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What are Some of the Different Cuts of Steak?

By Kathy Hawkins
Updated May 16, 2024
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In a restaurant or grocery store, you will find many different cuts of steak. Though quite a few different cuts can come from the same animal, they will be significantly different in flavor, texture, and shape.

One of the most popular cuts of steak is the filet mignon, as it is known in the United States. In the United Kingdom, the cut is called a "fillet steak." These cuts come from the muscle area near the spine of a cow, which is very tender. Normally, a cow will produce between 4 and 6 pounds (between 1.8 and 2.7 kg) of filet mignon, which are cut into two long tube-like shapes. These tubes can then be cut into slices several inches thick, and grilled, broiled, or fried. This is typically the most expensive type of steak, and can cost over $30 US Dollars (USD) per portion in a restaurant.

The strip steak, sometimes called New York strip steak, is another one of the best cuts. In Britain, it is called "porterhouse steak." Like the filet mignon, it is an extremely tender cut of meat, and comes from the short loin of the cow. When the bone and part of the tenderloin is attached to the strip steak, it is called a T-bone steak.

Rib eye steak, which is also called Delmonico steak or Scotch fillet in Australia, is another of the premium cuts of steak, and can be fairly expensive to purchase. This meat comes from the rib area, and is the same meat as that used in a prime rib roast. Because this cut contains more fat than most other steaks, it is known for being incredibly flavorful.

Another cut of steak is called a flank steak, which comes from the stomach muscle of the cow. It is much tougher than strip steak or filet mignon, which also makes it much cheaper to purchase. Flank steak is often prepared in a marinade, which helps to tenderize the meat before cooking. It can be fried, grilled, or broiled, or can be cut into thin strips for stir fry meals. Flank steak is one of the most popular cuts used in Chinese cuisine.

Another of the cheapest cuts of steak is the chuck steak, which comes from the shoulder muscle of the cow. The chuck steak is generally relatively thick, but can be very tough. It is best when slow-cooked or braised, or when chopped into smaller pieces for a stir fry. Larger pieces of chuck steak are sold as roasts, which can be used to make pot roast.

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Discussion Comments
By lightning88 — On Sep 20, 2010

I would highly recommend anyone who has not tried an aged steak to do this before you die. Unfortunately, so many people just end up with the regular grocery-store cuts of steak.

There are two kinds of aged steak: wet aged and dry aged. Wet aging is the cheaper alternative, and works by letting the steak age in it's own juices.

Dry aging works by hanging the beef up in an area with a closely controlled humidity and temperature. This kind of aging is more difficult because you have to watch it especially carefully for signs of bacteria.

This is why dry aged beef is more expensive, but there's an up side -- the taste is truly fantastic. By dry aging it, the meat's flavor will become steadily more intense; however it's essential for the butcher to find the day when the flavor peaks, yet spoilage has not yet started.

When done properly however, a dry aged steak can truly be the best steak you'll ever try.

By EarlyForest — On Sep 20, 2010

I am looking for a good broiler steak, and was wondering if a hanger steak would be any good. I've been poring over my cuts of steak diagram and can't actually find out where it comes from, which kind of puts me off though.

So, where exactly does a hanger steak come from, and is it good for broiling?

By gregg1956 — On Sep 20, 2010

By this time in my life I've probably tried about all the different kinds of steak cuts there are, from prime meats to the types of steak cuts not usually mentioned in polite company.

Out of all the beef that I've tried, I think that the best was a dry aged beef Chateaubriand. Chateaubriand is cut from the tenderloin, which if you look at a cuts of steak chart, is a think triangular part in the middle.

Chateaubriand is not only thick and flavorful, it is extremely tender, especially when dry aged properly.

I would recommend serving it medium rare with braised carrots, potatoes and, if you'd like, a salad or some onions. Think of it as a meat and three for grown-ups.

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