Did you know that beef is divided into sections called primal cuts? From
these large areas, the meat cutter makes smaller portions suitable for
individual or family-sized packaging. Different cuts of beef require unique
cooking methods. A chuck, for example, makes an excellent roast but isn't as
pleasing when pan-broiled. With these details in mind, we have prepared the
following information for you to use as a guide when selecting and preparing
Meat is basically muscle, and the chuck happens to be a heavily exercised area.
Luckily, this area contains a great deal of connective tissue, including
collagen. Collagen melts during cooking, making the meat intensely flavorful.
Cuts from this area benefit from slow, wet cooking methods like stewing,
braising or pot-roasting.
- Blade Roast --- an inexpensive cut which lies next to the ribs; more
tender than most chuck; makes an excellent roast. Alternatively, the roast
can be cut into a rib-eye steak, with meat above and below the bone
excellent for stir-fry dishes
- Chuck Steak --- a good choice for kabobs if well marinated.
Tender and flavorful ribs can be cooked any number of ways. Most recipes call
for ribs to be roasted, sautéed, pan-fried, broiled, or grilled.
- Rib Roast --- known as a standing rib roast (bone left in), or without the
bone for convenient slicing. Excellent when dry roasted. A seven-bone prime
rib roast can be quite a hefty addition to the dinner table. It is great for
a crowd, but for a small family a bone roast will do. Many butchers will cut
a roast to order for you.
- Rib Steak --- also cut from the rib section, these tender steaks can be
purchased bone-in or as boneless rib-eye.
This area boasts extremely tender cuts and can be prepared without the aid of
moist heat or long cooking times. Cuts from the short loin may be sautéed, pan
fried, broiled, pan broiled or grilled.
- Porterhouse Steak --- a very popular steak cut from the rear end of the
short loin; the name originated from the days when it was served in public
alehouses that also served a dark beer called porter. The porterhouse
consists of both tenderloin and sirloin tip. The tenderloin is often served
separately as filet mignon.
- T-bone Steak --- cut from the middle section of the short loin; similar to
the porterhouse steak; has a smaller piece of the tenderloin; usually
grilled or pan-fried.
- Tenderloin --- often considered the most tender cut of beef; responds well
to sauces, meaning the meat does not overpower the flavor of the sauce. It
can be cut as the whole strip, or into individual steaks for filet mignon.
"The backbone's connected to the & hipbone" --- not a song, but a
sirloin. These tender cuts respond well to sautéing, pan-frying, broiling,
pan-broiling or grilling.
- Sirloin Steaks --- these steaks are available in a variety of boneless and
- Sirloin Tip Roast --- excellent when dry roasted or marinated.
This meat is lean, muscular and very flavorful. Flank is primarily used for
flank steaks and rolled flank steaks. It can also be used for kabobs.
- Flank Steak s steak has a great flavor, and should be sliced thin
against the grain for maximum chewability. Use to make the classic London
This section is best used for stew meat, where its rich, beefy flavor can be
The round consists of lean meat well-suited to long, moist cooking methods.
- Top Round --- this is the most tender part of the round; it can be
prepared as pot roast or cut into thick steaks for braised dishes.
- Rump Roast --- a very popular cut for pot roast, but can also be roasted
at low temperatures.
Traditionally used for corned beef, brisket is best prepared with moist heat.
Suitable preparation methods include stewing, braising and pot-roasting.
- Foreshank --- excellent stew meat.
- Brisket First Cut --- a leaner cut of the brisket, for those who want the
flavor but not the fat of a brisket pot roast.
- Brisket Front Cut --- fork tender and succulent, a beef pot roast made
with this cut is truly mouthwatering.