If you’re looking to get the most from your meat, especially in taste and nutrition, we have the low-down on which cuts have the most to offer – both in taste and price – so you’ll be fully prepared next time you’re perusing the butcher shop. We’ve broken down the main meat cuts for beef, as this is one of the most popular and versatile meats. Whether you’re looking for the best cuts for a quick barbeque, or a nice candlelit dinner, we have you covered.
Chuck – also known as the 7-bone steak
So, let’s start with the cheaper of the cuts – the chuck meat. A rectangular cut sourced from the upper front part of the animal, this cut is usually inexpensive and is ideal for grilling, braising (frying it then stewing it) or grinding into mince.
How to cook chuck meat
Chuck meat is a good option for:
- Pot roasts
- Shepherd’s pie
- Slow-cooker meals.
This meat goes great with basic veggies such as potatoes, beans, broccoli and carrot.
Being better quality meat than the chuck meat, round steaks are generally better tasting. This cut comes from the animal’s rump, and is a great option for those looking for a cheaper quality meat that is lean yet filling. Round steaks tend to be a bit tougher than other cuts due to its lack of fat – but if you keep a good eye on it while cooking (or you’re opting for the slow-cooker), you can still have a nice, juicy round steak!
How to cook round steak meat
You can use round steaks for:
- Slow-cooker meals
- Round steak strips/stir fry
- Steak parmesan.
Round steak is a versatile meat so depending on what you’re cooking, you can add a range of ingredients. This can include rice, gravy, beans, peas, potato, sweet potato, carrot, noodles, salad and more.
Amping up the quality of the cut yet again, sirloin steaks are the thick, juicy cuts that are usually the favourite for surf clubs and restaurants. This cut is sourced from the lower section of the animal’s ribs – where most of the premium meat is found. If you’re after a hearty meal that is as delicious as it is filling, sirloin steak is a great option.
How to cook sirloin steaks
These steaks are incredibly versatile – you can cut them up and use them for beef stroganoff, or put them straight onto the grill. Just be mindful that the lack of bone makes this cut dry out much faster, so you’ll need to keep a close watch on it. If you are planning on grilling or frying it, be sure not to flip it over more than once (this often results in overcooking the exterior, resulting in a chewy and tough steak).
Sirloin steaks are generally the focal point of the dish, and are usually accompanied by steamed vegetables and mashed potato. You can always add some salad or asparagus as well, depending on how you would like to serve up your steak.
As the name suggests, these cuts are taken from the rib section. This is some of the best meat available on the animal, with cuts such as rib-eye steak, short ribs and prime ribs also found here. These meats are popular due to their incredible taste, texture, tenderness and juicy flavour. When cooked properly – the rib meat should slide right off the bone.
How to cook ribs
Ribs are best cooked over a dry heat, such as over a barbeque. Be sure to let it rest for a while to let the juices sit and really lock in that flavour. Serve with gourmet sauce, steamed vegetables and some roast potatoes! Ribs are also a great option for slow cooking – the constant warm temperature over hours of cooking makes the meat incredibly tender.
The short loin is the most premium cut – sourced from the lower back of the animal, just before the rump. This is also where most of other premium cuts are found – such as the T-bone steak and the porterhouse steak. These cuts don’t come cheap, however, so be sure you’re ready to spend big for this one.
How to cook short loin cuts
These cuts are best cooked (and eaten!) as steaks – as they are naturally tender and very juicy. They are also suited to being cooked over dry heat, so a grill or barbeque will do nicely. Serve with sauce or gravy, along with asparagus, broccoli, cauliflower, mashed potato and other vegetables.