Sizzling Choices: 12 Superb Steak Cuts Perfect for Backyard Grilling
January 07, 20243 min read
There's something about the scent of seared steak wafting through the summer air that says happiness. As grill enthusiasts, we know that choosing the right cut of steak can be the difference between a decent backyard barbecue and an unforgettable one. In this comprehensive guide, we'll explore 12 of the best cuts of steak for grilling, from the tender fillet mignon to the versatile flank steak, to help make your next cookout nothing short of spectacular.
From Tender to Robust: The Best Steak Cuts for Grilling
When it comes to grilling, not all steaks are created equal. The best cuts for grilling usually have a good balance of fat and beef, providing a tender, juicy bite and rich flavor. Let's dive in, steak by steak.
Ribeye is a grill master’s dream, often admired for its marbling, which keeps the steak tender during grilling and provides a rich flavor.
Pros: High fat content results in a moist and tender steak.
Cons: Can be pricey and may flare up on the grill due to high fat content.
2. New York Strip
The New York strip, also known as the Kansas City strip, is similar to a ribeye but has slightly less marbling.
Pros: Offers a firm texture and robust beef flavor.
Cons: Sometimes less tender due to lower fat content.
3. Filet Mignon
Although the priciest cut on our list, filet mignon's unmatched tenderness and mild flavor make it a crowd favorite.
Pros: Incredibly tender and lean.
Cons: May require extra seasoning and care while grilling due to lack of fat and marbling.
The T-bone boasts a two-for-one deal, featuring meat from both the tenderloin and strip loin.
Pros: Offers versatility with two distinctive flavors and textures.
Cons: Requires skill to grill, as each side cooks at a different rate.
Simply put, a porterhouse is a larger T-bone. It offers more of the tender filet mignon section, making it a steak lover's dream.
Pros: Ample size and variety of flavors.
Cons: Like the T-bone, it requires extra attention while grilling due to varying cooking rates on each side.
6. Top Sirloin
Top sirloin offers a nice blend of flavor and tenderness, but at a more affordable price point.
Pros: Lean cut with robust flavor, economical.
Cons: Requires marinating to ensure tenderness.
7. Flat Iron
The flat iron is a hidden gem, highly marbled, juicy and second only to the filet mignon in tenderness.
Pros: Tender and well-marbled.
Cons: Can be difficult to find, as it is usually used in restaurants.
Revered by chefs for its flavor, the hanger steak is becoming a popular choice for backyard grilling.
Pros: Rich flavor and tender texture.
Cons: Requires careful preparation to remove undesirable parts.
Flank steak is a great grilling steak, known for its marinated, sliced, against-the-grain serving style.
Cons: Can be tough if not cooked or sliced properly.
The skirt steak, similar to flank, is marinated and sliced against the grain. It is the traditional choice for fajitas.
Pros: Ideal for marinades, resulting in a flavorful bite.
Cons: Can be tough and chewy if not cut and cooked correctly.
The tri-tip, popular in California, is a flavorful and lower fat cut.
Pros: Lower in fat, economical.
Cons: Requires monitoring on the grill to avoid overcooking.
12. Chuck Eye
Often referred to as "the poor man's ribeye," the chuck eye is a cost-effective alternative with similar flavor and juiciness.
Pros: Flavorful and more affordable than ribeye.
Cons: Not as tender, less readily available.
"Cooking steak is a rite of summer. Selecting the right cut is the first step towards grilling perfection." – Anonymous Grill Master
Conclusion: Elevate your Grilling Game
Choosing the best steak for grilling can be complex with so many delectable cuts to choose from. Each has its own merits and intricacies, be it the marbling of a ribeye, the tenderness of a filet mignon, or the cost-effectiveness of a chuck eye. Armed with this thorough guide, you'll be well-prepared to choose the steak that will have your guests asking for seconds. The next time you fire up your grill, let the chosen cut be your gateway to a culinary masterpiece! Happy grilling!