Know your Cuts of Meats

Know your cuts of Meat

cuts chart

Whether you purchase a whole, half, or quarter portion it is important to know where the meat is located on the animal. The location of the cut helps to identify the best type of cooking for that cut. Butchers refer to these areas as primals. Remember, when reading and cooking from a recipe reduce the cooking time by half for grass fed beef. If the meat isn’t done enough, add time back in at 5 minute intervals. Overcooking grass fed beef leads to tough meat, no matter the cut!

Chuck: this is from the neck and shoulder region of the animal. These cuts can be tough and do best when braised: cooked in liquid at low temperature over a long period of time. This includes chuck roasts, chuck steaks, o-bone roasts and clod roasts.

Rib: this meat is from the back, over the mid section of the body. This is best as steaks and roasts. This includes rib roast, rib-eye steaks and rib steaks.

Loin: this meat tends to be the most tender of all of the animal. Familiar cuts are filets, t-bone, porterhouse, and sirloin. Other cuts include tri-tip and top sirloin.

Round: these cuts are from the hind quarters and tend to be leaner and tougher than the loin. This meat will do well roasted, especially as pot roasts. Be careful not to overcook them. One note here, on London Broil. London Broil is not a cut, but a finished dish. Items marked London Broil include flank steak, top round steak, or top blade steak.

Flank: this cut can be quite tender and flavorful. It does well when marinated and grilled, then cut into thin slices against the grain.

Short Plate:this area produces short ribs, which are sometimes termed flanken. These cuts are best braised. Another cut from this area is the skirt steak, which does well when marinated and grilled.

Brisket and Shank: these cuts come from the breast area of the animal. Brisket is often made into corned beef or cured for pastrami. Shanks do best when braised and are an excellent choice for soups.