You can also cook your chook in the slow cooker or portion it yourself into smaller cuts. Pigs’ cheeks are similarly delicious. Untrimmed beef brisket is still one of the least expensive cuts of beef you can buy. Some supermarkets even stock them now. Probably the most prized cut of beef, the fillet is very tender and very lean, as a steak it is suitable for quick cooking under the grill or frying. Plus these tougher more economical cuts of meat, by virtue of the lower fat marbling that in part causes them to be graded lower and thus priced lower, are healthier sources of protein because of their lower content of saturated fat. The primal cuts of beef are the basic cuts separated from the carcase during butchering. There is an alternative to paying top dollar for individual premium cut steaks found in the Short Loin area. Once you have your pork smoked and pulled, pile it up on white bread buns and you have the perfect sandwich to serve with coleslaw and chips. And with a little marinating, slow cooking, or pressure cooking the tougher whole Chuck cuts become tender, juicy, and delicious. 1. Extra connective tissues makes them tougher, but it also contributes more beefy flavor and the right cooking breaks connective tissues completely down. There is a growing number of frugal omnivores who raise their own beef cattle, or pool resources with friends and family (termed "Cow-pooling") to purchase quarter, half, or whole sides of beef, and butcher it themselves or hire a local meat processor. To aid you in your fiscally responsible quest for cow, we’ve put together this guide to eight of the best cheap steak cuts, featuring some truly excellent, and reasonably priced, pieces of beef. The lower prices of Sirloin cuts, compared to the oft outrageously priced tenderloin cuts, makes Sirloin a good frugal beef bet when you buy it on sale. Skirt These can be tough cuts. The best cheap beef cuts often come from the shank, flank, round, plate, or chuck of the cow. Beef can be pricey, so you’re not alone in looking for cuts that are less expensive. Cheap beef cuts from the chuck or round, such as chuck roast and round steak, will generally require moist cooking techniques and will become fork tender with a slow cooker, pressure cooker, or with braising. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) divides a cow into 8 main regions of beef, also known as the 8 Primal Cuts of Beef: Round, Rib, Loin, Chuck, Flank, Brisket, Short Plate, and Shank. Slow-cooking meat is a popular and convenient way of cooking cheaper cuts. A few of the best cheap steak cuts There is only one hanger. Top Blade Steaks are great cheap cuts of meat with a lot of flavor. As the name "Butcher's Cut" implies, butchers are said to have often kept this cheap beef cut for themselves because customers are unwilling to pay what butchers think it is worth. In fact, just about any cuts of beef can be turned into fork tender, juicy, and delicious roasts with a crock pot or pressure cooker. These cuts are premium because they are usually the most tender cuts for grilling because of the desirable quality of good fat marbling and less dense muscle. Untrimmed beef brisket is still one of the least expensive cuts of beef you can buy. But this also gives them a lot of good beefy flavor too. The Spruce / Hugo Lin. Let the lamb sit in this marinade for several hours before cooking. Your Meat Grinder, Crockpot, or Pressure Cooker will take care of the toughness. Yet there is more to the steer than just its ribeye, and some of the best cuts of beef fly well under the radar of your local supermarket or steakhouse. Over the years, they've become popular for many dishes and the price has gone up, making them not as economical as they once were. It is not visible on most beef cut charts, but butchers know it well and most love it. It’s much less expensive and almost always has less fat content than ground beef (make sure to check the label! Larger peices are used for dishes such as Beef Wellington. Many people consider the best cuts of beef to be those that come from the loin section such as New York Strip, Porterhouse, and Filet Mignon Steaks. So the loin section of the cow is off limits to us most of the time. Take those pieces and throw them on the grill over a medium fire, brush on some barbecue sauce, and you have a great meal that all of your guests will love—especially the kids. The cheaper cuts come from the animal’s most hard-working muscles. But there is one exceptionally frugal cut to be had from near the Loin and it is still little known. The following guide will focus on helping you find the cheapest beef cuts for frugal meal planning around those good meat sales you'll often see around the holidays or when supply of beef is more plentiful. The sirloin is one of the most famous cuts of beef, but it's actually generally divided up into three smaller cuts: the top sirloin, the bottom sirloin, and the rear part of the tenderloin. The Sirloin of the cow is behind the premium cuts loin region and is thus closer to the more frequently used muscles found in the hind legs/hips, or "Round", of the animal. Examples of common retail portion cuts are: steaks, roasts, briskets, strips, kabobs, stew meat, cubed steak, and ribs. Compared to a well exercised muscle like the cow's Shank (or fore-leg), the Loin muscles are not used as much and so have less connective tissue and a higher fat content. Prime cuts of beef are graded "Prime" by the USDA based on this ideal fat marbling in the meat. In France they call this hanging delicacy the "Onglet". Now, on a cow, there are eight primal cuts. Besides the below exception, we generally avoid buying cuts from this part of the cow because of the high per pound cost. Here's a brief guide to common cuts. Ask your local butcher about Hanger Steaks, Butcher's Steaks, Hanging Tenders, or Bistro Steaks. Hanger Steak is usually tougher, but it is flavorful. Chuck steaks are a great alternative to more expensive steaks (like ribeye, porterhouse, and New York strip). Arm Roast may also be advertised as Swiss Steak, Arm Steak, Arm Chuck Roast, Arm Pot Roast, or Round Bone Pot Roast. You can buy the entire 10+ lb. Each cut gives different cuts of meats and several tastes. Ground Turkey. They need about 5 hours in the smoker. Tender cuts of beef like tenderloin and filet are delicious, but can get expensive. It's also the best of this primal cut—just make sure you talk to your butcher so you're sure of what you are getting. That’s because, of course, beef is expensive. Using marinades and other meat tenderizing methods will help to break down connective tissues and protein fibers to turn even tougher cheap cuts of meat such as eye round steak, top round steak, skirt steak, or shoulder steak into great cuts of beef for broiling or grilling. Beef Cheeks. A popular roast for pot roast, shredded beef, and beef and Swiss cheese sandwiches. Flat Iron Many frugal meals can be had from a roast made from cheap cuts of beef. Excellent inexpensive steaks and roasts are available at every supermarket. But these are NOT the best cuts if you are on a beef budget, as we are. Unfortunately, good lamb can be hard to find and expensive. The Eight Primal Cuts of Beef. Though tougher, these budget beef cuts can easily be turned into tender, juicy, and tasty beef dishes with proper cooking techniques. The fajita craze has driven up the price of Skirt steak and Flank steak substantially over the last several years. Any way that you slice it, though, it is best to make your burger with fresh ground beef, handle it as little as possible, and avoid forming your burger patties too thick. The connective tissues is where a lot of the flavor comes from. Using wine or stock, cover half to three quarters of the sealed meat, to ensure it falls apart but remains tasty. 8 Delicious Steak Cuts for the Average Joe 1. Some say cash is king. They require slow cooking for tenderization. Unlike the rising popularity and price of "Flank Steak" and "Flap Meat", which has become sought after for meat strips used in Chinese and Mexican dishes, the Hanger Steak is still a hidden gem of frugal beef that can be had for a decent price, though it can be hard to find in many grocery stores. Since these are tougher cuts of meat, your best bet is to marinate, grill, and thinly slice, then serve the meat on rice or pasta, as fajitas or tacos, or on top of a salad. Rump As with chicken, you get a better deal buying a whole turkey and cutting it up (if that's how you want it). These are often tougher cuts because they incorporate well-exercised muscles of the cow. Beef round roasts, cut from the back leg of the cow, are among the most affordable. We show you which cuts of pork, beef and lamb will offer value for money. Or have your butcher do it for you. The best cuts of beef for slow cooking Chuck It comes from the shoulder and upper arm of the cow, so it’s done a lot of work over the life of the animal — with its abundant collagen, it’s the type of cut that gets tough when grilled quickly, but becomes tender and juicier the longer you cook it. In this steaks’ cooking game, among the best cheap steaks players out there, we couldn’t forget the hanger beef cut.. For Americans, the pricing of meat is pretty straightforward. What can make things confusing is that a few different cuts of beef are sometimes sold under the label of ‘beef ribs’. ). The shoulder of the cow, or Chuck, provides some tougher, but cheaper cuts. You can buy the bulk section and save a lot of money. For the best cheap beef cuts from the Chuck or Shoulder look for: As the name implies, the Arm is the part of the cow's upper front leg, above what is known as the Shank. Once upon a time, hanger steak made these lists of cheap beef cuts because no one knew what that incredibly tender cut of beef was. In addition, you can stretch your ground meat farther by making a patty that is small enough to fit the bun, instead of one that is impressive to look at. Whether you have the standard burger patty or like to add a cheesy surprise, most guests are excited to enjoy a good, juicy burger. Start with a strong marinade, putting in lemon juice as the acid—this will tenderize the meat and cut the sometimes strong flavor of lamb. It’s considered a sub-prime cut but has so many great uses for the frugal cook. Arm Roast often goes on sale for half the cost per pound of Ground Round and because it comes from the actively used front leg muscle, it is very tasty, but lower in fat and tougher. Hanger Steaks are also great additions to any Slow Cooker or Pressure Cooker recipe. Likelihood of tenderness, flavor, and juiciness correlated to higher fat marbling and thus a better "eating experience" is a primary consideration in the USDA's grading of beef cuts. This stretches the meat, making a meal for many out of a smaller cut. The Short Loin of the cow, or the small of the cow's back, is where the most premium priced and well-known cuts of beef for grilling are located. These different parts vary wildly in general quality, tenderness, and flavor. Cast an eye across your supermarket’s beef section and you’ll see prices hovering around $3.50-$6.00 per pound, and that’s in Texas where half that beef is coming from! 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