How to Tell Which Cut of Steak is Best

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.

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