Shopping for meat can be confusing. In addition to deciding what cut of meat you want, you also have to wade through a host of classifications like grass-fed, organic, free-range, and more. What does it all mean? Check out this handy guide, so you’ll be in the know next time you go.
- Grass-fed: This designation means that the cattle were raised on grass and hay, though it may not have been exclusively that way. Grass is a more natural option for cattle because their stomachs can more easily digest grass than grain, which makes grass-feeding a more natural and humane way to raise them. Grass-fed beef is leaner than grain-fed, and there’s a slight difference in flavor, with grass-fed slightly gamier. When preparing grass-fed beef, cook it no more than medium-done, because it’s leaner. Grass-fed beef is higher in healthy omega 3 fatty acids, beta carotene, and vitamin E, but there are currently no regulations regarding the use of the term.
- Grain-finished: Cattle that are grass-finished are raised on grass for the first six months, but then fattened on grain, typically corn or soybeans, prior to slaughter. These cattle gain weight quickly and have more marbling than grass-fed beef. About 85 percent of beef sold in the United States falls into this category, so if the label doesn’t say grass-fed, the cow was probably grain-finished.
- Organic: This is a legally defined term, so it is governed by strict rules. There are regular inspections to verify that meat labeled organic is being produced without synthetic fertilizer, hormones, antibiotics, pesticides, irradiation, or genetically modified ingredients. However, organic doesn’t mean that the animals were grass-fed or pasture-raised, and organic cattle can be fed grain as long as it’s organically grown. Organic meats pose the lowest risk of mad cow disease because organic rules forbid feeding animal byproducts to other animals.
- Natural: Producers of conventionally raised animals are permitted to use the label “natural” as long as their product doesn’t contain chemical preservatives, artificial color or flavor, or any other artificial ingredient. By this definition, though, all fresh meat is natural. Much natural beef is raised sustainably, but there’s no way to know for sure because there’s no certification or inspection.
- Pastured: This doesn’t apply to beef but is permitted for pork and poultry products, as long as the animals have been raised on pasture. Swine and poultry can’t live on grass alone, because they’re omnivores, so this isn’t the same thing as grass-fed.
If you’re looking for high–quality cuts of meat, head to R&R Quality Meats and Seafood to check out our selection. At R&R Quality Meats & Seafood, you’ll always find fresh, premium meats and seafood, sourced from trusted providers. Locally owned and operated, we’ve been serving the Redding, California community since 1971, providing high-quality meats and seafood along with friendly, personalized customer service. To learn more, give us a call at (530) 241-7770 or contact us through our website.
Low-carb diets have been around for decades. One of the latest iterations is the ketogenic diet, or keto for short. Under this plan, dieters restrict their carbohydrate intake and replace it with fat. The idea is to force the body to burn fat reserves rather getting energy from carbs. The resulting metabolic state, called ketosis, results in weight loss.
Use the information here to help you decide if keto could be right for you.
Benefits of Ketogenic Diets
- Weight loss: The biggest reason people start a ketogenic diet is to lose weight. It’s ideal for people hoping to drop pounds. Keto is less suitable for athletes and bodybuilders.
- Treatment for metabolic dysfunction: Keto largely targets harmful abdominal fat, which is beneficial for reaching your target weight and treating metabolic dysfunction so common in the West today.
- Diabetes treatment: The keto diet helps you lose excess fat, which is closely tied to type 2 diabetes. It also helps lower insulin and blood sugar levels. In many cases, people with type 2 diabetes end up reducing or going off their medications entirely thanks to the effects of keto.
- Heart health: The ketogenic diet reduces many risk factors for heart disease, including body fat, triglycerides, cholesterol levels and blood pressure.
- Brain health: People with Alzheimer’s disease, epilepsy and brain injuries can benefit from the keto diet because it converts fat into ketones, supplying energy to the brain in the process.
What to Eat on the Keto Diet
If you’re interested in enjoying the benefits of keto, you must understand which foods to eat and which to avoid. In general, any high-protein, high-fat food is acceptable. Here are some examples of what to eat on the keto diet:
- Meat, including beef, pork, poultry and lamb in all their varieties
- Fatty fish, such as salmon, tuna, trout and mackerel
- Animal-derived products, including eggs, butter and cheese
- Plant fats, such as nuts, seeds, olive oil and avocados
- Low-carb vegetables, such as tomatoes, onions, peppers and most green veggies
Then, you should cut out as many carbohydrates as possible. Avoid eating the following when you’re on a ketogenic diet:
- Grains, including bread, rice and pasta
- Fruit, except for small servings of berries
- Beans and legumes, such as lentils, chickpeas and kidney beans
- Root vegetables, including carrots, potatoes and yams
- Alcohol, including wine, beer and hard liquor
- Sugary food, such as soda, juice, candy and desserts
If you decide to try the keto diet, be sure to talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits. Then, stock up on high-quality meat to facilitate your diet. You can find all the tender and juicy cuts you’re looking for at R&R Quality Meats & Seafood. We have been serving up fresh and frozen steak, sausage, bacon, chicken and turkey since 1971. To learn more about our products, or to ask questions, please visit us in Redding, CA or call us at (530) 241-7770.
So, you’ve found a great steak recipe, and now you’re eager to fire up the grill. Before you get cooking, you need to pick the right piece of meat. Here’s how to tell which cut of steak is best.
It’s important to consider the thickness of the meat with just about any cut of steak. Thinner cuts can turn out fine, but they’re more difficult to master. Only one minute too long in the oven or on the grill could render your steak tough and hard to chew.
Thicker steaks give you more leeway, making it easier to achieve the perfect grill marks without overcooking the meat. Shop for steaks that are at least one-inch thick, no matter your cooking method.
The white lines running through a cut of steak are called marbling, another fancy name for “fat.” It’s a common mistake to think you don’t want fat in your steak. However, a fair amount of marbling will give your steak a tender, juicy flavor. As it cooks, the marbling breaks down, leaving the perfect texture and taste behind.
Of course, you don’t want a fatty steak, either. Look for thin, even lines of marbling throughout the cut rather than chunks of fat. You can also trim white areas from the edges if you prefer.
Knowing what cut to look for is the most important part of telling which steak is best. Some of our favorite cuts include:
- T-bone: This is one of the most popular cuts at steakhouses because it comes with two steaks in one: tenderloin on one side and strip steak on the other. Of course, this also makes it trickier to cook properly.
- Porterhouse: This larger, slightly less tender version of a T-bone steak delivers savory flavors when cooked correctly. It also takes some mastery because of the two-steaks-in-one characteristic.
- Ribeye: This cut comes with excellent marbling for superior flavor and tenderness. You can find bone-in and boneless versions, both of which are delicious.
- Filet mignon: The royal member of the steak family, filet mignon comes from a small area of the tenderloin close to the ribs, making it extremely
- Top sirloin: Because this cut of steak originates from a more muscular part of the animal, it turns out best when served rare or medium-rare.
- Strip steak: This cut comes from the short loin behind the ribs, a large area of the animal that also facilitates T-bone and porterhouse steaks. It’s the most affordable cut on this list of favorites.
With so many types of steak to choose from, you might feel overwhelmed by your options. Fortunately, you can receive the personalized advice you need from R&R Quality Meats & Seafood. Our retail location in Redding, CA is the perfect place to browse a wide selection of USDA Certified organic beef in all your favorite cuts. If you have any questions, or you want to learn more, please contact us at (530) 241-7770 today.
If you’ve never cooked with lamb before, you may feel overwhelmed when your significant other requests it for dinner. Don’t worry – cooking with lamb is easy, and with recipes ranging from extremely elegant to completely comforting, you’re sure to find just the right one for you. Here are some of our favorite lamb recipes to try.
- Mediterranean rack of lamb: For something elegant on a special occasion, give this recipe a try. The people you serve dinner to will never guess how easy it was to make! If you’re inexperienced cooking with lamb, this is a great place to start.
- Lamb shoulder with citrus-fennel salad: It’s hard to beat slow-roasted lamb shoulder. Don’t be intimidated by the five-hour cook time – all that means is that you get to enjoy the aroma of roasting meat all afternoon.
- Lamb pitas with yogurt sauce: This Greek gyro-inspired recipe features deliciously spiced lamb stew meat with sliced tomato and cucumber. It’s easy to whip up in the slow cooker, and the meat freezes well if you want to make a large batch.
- Lamb-fry: This simple stir-fry makes for a light and flavorful meal, ideally served with Indian flatbread. Spices such as garlic, ginger, coriander, cumin, turmeric, cinnamon and cloves bring out the best in your leg of lamb.
- Kashmiri lamb: Kashmiri cuisine combines fruits and nuts from the region with the cooking style of the Moghuls. This rich, hearty stew dish pairs beautifully with steamed rice or egg noodles.
- Lamb and winter squash soup: This flavorful dish is perfect for a chilly day. There are many different steps to this recipe, including marinating overnight, so be sure to plan ahead. If you can’t find the delicata squash called for in this recipe, acorn or butternut will work just fine.
- Grilled lamb chops: You can’t have a list of lamb recipes without lamb chop! This spin on an old classic features a tangy pomegranate-port reduction drizzled on top for a flavorful finish to every bite.
- Greek pasta bake: Combine ground beef and ground lamb with pasta for non-traditional comfort food you’ll make again and again. The tang of lemon and herbs combines wonderfully with the subtle presence of cinnamon.
- Lamb meatballs with raisin pesto: A pound of ground lamb, a handful of raisins, Greek yogurt and some herbs are all you need to make the most rewarding meatballs you have ever had.
With these great recipes to choose from, you should have everything you need to cook up a memorable lamb dish for your family. For access to tender, juicy cuts of meat, check out the selection at R&R Quality Meats & Seafood. We have a wonderful selection of marinated and seasoned meats to get your recipe started. To learn more about our products, or to ask questions, please visit us in Redding, CA or call us at (530) 241-7770.
One of the biggest hurdles of losing weight is the desire to eat great-tasting food. Whether you’re on a specific diet or you simply want to reduce your carbohydrate intake to lose weight, the following meals will help you realize just how easy and tasty low-carb eating can be.
- Scrambled eggs and veggies: Enjoy this meal for breakfast or lunch. It’s rich in protein and healthy fat to keep you going. Include whatever vegetables you prefer, including tomatoes, onion, spinach or asparagus.
- Broccoli and cheese mini omelets: When you have a little extra time on the weekend, whip up a batch of mini omelets. Single servings baked in muffin tins are perfect for grab-and-go breakfasts on hectic mornings.
- Ground beef and bell peppers: All you need for a delicious low-carb meal is ground beef, bell pepper, onion, spinach, and your preferred spices. Sauté these together in a pan for lunch or dinner in a jiffy. Make two servings for a quick meal later.
- Chicken lettuce wraps: The tangy flavors of chili garlic sauce and soy sauce really make this recipe special. The wraps are also paleo-approved if you’re on this specific diet.
- Moroccan meatballs: These mouthwatering delights are made with lamb and essential Moroccan spices like paprika and The roasted pistachio garnish rounds out the dish to perfection.
- BLT chicken salad: The next time you’re craving a bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich, simply add the essential ingredients to a salad, skipping the bread to keep it low-carb. The addition of grilled chicken breast makes this meal even more delicious and filling.
- Enchilada chicken stew: For another twist on a traditionally carb-filled meal, slow cook everything you need for chicken enchiladas by following this recipe. With plenty of sauce, you can eat it as a hearty stew instead of in tortillas.
- Enchilada chicken mango salad: Do you have some leftover chicken from the stew recipe listed above? Add this to a bowl of shredded romaine and top it with diced mango and half of an avocado to make an easy, hearty, low-carb lunch.
- Herb crusted salmon: Salmon is among the healthiest seafood out there. This simple recipe rivals similar meals you’ll find at 5-star restaurants – and it only takes 20 minutes to make!
- No-bun hamburgers: Who doesn’t love a good burger? If you’re eating low-carb, the bun can throw off your goals. Thankfully, you can simply whip up a few beef patties and wrap them in butter lettuce to satisfy your cravings without cheating on your diet.
Most of the tastiest low-carb meals are meat-based. If you’re looking for all-natural chicken, wild-caught salmon and 100% grass-fed beef to include in your meals, look no further than R&R Quality Meats & Seafood. We have been serving up juicy and tender cuts of meat to our customers in Redding, CA since 1971. To learn more about our products, or to place an order, please contact us at (530) 241-7770.
Are you looking to make a healthy change in your life? How about adding salmon to the menu? The American Heart Association recommends eating fish – particularly fatty fish like salmon – at least two times per week. One serving of salmon is 3.5 ounces or about 3/4 cup. Here are seven health benefits of salmon you will enjoy if you follow the AHA’s advice.
- High in omega-3 fatty acids: Salmon is the number one source of omega-3s, a fatty acid that promotes a healthy heart, brain, liver, eyes, joints and Your body can’t create omega-3fats, so you must get them from your diet, such as by eating 2 ounces of salmon every day.
- Good source of protein: Your body needs protein to build muscle, maintain muscle mass during weight loss and heal after injury. Salmon boasts an impressive 22 to 25 grams of protein per 3.5-ounce serving.
- Loaded with potassium: Most people think bananas are the best source of potassium, but salmon actually contains more! Potassium helps regulate your blood pressure and reduces the risk of stroke.
- Rich in B vitamins: The B vitamins found in salmon are involved in several critical bodily functions, including creating and repairing DNA, converting food into energy, and reducing inflammation. Even people in developed countries can become deficient in one or more B vitamins. Eating salmon can help prevent this.
- Packed with astaxanthin: This powerful antioxidant is what gives salmon its signature pink color. Studies show that astaxanthin reduces bad LDL cholesterol and raises good HDL cholesterol, which could reduce your risk of heart disease. It also works with omega-3s to protect the brain and nervous system from harmful inflammation.
- Low in mercury: There’s one catch to eating fish – many types may contain high levels of mercury and other environmental contaminants. Fish with the highest potential of mercury contamination include swordfish, king mackerel, tilefish and Fortunately, salmon ranks among the fish that typically have lower mercury levels. The AHA states that, in most cases, the health benefits of salmon far outweigh the potential risks of mercury consumption.
- Delicious and versatile: The best part about salmon is that you can appreciate all the health benefits it offers while enjoying its tasty flavor. If you like seafood, odds are you’ll like salmon. It has a less “fishy” taste than sardines and mackerel, and you can serve it in numerous ways – steamed, grilled, smoked, sautéed, baked, or raw in sushi and sashimi meals.
Now that you know these health benefits of salmon, you may be eager to start adding more of this fatty fish to your weekly diet. R&R Quality Meats & Seafood is the leading source of wild-caught salmon in Redding, CA. We have the North State’s largest seafood display and selection for you to browse. Please contact us at (530) 241-7770 today to learn more about our products or to place an order.
Beer and St. Patrick’s Day go together like bacon and eggs, like peanut butter and jelly – like corned beef and cabbage! The question is what beer goes best with the Irish food you plan to serve on the holiday? Use these pairing ideas to create the perfect suds-fueled celebration.
Corned Beef and Cabbage
It just isn’t St. Patrick’s Day without a plate full of corned beef and cabbage. If you haven’t tried it before, make this the year! A traditional or dry Irish stout is the obvious beer pairing for this meal, but it’s not your only option. If you’re not a fan of stouts, try a Scottish ale or Irish red ale instead. These pairings are a great way to highlight the salty beef and sweet carrots in this meal.
Irish Soda Bread
This traditional dish is tasty on its own or as a side dish. Tea is the traditional drink used to wash down the dense, somewhat dry texture of Irish soda bread, but if you want something sudsy, an Irish lager should suit your fancy. The graham cracker-like flavor of this single malt beer matches the crust of the bread perfectly.
Irish Beef Stew
The dark brown gravy, chunks of steak, and hearty pieces of carrot and potato make this the leader of Irish comfort food. Lightweight beers with a hint of roasted malt and sweet caramel pair best with this dish. To emphasize the vegetables, try English mild or Scottish ale. To bring out the flavor of the meat, go with dry Irish stout.
Irish Lamb Stew
Similar to beef stew, this Irish classic incorporates boneless lamb shoulder and even bacon in some recipes. Irish red ales and English browns are the ideal options for bringing out the flavor of both the meat and the vegetables in this dish. Stouts are also a safe bet.
This creamy, carb-forward dish pairs best with Irish lager. The bitterness and hoppy flavors are modest in this drink, allowing you to clear your palate between bites without cluttering up the pairing.
Made with potatoes, vegetables, and ground beef, lamb or turkey, shepherd’s pie is another traditional comfort food that should adorn your dinner table this St. Patrick’s Day. Malty and mildly sweet red ales make for the ideal pairing. They have a caramel flavor up front and a subtle roast on the way out that’s just right for washing down a bite of potatoes and ground meat.
Whether corned beef, steak, turkey or lamb is on the menu this St. Patrick’s Day, R&R Quality Meats & Seafood has you covered. We stock a wide array of flavorful cuts with no hormones or antibiotics ever. Feel free to call us at (530) 241-7770 or visit our location in Redding, CA to learn more about our products or pick up the perfect meat for your Irish feast.
A slow cooker is a kitchen staple for anyone who wants to enjoy tender pot roast, tasty winter stews or easy game-day dips. If you’re new to the concept of cooking meat slowly, follow these tips to ensure proper food safety and delicious results.
- Choose the right cut: Slow cookers are perfect for producing succulent meals from tougher, less expensive cuts such as chuck roast, pork shoulder and short ribs. Just keep in mind that fattier cuts tend to remain juicy while leaner meats may dry out. You can combat this by adding an inch of water at the bottom of the slow cooker.
- Start with a clean area. Wipe the counter and make sure all utensils, cutting boards and the slow cooker itself are clean and ready to go. Don’t forget to wash your hands as well.
- Delay taking perishables out of the fridge. Bacteria multiply quickly at room temperature. To help prevent food poisoning, keep meat, cheese, vegetables and other perishables refrigerated until it’s time to add them to the slow cooker.
- Keep meat and vegetables separate. To avoid cross-contamination, use a different knife and cutting board to prepare raw meat and veggies.
- Defrost meat before slow cooking it. Because slow cookers operate at relatively low temperatures of about 170 to 280 degrees F, it takes a while for frozen meat to thaw. This could leave it in the danger zone of 40 to 140 degrees F long enough to harbor dangerous bacteria growth. To keep your food safe to eat, thaw meat in the fridge for 24 hours prior to slow-cooking it.
- Know when to brown. Many recipes specifically suggest browning meat on the stove before slow-cooking it. You can always skip this step to save time, but the extra effort rewards you with a caramelized flavor that slow cooking alone can’t achieve.
- Trim the fat. If your goal is to make a healthy meal with silky gravy, remove excess fat and skin from your meat and poultry before throwing in the slow cooker.
- Layer properly. Let your slow cooker do all the work by loading it with root vegetables and meat. For the best results, layer carrots and potatoes on the bottom, and pile meat on top. To ensure everything cooks thoroughly, don’t fill the slow cooker more than two-thirds full.
- Store leftovers safely. It’s easy to cook in bulk when you use a slow cooker, providing you with leftovers for later in the week. For proper food safety, make sure you refrigerate food within two hours of turning off the slow cooker. Shallow containers are best because they help food reach cooler temperatures faster. Eat or freeze any leftovers within seven days.
Stock up on the perfect cuts of meat for your slow cooker at R&R Quality Meats & Seafood. To learn more about us, please visit our website or call our retail location in Redding, CA at (530) 241-7770.
Want to impress your significant other with your cooking skills this Valentine’s Day? Treat him or her to a romantic night in by preparing a special home-cooked meal. Here are some recipes to inspire you.
- Steakhouse sheet pan dinner for two: Enjoy a steakhouse meal without the steakhouse price. This surf-and-turf recipe combines all your favorites – New York strip steak, jumbo shrimp and potatoes – into an easy-to-prepare, quick-to-clean-up feast for two.
- Slow cooker lemon garlic roast chicken: Who knew a 3-pound chicken, some spices and eight hours in the slow cooker could produce such delectable results? This recipe also includes instructions for making gravy from the juices. Since it serves six, you and your loved one can plan on leftovers later in the week.
- Lasagna rolls: If you and your significant other love lasagna, but you don’t want to make 12 servings for Valentine’s Day dinner, try this recipe. Lasagna rolls have the same taste as the traditional dish, but with fewer ingredients and less prep time.
- Shrimp scampi linguine: This romantic pasta dish fetches a high price at restaurants, but you can make it yourself without breaking the bank. The recipe adds a dash of red pepper for a little extra heat on your Valentine’s Day date.
- Chicken cordon bleu: Any recipe with a French word in the title is bound to be romantic. This easy recipe combines chicken breast and sliced ham for a match made in heaven. For the best results, use large chicken breasts to make them easier to roll. The resulting pinwheels will look beautiful on your dinner plate.
- Beef stroganoff: This hearty winter meal is perfect for Valentine’s Day dinner! The trick to achieving a savory, tangy stroganoff is to sear the beef until the edges caramelize. A perfectly thickened sauce and tender egg noodles round out the recipe for a taste you and your date will love.
- Honey garlic glazed salmon: Looking for a sweet and salty way to serve salmon on Valentine’s Day? Try this recipe! It’s easy enough for a beginning chef to prepare, yet it’s sure to leave a lasting impression on your loved one.
- Garlic herb prime rib roast: Melt-in-your-mouth prime rib is only enhanced by the buttery, garlicky rub found in this recipe. Your date will swoon over the crispy, golden crust and tender, juicy meat of an expertly prepared roast. With the tips and side dishes included in this recipe, you’ll have everything you need for the ideal Valentine’s Day dinner.
No matter which meal sounds the most appealing to you and your significant other, you can find the cuts of meat you need at R&R Quality Meats & Seafood. We have been serving up fresh and frozen beef, poultry, shrimp, salmon and more since 1971. To learn more about us, please visit our website or call our retail location in Redding, CA at (530) 241-7770.
Food is one of the most important aspects of Chinese New Year, which takes place this year on February 5. The date fluctuates from January 21 to February 20 based on the lunar calendar, which is why it’s also called Lunar New Year.
Chinese New Year is the ideal time to explore foods from the East, whether you have Asian ancestry or you want to introduce your family to foods from around the world. 2019 is the year of the Pig, which gives you the perfect excuse to serve up pork in all its varieties. Here are some modern Asian-inspired recipes you might want to include in your feast this year.
- Braised pork spare ribs: Want a savory, fall-off-the-bone pork recipe? These ribs call for traditional Asian techniques – including blanching the meat instead of braising it – with juicy, tender results. This dish is traditionally served over steamed rice, though it also pairs wonderfully with carrots, potatoes and green beans.
- Chinese lion’s head pork meatballs: In China, pork meatballs are called lion’s head. These are easy to cook in large batches and deliver tender, juicy bites with a savory taste. Eating these with fluffy white rice is just as addicting as a burger and fries!
- Chinese BBQ Char Siu: This combines Western BBQ with Chinese culture for a treat the whole family is sure to love. Delicious Chinese BBQ relies on three things – the perfect cut of meat, a well-balanced marinade and the proper roasting technique. This recipe teaches you about all three.
- Slow roasted crispy pork belly: Called Siu Yuk in China, this pork recipe is crispy on the outside, juicy on the inside, for a melt-in-your-mouth treat that’s easier to make than you think! The key is to marinate the meat overnight, score the skin instead of piercing it, and roast the pork low and slow.
- Pork dumplings: Chinese dumplings are made with fresh dough and filled with meat, cabbage and You can make your own dumpling dough from scratch, or you can skip that step and use store-bought dumpling wrappers. Either way, expect these bite-size treats to turn out juicy, tender and delicious, even without a dipping sauce.
- Braised pork feet: Want to be adventurous? Try this recipe, which turns less-than-palatable pig’s feet into moist, flavorful meat in a sweet and savory sauce. You can cut down on the cooking time by using a pressure cooker, but a wok or Dutch oven is a suitable alternative.
If you decide to make one or more of these Chinese New Year recipes to celebrate the year of the Pig, you can find all the pork you need at R&R Quality Meats & Seafood. We have been serving up fresh and frozen pork products since 1971. For more information, or to ask a question, please visit our Redding, CA location or call us at (530) 241-7770.