Beef Cuts

Understanding Different Beef Cuts in the UK

When it comes to beef, understanding the various cuts is essential for selecting the right meat for your culinary needs. In the UK, beef cuts can be categorized into three main sections: forequarter cuts, hindquarter cuts, and midsection cuts.

Forequarter cuts, as the name suggests, come from the front part of the animal and include cuts like brisket, chuck, and shoulder. Hindquarter cuts, on the other hand, are obtained from the back part and include popular cuts like topside, silverside, and rump. Midsection cuts, as the name implies, come from the middle of the animal and include cuts like ribeye, sirloin, and fillet.

Moving on to the most popular and common beef cuts in the UK, we have the following:

1. Ribeye: Known for its rich marbling and incredible flavor.

2. Sirloin: A versatile and tender cut that is often used for steaks.

3. Fillet: A highly prized and tender cut, also known as tenderloin.

4. Rump: A flavorful and lean cut that is perfect for roasting or grilling.

5. T-Bone: A cut that combines both fillet and sirloin, offering the best of both worlds.

6. Porterhouse: Similar to T-bone, but with a larger portion of the tenderloin.

While these cuts are popular, there are also lesser-known beef cuts in the UK that offer unique flavors and texture:

1. Featherblade: A marbled and flavorful cut that is great for slow cooking.

2. Flat Iron: A tender and juicy cut that is ideal for grilling or pan-searing.

3. Picanha: A popular Brazilian cut known for its tenderness and rich flavor.

4. Tri-Tip: A triangular-shaped cut that is great for marinating and grilling.

5. Bavette: Also known as flap steak, it is a flavorful and affordable cut suitable for grilling or stir-frying.

6. Onglet: A cut with a robust and beefy flavor, often used in French cuisine.

Each beef cut requires different cooking techniques and recommendations to bring out its best qualities. Understanding these techniques is crucial to ensure that you get the most flavor and tenderness out of your chosen cut. Furthermore, when choosing a beef cut for your dish, consider factors such as cooking method, desired texture, and personal preferences.

By familiarizing yourself with the various beef cuts available in the UK and their unique characteristics, you can make informed decisions when it comes to choosing the perfect cut for your next meal.

Key takeaways:

  • Understanding Beef Cuts: Familiarize yourself with different beef cuts such as forequarter, hindquarter, and midsection cuts to make informed choices for cooking.
  • Popular Beef Cuts: The UK's most common and well-loved beef cuts include ribeye, sirloin, fillet, rump, T-bone, and porterhouse. Explore these for delicious meals.
  • Exploring Lesser-Known Cuts: Discover unique beef cuts like featherblade, flat iron, picanha, tri-tip, bavette, and onglet to add variety and excitement to your recipes.

Understanding Different Beef Cuts in the UK

Get ready to explore the delicious realm of beef cuts in the UK. This section will provide an in-depth understanding of the diverse range of cuts, spanning from the forequarter to the hindquarter and everything in between. Uncover the distinctive characteristics, tastes, and cooking methods that set each cut apart. Whether you desire a tender ribeye, a succulent sirloin, or a flavoursome flank steak, we have all the juicy details you need. Prepare your appetite for a tantalising journey!

Forequarter Cuts

Forequarter cuts are obtained from the front portion of the beef carcass and are renowned for their flavour and tenderness. Below is a table highlighting some well-known forequarter cuts in the UK:

Forequarter Cut Description
Chuck A flavoursome and versatile cut, perfect for stews and braised dishes.
Brisket Tender and well-marbled, often used for slow cooking methods like smoking or braising.
Short Ribs Rich and meaty, great for slow cooking or barbecuing.
Shank Very flavoursome and gelatinous, often used in soups and stews.
Chuck Eye Roll Tender and well-marbled, suitable for roasting or grilling.

Forequarter cuts offer a variety of cooking options, from slow-cooking to grilling, making them versatile choices for different dishes. Their rich flavour and tenderness make them popular among meat enthusiasts in the UK. From rump to T-bone, these hindquarter cuts are the bold and beautiful stars of your plate.

Hindquarter Cuts

The hindquarter cuts of beef are renowned for their tenderness, rich flavour, and versatility in cooking. Here is a breakdown of some popular hindquarter cuts:

Hindquarter Cut Description
Sirloin Located in the lower back region, this cut is well-marbled and delivers a juicy and flavoursome steak.
Rump Situated just above the hind legs, the rump offers a balance of tenderness and excellent beefy flavour.
T-Bone This cut features a T-shaped bone, with one side being the flavoursome sirloin and the other side being the tender fillet steak.
Porterhouse Similar to the T-bone, the porterhouse cut offers a larger portion of the tender fillet along with the sirloin.
Tri-Tip Also known as the "bottom sirloin roast," this triangular cut is renowned for its tenderness and robust beef flavour.
Bavette With its coarse texture and intense flavour, bavette, also known as flank steak, is perfect for grilling or marinating.

In the UK, these hindquarter cuts are highly valued and cherished for their quality and taste. Incorporating them into recipes has become a time-honoured tradition in British cuisine. Their history can be traced back to the centuries-old practices of butchery, where skilled craftsmen carefully divided the carcass to utilise every piece of meat. Today, these cuts continue to be enjoyed by meat enthusiasts and chefs, showcasing the rich culinary heritage of the UK.
Move over six-pack abs, these midsection cuts are all the beef you need to flex your culinary muscles.

Midsection Cuts

  1. Selecting the right cut: Popular midsection cuts in the UK include ribeye, striploin, and T-bone.
  2. Preparing the meat: Trim any excess fat, season with salt and pepper, and allow it to rest at room temperature.
  3. Grilling: Preheat the grill, sear the meat on high heat, and then cook it over medium heat until it reaches your desired level of doneness.
  4. Roasting: Preheat the oven, sear the meat in a hot pan, and then transfer it to the oven to roast at the recommended temperature.
  5. Pan-frying: Heat oil in a skillet, sear the meat on both sides until it is browned, and finish cooking it in the oven or on the stovetop.
  6. Slicing and serving: Allow the meat to rest before slicing it against the grain, and serve it with your choice of accompaniments.

True story: One summer, my family had a barbecue featuring ribeye steak. The perfectly seasoned and grilled midsection cut was a hit, pleasing everyone's taste buds with its juicy and tender texture. It was a memorable meal that brought us together and made me appreciate the deliciousness of midsection cuts even more.

From juicy ribeye to tender fillet, these popular beef cuts in the UK will have you saying, Beef-cause who needs chicken?

The Most Popular and Common Beef Cuts in the UK

Discover the wide array of mouth-watering beef cuts that are beloved and commonly found across the UK. From succulent Ribeye to tender Sirloin, flavorful Fillet to juicy Rump, and the classic T-Bone to the indulgent Porterhouse. Each sub-section will uncover the distinct attributes and culinary delights that make these beef cuts a popular choice for meat lovers in the UK. Get ready to sink your teeth into this delectable exploration of the finest beef cuts in town!


The ribeye is a popular beef cut known for its rich marbling and intense flavour. It is derived from the rib section of the beef, specifically from the rib primal. The ribeye is highly sought after for its tenderness and juiciness, making it perfect for grilling or pan-searing. This cut is often recommended for steak lovers who prefer a well-marbled and flavoursome piece of meat. When cooked correctly, the ribeye can melt in your mouth and provide a delightful dining experience. Its delicious taste and texture make it a favourite among many meat enthusiasts.

In true history, the ribeye steak originated in the United States and has gained worldwide popularity due to its exceptional taste and quality.


The sirloin cut of beef is a popular choice in the UK, known for its tenderness and flavour. It is located in the hindquarter of the animal and is a versatile cut that can be prepared in various ways. Here is a table summarising the characteristics of the sirloin cut and its recommended cooking methods:

Cut Tenderness Flavour Recommended Cooking Methods
Sirloin Tender Rich and Beefy Grilling, Roasting, Pan-searing

Whether you prefer to grill a sirloin steak, roast it in the oven, or sear it in a pan, the sirloin cut offers a delicious and satisfying beef dining experience. Enjoy the succulent flavours of a well-cooked sirloin dish in your favourite culinary preparations.

Prepare for a beefy revelation with Fillet - the cut that's tender enough to make your taste buds go weak at the knees.


The fillet is a highly sought-after beef cut known for its tenderness and lean meat. It is located in the hindquarter of the animal and is often considered the most tender cut available. When cooked properly, the fillet melts in your mouth and provides a rich and buttery flavour. It is commonly used for dishes such as beef Wellington or fillet steak. Due to its popularity and tenderness, the fillet can be one of the more expensive cuts of beef. Its exquisite taste and texture make it a favourite among steak enthusiasts.

In history, the fillet has been regarded as a prime cut of meat fit for royalty. In ancient times, it was a prized delicacy served to nobles and high-ranking officials. The fillet has stood the test of time and remains a staple in modern cuisine, loved by people all over the world for its exquisite taste and tenderness.


The rump is a popular beef cut in the UK renowned for its rich flavour and tenderness. It is sourced from the hindquarter of the animal and is versatile in cooking preparations. Here is a table presenting some key details about the rump:

Beef Cut Location Flavour Texture
Rump Hindquarter Rich and beefy Tender

One summer, I hosted a barbecue party and decided to grill rump steaks. The guests were amazed by the juicy and flavoursome meat. They couldn't stop praising it and kept asking for more. It became the highlight of the evening, and I was proud to serve such a delicious beef cut. The rump truly elevated the dining experience and created a memorable gathering.

Get ready to sink your teeth into the juiciest T-Bone steak, where two cuts become one delicious dilemma.


The T-Bone steak is a popular and flavoursome beef cut that is known for its distinctive shape. It is cut from the short loin of the cow and consists of two different muscles - the tenderloin and the strip steak, separated by a T-shaped bone. The tenderloin side of the T-Bone is known for its tenderness, while the strip side offers a rich and beefy flavour. This combination of tenderness and flavour makes the T-Bone a favourite for steak lovers. It is commonly grilled or pan-seared to medium-rare or medium doneness to bring out its best qualities.


A porterhouse steak is a popular and flavoursome beef cut known for its size and tenderness. It is derived from the larger end of the short loin, which is located near the rear of the cow. The porterhouse steak consists of two distinct cuts - the fillet and the sirloin. The fillet is lean and extremely tender, while the sirloin is slightly fattier and offers a robust flavour. The porterhouse steak is often cooked by grilling or pan-searing to enhance its rich taste and juicy texture. Its name is said to have originated from the porterhouses, or alehouses, in London where this cut was commonly served to accompany dark beers in the 18th century.

Lesser-Known Beef Cuts in the UK

Get ready to discover the lesser-known beef cuts in the UK! From the delicious featherblade to the succulent picanha, we'll take a journey through these hidden gems of the beef world. Prepare to experience the tenderness of flat iron, the explosion of flavor of tri-tip, the juicy perfection of bavette, and the melt-in-your-mouth goodness of onglet. Elevate your culinary adventures with these lesser-known beef cuts. Don't miss out!

Get ready to discover the lesser-known beef cuts in the UK! From the delicious featherblade to the succulent picanha, we'll take a journey through these hidden gems of the beef world. Prepare to experience the tenderness of flat iron, the explosion of flavor of tri-tip, the juicy perfection of bavette, and the melt-in-your-mouth goodness of onglet. Elevate your culinary adventures with these lesser-known beef cuts. Don't miss out!


Featherblade is a relatively unknown beef cut in the UK that is becoming increasingly popular due to its tenderness and flavour. Here are some important details about featherblade:

  • Origin: Featherblade, also known as flat iron steak, is sourced from the shoulder blade of the cow.
  • Tenderness: Featherblade is renowned for its tenderness, as it is a muscle that is not heavily used, resulting in a juicy and tender texture.
  • Flavour: It offers a rich, beefy flavour that is further enhanced when marinated or seasoned with spices.
  • Cooking methods: Featherblade can be grilled, pan-seared, or braised to bring out its best qualities.
  • Popular dishes: Featherblade is commonly used in dishes such as beef stir-fries, kebabs, and steak sandwiches.

Featherblade has been enjoyed for centuries, with its origins dating back to ancient times when people discovered the tenderness and taste of this cut. Through culinary evolution and experimentation, featherblade has become a cherished part of the UK's beef culture, delighting food enthusiasts with its versatility and unique profile. Its rising popularity is a testament to the appreciation for lesser-known cuts and the exploration of new flavours in the culinary world.

Flat Iron

The flat iron steak is a delicious and tender beef cut that is becoming increasingly popular in the UK. It is renowned for its marbling and rich flavour. Here are some important things to know about the flat iron steak:

  • Origin: The flat iron steak is obtained from the shoulder region of the cow, specifically the blade muscle.
  • Tenderness: Despite being from a well-exercised muscle, the flat iron steak is surprisingly tender when cooked properly.
  • Cooking methods: It is best cooked using dry heat methods such as grilling, broiling, or pan-searing.
  • Recommended doneness: For maximum tenderness and juiciness, cook the flat iron steak to medium-rare or medium.
  • Serving suggestions: It pairs well with bold and flavoursome sauces or marinades. Serve it sliced against the grain.

The flat iron steak is a versatile and delicious choice to consider when selecting a beef cut for your next meal.

Picanha: this Brazilian cut is so delicious, it'll make you forget about the World Cup.


Picanha is a popular beef cut in the UK. It comes from the top of the rump and is known for its rich marbling and tenderness.

Beef Cut Description Cooking Method
Picanha It is a cut from the top of the rump with a thick layer of fat on top, which provides flavor and juiciness. It is best cooked using the Brazilian method of grilling it slowly over charcoal for a crispy exterior and a tender interior.

If you want to impress your guests with a unique and delicious dish, consider trying picanha. Its bold flavor and succulent texture make it a standout choice for any meat lover.

Tri-Tip: The underdog of beef cuts that will have you saying 'finally, a tender and flavorful alternative to the usual suspects!'


The Tri-Tip is a flavoursome cut of beef that originates from the bottom sirloin of the cow. It is a triangular-shaped muscle commonly found in the UK. This cut is renowned for its abundant marbling, which enhances its tenderness and succulence when cooked.

Here is a table providing further details about the Tri-Tip:

Location Bottom sirloin
Flavour Rich and beefy
Texture Tender
Cooking Methods Grilling, roasting, or smoking
Popular Dishes Tri-tip steak, tri-tip roast
Serving Suggestions Sliced thinly for sandwiches or served with mashed potatoes and vegetables

The Tri-Tip is a versatile cut that can be prepared in various ways, making it a favourite among beef enthusiasts. Whether you're grilling it for a succulent steak or slow-roasting it for a tender roast, the Tri-Tip is certain to impress with its robust flavour and tender texture.

Bavette: The cut that proves beef can be both tender and tough, just like your love life.


The bavette is a popular beef cut in the UK known for its rich flavour and tenderness. It is also referred to as flank steak and is taken from the abdominal muscles of the cow. When cooked properly, it is juicy and has a great texture. Bavette is often used in dishes like steak frites or served with a flavoursome marinade for grilling. It is a versatile cut that can be cooked quickly on high heat or slow-cooked for a more tender result. Its popularity has been growing in recent years as more people discover its delicious taste and cooking potential.

Note: The following is a true history about the bavette cut:

The bavette cut originally gained popularity in France where it is commonly used in classic dishes like steak frites and bavette à l'échalote. It was also a favourite cut among butchers and butchers' families due to its affordability and rich flavour. Over time, its popularity spread to other countries, including the UK, where it is now enjoyed by meat lovers and chefs alike. Today, the bavette continues to be appreciated for its unique taste and versatility in various cuisines.

Onglet: When your taste buds crave a meaty adventure, this flavorful and tender cut will take them on a rollercoaster ride of deliciousness.


Tab, also known as hanger steak, is a flavoursome and tender cut of beef that is popular in the UK. It is taken from the diaphragm of the cow and has a rich, beefy flavour. Tab is best cooked quickly over high heat, such as grilling or pan-searing, to maintain its tenderness. It is often marinated to enhance its flavour and can be served with a variety of sauces and accompaniments. When choosing tab, look for well-marbled cuts and ensure it is cooked to medium-rare for the best results. Enjoy this delicious cut of beef in dishes such as steak fries or in tacos.

Unlock the secrets to perfectly cooked beef cuts with these expert cooking techniques and recommendations.

Cooking Techniques and Recommendations for Each Beef Cut

When it comes to cooking beef, different cuts require different cooking techniques to achieve the best flavour and tenderness. Here are some cooking techniques and recommendations for each type of beef cut:

Ribeye: Grill or pan-sear for a juicy and flavoursome steak. Tenderloin: Roast or grill for a tender and buttery texture. Chuck roast: Slow-cook or braise for a tender and flavoursome pot roast. Brisket: Smoke or braise slowly for tender and moist BBQ. Short ribs: Braise or slow-cook to render the marbled fat and achieve fork-tender meat. Flank steak: Marinate and grill quickly over high heat for a delicious and tender steak.

By using the appropriate cooking technique for each beef cut, you can bring out the best qualities in the meat and create a memorable dining experience.

Choosing the Best Beef Cut for Your Dish

When choosing the best beef cut for your dish, there are several factors to consider. These include the tenderness and flavour of the cut, as well as the cooking method you plan to use. Here are some options to consider:

  1. Ribeye: This cut is known for its marbling and tenderness, making it perfect for grilling or pan-searing.
  2. Tenderloin: As the most tender cut, the tenderloin is great for roasting or grilling. It is often used for fillet steak.
  3. Sirloin: The sirloin offers a balance of tenderness and flavour, and can be grilled or used in stir-fries.
  4. Chuck roast: This cut is ideal for slow cooking or braising to achieve tender results.
  5. Brisket: Brisket is often cooked low and slow, making it perfect for smoking or braising.

Consider these options when choosing the best beef cut for your dish based on your desired tenderness, flavour, and cooking method.

Some Facts About Beef Cuts:

  • ✅ Beef cuts are divided into primal cuts and further broken down into subprimals and individual retail cuts. (Source: The Spruce Eats)
  • ✅ The beef chuck, which comes from the forequarter, produces tough but flavorful cuts of meat, such as beef stew or pot roast. (Source: The Spruce Eats)
  • ✅ The beef rib primal cut is used for premium cuts like standing rib roast and ribeye steak, known for their tenderness. (Source: The Spruce Eats)
  • ✅ Beef plate primal includes cuts like short ribs and skirt steak, which are flavorful and ideal for braising or cooking quickly over high heat, respectively. (Source: The Spruce Eats)
  • ✅ Beef brisket, although tough, becomes tender and flavorful when cooked correctly, making it popular for barbecue, corned beef, or pastrami. (Source: The Spruce Eats)

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the different cuts of beef and where do they come from on the cow?

Beef is divided into primal cuts, which are then further broken down into subprimals and individual retail cuts. The forequarter and hindquarter are the two main sections of a side of beef, with the forequarter consisting of the neck, shoulder blade, and upper arm.


What are the best cooking methods for beef chuck?

Beef chuck produces tough but flavorful cuts of meat. It is good for braised dishes like beef stew or pot roast, as well as for making ground beef. The beef chuck also contains the tender longissimus dorsi muscle, which is used for rib-eye steaks.


Which cuts come from the beef rib primal and how can they be cooked?

The beef rib primal cut is used for standing rib roast, ribeye steak, and entrecôte. These cuts are already tender and can be cooked using dry-heat methods. The lower parts of the ribs, whether attributed to the rib primal or the plate primal, are where beef short ribs come from.


What is the recommended cooking method for skirt steak?

Skirt steak is flavorful and should be cooked quickly over high heat, but sliced against the grain to avoid chewiness.


How should beef brisket be cooked to achieve tenderness?

Beef brisket is a tough but flavorful cut of meat that needs to be cooked properly. It is moderately fatty, which helps tenderize it when cooked correctly.


What is the purpose of beef cut posters and who are they designed for?

Beef cut posters are effective tools for learning about different cuts of beef, their location on the carcass, and the recommended cooking methods. They are designed for both butchers, who have access to a chart that includes sub-primal cuts, cooking methods, and lean designations, and foodservice professionals, who can reference a chart with IMPS/NAMP numbers and order specifications.