The best cuts of beef
Do you know your chuck and blade from your flank steak when it comes to choosing the best beef cuts for your recipes? We have put together a little guide to help you choose the best cuts of beef, depending on what meal you are cooking. Some cuts of beef can be cooked in numerous ways. Read on to find out more . . .
Best beef cuts for roasting
Topside and silverside are probably the most popular cuts of beef for roasting.
Silverside was traditionally sold as a boiling joint for salt beef. It would have been salted and very lean. It is generally now sold unslated for roasting but, to keep it lovely and moist, it needs regular basting once it’s in the oven.
Topside is normally sold with an extra layer of fat tied to it so it self-bastes whilst cooking. This lovely lean cut of beef is perfect for a roast but, it can also be cut into steaks for grilling, frying or stir-frys.
Other cuts for roasting
Although Topside and Silverside are probably the most popular, other cuts are also worth a look.
Top Rump (also known as Thick Flank Steak) is great for slow roasting.
Sirloin, when boned and rolled, is perfect for a classic roast.
Fore Rib is sold either ‘boned and rolled’, ‘French trimmed’ or ‘on the bone’. The marbling through the meat makes this a superb cut for roasting.
Brisket is a cheaper cut of beef but, is full of flavour if cooked right. It is usually sold rolled, with the bone in and is perfect for slow or pot roasting.
Cuts of beef for the BBQ
As well as making a great cut for roast, Fore Rib can be cut into steaks or ribeyes for the BBQ. The last few ribs on this cut, known as Wing Ribs, can also be cooked on the barbie and are very tasty.
Sirloin can be cut into delicious prime-cut steaks such as T-bone, Porterhouse and Entrecote. Delicious when barbequed.
Rump, often cheaper than fillet or sirloin steaks, is very popular for popping on the BBQ. Although not quite as tender as the more expensive cuts, it is just as tasty and copes well with quick-cooking.
Thin Flanks Steak, often known as Skirt, is good for outdoor cooking. It has lots of marbling, making it lovely and moist.
Best beef cuts for everything else!
Chuck and blade is known by a few other names – braising steak and flatiron steak, due to its shape. It’s a little more tender than stewing steak and makes wonderful winter stews and casseroles.
Fore Rib, cut into steaks or ribeyes, is delicious grilled or fried.
Sirloin, although mentioned above in the roasting section, is probably better known as a steak that is grilled or fried. It also makes very tasty stir-fries when cut into strips. Topside can also be cut into steaks for grilling or frying.
Fillet, also known as Filet Mignon, Tenderloin, and Tournedos, is possibly the most prized cut of beef. Very tender and lean, it is the cut that is used for Steak Tartare, Chateaubriand, or Beef Wellington.
Rump steak is perfect for grilling, frying, or stir-fries. Although it can be a little tough, it is full of flavour, coping well with marinades and sauces.
Thick and Thin Flank Steaks are great for grilling, frying and braising. The marbling makes these cuts moist and very tasty.
Leg and Shin cuts are what go into stewing steak and make amazing stews. Both are perfect for long, slow cooking, making them great for lovely thick sauces and gravies as well as stews etc.
Neck is also used for stewing steak. Again the flavour is released when it is cooked slowly in stews and casseroles. It also makes fabulous gravy and very tasty sauces.
Thick Rib is generally sold as braising steak. A little more tender than stewing steak, it is ideal for braising, stews and casseroles.
Minced beef, corned beef and more . . .
Minced beef is normally made from Thin Rib and Brisket, with the latter also being used to make corned beef.
Oxtail, when braised slowly, is one of the tastiest and inexpensive cuts. It has an excellent, rich flavour – perfect for stews, soups, sauces and gravies.
Ox cheek is a budget cut but, when cooked slowly in ale or wine, it absorbs the flavour beautifully, creating a wonderful gravy and very tender meat.
We hope our guide has helped you understand the different cuts of beef that you need for different meals. The National Beef Association has lots of information on the different cuts of beef with recipes to try.
If you have any questions about meat and what to do with it, we would be more than happy to help. Just pop into the shop or drop us a line.