of beef for your meal!

  1. Find a good, reputable butcher: It’s important to know where your beef comes from, how it was raised and there is simply no comparison to fresh, high-quality meat you’ll find at a butcher compared to a supermarket. Make friends with your butcher and they will be able to offer you their wealth of knowledge and expertise.
  2. Choosing the right cut of beef: It's important to know the characteristics of each type of beef. Here are some guidelines:

  • Loin - generally a tender, flavourful cut. A lot of loin cuts (tenderloin, T-bone steaks) are the expensive ones you see at nice restaurants or steakhouses.
  • Brisket - Brisket is the breast of the cow, so it's typically rather tough. Therefore, most people opt to slow cook it so it gets more tender.
  • Chuck - Chuck comes from the shoulder. It is tougher than the loin, but also incredibly flavourful. It is a versatile cut that can be used in a number of different dishes.
  • Shank - Shanks are the "forearm" of the cattle. Full of collagen, you'll see shanks typically prepared with dishes that are hearty or come with a gravy or sauce.
  • Round - Often what you'll see sold as ground beef, but also includes some of the tender cuts that cost a lot when you eat out.
  • Short Plate - The shortcuts are found underneath the ribs. It's not a lean cut of meat but can be used for things like fajitas or short ribs.
  • Flank - A tough cut of beef that can feed many people. If prepared right, it's one of the most flavourful cuts.
  • Ribs - Not everyone is a fan of beef ribs, but cooked correctly, they can be quite delicious

When choosing your cut of beef, keep in mind how it is prepared and cooked to ensure it is used in the best way possible. For example, you don’t want to throw a Shank cut onto the grill, as it is one of the toughest cuts and will be extremely hard to eat. Shank is best when braised and slow cooked in soups and stews, which will make the meat more tender!

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